Dave KaiserBoatshed Port Townsend
About Dave Kaiser
My boating history begins in my early childhood. I remember watching Dad row the boat out to our favourite fishing spots, and it wasn't long before I was rowing the boat with him. At a young age I began rowing by myself, and soon was rowing well out of sight of Mom and Dad. I was chasing the fish and, more likely, pursuing the thrill of independence. I still remember the joy of rowing out by myself on a summer evening and catching my first fourteen inch rainbow. What a thrill for a young lad! From rowboats I moved to outboards, and from outboards I graduated to speed boats and ski boats.
I don't remember how old I was (likely, a very early teenager), but I remember well my first experience with a sailboat. An adult friend owned a small sailboat and gave me permission to use it at any time. I took my best friend with me and we wheeled the sailboat from the owner's home to a nearby lake. Oh, what a thrill to be driven by the wind and to be heeling over in the water! With great excitement and enthusiasm I pushed it to the limit. In a flash, we went all the way over and everything was in the water, including my best friend and me. It was then that I discovered that my best friend had lied to me about his swimming abilities. I had to choose between saving the gear and saving my friend's life. I am so glad that gear can be replaced!
Fast forward a few decades and I found myself with an invitation to join a local sailboat racing team. I spent a couple years racing all four seasons of the year--another high point in my life that ended when a career change moved me out of the area. Also during this time, I had the opportunity to experiment with living on a sailboat fulltime, an opportunity I have been longing to repeat ever since.
Currently, I own a 1970's era full keel cruising sailboat. This boat was designed to be, and has been, out on the ocean. For me, however, most time with the boat is spent on restoration projects. I dream of the day when I sail out to Cape Flattery and "turn left", rather than returning to home port.
What did you do before working with Boatshed?
Before working with Boatshed my career was focused in electronics and computer technology. I have worked on a number of projects developing laboratory instrumentation and control systems, medical equipment and interface systems, and identification/bank card printing and personalization systems.
What do you enjoy most about working with Boatshed?
I enjoy most the opportunity to meet other boaters and those learning to boat. I enjoy hearing their stories, their experiences, and their dreams. I especially enjoy being a part of making those dreams come true.
Are you a motorboater or a sailor?
Does it function on the water? I love being on the water, whether rowing, motor powered, or wind powered. I will admit, however, that I am especially fond of the sound of turning off the motor and hearing the sails pop as they fill with wind. And then, the sound of the hull slicing through the water...
What is your most memorable boating experience?
With so many great experiences, it is hard to choose. Probably my most thrilling experience was laying upside down on the edge of the cockpit with my feet in the air and my head bouncing just above the water. We had been blown down and with all my strength I was holding on with one arm around a winch. With my other arm I was holding onto a teammate who had come flying down off the windward rail. I started laughing wildly as I pondered just how long I could continue to hold the two of us onto the boat. Yes, this is what we do for fun! Needless to say, I developed a very healthy appreciation for PFD's and the role they might be required to play.