Catalina Fleet 21 - Chicago Region
FleetSheet Newsletter

April 2004


Scott Welty & Sue Budde (wife) have been sailing Lake Michigan ever since they got the sailing bug seven years ago. Scott sailed in his youth and then cleverly paused for about 30 years before picking it up again. Scott and Sue have sailed up and down both the Wisconsin and Michigan coasts, first in their Chrysler 22 (exciting!)  and now in their Catalina 30 – Enee Marie. Last summer  they completed a six week cruise of the northern part of Lake Michigan. Preferring the anchor to marinas, Scott & Sue have charted out some great anchorages in Traverse Bay, Beaver Island, Lake Charlevoix, and several of the lakes linked to Lake Michigan on the Michigan side.  Our April General Meeting features a power point presentation of their cruising adventures.  So what if your boat isn’t in the water…you can still sail Lake Michigan!

The meeting is Tuesday, April 20 at the Burnham Park Yacht Club.  The Club  opens at 6 p.m. with a cash bar.  A banquet style dinner is at 7 p.m.  You’ll have soup, salad, a choice of three entrees (Chicken Marsala, Grilled Salmon, or Barbeque Baby Back Ribs) dessert and coffee for $20.00.    Make dinner reservations by calling 312-427-4664.  Please consider dinner part of the meeting and plan to join us.
The Yacht Club does not charge us for meeting space.  We need to pay our way by eating at the club.  It is imperative that you make reservations.

The Burnham Park Yacht Club is located at 1500 S. Linn White Drive.  Follow the signs to Northerly Island or the Museum Campus.  Parking is available in the Park District parking lot next to the Yacht Club. (There may be a fee)   Next month we are moving both the date of the general meeting and the location.  The new date is Thursday, May 20.  We will meet at the Columbia Yacht Club.  Please see the Commodore’s Message for more details.




I'm sure by now everyone has washed, waxed, bottom painted and is ready to set sail by now. Right? Well maybe not all of us, but I'm sure you're well on your way. This past weekend Brian installed a new water pump (everything went smoothly!) and next weekend we bottom paint. If all goes well, we'll be in the water April 22 and back in Chicago on the 23rd.  We'll frequently be making trips to Winthrop Harbor till May 10th. In a moment of what could be described as insanity,  Brian and I purchased a one week old Chocolate Lab Pup. I think we looked at each other and said write the check quickly before we change our mind. Winthrop needs to stay with the mom for a few weeks then he'll be home with us where  Remington (our black lab) will take over and show him how to be a dog. Winthrop will be learning to get his sea legs this summer, once he has his land legs (last time I saw him he was crawling around on his belly). We'll keep you updated on this exciting adventure.

I also want to update you on a change that will be happening in May. Columbia Yacht Club has offered us to use their Yacht Club for all of our future Programs and Meetings. I know we have been considering a change for quite some time now and this might just be the shot in the arm we need. Here are the details as put to me by the club manager. We will have full use of the club on the third Thursday of the month. We can use the club February through October. Parking will be about $3.50 in the underground parking (directions will be provided). We will have the upper salon to ourselves to hold our meeting and program. In return for this generous offer we will have dinner and drinks at the club. Dinner will be served starting at 6:00. You can eat in the main dining area or the bar area. With your credit card you will be able to order anything you want off the menu. Hamburgers start at $8.00 and the menu tops out at around $30.00. Whatever you choose. You must eat at the club if you come to the program. This is not an option. Reservations would be very much appreciated. On May 20th we will be holding a meeting there to see how this all comes together. This is a Trial meeting and I would like as much input from our members as I can get. Please mark your calendars and plan on being there so you will have a say in the future of your club. This one night will have a huge impact on the years to come. You'll want to be involved. More details will be in the May Fleet Sheet.

                                                                    Deborah Ruxton 

CPR classes are planned for May.  CPR-Plus will teach infant, child and adult CPR for $18.00 per person. If you are interested in learning the greatest gift you can give to someone, the ability to help save their life, call me at home and get signed on. Every boat should have one person on board that can perform CPR in a crisis situation. Call me at 630.279.4533 to sign up.   The class is a definite go.   Call me for the date.
Deborah Ruxton


Fleet members may list items they want to sell, trade, or buy in this column without any charge.
Send listings to Fleet Sheet Editor, 306 Linden Street, Glen Ellyn, IL 60137
Fax 630-668-8950 email:    Phone: 630-469-6117
Listings must be received by the 1st of the month and will  run for 3 months.

FOR SALE: 1983 Catalina 30, New custom cushions, new life lines, phenomenal interior wood stain, auto pilot, single line furling genoa, and much more.  Has been very well maintained. $26,000 price will go up in June at the slip.  No blisters.  Joe Refkin 219 769-2222 days until 7pm 219 865-0878 after 9pm.

FOR SALE:  Lazy Jacks system.  Sail Cradle MK2 by Sail Care. Model 303 for a Catalina 30.New.  Includes complete instructions.
Bought at Strictly Sail.  Never installed.
$50.00.  Call Dave DeAre at 630-469-6117 or
email to



The complete outings schedule will be ready for our May Fleet Sheet.  In the meantime, take a look at what’s already on tap.  Got an idea for another outing?  Call a member of the outings committee (Fred Collins, Dave Green, and Dave DeAre) and get it on the calendar.  It’s easy to sponsor an outing—the committee will walk you through the steps.
May 29  Memorial Margarita Party at Burnham
June 12   Photo Cruise
June 26   North Point Cruise
July 11 - ?  North Channel Cruise
July 15-18  St. Joe Venetian Festival
July 23 – 25  LMCA Rendezvous
August 7 – Anchor Out Party at Olive Park
August 21 – Hammond Overnight
Labor Day Weekend in Michigan City

For those of you in northern harbors who cannot make some of these events, you might want to contact Fleet Member Michael Rafa.  He has a cruise schedule for the Winthrop Harbor Yacht Club.  Non yacht club members are welcome on a one-time basis.  Call Mike if you are interested.


From Chicago to the Keys
 Scott Welty & Sue Budde

To the Readers:
 In June of 2005 we plan to sail Enee Marie, our 1978 C30, from Chicago to the Florida Keys and hopefully beyond. This series of articles will describe some of the improvements and modifications we’ve made in preparation for this trip. We hope you enjoy these articles and please know that we are certainly  not the last word on how to do these projects.


Well, here comes summer! Is it going to be another year of schlepping ice down to the boat, of arguing with the yacht club to sell you, a non-member, ice, or are you going to take the plunge and install refrigeration?

After a summer of living aboard 2 years ago and making ice runs every couple of days, we installed refrigeration in 2002. There are two basic systems for refrigeration on a sailboat: Engine driven and 12 volt. With engine driven, the compressor runs mechanically off the engine and freezes a cold plate in the ice box. As this frozen plate slowly thaws it draws heat from the items (beer) in the ice box and cools them. The plate typically has to be “recharged” once or twice a day. This is the typical refrigeration on Caribbean charter boats. You run your engine twice a day for 45 minutes or so and thereby cool your frig and recharge your batteries. The other method is a refrigeration unit where the compressor runs off of your 12 volt house batteries. These typically draw 5 amps for 30 minutes out of every hour depending on the setting of the thermostat, the insulation, and the external temperature.

We went with the second method as no mechanical changes in the engine are necessary and it only remains to experiment as to how to keep the batteries up with the load. Also, since much of our time right now is spent at the pier, when we are plugged into the dock 110 volt power our onboard battery charger can charge the batteries.

We bought the Cold Machine from Adler/Barbour via Sailnet. You pick a compressor unit (mounts outside the icebox) and evaporator unit (mounts inside) separately,  The evaporator unit we picked is a box about 5” by 10” by 12” deep. There is room for 2 vertical ice trays (Ooooo, treat for cocktail drinks while on the hook somewhere!)  and some frozen food. This then also serves to chill the rest of the icebox. The compressor and evaporator together are about $1100. We opted for the compressor unit that can  be altered for water cooling in the future. When the air temperature gets above 80o, the unit will run more efficiently by exchanging heat with sea water rather than air. Maybe at some future date then, we will add the pump and thru-hull for this modification.

As it turns out, the L-shape of our Catalina icebox is perfect for this unit. We mounted the freezer in the back left (when looking aft) corner of the icebox. It fits nicely but of course this part of the icebox is under the counter making the use of the icebox itself (remember, ice cubes!) impossible. So, we cut a hole in the countertop right above this freezer unit. Now we have the standard flip top lids to the refrigerator part and a little separate lid made from teak over the freezer part. This makes for a range of coolness in the icebox. Really cold is under the freezer unit. Just right for about 6 cans of Old Style! To the right and then forward is not as cool but perfect for your normal refrigerator items.

The compressor fits nicely inside the port cockpit locker on the shelf to the forward end. We had to make a small shelf board for the unit as it was slightly wider than the existing shelf.  The installation is the usual crawling around upside down in  the far reaches of your boat. The copper tubing has to be handled gently and the extra is coiled up and stowed behind the icebox. The unit comes already “charged” which means the copper tubing already has the coolant in it. You get one chance to make the connection that breaks this seal when you connect to the compressor so read the instructions carefully here. There is a thermostat knob that we mounted on the bulkhead aft of the counter top. This has a little tube that runs down and is screwed against the freezer unit. Additionally you want this to have its own circuit breaker. You can run wires over to the nav station if you have room for another switch or, like us, we put the breaker switch on the bulkhead near the thermostat. Less fishing of wires that way.

We are really happy with this unit. It makes ice (Yum!) and we kept frozen food in the freezer for up to two weeks during our 6 week cruise last summer. Of course you will have to defrost every couple of weeks.  Improvements to be made are to better insulate the entire icebox and to better insulate all the lids on the countertop. This is our only large battery draw but with our larger alternator and smart regulator (see Fleet Sheet for March 2004) we can keep up with the refrigerator with a couple of engine runs a day  when  we are cruising.