Navtec and Serendipity

We ordered YYZ with an adjustable backstay, a mechanism which is used on sailboats to bend the top of the mast back and the middle of the mast forward, thereby pulling the luff of the mainsail and flattening it. This seemingly small bit of trim can make a world of difference on the helm by balancing the boat better, and reducing drag on the rudder when the boat is overpowered and trying to force itself up into the wind.

Not only is this trim adjustment easier on a person at the helm, resulting in less fatigue, one might argue that the better trim and balance will put less demand on an auto-pilot, drawing less power, so less battery depreciation, offsetting the cost of the adjuster itself. Okay, perhaps it's a stretch, but it's fun to think about.

Anyway, when the boat arrived in New London and we unwrapped everything, there was no adjustable backstay, just the conventional fixed backstay. The boat can still be sailed but, after all the effort we put into the design of the rig, the sail plan, and the folding propeller, we didn't want to compromise on this feature.

As we tried to coordinate the specifications with Jeanneau, the problem was seeming insoluble. So we sent an email late last night to Navtec to see what they suggested in terms of using local resources. 

Today, we were driving back to Stamford on I95 south and the phone rang. It was Doug Harreys calling from Navtec's HQ in Guildford CT. Of all the crazy coincidences, we were approaching Exit 58, which is just a couple of miles from Navtec, so we exited the turnpike and pulled into Navtec's parking lot within a few minutes.

Doug met us in the lobby with the Hydraulic Integral Backstay Adjuster in the exact model and size we needed. It was the last one they had in stock and might have been on back order for months. Technically, Navtec could not sell the unit direct to us but they allowed us to simply declare who our rigger would be and we were on our way back to Stamford with a beautiful piece of gear. A quick stop at Hathaway Reiser and Raymond - Riggers and Sailmakers for a consultation with Tom Anderson and YYZ is on her way to getting the adjustable backstay she deserves!

Thanks Doug for your help today. Much appreciated.