Getting To Know Liveaboard Cruisers Brian Duff and Lizzi Doub

Brian Duff and his girlfriend, Lizzi Doub, are cruising and living aboard Sender, their Falmouth Working Boat built as a Heard 28 in 1997. Sender boasts a headsail inventory of Quantum sails, and Brian and Lizzi are enjoying an extended cruise under that canvas. We caught up with Brian from the Bahamas. 

Photo Credit - Wilbur Keyworth

Quantum: Tell me a little bit about what type of sailing you're doing right now, and all about your boat!

Brian Duff: We are on an open-ended cruise, having decided this shortly before the boat show at Annapolis this past October. This season had a high frequency of fronts, so we ended up hopping down the coast instead of going straight offshore, but we got a few good 200-mile legs in to shake down on the way. Our boat is a Falmouth Work Boat, 28 ft, total keel weight of nearly 10 tons, with a gaff rig; she's really fun to sail and goes well in all conditions, from super light with topsail to well reefed down. We prefer sailing to motoring, so light air performance is important to us. 

Q: What made you choose Quantum Sails as your sailmaker, and how has our team helped outfit Sender

BD: I have gotten my new sails almost exclusively from Quantum over the last 20 years, for my race and cruising boats. Sender, the boat we have now, came just with her working sails, so Quantum has helped us outfit her with the large light Genoa, a staysail with reef point, and a storm jib. Because our rig uses a retractable bowsprit, we roll up the various jibs on torque rope luffs using continuous furlers, allowing us to select among four headsails. Once back in the spring, we will get a new working jib from Quantum, too!

Q: We saw your unboxing video with your new storm jib and staysail! Have you had a chance to utilize the news sails yet? If so, how was it?

BD: During our passages south and cruising here, we have used all of our sail inventory. We prefer to sail, and handling the boat is my way of staying active and enjoying sailing more. Having the jibs all on furlers makes it easier to handle than free-flying like before. The light Genoa we designed achieved perfect helm balance with the main and topsail up. For the storm jib, we are still fine-tuning the length of the pennant and how far out to fly it on the sprit and sheeting points. We've only got to use it twice so far. The staysail is heavy-duty, and we sailed one night with the deep reef tied in. It's nice to have sails for nearly any condition. 

Q: Did you work with one of our sail experts, designers, or a team at one of our lofts? How was that experience? 

BD: In the past, Tad Hutchins did all of our outfitting at the Annapolis loft, but since I’ve lived in BVI for the past 15 years, I've been working with Kevin Wrigley at the Tortola Loft, and Doug Stewart has helped us fine-tune our ideas. I've always found that something about the culture of Quantum means the folks working there are easy to get along with and helpful, never arrogant or pushy. I'm not normally brand loyal, but Quantum got me.

Q: Just for fun…what's your FAVORITE point of sail!?

BD: This is a hard question, as it depends on the wind strength and sea conditions. But on Sender, there are three really enjoyable situations for me. In light wind, 4 to 8 knots, it's nice to be close-hauled with everything up and drawing, just gliding along with a light helm and feeling the boat accelerate in the light gusts. For windier conditions, 120° apparent, so everything is pulling; we broad reach up into the 8s, which is exciting on a little tank of a boat. At sea, on passage, wing on wing with reefed main and posed out staysail, sliding down the waves is my favorite safe, comfy, and relaxing way to run down the miles.

Sender crew, we are proud to be your sailmaker! Brian and Lizzi (and their cat, Moby) document their adventures on Instagram — they’re currently cruising in the beautiful Bahamas. Stay updated and follow along @SailingVesselSender

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