Friday, October 23, 2009

Well, I’ve really gone and done it now.

Well, I’ve really gone and done it now.

I tried to put it off until next year, but it’s something that has to be done and whenever it happens it’s going to cost money – quite a bit really.

I prevaricated about it and no matter how I cut the cake, there was no shortcuts, no utilising cheaper materials, or doing it myself. No I was going to have to spend and let an expert do the job.

So yesterday I gritted my teeth and went to see JKA and ordered a new engine for Sibrwd.

I already have an engine, two actually – a 3 hp evinrude which although working is’nt a the best looking thing around, is heavyish and does’nt really set her off at her best. I also have a 1.5hp seagull of uncertain vintage, but has bags of character and is just so for a modern trad boat like Sibrwd.

No this was for the real engine in any sailing boat, the massive expanse of cream coloured cloth forming the lugsail – the main driving engine, the bit that makes it go, as silent as an albatross gliding over the sea in a zephyr with just the sound of the ripple from the cut of the bow in the water or the exhilarating hissssssss as she planes down the face of a wave in a broad reach.

Surprise’s rig

This also has other implications, not just financial. Although I had gone down the route of having an unstayed lugsail rig in the eyes of the boat, I had also taken steps in the design to allow for a more conventional rig if everything else turned sour. Now it’s too late. The deed is done. It will be a lugsail for Sibrwd, nothing else

So over the next few months, in addition to finishing off the hull, sanding down and repainting the exterior, rebuilding the rudder and stock, I will have a 20’ mast to build, a 12’ mast to build, 8’ of bumkin to build and install and joy of joys 14’ of ultralight, ultrastiff carbonfibre yard to shape and glass up – all to hang a large hankerchief off.

The timber for the mast is here already 20’ of 5”x 4” Douglas fir to be sawn up into thin lengths for me to shape and glue back together.

Well it will keep me out of mischief until next summer.

Oh and the car really could do with being replaced. It’s done over 200k miles, but you know, it really does’nt strike me as being a priority right now ;).


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