Don Frakes Commodore

Profile Updated: September 30, 2014
Residing In: Anaheim, CA USA
Occupation: Graphic Designer
AMYA Number


Boats I Own:

US One Meter
Soling One Meter
Micro Magic
US 12 Meter
Newport 12 Meter
Schooner (Santana)

My Sailing Story:

Drafted: 08.10.2010

How I became involved with RC model sailing. I was playing Disc Golf at Mason Park with my brother. We saw sails in the distance and both of us were instantly attracted to the pond to get a closer look. The club was sailing Marbleheads that sunny day. When we approached the shelter Swede noticed us and immediately offered us a chance to sail his boat. The minute I started sailing the boat I new I had to have one. I went home that day and found a Marblehead for sail on line and contacted the owner to make arrangements to purchase a Pinter II with a swing rig. The next weekend I was on the water sailing with the club. I remember how friendly and helpful everyone was. That has not changed since I joined the club in 1998.

From when I took the helm as commodore in 2001, I have seen this club grow to over 59 members in ten years. That is the largest membership that the club has ever enjoyed. The biggest thing that has ever happened to this club to help boost membership is an episode on California Gold with Huell Howser. Curt Nehring put that together for the club and it still brings in new members every time they air that episode.

It’s funny, I thought after I bought my first boat, that would be all I need. As we all know, it doesn’t work that way. I am now the proud owner of eleven boats. That is the end. No really, it is. No more for this kid. My favorite boat to sail is my US One Meter. It is a baby blue Hot Dog, built by Swede in 1982. It is not a light air boat because of the weight, but when it blows it is a tough boat to beat. I love watching it cruse threw the water with the bow shearing water 360 degrees over it’s rounded nose. The Hot Dog may be my favorite boat to sail, but when I am sailing any boat, at that moment that’s my favorite boat!

By far the coolest boat project that I have ever been involved with was to build a schooner from scratch side by side with Swede Johnson. When I approached Swede with my request to show me how to build a schooner and told him I wanted to build the Santana, a big smile came across his face. I had no idea of the history he had with that boat. We were eager to get started. We went into his garage and he pulled out a 2 x 6 and he said, I see two schooners in this piece of wood. We waisted no time. He explained the plans to me and how to read them. Most everything at first was way over my head. Once you start putting a few sticks together it all starts making sence. I spent the next four months working every night on my coffee table/work bench. I was so into the project that I would forget what time it was and would find myself going to bed at 3:00 am without dinner a few nights in a row. Then I would bring the boat over to Swedes on the weekend and he would inspect it and show me the next step. Now I am not afraid to take on any building project after building a schooner. I have built many kit boats since and still have as much enthusiasm each time I take on a project as I did building the Santana. I will never forget how much fun I had building the Santana. Thank you Swede!

That is my story and I am sticking to it.

See ya at the pond!

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Posted: Nov 05, 2015 at 3:29 PM
Posted: Nov 05, 2015 at 3:29 PM
Posted: Nov 05, 2015 at 3:29 PM
Posted: Nov 05, 2015 at 3:29 PM
Posted: Nov 05, 2015 at 3:29 PM
Posted: Nov 05, 2015 at 3:29 PM