Tuesday 24 November 2015

Name that Boat.


Derek has been back in touch to say he's tracked down some details of his new boat. He's found an article reviewing the boat back in 1981 when it was first produced.
Unfortunately IPC mags who published it in PBO or Yachting Monthly or one of their other comics are a bit sensitive about their copyright so I can't reproduce it here. 
I can say that the boat was marketed by Court Marine but built in North Walsham by Hardy Marine. Moulds were taken from an original Shetland racing Skiff, hence the rather generic North Sea Skiff name. 
Price back then was a fairly stiff £1214 + VAT excluding trailer. 

The reviewer makes all the usual excuses about not being able to test this and that due to the conditions on the day but as you'd expect she's fast, easy to row, and just a tad flighty in a gust. 
She doesn't like tacking due to that long keel, but the later models had the bowsprit mentioned by Derek which helped a bit.

Enjoy Derek, and reef early! 

I've had an e-mail from Derek who is now the proud owner of this fine boat. He's trying to find out a bit more about the type. 

Quote, "Hi I have just bought a  Shetland  style  boat called a  North Sea skiff  it is 16 ft  and am looking for information  about it but can't find any on the Internet. And was wondering if you could help.

Grp   And just has  long keel  no centreboard  She has a lug sail and a jib on a bowsprit  have u ever seen this type of boat before  thanks Derek 

She definitely has a Nordic look about her and would be a close cousin to the Shetland Yole. 
 That deck looks like its been added later, the planks are going in all directions, although I do like the idea of decking these over, makes them very traditional looking and provides plenty of dry storage. Our Scaffie at the Ancient & Vulnerable has no storage at all. 

 Anybody recognise the design? Answers via the comments box please. 

Monday 9 November 2015


Sounds like my kind of club.

Some photographs of a recent visit to Beer. 
 A fishing village in Devon. 
Home of the famous Beer Lugger. 

Lots of interesting stuff including some lovely old hire boats on the beach. 

Boats are launched and recovered down the steep beach, check out the reinforced stems and skegs. 

I had a pot of tea and a chip butty at the beach cafe. 
some days just get better. 

Sunday 18 October 2015

Traditional Clinker Rowing Boats for Sale

As Hon. Secretary of
The Ancient & Vulnerable St Deny's Sailing and Rowing Club
 I have pleasure in offering the following boats for sale. 

Double Skiff 
Length 20ft
Beam  3ft 6ins 
Two pairs of oars 

Built c 1925 
Asking £2,000 ono.

Pair Oar
Length 18ft
Beam 3ft 6ins. 
Two sweeps 
one pair of oars. 
Built c 1925 

Asking £1250 ono

Thursday 8 October 2015

Where in the World?

Santa Monica?
Bournemouth, October 2015.
That's Old Harry Rocks in the distance.

Wednesday 2 September 2015

Three men and a dog in a boat.

More Fun and Frolics from this year's Cobnor. 

Chris Partridge brought along his recently acquired boat and keeping up a family tradition Christened her Snarleyow,  just like all his other boats. 

Alistair Law inspects the fleet from the comfort of his paradox, (I'll bet he's wearing slippers,) while chief organiser and DCA stalwart Liz Baker looks on. 

Chris was very pleased with his boat, but complained that the flappy things get in the way when he's trying to row.  Ardent readers of Chris' excellent blog will know he's a keen rower, but apparently every time he gets the oars out in his new boat someone comes speeding up to ask if he's in difficulty and does he need a tow. 
They don't get that you might want to Row for Pleasure

While we were admiring Chris's boat these three chaps turned up heading out to their cruiser. 
talk about three men and a dog in a boat, somebody needs to go on a diet and I don't think its the labrador.

Now this photo may not appear too special, but it represents a very long haul for skipper Paul. 

Eighteen months ago Paul decided to re-model Millibee, chopping three inches off the coach roof to bring her back in line with what designer Paul Fisher originally intended, and cutting out the old bilge-boards to be replaced by a centreboard, the way God intended.
 Just when he'd completed all the hacking and cutting Paul was floored by illness so it's been a monumental task to get this far.  Paul has also replaced the original Enterprise rig with a re-cycled gunter and a genoa off a Wayfarer.   Well done that man. 

And finally just a quick look at Chris Peacock's lovely Gaffer. You may remember Chris as head sourcerer in The Crucible

Saturday 29 August 2015

Calluna. Caledonian Yawl

Its been a while.

The garage doors still aren't painted, but I have managed to get some sailing in.

Back in April a few of us met up at Barton Turf, including Richard Rooth with his brand new Caledonian Yawl, "Calluna".  

Isn't she lovely? 

She was so new she hadn't even got wet.  This is a very different boat from his "Inwe"  even though Iain Oughtred designed both of them, so it's taken Richard a few outings to get to know her. 

We've just been to the DCA summer camp at Cobnor which gave Richard a chance to get some more sailing in. I was lucky enough to join him.
Flukey winds and strong tides can mean difficult sailing and we learned a lot about the boat including that a Caledonian Yawl will sail on a wet lawn, and that she responds well to a bit of powering up during the tacks.  

I also got the chance to re-visit some of the places I last enjoyed in Caitlin, but the less said about that the better.   Happy Days.

Sunday 28 June 2015

Turtle Headed Coffin Dodgers.

"I can only carry two bikes on this train," quoth the chirpy guard on the Brockenhurst to Lymington Train. We looked at our five bikes plus the one belonging to the chap who'd got there first and pondered.
"Where would you like us to put the other four?"
"On the roof mate." he winked.
We smiled sweetly and moved down to where the first guy was loading his bike, he seemed to know the routine.

So there we were, with six bikes crammed into a space made for two on a two-carriage train one of which was for the exclusive use of First Class passengers.
First Class passengers from Brock to Lymington? Ooo those'll be the ones with weekend homes and huge yachts in the marinas then. 

Then along came our cheery Guard,
"Honest, I'm only licensed to carry two bikes, anyway why aren't you lot cycling to Lymington? Its only five miles. Bunch of coffin dodgers with these turtles on your heads!"

Charming, yes it is correct that two of our party use their senior citizen rail cards, but that means three of us don't, although two more of us will qualify in the next couple of months. 

" You should see it on a Sunday, whole families turn up, Mum, Dad, two Kids on bikes another in a trailer. They gets quite stroppy when I tell them I'm only licensed for two bikes. "

We got off wondering how long it would take for South West Trains to convert their empty First Class carriage into a guards van. 

No such problem on the Yarmouth Ferry. 

"Do Not Lock Your Bikes to any Part of The Ship!"

Oh O.K.

We climbed to the mess deck for coffee then headed out on deck to enjoy the early morning sunshine. Paul B and Pete then appeared with toast and marmalade.
 I looked at my brunch bar then back at their toast.
Serious error of judgement there I think.

Coffin Dodgers Away-Day. Paul B, John, Paul T, Me and Pete.

Off the ferry and onwards towards The Needles then up onto Tennyson Down.

After paying our respects to Alfred Lord, and watching a fly-past by a Hurricane and a couple of Spitfires it was down hill all the way to Freshwater Bay. 

Has to be one of the best downhill rides ever. What a blast!
We were so excited after the downhill we had to stop and have some coffee and cake.
We needed the energy for the grind back up the other side through the golf course.

Looking back from the Golf Course to Tennyson Down and that long downhill. 

The lady golfers were playing a game of slice the cyclist,


For every up there has to be a down.  

and for every down....................

Getting a bit knackered by this stage. 

But excellent views to be enjoyed before........

another downhill. 
There was a final amazing steep downhill to Carisbrook where we repaired to The Waverley Hotel for an excellent lunch washed down with lashings of Ginger Beer.  

Then onwards to West Cowes and the Chain Ferry over to East Cowes to catch  the Southampton Ferry. 

Pedestrians and cyclists go free on the Chain Ferry, how progressive.

Due to a minor navigational error by some of the party who are in total denial about the incident we just missed the 4.30 ferry and had to wait an hour. 

So of course we headed for the nearest cafe and had a cup of tea.

The Empress of Ecoli heading out to empty her holding tanks.  

Once back in Southampton we sped across town to the station like a bunch of adolescent BMX'ers to catch the train back to Brock.  

There was a train coming in to platform 3 so we hoisted our bikes on our shoulders and legged it over the footbridge in excited anticipation only to be thwarted by the lady guard, who would allow only three bikes on her train, and was already full. 
She at least kept her comments about our age and attire to herself.

The next train was due in ten minutes so we shouldered our bikes again and legged it back over to platform 4, ready to take the train by force if necessary. 

Plenty of spaces this time but we were told the train was splitting, but which end was stopping at Brock? No one knew no one seemed to care, a mild flurry of panic and swopping carriages and we were sorted. 

Back to Brock to pick up the cars. 

An excellent day out;

Two Trains
Three Ferries. 
Second Breakfast
Morning Coffee  
Afternoon Tea
Fantastic Weather 
Beautiful Scenery
28.2 miles cycled
2, 616 feet of elevation climbed. 

which of course means 2,616 feet of downhill.
Yee Ha!

Put your shades on and look tough. Idiots.

Thanks to John for all the photos, 

Friday 12 June 2015

Bufflehead @ Beale

And about time too you might say, I've been so busy multi tasking I haven't had time to post.
There's been a trip to the Norfolk Broads with Katie, a trip to Scotland to see family, then a re run of our Lechlade to Beale Park Raid.
Amongst the many interesting things at Beale this year was this Bufflehead Sailing Canoe built by Jamie Clay.

She's quite high tec, there's lots of Kevlar and Carbon in her and although that batwing/sprit rig harks back to the golden age of Canoe Sailing it is thoroughly modern in the way it's put together.  Here are a few more photos.