Call for Newsletter Director (October 2017)

 SSSF Newsletter Director Volunteer Wanted

Do you enjoy the Mainsheet, learning about the upcoming Club events, finding yourself and friends in photos of past months sails, socials, and parties, reading the Commodore’s monthly message, the reviews of pasts events, and articles submitted by other members? Many of our members do and would like the publication to continue.
There’s a vacancy on the 2018 Board for Sailing Singles of South Florida and we’re looking for a volunteer to be our Newsletter Director, responsible for producing the Club’s monthly publication.
Are you available to work on a monthly project at your own pace, to coordinate input from other Club Directors, to encourage members to submit informative articles and photographs of past events?
Help us document and publicize Club events ~ Click here to contact Lynette Beal, Chairperson of the SSSF Nominating Committee
 Volunteer to be our 2018 SSSF Newsletter Director!

Of Interest to Captains (October 2017)


by Brian Brown

That old expression…an ounce of protection is worth a pound of cure is absolutely true.  However in the case of your boat’s lines you better ante up up:  An ounce of prevention is worth a ton of cure; your lines could be tasked to hold a ton of weight in a millisecond.  A worn or old line could be life threatening to you, your family and friends.  Its one thing to be docked, another when you’re rolling in ten foot seas and a frayed line splits and something comes loose.

Most people take ropes for granted—did I say that?—errrr…you’d better call them LINES if you’re crew on a boat.  (Don’t ever say ropes or a boater will know you’re a newbie.)  Lines do everything from keep your boat docked to hoisting your sails, rescuing a crew member and more.  To many people lines are replaceable and frequently overlooked…needing not to be looked after properly.  The use of lines—worn or until they break–is a common practice.  For safety’s sake, it’s better to regularly inspect, maintain and replace lines.

Let’s talk about reconditioning and line maintenance first.  Keeping your lines clean and salt water free will extend their life.  OK, so you say that’s impossible when you’re blue boating in the ocean, but just an hour or so spent maintaining your lines will change your mind.

Here’s a great trick for helping maintain lines…wash them in your washing machine.  Use normal laundry detergent but also throw in liquid fabric softener.  Yes…you’ll find that fabric softener—which is liquid wax—will soften the “feel” of the lines almost returning them to their “original” soft and pliable condition.   Next you’re probably asking…”won’t the wax allow for slippage?”  The answer is no.  Try it Mikee, you’ll like it!  You won’t believe the feel of the “hand” returns to your lines…it will be like, wow, they went from stiff and old to feeling almost brand new.  And for you laundry fanatics, please don’t put them in the dryer.

When you can, keep your lines inside and out of the sun.  In most cases both salt water and the sun will break down your lines (it’s a chemical reaction).  After every outing its best to hose down your lines inspecting them for fraying.

Next, let’s talk about dock lines and address chaffing…not the underware type.  Every boat in “resting” mode has to have some sort of line to keep it in position.  Whether that’s at a dock or on a mooring, these applications demand different types of lines.

When your boat is away from its regular slip or mooring, you need to have some designated nylon lines aboard, preferably with spliced eyes, ready for use when you tie up somewhere. We call these transient dock lines.  The eye in the end is easily passed around a cleat or piling by someone on the dock and the bitter end is adjusted on board. There are dozens of combinations of diameters and lengths.

Permanent dock lines are also made of nylon, but differ from transient dock lines in several ways.  First, they must be protected from chafe, the enemy of all lines in constant use. This calls for leather, rubber or fabric chafe gear where the line passes through the chocks, and possibly a chafe sleeve on the eye where it goes around the cleat on deck.  At the dock, lines should be protected from chafe using eye splices and shackles if the dock has rings, or eye splices and short lengths of chain if the dock has cleats.  Permanent dock lines should be cut to fit the particular boat in the slip.

Dock lines should be made from nylon, a synthetic fiber that has a superior combination of strength and stretch.  Nylon is strong (although it shrinks and loses about 10-15% of its strength when wet), durable, and stretchy (three-strand nylon stretches up to 16% of its length when loaded to 15% of its breaking strength), so it absorbs shocks.  Low-stretch lines, like old worn-out polyester double braid used for sailboat running rigging, are less desirable because they transmit shocks from waves, loading up and loosening dock cleats and your boat’s deck hardware. There are three main types of rope construction for dock lines:   three-strand, double braid and Mega Braid.

Three-strand line has a knobby finish, is easy to splice and is the most affordable.  Double braid is somewhat stronger for a given size, has about half of three-strand’s stretch, and is available in many colors so you can color-coordinate your dock lines to match the color of your trim or canvas.

Mega Braid is a 12-strand single braid.  Single braids are very supple and limp, so they are easy to coil and handle.  Mega Braid is frequently the choice for boats above 70′ and it’s harder to splice.

Many boaters will want lines which match their canvas work, or trim color.   Double braided dock lines are available in six colors plus white and white/gold.  Its recommended that 1/8″ of line diameter for every nine feet of boat length.  Larger lines will wear longer but stretch less.

Boat Length
Up to 27′ use 3/8″
28′ to 31′ use 7/16″
32′-36′ use ½”
37′-45′ use 5/8″
46′-54′ use ¾”
55′-63′ use 7/8″
64′-72′ use 1″ or more

Last, transient dock lines should be about 2/3 of the boat’s length when used on the bow and stern.  Spring lines should be equal to your boat’s length.

Rich Hustins Remembered (August/September)

Celebration of Life for Rich Hustins

By Doug Noble and Gillian O’Neill

On August 30th our friend Rich Hustins passed away as a result of a car accident. Rich was an SSSF Captain from 2003 to 2017.

There’s music in the heavens tonight as our dear friend, long-time SSSF Captain and Club DJ will be dancing with the Angels.


On September 28th at Flip-Flops, many past and current members of Sailing Singles gathered along with some of Rich’s family members, at a celebration of life for Rich, hosted by long time friend Marie Alcazar, to share memories and express their grief at his untimely death.

Ken Bloemker was master of ceremonies.  He related Rich’s history in the Navy as a nuclear engineer, and told us quite a few humorous stories of their friendship and shared boating experiences. Many other captains who were present had similar connections with Rich, including helping with boats and visits to the VA when one or another needed help.  It was great to see so many old friends show up – even from out of state – to celebrate Rich’s life.

His son, Dana, was present along with other family members, and described growing up with “Dad” Rich. Dana shared many happy memories of his father during their early years together.

Max Goldstein prepared a slide show of photographs going back to the time when Rich first joined the club and the images bought back good memories to all of us who have been members for a long time.

Marie Alcazar read a touching letter, from which I share:

“May the wind always be at your back and a smile always on your face.  Anyone who ever had the chance to meet you was truly blessed.  Your positive attitude was contagious and your outlook on life inspirational. Thanks for always being there for me.  You will always be in my heart.    Good people go only too soon.  Goodbye my dearest friend… til we meet again.”

For many years Rich and Marie owned the Irwin 42 “Tranquility”, and many members enjoyed their hospitality onboard. He received an Outstanding Service Award in 2009 and he and Marie were Co-Captains of the Year in 2012. More recently he purchased a 26 foot Carver named “Rich’s Folly”. Rich was the life and soul of any party he attended. He will be missed by many of his good friends in the club for his sunny good humor, and his love of music which he played for our enjoyment at our Thursday night socials.

Commodore Kelly Dobbs of Sailing Singles presented Dana and the family with a pennant with 8 stars, and performed an 8-bell ceremony which brought tears to many eyes.

Farewell and Fair Winds, Rich.  Thank you  for the time you spent dancing with us on land and at sea.

Some photos from the Celebration of Life at Flip Flops (thanks photographer Gabe Forray -he has many more pics than we have room for here, ask him.).



Welcome (July 2017)

Hello once again, single sailors. It’s time for our look at all that happened in July, and what’s ahead.

In From The Helm, Capt Kelly reminds us to help clean up after a day on the water.  If we all pitch in, we might get invited back!

We are sad to report the loss of Rudy Sprenger, a long standing member, husband of Arlene and a former SSSF Commodore.

Our featured Captain this month is Fred van Everdingen, new owner of Meridian 2.

Pink Books are available. See Ben at Flip Flops for yours.

Sailing News covers the Cheeseburger raftup, Captains Appreciation day  the upcoming Silly Sunglasses August Raftup, and Peanut island on Labor day weekend.  Our Social News report covers the Beach Party.

And last but not least, Brian Brown has contributed a great article with tips for  Buying A Boat.

On the fence? If you know someone thinking of joining or re-joining SSSF, they can join for thje remainder of 2017 for $60. Click here.

We welcome your feedback. We encourage you to submit for consideration any articles relating to sailing or topics that may be of interest to our fellow members, our deadline is the 20th of each month. Please continue to email us photos you have taken at our events. And we welcome your suggestions for articles.

Gillian O’Neill and Doug Noble,
The Mainsheet Team
Send photos to


From The Helm (July 2017)

From The Helm

by Commodore Kelly Dobbs



So, you have been out sailing with a SSSF Captain. You have rafted up and socialized with SSSF Crew. What a great way to spend the second Saturday of the month. You have had another great sailing experience, good food, conversations, perhaps danced, and made new friends.

The vessel you are on has just left the raft up and is heading back to the dock. (Remember we all return to the dock on the boat we crewed.) You may be winding down, but now is the time to gather your belongings and plan for cleaning the galley and head, floors and cockpit, and bagging the garbage. Don’t forget the fridge; all food brought to the boat should be removed unless the Captain gives the okay to leave it. (Most will not want left-overs). Prepare to assist with docking the boat, coiling and stowing lines, putting on the sail-cover, rinsing the salt water off the deck and any other docking tasks the Captain may have.

Refer to our SSSF Policies & Procedures posted on the website at for Crew & Crew Chief Responsibilities and General Information Regarding Club Sails. Every Crew has a responsibility to help clean and secure the boat after each sail. The Captain has just shared their boat, provided fuel, safety equipment, and shared his or her knowledge to promote sailing. I also encourage you to signup as Deckhands to help show appreciation of our SSSF Captains by spending a Saturday morning cleaning their boat. Deckhand events are posted at our website each month. Help all you can and more to show our Captains how special they are to you and the club.

Full sails and tight sheets.

RIP Rudy Sprenger (July 2017)

Rudy Sprenger, a past Commodore of SSSF, died unexpectedly July 2, 2017. Rudy was a member of SSSF for many years, and met and married his wife Arlene in the club. We send our sincere sympathies to Arlene and their families on their sad loss. A memorial service for Rudy Sprenger will be held on Saturday, September 9, 2017, at 11am in the Sanctuary of Christ Church, 4845 NE 25th Avenue. The following day Sunday September 10, 2017 there will be a flotilla to lay Rudy’s ashes to Rest in the Atlantic Ocean.  Arlene has asked Debbie Hallmark to coordinate the plans for the flotilla.  Please contact Debbie if you wish to participate – see the August 4th email she sent for details.

We will have a retrospective on Rudy in a future issue of The Mainsheet.

Here is a link to Rudy’s obituary in the Sun Sentinel.

Rudy and Arlene at the BBQ in Hugh Birch State Park April 2017

Meet Captain Fred van Everdingen

Meet Captain Fred van Everdingen

by Anne Ekstrom, Contributor

Captain Fred Fred has been around boats for most of his life. His father had a small sailboat and took him out when he was just three, cautioning him to stay on the high side. Of course he had to see what all the fuss was about, and went over to the low side. He didn’t learn to sail that day, but he says he learned to swim in a hurry.

All that took place on the River Maas near Rotterdam in the Netherlands where Fred was born a short time after the end of World War II. Because there was so much unrest in postwar Europe, his parents packed up the family, set sail on the original Queen Elizabeth and moved everyone to the United States.

Fred grew up in New Jersey where he graduated from Hoboken High School. For three summers he lived on a fishing charter boat and worked as a mate. After graduation in 1965, he joined the navy for four years. As the Irving Berlin song goes, instead of the world, he saw the sea, but not leaving the western hemisphere kept him out of harm’s way.

His first assignment was Key West and soon after they sent him to mechanics school in the Great Lakes. Other assignments included a destroyer in Brooklyn where he sailed to Kingston, Jamaica and another in Charleston, SC where he cruised to San Juan, Puerto Rico and Guantanamo Bay. There was also a trip up the Mississippi River. He received more training too, this time in radar and electronics.

In 1969 Fred left the navy, got married, and moved back to New Jersey. He found a home on a lake which led to another succession of boats. He started out with a sailing dinghy, but then moved on to a Sunfish, and eventually a 17’ day sailor. He also had three kids- two boys and a girl.

Fred’s career was moving along as well. He was working with hydraulic machinery, starting out first as a service tech, but then moving on to service manager and later, vice president of the company. The product was plastic packaging material- you know, the frustrating brittle stuff that you need to use an ice pick or a crow bar on to retrieve just about anything you’ve bought in the last 30 years.

Meridian "1"
Meridian “1”, an Irwin 38

In 1995 he got a captain’s license and worked for Sea Tow on and off. He also got a 26’ sailboat and became a live-aboard in Haverstraw, NY on the west bank of the Hudson River. Opportunities to captain other people’s boats came along as well. He took a 60’ Jefferson Motor Yacht down to Jupiter and a 65’ center cockpit Irwin to the Windward Islands and Trinidad and Tobago for a year. It was that experience that persuaded him to get his own 38’ Irwin in 1999.

In 2009, Fred landed in Fort Lauderdale- with his Irwin- on Thanksgiving Day. We met up with him at Lauderdale Grill when he stopped by for a Sailing Singles happy hour. He’s been a member ever since, giving up his single status in 2014 when he married Becky Austin, another club member.

Fred has been an active captain in the club. In addition to numerous day sails, he took members to the Abacos in 2012 and the Exumas in 2013. He’s also participated in SSSF sails to Key West and the Dry Tortugas a couple of times.

After a knee and hip replacement left him less agile, he traded in the Irwin for a Pilgrim tugboat – Meridian2 also around Thanksgiving Day last year. He claims the new boat keeps him from having to run around too much and climb stairs. Fred participated in the Key Largo weekend over Memorial Day. He and Becky look forward to doing the Great Loop one of these summers, but this year they are away on their annual road trip around the country to visit assorted family members.

Meridian 2 by John Konheim
Meridian 2 off Gilberts at the Memorial Day trip to Key Largo


Sailing News (July 2017)

Cheeseburger in Paradise Raft Up

Our July Club Sail & Raftup, Cheeseburger in Paradise, was a great day on the water followed by a raftup where everyone enjoyed: burgers on a warm bun with mustard, onion slice, lettuce and tomato, Heinz 57, french fried potato (chips), and a big kosher pickle! 
Five boats participated in the event:
·        Ryan’s Place – Capt. Debi Hallmark
·        Silver Cloud – Capt. Marijo Beckman
·        The Grand – Capt. Kelly Dobbs
·        Val Hal – Capt. Jay Thomsen

·        Viking Princess – Capt James Bradford

Twenty-five SSSF Members enjoyed great weather, fair winds, and good friends. The sailing objective, first aid at sea, focused on preventing dehydration and recognizing symptoms. Signs of Dehydration: thirst, dry or sticky mouth, dry cool skin, headache, muscle cramps, weakness. Steps should be taken to cool down your body temperature and begin drinking water or sports drinks. Packets of Emergen-C, were passed out to crew to add to their boat bags. Added to a bottle of water, these packets include Vitamin C and Electrolytes to help with hydration.

Our thanks to Gabe Forray for these pics.

Silly Sunglasses Raftup – August 12

 The August SSSF Sail & Raftup, Silly Sunglasses, will be on Saturday, August 12, sail first and then raft up in Lake Sylvia. Login and Register Here.

Save The Date – Sept 2-4, Labor Day Weekend
– Pirates of The Caribbean Peanut Island

Sail to Peanut Island (3-day Extended Sail)  – or –
Drive up to Join us from Riviera Beach Marina for Sunday’s Island Party, Sept 3,
Place: Peanut Island, Palm Beach Inlet
Time:  11:00 – 4:00
SSSF Dinghy Pickup:  11:00 Riviera Beach Marina
$10 SSSF Members ~ $20 Guests
Serving Caribbean Shrimp or Veggie Kabobs, Coconut Rice, & Tropical Salad
Registration opens August 23rd.

Captains Apprecation Day
– All hands on deck for Jay Thomsen’s Val Hal

Mop & chamois, soft clothes & magic erasers, simple green & diluted vinegar were the tools of the day for our SSSF Deckhands that whirled through Val Hal like a white tornado! Nine Deckhands met on Saturday, July 22 to show appreciation for Captain Jay Thomsen’s support of club sails by cleaning his trawler. Crew Chief Sheila O’Neil organized the group, assigned specific areas to clean, and reviewed cleaning methods and products with the Captain before starting the day:

·         Decks –  Rich Babbit, John Konheim
·         Stainless Steel:  Sheila O’Neil
·         V Berth & Nav Area:  Dot Castell, Terry Patterson
·         Galley: Sharon Schultz
·         Main Salon: Sherry Harris, Anne Ekstrom
·         Heads:  Susan Cohoat

Our SSSF Fleet Captain, Susan Cohoat arranged for lunch and everyone enjoyed the break, relaxing and looking at the shine and sparkle of the mornings efforts.

Captain Jay has participated in most of the monthly club sails this year, always willing to take SSSF Crew out boating. Each month at the General Meeting a drawing is held to select a boat from active captains. Watch for the Calling All Deckhands announcement on the club calendar, and signup for the next boat cleaning to show your appreciation of our SSSF Captains.


Social News (July 2017)

Summer Beach Party

Neither the Wind nor the Rain could ruin the SSSF Summer Beach Party held July 29 on the Lauderdale-by-the-Sea beach. About 35 members gathered for a day of fun and sun but had a little rain delay. All gathered at the beach around 11am and had a nice swim when the windstorm came through and collapsed two of the three tents. Then the rain began and chased everyone to cover. Thanks to Jim Price who hosted the party at his Ocean Place Condo, all members were able to gather in the pool area cabana and carry on. Our SSSF Grillers, Rich Hustins, Bill Roberts, and Sheila O’Neil grilled hot dogs, hamburgers, and veggie burgers and lunch was served at the cabana.  After lunch the sun came out and dried up all the rain – party returned to the beach for the rest of the afternoon. Thanks to all who helped move the party twice! An thank you to Jean Marie Gordon who won the 50/50 pot $123 and donated the winnings back to the Beach Party fund! Nothing can keep Sailing Singles from having a great time together.

The 2017 Pink Books are available!

The 2017 Pink Book Membership Directory is now available thanks to IT Director Doug Noble who put it together with help from Sheila O’Neil. We started distribution at the August General Meeting. If you have not already picked up your copy, see Ben Nahabedian at Flip Flops on Thursdays. Each book has a label with your name so take that one and please sign the sheet to record that you have picked it up.

Remember you can also login to the SSSF website and search for a member’s information (including new members who joined after the book deadline) if you don’t have the Pink Book to hand.  Once logged in, click Directory. You can put in a partial name in the search field as shown below.