The thoughts will be your own as you reflect on this photograph and the video (below).
Friday, October 23, 2020
Thursday, October 15, 2020
Wednesday, October 7, 2020
The link below takes you to a training regime for 49'ners that is used by a couple of members of the Pigeon Bay Boating Club on Banks Peninsula, South Island, New Zealand.
Why the crew is wearing white underpants is anyones guess.
the link below and don't forget to switch the sound on (bottom right)
to get the combined technicolour and stereophonic effect.
Thursday, September 24, 2020
Saturday, August 29, 2020
Some may think that painting a boat yellow is somewhat counter intuitive and some what un-nautical. Classic white, various shades of blue or grey, and black for work boats is more the traditional norm and with the modern mass production of fiberglass boats, white hulls have become pretty ubiquitous.
One day while I was restoring my Zephyr and toying with the idea of painting the boat yellow I heard on the National NZ concert programme the announcer (when introducing the next piece of music) say that whenever he hears a Bassoon sonata or concerto he is convinced that the Bassoon is smiling!
That's how I feel about yellow - it's a colour that is always smiling.
So now I have a yellow boat. The colour yellow is happy and bright and positive and cheerful and reminds me of the sun and summer. It puts a smile on my face.
To date the colour record of sailing boats I have either built, purchased or restored in both timber and fiberglass has been:
Blue - NZ 'P' Class "Panic"
Red - NZ 'P' Class "Elusive"
Red - OK Dinghy "Okere"
Blue, Grey, White - 30' Yacht "Mariner"s various colour iterations.
White - Restored NZ 'P' Class "Dart"
White - Restored NZ Starling Class (Sold before I could decide on a name).
Black - Restored fiberglass clinker sailing dinghy "Scout"
White - Laser "Echo"
Yellow - Restored NZ Zephyr Class "Slipstream"
Other boats have included various yacht tenders (all white) a blue sea kayak and yellow and white inflatable dinghies.
At the moment I own three sailing dinghies, a 30' yacht and it's dinghy tender - Five boats which is quite enough boats to be going on with. If I had more sense I would get rid of three of these especially as I am close to beginning a new build (watch this space).
Friday, August 28, 2020
Sunday, August 23, 2020
Wednesday, August 12, 2020
There have been 15 races to date in the Combined Clubs Winter Series. The racing consists of 3 back to back races at each of the clubs on a rotational basis. As each of the clubs are at different locations on Whangarei harbour it makes for three different, interesting venues. My placings to date have been:
After 15 races I continue to lead the series by 9 points.
There are 6 more races to go in the series.
I agree with one of my competitors who once said, "In yacht racing it's the nut behind the wheel that makes the difference and wins the races" - True enough I say, so long as it's a level playing field. I think the restoration has now created a level playing field. But the locals races are among differing classes of yachts and with different handicaps making up the mix. Although there are 3 Zephyrs that usually race I am the only Zephyr competing in this years winter series. The true test will be when I take the boat down to Auckland and race in true one design races in a fleet of other Zephyrs.
Having said that, one yardstick that is significant is the four hours I spent recently on the harbour racing against Don in his Zephyr 'Venture'. Before I did the restoration he was beating me in races by a country mile. During our friendly four hours of racing the boats were pretty evenly matched with Don (being 20kgs lighter than me) having a slight advantage downwind while I had a slight advantage upwind.
Sunday, June 28, 2020
The crucial factors that have contributed to better performance are:
- The boat now weighs 59kgs down from 64kgs - a weight saving of 5kgs. A light boat is a fast boat.
- New carbon fibre foils are half the weight (3kgs) of the old wooden foils (6kgs) and are a very accurate commercially produced aerofoil shape. The boat steers better, points much closer into the wind and the feel on the helm is light and balanced. The small bucket I felt we were always towing has vanished.
- The hull has been repaired and faired, capturing the true shape of the hull minus any corrugations and imperfections.
- An adjustable mast step allows various raking angles to suit various wind conditions.
- I am now using a 'TacTic' digital compass which makes the detection of wind shifts a doddle. I should have had one years ago. The tactical usefulness of such a compass cannot be emphasized enough.
- Adjustable hiking straps makes fine adjustments during or between races very easy ensuring more comfortable hiking positions.
There are a few more tweaks that I will do to squeeze out a bit more boat speed. Overall I am pretty pleased with the performance. I haven't produced a super yacht, rather I have produced a level playing field. Slipstream is now as up to date as any of the other 'flash Harry' Zephyrs racing. The winning difference will now depend on the nut holding the tiller, time on the water and a fair old wodge of luck.
The next race in the series is in a fortnights time at the Marsden Yacht Club - I'll be there.
Tuesday, June 9, 2020
I have spent a good amount of the Covid 19 lock down time finishing my Zephyr sailing dinghy 'Slipstream'. The last job has been setting up the sail controls and adjusting the rigging. Today I rigged the boat and checked everything - it's now time to go sailing.
Wednesday, June 3, 2020
Monday, June 1, 2020
Friday, May 22, 2020
Wednesday, May 6, 2020
Sunday, May 3, 2020
Also the book 'Swin, Swale & Swatchway' by H. Lewis Jones first published in 1892 and re-published recently by Lodestar Books has again given me a very interesting historical background to Griffiths, Stocks and Smiths writings.
Adding to the list, as always that legendary publication 'East Coast Rivers - Cruising Companion' (19th Edition - Wiley Nautical) by Jane Harber has been a truly excellent crew member on a journey such as this.
I found this very interesting information about 'Storm' from the OGA site (Old Gaffers Association).
"Storm was built in 1910 by Bundock Brothers at Leigh on Sea, and when built she was originally called "Lady Myra". Myra was the wife of the first owner, Mr C Horstead. In the 1911 & 1912 local newspapers Lady Myra was reported doing very well in races. She was sold in about 1912, and sold again before 1914. The third owner was Norman O Searle, and architect, who also designed a similar boat "Ripple" which was later owned by the marine artist Fid Harnack, who later illustrated Magic of the Swatchways, and the Yachting Monthly, for editor Maurice Griffiths. By a co-incidence, Norman Searle was then part owner of Charity (see entry in OGA Register) 1924-26, then a gaff cutter but now bermudian, and owned by the sister of East Coast Gaffer's Clare Thomas. Lady Myra/Storm was built as a yacht but with the scantlings of a shrimping bawley, but was never used for fishing. After the first World War she was sold again, had her first engine installed in 1920, and relocated to Burnham, and later West Mersea where she was found and bought by Maurice Griffiths, who re-named her Storm. She was owned twice by Maurice Griffiths, past editor of Yachting Monthly, and he describes her in his books, in particular 'Magic of the Swatchways'. In 'Dream Boats' he describes her as 'My little 7 tonner Storm was built as a miniature bawley yacht, but with somewhat finer lines, and I always regarded her as one of the most endearing little craft I have ever owned.' He had to sell her and vowed he'd buy her back which he did six years later. The owner between 1924 and 1930 when MG bought her back, was a Mr Eustace Mason, who founded the Claygate Cement works. MG sold her again in 1931, and she was re-located to Poole, to take part in races organised by the Parkstone Sailing Club. The owner then was a Col J M Hulton, a veteran of the Boer Wars, the First World War, and the Irish troubles in the 1920's. There are records of her not doing too well in the 1935 round the island (IOW) race. Storm drops out of the Lloyds Registers in 1937, and the next record I have found was the hand written receipt included in her paperwork, when the then owner John Derrick of Fareham sold her to David Cade in 1962. John Derrick appears to have been an actor in the Portsmouth area, but the record is cold between 1937 and 1962 - I would love to find out where she was in those years.
David J Cade passed away on 17 July 2002, when serving as OGA President having owned Storm from 1962. Badly damaged in a northerly storm after the 1975 Solent Race in Cowes it took David Cade 18 years to rebuild her. Alison, his widow kept her on until her death in 2014.
Much of Storm is still original, although the cabin has been lengthened/the cockpit made shorter by about 18". I have found and had restored a "Jack Tar" stove, the same as MG had, the elderly Kelvin diesel replaced with a more modern Beta, and gradually planks have been replaced, the hull re-fastened, the usual on-going process for an old boat like Storm."
Saturday, April 25, 2020
Let's make Solidarity as a community our canoe,
Common sense our creek,
Self distancing our water,
and our brains as our paddles,
Let's all pray for the nurses, doctors, care givers and all others who are working in the eye of this storm.
Friday, April 24, 2020
Monday, April 20, 2020
I am usually neither a train nor plane spotter, but at the time of the Hercules sighting we were leaving a friends house who lives down harbour on a hill at a very high elevation. The Hercules thundered past at a height that was level with us and in a direction that indicated that it was in full landing approach mode. We got to the airport too late to see it land but stayed long enough (along with all the other local rubber neckers) to watch the impressive short runway takeoff of this large aeroplane. And impressive it was, as it headed directly back to Australia.
Saturday, April 18, 2020
19/4 - I have uploaded and reinstated photographs on the River Crouch post and also completed some computer tweaking which I think may have been giving me problems with Blogger - time will see if I have been successful.
I would appreciate it if anyone who sees anything unusual when viewing this Blog and/or has photographs blocked from view to post a comment on this post.