Updated: Oct 23
Fellow Rats, here's all you need to know to enjoy our newest boat. It's presently named the Eric Gill; give some thought to what its new name should be!! (Update: Now named John Collins)!
-- Use the Oct oars. We will be doing a refresh of the club's oars over the next month or so. Once that's done it will be fine to use all the "plastic boat" oar sets interchangeably. For now, please use Oct oars with this quad.
-- New shoes (they’re a lot like Crocs) adjust quickly from Mens 10 - 15. Press firmly down on the yellow tab to release the catch, and either push or pull on the FRONT of the shoe as shown in the video. There’s a little window inside the shoe to show size as you adjust it. Heel section of the shoe stays stationary. If your feet are smaller, wearing booties should work fine; that’s what Jeanne and Michele did on our shakedown row yesterday; heel cups would be OK too.
-- Steering: Coxswains, good news! There’s no need to mess with steering cables or the clamp screw to change position of your foot stretcher. The last few inches are run through cable jackets similar to bike brakes—and they’re built to be springy so they stretch the length of the stretcher travel... see video. Accordingly, please don’t loosen the clamp screw, and let me (Ron) know right away if there’s any problem. Worked well yesterday and **should be** reliably easy to use, but we need time to prove that out.
-- Fin: The stabilizing fin on this quad is deeper than our other boats by at least a couple inches. Take note of that as you launch and return to the beach, so it doesn’t get dragged across rocks.
-- Carrying: It’s the lightest quad we have, at about 120 pounds. Much lighter than Lorna or Dose; lighter even than the Kaschper. With the wing riggers it’s fine to carry the boat by grabbing the riggers where they meet the gunwales (the riggers make great handles). Also fine to carry by the gunwales in the reinforced areas where the riggers attach. Please don’t carry the boat by the gunwales in the unreinforced areas between riggers.
-- Access & egress: The wing riggers and widely spaced seat rails make this boat easy to get in and out of on the beach, and to row entirely free of calf-bites.
-- Bit of extra love: This last note goes for all the club's boats, but perhaps having a newer quad with fresh, smooth-working components is a good reminder. Please take a little extra time to make sure seat tracks are grit-free before rowing (and again after washing down the boat). Keep foot stretchers well adjusted and tight. Let one of the 'service crew' know right away if there's any problem. For now that would be Noah, Paul or me.
Looking forward to feedback from folks as more and more of us row the Gill; hopefully it will be a comfortable and rewarding boat for the club to own.