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Posts Tagged ‘regional occupational program’

A monohull and a trimaran were let loose from Capistrano Beach on Thursday afternoon. One came ashore in San Clemente hours later. It is undergoing repairs for possible relaunch today or this weekend. The other is at sea and being tracked via its onboard GPS.

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Looking like a shark ready to strike, the WikiWiki is prepared for launch Thursday afternoon from Capistrano Beach. The WikiWiki is one of two boats made by a Capistrano-Laguna Beach ROP class at San Clemente High School. The students hope the boats will sail as far as Hawaii.
DAVID BRO, FOR THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER

By DAVID BRO / SPECIAL TO THE REGISTER

CAPISTRANO BEACH -(CA)- An ROP model-making class at San Clemente High School was at it again Thursday afternoon, trying for the second year to launch handmade watercraft from Capistrano Beach on a course students hope will take the boats as far as Hawaii.

About 50 students in instructor Malcolm Wilson’s 3-D model-making class in the Capistrano-Laguna Beach Regional Occupational Program gathered to launch two of their latest projects, the monohull WikiWiki and the trimaran NeNe.

SEE A SLIDESHOW HERE.

They think improvements they made in the design of these boats will give them better results than different students in the class got with a single boat last year – it washed up in Laguna Beach.

The boat building is meant to teach the design process from start to finish. The students, divided into two teams, worked all semester to complete the boats.

“The students get hands-on knowledge in completing a project and learn that hard work pays off,” said Dave Giertych, director of the Capistrano-Laguna Beach ROP.

Team leaders Dallas Krick, 18, a San Clemente High School senior, and Maurice Bollhorn, 16, a Tesoro High School sophomore, said they’re excited to be able to follow the boats’ progress via the onboard GPS the students installed. A tracking device on each boat reports its location every two hours. That information is posted on the class Facebook page.

At the launch Thursday, the breakers sent the WikiWiki back to shore with minor damage on the first try. After some quick repairs, the boat was relaunched with volunteer Michael Tracy swimming alongside and pushing the craft through the higher-than-normal surf.

There were tense moments as the NeNe was tossed almost completely out of the water by a high breaker. But soon both boats were out to sea.

Wilson reported that the NeNe washed ashore in San Clemente late Thursday. The WikiWiki came back to within 200 yards of shore and then turned around, making it as far as 18 miles offshore Thursday night, Wilson said. On Friday afternoon, the WikiWiki was about 22 miles off San Onofre State Beach, according to its GPS tracker.

The NeNe was back in port for repairs and is to be relaunched Friday or over the weekend.

“Who knows where they’ll end up?” Wilson said.

The students used mostly donated supplies and funds from area businesses such as Rainbow Sandals, Basham’s Surfboard Factory, Interlux Yacht Paint, AirFlow Systems, CalebWorks, Glas Werk Inc. and The Surfer’s Journal. They even used old sails from the 82-foot schooner Curlew, a charter boat out of Dana Point Harbor.

“I liked shaping the boat and putting on the fiberglass,” Krick said.

Bollhorn said that the class sparked his interest in 3-D computer design. “I liked managing the whole process and going out to test the boats at Dana Point Harbor,” he said.

Sarah Smith worked on the NeNe, preparing the boat for paint and putting on its bright red color. “It was hard but fun,” Smith said. “The best part was watching it go out.”

She and Krick said they intend to take the class again next semester.

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Class at San Clemente High School that tried to send a miniature trimaran on a course to Hawaii in April plans to try again in December with two new boats equipped with altered designs, GPS units, digital cameras, navigation lights and a path-tracking Facebook page.

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By DAVID BRO / SPECIAL TO THE REGISTER

SAN CLEMENTE -(CA)- A 3-D model-making class that tried to sail a miniature trimaran to Hawaii in April is at it again.

Instructor Malcolm Wilson’s Regional Occupational Program students are meeting twice a week at San Clemente High School with plans to launch two new 6-foot-long foam and fiberglass boats in early December, probably from Capistrano Beach, where the spring attempt began.

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Regional Occupational Program 3-D model-making student Ian Sprenger stands beside the trimaran Wilson in April before its launch at Capistrano Beach for a hoped-for voyage to Hawaii. It was found three weeks later washed up at Laguna Beach.
DAVID BRO, REGISTER FILE PHOTO

SEE A SLIDE SHOW HERE.

In April, 80 students from several south Orange County high schools put together a miniature sail-powered trimaran named Wilson, after Tom Hanks’ volleyball buddy in the movie “Cast Away.” They designed the bright yellow craft to sail on a predesigned course to Hawaii, though it was found three weeks later about 200 yards off Laguna Beach.

The boat, a sort of “message in a bottle,” held a log book in a waterproof compartment so that anyone who found it could write where, when and how it was found.

This semester, 50 different students modernized the concept with onboard GPS units and a Facebook page (Team Wiki Wiki.webloc) that will illustrate the projected path south across the Pacific Ocean. In addition, a pair of digital cameras to take timed photos along the voyage will be mounted on the vessels, as well as battery-powered LED navigation lights.

The boats, already shaped in foam and in the process of having fiberglass applied, are the products of what project leader and San Clemente High School senior Dallas Krick, 17, said were several weeks of class study on what ancient mariners used in their quest to conquer the waves. The students settled on a design that most resembles what Philippine fishermen have traditionally used, with features especially constructed to get through big waves.

This year’s effort is spearheaded by the monohulled Wiki-Wiki (“speedy” in Hawaiian), with a larger and heavier fixed keel and a wing foil instead of a traditional sail. Malcolm Wilson said he’d like to provide space on the vessel for a sponsor logo in exchange for helping with the project’s estimated $1,000 cost.

The other boat, the NeNe, is a sleeker, slightly smaller and faster trimaran than the more stable Wiki-Wiki. The NeNe, named after Hawaii’s state bird, will have a more traditional sloop sail rig, with sail material already donated by sailors with boats at Dana Point Harbor.

San Clemente High junior Daniel Therrien, 17, and senior Matt Cox, 17, worked together this past week on the final shaping of the NeNe in the hallway outside their classroom, with shavings of foam swirling around them.

Before joining the class, Cox had thought of signing up for a restaurant course.

“I’d rather build a boat than a hamburger,” he said.

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