Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them all?

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davidh
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Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them all?

Post by davidh » Wed Jan 16, 2013 2:26 pm

Hi everyone and as it is January, this is an unashamed 'plea' for assistance - but it is all for a good cause.

After the 'success' of the Holt story at last years Dinghy Show (at least, I hope it was) I have been asked back to do a prime time slot on the Mirror and how this begat (a wonderful old english word that) the Mirror 14, 16, Miracle and Mirror Offshore yacht - though the latter might be questionable under todays more explict use of the Trades description act.

If anyone here has any interesting details about building and sailing any of the above - and even more importantly, PICTURES - please please let me know and I can build this in to the presentation. Of course, the CVRDA will get thanked at the end!

Many thanks in anticipation of some real 'gems'

Regards

Dougal
PS - Pat and Sandy, Roger, Nessa and others who were there last year, please don't throw fruit, I'm still working my waay through what was collected from the stage during the Holt talk! see you at the bar 'under the organ' for a pre-talk drink???
David H

Rupert
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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by Rupert » Wed Jan 16, 2013 3:04 pm

Hi David,

all I have to offer are some shots of the boys sailing our Mirror at the cvrda Nats in 2011 at Whitefriars. Good quality, and maybe of use if you want to show the child friendly side of things, but not a "classic" boat - 67667 is from 1984 - but there if you have use.

Hopefully see you at the Dinghy Show at some point - I'll be spending some time on the Lightning stand, probably Sat morning, but plan to be there both days.
Rupert

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jpa_wfsc
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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by jpa_wfsc » Wed Jan 16, 2013 4:47 pm

My Father, my sisters and I (mum made tea, scones and crumpets) made 43069 in the winter of 1972=3 and I'd be happy to write you some notes about the experience if it was useful. One of my sisters is still Sailing her. Hopefully a typical Mirror Owner's tale and We have many photos of "Alice" in many places and I will try dig some out for you.

The experience was life changing!
j./

National 12 "Spider" 2523
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roger
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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by roger » Wed Jan 16, 2013 7:17 pm

Somewhere I have an old instamatic pic of a very young me with my Mirror standing in the water holding it waiting for the wind to come up or the tide to slow at Gurnard during Cowes Dinghy week. Sail number 35216(funny how you remember the numbers of your first boat). Probably the first year it was held at Gurnard after my brother sank his 4340 just outside Cowes harbour when it was run from the ISC.
This of course was in the days when "better drowned than duffers, if not duffers wont drown" seemed to still be practiced and I was allowed to sail from Fishbourne to Gurnard without being accompanied by another boat let alone a rib. Was there such a thing then?
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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by Graham T » Wed Jan 16, 2013 10:42 pm

It is funny how sail numbers stick - our first Mirror was 4405, the second 22116 and the third 54367. I wonder if any of them are still around? Dad drove up to Bells to collect the kit for 22116. He could only go on a Saturday when Bells closed at mid-day. The elderly Hillman Minx he was driving was only used to pootling around town so a hurtle up the A roads to get there on time knocked out the top piston rings and he came back in a cloud of smoke. The car had to be re-built before we could start building the boat.
Graham T
Osprey 1340, Osprey 1245, Osprey 55, Miracle 1358, Laser heap, ancient Mirror kit half assembled, Project Miracle in need of decks........
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Ed
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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by Ed » Thu Jan 17, 2013 1:30 pm

might be worth scouring the forum archives as i know there have been some interesting mirror related stories in the past... just can't remember what any of them are!
Ed Bremner
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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by pierre » Thu Jan 17, 2013 3:17 pm

I have recently had some of my late father's cine film put on DVD.
A few shots on there of the Mirror we built in the garage, 18756, down at Pentewan
whilst we were on holiday. Probably 1969-ish.
The boat only recently expired. Stood three generations of us in good stead.
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Michael Brigg
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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by Michael Brigg » Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:12 pm

Hi David,

I might be able to find a connection to the author of "The unlikely voyage of Jack DeCrow." (Sandy Mckinnon) THis is the guy who set out one day for a nice Jolly cruise in his Mirror...
"A couple of quiet weeks' on the river Severn was the intention. 'Somehow things got our of hand,' writes A J Mackinnon. 'A year later I had reached Romania and was still going.' Equipped with his cheerful optimism and a pith helmet, this Odysseus in a Mirror dinghy takes you with him - 4,900 kilometres over salt and fresh water, through twelve countries, 282 locks and numerous trials and adventures. An epic voyage brilliantly told.
(I nearly bought a house I think he used to live in here in Beautiful Gosport, and I know a family cousin very well.)

Even if just to mention that Mirrors have been used for everything from School sandpits to epic voyages.

I am sure you will be suitably disparaging about the dropping of the signature Gaff rig. And also all of those overgrown schoolboys that still race them in World championships.

The Change in rig has changed the whole nature of the class from a fun family cruiser that can also be raced at a high level, to being a racing boat (that isn't as high performance as the top racers ought to be racing,) ...which could be used as a cruiser... except that with all the racing gear it is now too expensive to buy as a childrens trainer/cruiser and cant compete for cool with the modern junior skiffs.

No doubt someone will tell me different. The Mast was clearly changed as an attempt to maintain status as an RYA trainer, (which goes to show how far away they have gone from the important need for a Cruiser trainer if they want to keep kids in sailing) They are both short sighted. The RYA will drop the class soon enough anyway and the market competition in this area is very hot. The mirror already had its niche.

Other than an Oppy, what other boats are there which parents will genuinely regard as being actually owned by their children. A boat you can still just knock a nail in if you have to and not worry? A boat their children can safely make mistakes in and still get themselves out of trouble? (Mostly!)
Michael Brigg

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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by SoggyBadger » Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:57 am

That's a very narrow view of the Mirror Michael. Calling adults who sail the "overgrown schoolboys" is rather insulting too (you might want to do some research on the winner of last year's Nats).
Best wishes


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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by Obscured by clouds » Fri Jan 18, 2013 11:13 am

I remember the Mirror I first learnt to sail on my own in - No 650 iirc.

Being a a boat builder dad sold it on a year later and I was relegated to an old clinker dinghy with a GP rig.

There may be a couple of photos knocking around so I'll go digging next week.
Tony



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whacko!
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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by whacko! » Fri Jan 18, 2013 6:26 pm

I remember my father building Mirror 6261 in the dining room. He made a terrific job of it and the only hic-cup was discovering, once completed, that the beautifully finished blue Mirror was just a fraction too wide to be removed from the room. So, off came the dining room door and a little careful re-profiling of the door frame ensued - it had to be careful as we were in RAF quarters and the MoD didn't like its properties being subject to DIY!

The family spent quite a lot of time sailing 'Sgathan Gorm' (if I've got the spelling right; Gaelic for 'Blue Mirror' anyway) before she was put in store when my father was posted to Singapore in late 1967.

As well as many privately owned boats, RAF Changi YC had several club fleets: Ospreys, GP14s, Snipes, Thunderbolts (which I've never come across since leaving Singapore) and three Cadets that, I discovered, were a lot more fun to sail than a Mirror not least because Cadets had spinnakers and, at that time, Mirrors did not. Happy days!

Chris Turner
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jpa_wfsc
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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by jpa_wfsc » Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:21 pm

You have hit at least two nails on the head there Michael..

other than second hand, what boat is there you can buy to learn to sail in, learn to race in, safely go cruising in, and take it all home on your cars roof rack or on a simple, light trailer (with all the spars inside).

and the one on ownership - the ubiquitous RS Feva and similar are very worthy boats for kids to learn to race and compete in... but are soul-less, so un-neding of care or much maintenance, that like many other aspects of life these days, kids are not learning about.the joy of developing a relationship with. Its just another consumer item..

and thirdly... cruising and just messing about in boats - sailing is sometimes a sport but more often, a passtime, and in small boats clubs and the RYA seem to be forgetting this!
j./

National 12 "Spider" 2523
Finn K468 'Captain Scarlet'

British Moth, 630, early 60's 'Pisces'

!!!! Not CVRDA !!!!
Comet Trio - something always ready to sail.

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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by SoggyBadger » Fri Jan 18, 2013 10:47 pm

jpa_wfsc wrote:other than second hand, what boat is there you can buy to learn to sail in, learn to race in, safely go cruising in, and take it all home on your cars roof rack or on a simple, light trailer (with all the spars inside).
Heron.
Best wishes


SB

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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by jpa_wfsc » Mon Jan 21, 2013 12:42 pm

Can you still buy a heron new / kit / ?? If so that is good news.
j./

National 12 "Spider" 2523
Finn K468 'Captain Scarlet'

British Moth, 630, early 60's 'Pisces'

!!!! Not CVRDA !!!!
Comet Trio - something always ready to sail.

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Re: Mirror Mirror, on the wall - who is the fairest of them

Post by Bill-Conner » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:05 pm

THe trouble is the MIrror Class has been shot in the foot, a Winder Fantastic has put the homes builds well into left field racing wise and a bit too complex for learning and cruising, time will tell but I predict the end of the Morror as we know it.

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