Rigged studding sails on the fore-mast today. Studding sails or st’n’s’ls are extra sails set in light airs to add sail area and thus a little extra speed running down wind. These lovely sails date from clippers ship days and before. The breeze was finally light enough to need them today, so anyone who wanted to help got to spend a couple of happy hours aloft in the sunshine helping to rig them up: it was beautiful working high in the rig, the ship small below and surrounded by endless cobalt blue sky with flying fish skidding here and there over the small seas. St’n’s’ls are set ‘flying’ from deck, which is a neat bit of seamanship, and it shows just how far our crew have come that they can competently manage this on top of all of our usual sails. The sails have the added advantage of looking magnificent. In these conditions they ad maybe half a knot. That’s 12 miles a day, which can add up on a long passage.
SHIP’S WORK: Send up st’n’s’l gear: run aloft to lash blocks for the halyards and tacks, send up the st’n’s’l booms and lash them outboard so they rest in the irons that are fixed to the yards for that purpose, send messenger lines down to reeve off the lines themselves and run the working ends down to deck and the dead-ends to belaying pins on the foreward fife rail. Then the sails are bent onto bamboo poles, the halyards, sheets and tacks are hitched on and the sails are ready to be set, from the focslehead, t’gallant st’n’s’l first. This afternoon we had a workshop to give each watch practice at striking and setting the new sails, and all did very well.
FROM: Mindelo, Sāo Vicente, Cape Verde
TOWARDS: The West Indies
TIME ZONE: ZD+3
NOON POSITION: 16°09.2’N /053°35.7’W
DAYS RUN: 74nm
PASSAGE LOG: 1,745nm
DISTANCE REMAINING: 422nm
COURSE AND SPEED: West (CMGT 282°T)
WIND: Force 2, East x North
WEATHER: 3/8 cloud cover (cumulus), air temp 80F (27°C), barometer reading 1018 millibars, visibility good
SWELL HEIGHT & DIRECTION: approx 2-3 feet, East by North SAILS SET: All square sails to the royals, fore lower, topmast and t’gallant studdingsails, fore topmast staysail, inner jib, outer jib, main topmast staysail, main t’gallant staysail; braced up a point on the port tack under a cloud of canvas.