Tuesday 27 May 2014

Teal sails again

Where to start ! Its been a big weekend.
A great one at that.
We registered Saturday morning and went out in our horrendous dinghy to get the mainsail sorted and re-torque the engine head and reset the tappets. The wind was over 20kts so dropping the mooring with an untested engine was a bit worrying but we went and rafted up next to the newly restored Guillemot which
had just arrived from Hegarty's.
We got a great reception with Teal and after chatting for a while we headed back out to the mooring with the intention of maybe just sailing her under mizzen and staysail. As it turned out we ended up having our first sail with a reefed main, mizzen and staysail. We sailed off the mooring and had a blast, delighted with how she sailed.
Sunday morning we had another quick re-torque of the head bolts to be sure to be sure and again went ashore. The festival activities were well under way so we relaxed for a few hours before deciding to have a go at the harbour race.
Ken's wife and daughter thought they might get out for a relaxed sail with us but they arrived just in time for the start so we gave them a trial by fire.
We had a go with under Main, mizzen, Staysail and Genoa so there were plenty of ropes and short tacks.
Teal behaved flawlessly and was very forgiving of our mistakes. We managed the to get her through the start line and the finish line but did miss one windward mark being too lazy to try tack back to round it, It was just for the hell of it anyway.
Monday morning we motored out of Baltimore and out South of the Kedge were we picked up the lightest of breezes and coasted along east through the Stags sound. It was absolutely blissful, Sunny morning, ocean was like glass, a fin whale passed by for a look and a few modern yachts motoring by taking photos.
The breeze disappeared after passing through the sound and tide alone wasn't going to get us back in time so unfortunately we had to motor the last 6 or 7 miles. We arrived in Union Hall in misty rain and picked up Ann Again's mooring. Thats the next job, getting Ken's old mooring out, beefed up and set in deeper water.

A big thank you for all the kind comments over the weekend and to Tim Cooke of  http://ilur.tumblr.com/
who sent me some fantastic photos of her under sail on Sunday. He will have posts about the weekend in a few weeks time. Well worth a look.

We were awarded this beautiful hand painted plaque for best Newcomer

Teals bow cutting the water once again 
In Union Hall at last

Friday 23 May 2014

Run up to the weekend

So after a very sketchy trip out to the boat in a deflating decrepit dinghy yesterday I managed to get the engine reassembled and running again. Didn't get home until nearly 10pm last night. Only time will tell if there has been more damage to the bottom end. The weather isn't great and Jess and the kids are all choking with head colds so I'm trying my best to stay healthy for the weekend. The forecast for Saturday is for NNW 15kts gusting to 22kts so it could be a lively first sail for us. I need to make a winch handle for the furling boom today.

Wednesday 21 May 2014

Made it to Baltimore

Well we made it in time for the 2014 Baltimore wooden boat festival. The guys were at Teal at 8.15 this morning to finish the swaging and were nearly finished when I arrived so we headed away around 11am.
We put up the staysail going down the river to give her a taste but unfortunately that was all the sailing we got in.
We made it into the pier for lunchtime but with some mechanical issues, The treads on the retaining nut for one of the rocker arms failed and raised the compression and blew one of the head gaskets, I had to pull it straight out because there was salt water getting into the cylinder, I'm going to pick up a head set in the morning and hopefully get her back up and running tomorrow. Maybe Andy Rankin had a point we he through out her old engine !
Either way she's arrived and happily swinging on a mooring.

Monday 19 May 2014

Getting ready to go

There hasn't been much to tell since she went in the water.
I've been doing bits and pieces to have her fit to leave.  We had the insurance survey Thursday morning and I spent Friday afternoon trying to splice wire to rope for the running backstays. Finally got a result I was happy with after about 2 hours. I didn't get to Teal over the weekend but I did drop off the alternator to have it checked out and made a cap for the rudder stock. I spliced the other backstay today and made up the span for the gaff, oiled the leather bits, fitted the rudder cap and fitted an anti-syphon loop for the engine as well as various other little jobs.
We're planning on heading to Baltimore on Wednesday morning and hopefully squeezing in a little sailing.
I didn't take any pics because it was raining today but I was given a few more of the launch day.
Thanks very much to Helen for those.

There is a lot more rig now with the boom, gaff and running backstays all in place. Didn't even realise Ken was on board until I saw these. 

Boat load of kids

Thursday 15 May 2014


I read through the article that was written about Teal in Yachting Monthly 1914 last night because I thought that her ballast was mentioned. It was. She had 24 3/4 cwt external ballast and about 1/2 a ton internal as well as the engine and iron beaching legs stowed in the bilge so that helps explain her being so far off her marks.
I spent most of the day rummaging around the yard looking for lumps of Iron. With some help from Leo to get it all across the rafted boats I filled the bilges and most of the nooks and cranny's I could. She is a lot closer now but I still need more aft on the port side, the rest I will have to put down to her being fresh and dry and I will probably have to lower the waterline a little next season. She is a lot less tender now when you step aboard.
I've been letting her run in gear to load the engine and get some hours on it before we set off down river, I had a bit of a problem with the inner shaft bearing heating but I'm now pretty satisfied that its sorted and the other thing is she isn't charging so I might pull out the alternator tomorrow to try and rectify that.

Wednesday 14 May 2014

She Floats !

Hair Raising day yesterday.
I got to the yard at lunch time and started moving all the spars up the yard. Ken arrived a bit later and
we moved the mast. Liam craned it in and we got all the rigging clipped in place temporarily with bulldog clips, They will be swaged properly tomorrow.
We spent the next while running about getting the bobkin, bowsprit and mizzen mast up.
The girls and kids arrived with a bottle of champagne and icecreams so we had a little cooling off period
before hooking up the crane.
Once the crane had the weight there was a little more running around removing blocks and the legs and patching up the anti-foul. Then in she went.
Leo jumped on board to check for water while she was in the slings and told me to go have a look but there was just rain water running forward from under the engine. She was surprisingly dry, there were only 2 or 3 little seeps which all dried up quite quickly and she didn't take any water last night.
She motored out to raft up outside the other boats under her own power where we tied her up and popped the bottle of champagne. Kids all crowded on board to climb all over everything and once it all quieted down we cooked some dinner, drank some coffee, drank some beer and had a nice night's sleep on board.
All in all everything went great. I have a few little issues to sort out, and she needs probably half a ton of ballast as she is way too high off her marks. She must of had ballast removed at some point before I got her that I never knew about but that's relatively easy to sort.
There are some great pics of the launch here thanks to Kevin O farrell https://www.facebook.com/KevinOFarrellPhotographer

Teal hanging over Jeremy Irons 'Willing Lass'. Willing Lass is a Blue moon yawl apparently based on the Quay punts, Her rig is very similar to Teals apart from Teals pole mast and bermudan mizzen.

Unfortunately the few pics I  have on my camera of her touching the water didn't come out good but loads of people have better ones which I will put up when I get them.

Monday 12 May 2014

Launch tomorrow

Finally Teal has made her way up the yard to the crane after sitting in the same spot for 2 and a half years.
Moving it was no less terrifying than I had envisaged but she made it intact.
We're going to step the masts after lunch tomorrow and drop her in on tomorrow evenings high tide.
Might not get much sleep tonight. Exciting and nerve racking times.


Drafty isn't she

Next to the crane and the water

Friday 9 May 2014

Ready to move

Well the weather is not cooperating for the weekend so we haven't made a move yet. If this evening had stayed dry we may have loaded her on a trailer but it didn't so we might get round to it tomorrow. Once on the trailer she can be moved up to the crane to get the rig up.
We fitted the gooseneck, shrouds and all the halyards and have them all tied off in organised chaos.
The same goes for the mizzen mast and all the other various bits of rig are ready to go. I need to do a little work on the spreaders because they seem to have no way of attaching them to the mast, I don't know how they were held on before.
I fitted the soleboards and worktops as well and finished off the aft toerail and gave it a coat of woodskin.

All cleared and ready to move

A very nearly complete interior. I don't have the money for new cushions at the moment but I found these pretty cheap and they will do nicely for the time being.

Need to make belay pins asap 

Thursday 8 May 2014


The updates are pretty much daily at the moment, Lots of bits and pieces need to come together to get the rig up.
I've wrapped the bowsprit traveller and the gaff saddle is in progress.
I made up the worktops and just went and sanded them and gave them a coat of varnish. The soleboards are varnished so I just painted the underside with aluminium primer. I might give the underside a coat of bilge paint before their fixed down.
I've had the rigging screws soaking in diesel for the last few weeks, I took them out today but they were still pretty well seized. After a good bit of hammering and working everything loose I eventually got them all freed up nicely. For a while I was sure they were never going to work again.

I got a good link for the leather work off of  http://ilur.tumblr.com/ which was very handy.
I wasn't very particular about it but it will do just fine, I used the point of a wing bit to punch the holes and sail repair twine to stitch it. I need to treat the leather with something to waterproof it. Ken keeps some bees and has bees wax so I may try that.

Worktops glued up. They are now sanded and varnished and look really nice.

Wednesday 7 May 2014

Serving rigging wire

Ok I've spent the whole evening figuring this out. The first one I wrapped in denso tape and then in 3 strand nylon. The result looks pretty good I think but it was an absolutely disgusting job and despite the fact I bought 10 meters of 3 strand it was only enough to finish one. I'm confident that one will out last just about everything though.
The other two I covered in nylon braid which Leo had left over from Sile á Dó. I just put it on dry and stuck it in a load of linseed oil. It was a much cleaner job.
I fitted a manual bilge pump today, finished painting the bilge, finished varnishing the soleboards, put in new battery leads and wired in the kill switch.
Tomorrow evening I'm gonna have a go at the few leather bits I need to make.
The weather is looking utter crap for the weekend so its most likely Teal will be staying dry until Monday. Hopefully we will still get at the rig on Friday.

Denso tape, Dam sticky but very waterproof

The 3 strand was white when I started

Monday 5 May 2014

Launch plan

Ok so we have a plan. The rig should be going up on Friday and if the weather behaves we will launch her on Saturday after lunch. At the moment there is a SW gale forecast for Saturday but its a long way off for that to be accurate. If Saturday doesn't work out then we'll change to Monday.
I'm getting as much done as possible this week before she goes in.
I've put diesel in and started the engine. The wiring is more or less finished and pumps, nav lights and sounder are all working and the engine is starting off the key. I'm varnishing the sole boards and have made templates for the worktops. I test fitted the mizzen mast and bobkin, made and fitted a battery box ( Out of plywood :( First bit in the boat but I thought it acceptable enough ) and I've made the side panels for the engine and lined it all with sound deadening. The main thing to be done is to buy and fit a new manual bilge pump and I need a topsail halyard before the mast goes up. Everything else is minor.