A new boat

One year of posting nothing new here is quite enough.

Let me show you the last boat I built.
It’s a “14 foot sail & row” as discribed by John Gardner in his book Classic small craft you can build.

A post about the first to be built was published here in 2011: Building of Bertha.
The recently built is largely documented on the dedicated pages called the Berthas Blog.
Scroll way back down to the beginning.

The new boat behaves on the water exactly the same as the first one, no wonder it’s the same boat, a tad faster maybe. From a distance even I can’t tell the difference which’ boat ‘is’ the newer or the older one.
With the alternative balanced lugsail however things change: it’s the same girl but in a new dress and it suits her just fine. Als if it were meant to be.

Going Pro

After 20 years of amateur small-boat building I thought it was a time to take the plunge in the cold water and make it my daily occupation as boat builder.
The business is named “BERTHAS“.
Check out Berthas.be to find out what it’s about (Maybe with some help of Google translate for now, the website is not multilingual yet).

Anyway, this blog will stay here, and will keep generating random subjects about sailing and racing small boats, slightly Minisail orientated.

… And if it happened that you would like to order a replacement part or even a complete hull (for any of the wooden dinghies), I’d be delighted to discuss with you the object of your desire.

There is now a sister blog: Berthas Blog.

La semaine du golfe 2019 -Part 3

We went over and had a great time. Weather predictions promiced a “last jugement” kind of circumstances but once arrived there and got sailing it went all right.
This scow showed to like a bit of wind, and good for us really since it was blowing hard during the first days at La Semaine.
A confession to make: We were in the sail&row category (Flotille 2: voile et Aviron), but our boat didn’t seem to be adapted to do both. Once rigged for sailing it was hardly possible to get the oars out to do any serious rowing and vice versa.
Mmm we had a tiny 2-stroke Yamaha Malta handy, not really in the spirit of the fleet we were in but handy anyway.
Enjoy the images and believe me, participating at the “Semaine Du Golfe” is an addicting pleasure.

some more:

La semaine du golfe 2019 -Part 1


This gallery contains 2 photos.

In May 2017 we participated in the French bi-annual Semaine du Golfe event (article here) And we are going back: We’ll bet at the 2019 edition. As newbies in 2017 we did some learning; Being at and sailing the edition … Continue reading

Bertha with bowsprit

Went out sailing with the 14 foot sail and row “Bertha” today.IMG_6786

I needed to test three things: rigging on the water, how does she sail with the added jib and check if the hull is watertight.
– Rigging afloat: It worked but lesson learned, it’s vital to prepare all parts and strings before setting off. The mess I had to deal with (having to start over and over again) was due to just having thrown in the rig at random in the hull.
– Sailing with the added jib was easy and the boat was neutral at the helm. Very neutral, the slight weather helm I used to feel with this boat was gone.
Forgot during the build to install some jib sheet cleats. Must get that sorted.
– leaks?: None, huraa!

With one boat less in the workshop there is room to take care of the Minisail Meson that’s going to be in action at Keyhaven next weekend.

Some more pictures from a week later:

La Semaine and Bertha I

With La Semaine Du Golfe Bertha will need some taking care of. Sanding and painting the  hul is a good start.

The boat will be left afloat on a mooring during La Semaine and that’s an issue. She will fill up.

Traced the leak ar the rear; The solid oak panel once again not bonding with the ply. The best answer would be be to replace the oak with a ply panel but I like it as it is so I’ll just waterproof it. There is another leak to look for at starboard I haven’t been able to find up to now.

With my compagnon Frans joining me during the raid it’s fair to think the boat will be underpowered. So I have  a jib sail made. It will be ready next weekend, can’t wait.

Ah look it’s there!

Some damage needed to get repared:

And some more pictures from a week later: