Sailing “Grace”

A photo of Grace getting launched after Spring maintenance (2022).

In 2019, I took on an extensive restoration project of a 1980 Artekno H-Boat called “Grace.” Even though the H-Boat is a common racing class in Europe, mine is one of the few on the West Coast of the United States. It seemed like a worthy boat to bring back to life both for its aesthetic beauty and lineage. The H-Boat descends from the folkboat, which appeals to my motivations for sailing: minimalist coastal cruising, often singlehanded. Racing doesn’t interest me much, although it’s always nice to go fast and point well into the wind. I rather compromise comfort for performance and performance for safety. After about two years of restoration and dreaming of the trips I would take, Grace sails again. These posts share my journey in boat restoration and sailing.

By the numbers

The H-Boat balances relative performance with seaworthiness and simplicity. Comparing the H-Boat to the Nordic Folkboat and to the Santa Cruz 27 (a popular racing class in my region that is the same length as the H-Boat although of a different generation of sailboat design):

  • The comfort ratio of the H-Boat (15.78) falls between the Santa Cruz 27 (11.64) and the Nordic Folkboat (22.13). Its motion comfort is less like a coastal cruiser, such as the Folkboat, and more like a lightweight racing boat, even though perhaps more kindly than high performance racers like the Santa Cruz 27.
  • The displacement to length ratio — an estimate the power required to drive the boat to its nominal hull speed — places the H-Boat as “light” (161.26), which falls between the Nordic Folkboat (“moderate,” 249.22) and the Santa Cruz 27 (“ultralight,” 95.92).
  • The balance to length ratio over 40 for the three boats indicates that they are all stiff, powerful boats able to stand up to the wind. Interestingly, the H-Boat (49.97) is just slightly lower ranked than the Santa Cruz 27 (50.00), and both these boats are noticeably lower than the Nordic Folkboat (51.82).
  • The sail area to displacement ratio places the H-Boat (19.54) as a reasonably good performance between the under-powered Nordic Folkboat (19.54) and the high-performance Santa Cruz 27 (23.21).
  • The capsize screening formula (CSF) or capsize ratio, which compares the beam with the displacement, rates the H-Boat (1.95) as suited for ocean passages much better than the Santa Cruz 27 (2.22) and slightly worse than the Nordic Folkboat (2.22).
  • The S#, which estimates probable boat performance versus boats of comparable size, ranks the H-Boat as a racer cruiser (3.29) between the slow/underpowered Nordic Folkboat (1.82) and the fast/racing Santa Cruz 27 (5.32).

Cruising Logs

  • Berkeley – October 2023

    Berkeley – October 2023

    Paul makes a quick sail in two days from Santa Cruz to Berkeley, with some night motoring to arrive late at Half Moon Bay. On the second day, some eventful sightings include the Hōkūleʻa and the John P Murtha. It was a wild ride entering the San Francisco Bay at ebb tide. … Continue readingBerkeley…

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  • Monterey – June 2023

    Monterey – June 2023

    Our sailor sets out for a Santa Barbara trip, but high seas and a beginner wife call for a Monterey detour. They putter along, dodging grumpy harbor masters and perilous breakwaters. Wife falls ill, boat logs excessive speed, they make a jelly-rubbing stop in Monterey, and the sailor makes a solo, gusty finale back home.…

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  • Santa Cruz – April 2023

    Santa Cruz – April 2023

    Between storms and strong winds, my father and I found a window of mild weather to sail from Berkeley to Santa Cruz. We motored from Berkeley to just past Alcatraz, at which point the winds quickly picked up. I had chosen the genoa due to the light wind conditions, but we were quickly overpowered. As…

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  • Berkeley – September 2022

    Berkeley – September 2022

    In a succession of daily seaborne misadventures, our valiant mariners stage unsuccessful campaigns against unforgiving winds, mercilessly soaked cots, and defiant navigational lights. Despite their travails, they end up amidst friendly neighbors celebrating a birthday party. … Continue readingBerkeley – September 2022

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  • San Francisco Bay – June 2022

    San Francisco Bay – June 2022

    On a foggy sail full of unexpected seaweed encounters and marine life collisions, our sailor switched between genoas and jibs, dealt with misbehaving winds, navigated nocturnally, and made new friends. Despite some equipment troubles, grilled sardines kept spirits high. … Continue readingSan Francisco Bay – June 2022

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  • Año Nuevo – March 2022

    Año Nuevo – March 2022

    On an amusingly windswept voyage, our sailor saunters from Santa Cruz to Año Nuevo, battling gusty winds and gulls’ curiosity. Plans for 5-day trip change due to a home robbery, because even sailors can’t escape landlubber problems! … Continue readingAño Nuevo – March 2022

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Maintenance and Repair Logs

  • M&R Log 2023

    M&R Log 2023

    On one of my recent trips between Santa Cruz and Año Nuevo, my mast-mounted tri-color navigation lights failed due to saltwater intrusion that corroded theContinue readingM&R Log 2023

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  • M&R Log 2022

    M&R Log 2022

    The vessel Grace underwent crucial modifications this year, including completing major repairs, improving routine maintenance, and certain enhancements. The primary changes involved outboard services, deck hardware bedding, winch servicing, and brightwork. Bottom paint application, boom repair, and sail replacements were critical improvements implemented. These modifications brought significant efficiency and durability, crucial for extended coastal cruising.…

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  • M&R Log 2021

    M&R Log 2021

    In 2021, extensive repairs were completed that began in 2020. The renovations included interior sanding, painting, shelf installations, exterior hardware modifications, rigorous gel-coating, hull and foredeck repair, and reassembling the internal electrical systems. The majority of the repair work was executed independently with professional guidance. … Continue readingM&R Log 2021

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  • M&R Log 2020

    M&R Log 2020

    The author spent 2020 amidst the pandemic restoring his sailboat, Grace, while teaching online. He tackled various pressing issues systematically, conducting repairs with both professional help and hands-on efforts, including fiberglass work, interior revamping, winch maintenance, and comprehensive upgrades to the rigging and outdoor equipment. … Continue readingM&R Log 2020

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  • M&R Log 2019

    M&R Log 2019

    In October 2019, the author broke their arm and subsequently bought a sailboat named Grace. Despite the boat’s need for extensive renovation, they proceeded with necessary repairs and modifications for safe, coastal cruising. … Continue readingM&R Log 2019

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