Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

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Itchen Ferry
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Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by Itchen Ferry » Sat Aug 23, 2014 12:49 pm

Hello everyone,

My name is Dave F, I have been lurking here for some while, reading and reading and following links and learning so much.

I have lived in Southampton my whole life and despite the fact that there are probably more opportunities for sailing within 20miles of here, than practically anywhere else in the UK, I will admit I have never set foot in a sailing boat!

So you might very well ask what I'm here for?

Well I restore and repair motorcycles for a living and am an avid student of the history, development, racing legends and folklore of bike racing. I was inspired into motorcycles by the life and works of the one and only Mr William Joseph (Joey) Dunlop - his work, his style, his eccentric approach and sheer bloodymindedness.

Would you care to hazard a guess as to who has inspired me to develop an unhealthy interest in Sailing, and dinghies in particular? Yes thats right, Uffa Fox! inspirational.

So after a few years of reading about boats, Uffa, the designs, the era, the style, sailing and racing, my wife finally became fed up with my seemingly pointless interest in "silly old boats" and bought me a RYA Dinghy 1&2 voucher for my 40th birthday, and I'm doing the courses over two weekends from the 6th Sept - wooooo!

Anyhow enough about me I have obviously been giving a lot of thought to what kind of Dinghy I might like to sail, I do need to be inspired by objects in order to really bond with them. I find myself uninspired by GRP (sorry but there you are) and it has to be wood, preferably Uffa and preferably not completely shagged out.

Now I am clear in my mind that I will need to spend much time learning to sail and to that end a popular, simple plastic fantastic to start with makes a lot of sense, and will probably get a modern GRP dinghy to learn with but I love to challenge myself, don't mind hard work and learn fast. I want to be in a classic/vintage dinghy as soon a practical and to that end I have already started searching.

To be fair I am well aware that there are far wiser choices, but I have been smitten by the vintage International 14's I intend to buy one renovate it and join in with your group at CVRDA.

So I have been discussing with a chap named Martin Webster about the potential of buying his late father, John Websters' dry stored I14 which is up for sale at the moment.

She is K512 "Jill" and seems to be a 1948 Uffa design "Alarm"


I have had a lengthy chat with Mr Webster and have established that "Jill" was taken off the water in 1979 and has been stored in the location shown in the photos ever since.

I have researched the sandwich style construction used to build her and am very wary of damage or large gaps between the tiny planks. Now the boat is 3 hours away from me but I have made a small holding deposit to ensure that I get the chance to go and view her in person before committing. The chap is away for the weekend but more photos will be forthcoming on Monday, to help see if it is even worth going up to look, but I am assured that she is in great condition and that all the spars, foils, rigging, sails and hardware are present although some fittings have been removed from the hull and stored in canvas bags.

Now I'm wary of the wood having dried out too much, I read that all the drying out takes approx 5 years then you have a certain moisture stability from then onwards. From this next photo you will see that the transom finishing strip has lifted and to my eye indicates shrinkage. If the fasteners for that have loosened as the wood dried what will it have done to the hull fasteners!?


From the interior shot, below, it looks to me as if someone has made a historical attempt to seal the buoyancy tanks with what looks like some kind of filler or mastic, hopefully this will be so old and dry that it can be removed, redone. lt also seems like someone added hatches to the side tanks but as she was with EACC, as a broads cruiser, some added storage makes sense, no?


I'm in love - I really would like to get this project on the go and give myself something to work on whilst I learn to sail and intend it to act as inspiration to really get on with learning all the new skills, both on the water and in the workshed, that I am clearly going to need!

I hope to receive more photos on Monday, if anyone is interested I could post them up here? Perhaps more importantly has anyone got any thoughts on what can be seen in these photos or even knowledge of the boat herself?

I do understand that these dinghy's require dedication, and time and money but I intend to do as much of the work as I can myself and to be frank she does look rather solid, but we shall see, I may be going for a viewing on Friday, depending on what the new photos reveal.

Really great site, association and overall concept, I'm in!

If you'll have me and maybe, just maybe "Jill" too?

Thanks and best wishes.


Itchen Ferry
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Update: Measurement certificate by email!

Post by Itchen Ferry » Sat Aug 23, 2014 12:54 pm

Just to add to the above:

Mr Webster has emailed me a scan of the original measurement certificate:


What a nice thing to have?



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Re: Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by JimC » Sat Aug 23, 2014 4:18 pm

A lovely thing, but maybe not the boat to go sailing in every weekend! The other thing about 14s too is that they have a large rig and put a lot of load in the boat if you sail them in breeze.
A boat to love, cherish, yes and sail from time to time in carefully chosen weather and locations. But be aware that I suppose you could say in technology terms she's roughly equivalent to 1920s or earlier racing bikes, and like them the time spent in the workshop will far exceed the time spent in the water.

However if you want a boat that you can continue learning to sail in every weekend then something like an older Firefly or Albacore still ticks the boxes as far as wood and Fox are concerned, but won't require quite the same level of white gloves handling and protection that 'Jill' deserves and requires. Given the time and space I guess I'd have both, but if I had to have only one boat that I was going to actively sail then I think reluctantly I'd conclude that I wasn't the right custodian for 'Jill'.

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Re: Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by Ian Malcolm » Sat Aug 23, 2014 5:21 pm

Looks interesting, but high performance traditionally built racing dinghies from the immediately post war austerity era are not for the unwary. Fitted tanks on a closely ribbed hull are a maintenance nightmare and those obviously only provide enough buoyancy to keep the hull awash. so totally impractical for sailing in other than benign conditions or with very well trained safety cover used to dealing with vintage boats. If you are going to sea sail this independently, you will need bow and stern buoyancy bags and a fitted cover for the bow back to the mast to keep the worst of the spray out.

I also would be suspicious of all the fastenings. If they aren't silicon bronze (extremely unlikely) they are probably all near dead from corrosion and the metal salts will have damaged the wood around them removing much of its strength. The traditional term is "nailsick". Fortunately the construction doesn't appear to be individually fastened double diagonal planking with the outer planking bedded on oiled silk but is more likely to be one of Uffa's earlier experiments with laminate construction.

If you can borrow someone with vintage dinghy maintenance experience to take with you on your inspection trip it will be well worth it. Take lots of hi-res closeup photos of both the inside and outside and be prepared to make a second trip to actually buy the boat *AFTER* the guys here have seen the photos. Photo every fitting and every inch of the mast and boom. Be methodical - work around the boat in an orderly fashion.

If you have the fine cabinet making skills you need to make a fair job of hull repairs, lots of free time on your hands and a deep pocket, go for it - but it will be a long haul and a steep learning curve. I assume your mechanical, metalwork and paint-shop skills are already excellent.

If you don't want to be too depressed, you'll need a boat to go sailing in as well, ideally something not too dissimilar in style but much lower maintenance and more tolerant of heavy weather. I also suggest a composite Albacore, (GRP hull, timber deck) reasonable examples of which can be picked up for around £500-£700. Fairey Marine based the design on the 15' Uffa Fox Swordfish dinghy hull, detuning it slightly (no spinnaker) and increasing the freeboard to make a better sea boat. An Albacore is unlikely to teach you any bad habits that will cause problems in the 14. A composite Alb will survive quite happily in a dinghy park under a good cover without excessive annual maintenance and you could easily keep one looking very sharp indeed. You don't want more than one all varnished all wood boat at a time unless you are a restoration addict or have a barn to dry store your collection in!
[at]=@, [dash]=- & [dot]=. *Warning* HTML & >32K emails --> NUL:
'Stingo' Albacore #1554 - 15' Early 60's, Uffa Fox designed,
All varnished hot moulded wooden racing dinghy.

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Re: Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by Ed » Mon Aug 25, 2014 10:48 am

Hi Dave,

So, you want to own a 14, good on you!

When I was a kid, my father had a Fairey Jollyboat. We didn't have a topper or a cadet, but only the Jollyboat, so I learned to crew and then a Jollyboat. Many years later, I was reading a 1960's book on learning to sail; it started by stressing the importance of learning on an appropriate boat and finished by saying: "Whatever you do, don't try and learn on something like a I14 or a Jollyboat" as if no-one would ever be mad enough to do so. Well I did, and nobody ever told me it was an issue at the time. You just take things at your own speed, accept the knocks with the successes and enjoy it.

Yes, the 14 is right at the top of the tree of post-war dinghies. They were the most expensive boats and gave the best performance. They also demanded a fair amount of sailing ability to get the best out of them. They were also largely sailed by the more upper-class elements of society. All of these meant the boats were revered with a certain amount of awe, which continues to this day.

But you want some advice, and for sure you have come to the right place, although the forum is quiet at the moment as everyone is at the nationals in Clywedog this weekend, there will be more advice and opinions in a while.

Sailing a Vintage 14

I don't think sailing a vintage 14 is nearly as much of a challenge as you might think or be told, with one proviso. (as Jim said) They have a damned big rig, so pick your times for sailing her with care. When you get around to getting a new set of sails, do not be tempted to have anything cut any bigger than Jill originally had when originally measured.

Fox 14s have a relatively high freeboard and buoyant bilges (and most probably a leaded board), which mean they are quite tender (tippy) but firm up as they start to go over, which means they are easier to recover from gusts with, as long as your sailing is up to scratch. I bought my 14 (Fox designed Fairey boat) from a scout leader who filled it with kids and sailed around the solent. I asked him what happened when he capsized, but he said he didn't know....never had. For that matter, I never capsized mine either, which is quite something as I rarely manage to go a regatta in the Jollyboat without going for at least one swim.

The issue with sailing a vintage 14 is not the design, or really the sail area, it is simply the fact that the boat is 70 years old, valuable, and part of our maritime heritage. You have to choose your times to go sailing by what is appropriate for the boat (and for a while - your skills, till they grow). But then, who would want to go out for a club race on a rainy mid march day in this boat? It is a boat for gently sails on long summer evenings and I can think of no better boat for those kind of sails.

Renovating a 14

There are others with much more experience than me with ribbed 14s, and to be honest, I have always avoided them as they just seemed to me like the very hardest of boats to renovate and I was always worried about my ability to do one to the standard I would wish the work to be done. They are hard, you will need lots of specialist knowledge, but at least you have found the right place to get that help!

You have one big issue with a boat like this. It has been in dry storage since 1979. That is 35 years. When you look at it, when you photograph it, you may well find very little damage. So little it is tempting to just wap on a coat of epiphanes and go for a sail, but as soon as you put the boat under stress, you 'may' well find that everything starts to move and creep a bit and things break, you get leaks etc etc. The chances are high that the varnish may look ok, but is unlikely to have any UV-filtering left in it, so really isn't doing its job, so don't leave in sunlight!

So, you have two options. First is to just fix anything that is obviously wrong and then go for a couple of gentle, really gentle sails and see what happens.....then take it out, inspect and presuming it is necessary, put it back inside to dry out. Many people will dislike this approach, but if you take care, store it inside at correct humidity (slightly damp boat house, not museum), it is possible that you can do best by doing least and you could go on for a few years till renovation becomes compulsory.

Second option is to go for the renovation right now and start stripping it of varnish. As you do this, you may well find that it is only really the varnish that is holding it together and it starts to fall apart. This is annoying, but good, it shows you what needs to be fixed :-) It will take forever.....renovating 14s is slow and very painstaking work. There are thousands of rivets, that may need to be individually removed and replaced. The gaps between the ribs are only a couple of inches and very fiddly to strip/sand, especially without scratching. Dip-stripping and blasting are both a bad idea, you have to do it by hand. This job would be like stripping a nice Borrani Rim that had been powder-coated, with the intention of bringing back to a polished finish, by hand, with nothing but a scraper and wet'n'dry. These boats did not have much glue in their construction, but any glued joint can now be considered suspect. The main place where this will be so is the mast, which will most probably need to be split and re-glued.

Is this work hard, yes; it is fun, for sure; is it possible, certainly; especially with help/support from the forum, but there is a lot to learn and much to be lost or gained in the job.

My thoughts

You know this is a big challenge, but you are up for it, so go to it! Just remember Jill is very precious to all of us, so you take on a responsibility to do the job well.

As you and others have said, getting another boat to learn on would seem like a good idea. But I am going to advise something different. Don't buy a plastic boat (you don't want one anyway) buy a nice Fairey Firefly, Swordfish or Albacore (might have a jollyboat if you are interested). This will give you something to learn to sail on, but also more importantly something to learn your boatwork on, whilst you slowly work on Jill. If you decide to renovate her, Jill will be a year or two in the workshop. So, make sure you can strip, sand and varnish your Firefly decks before you have a go at Jill's hull. Owning a classic or vintage boat rarely means just having the one. We all normally have one or two we are sailing, and one or two in the workshop.

In the end, most cvrda members will advise you in terms of 'sailing' a 14, but I have certainly had boats where it was more to me about just 'owning'. I wanted to look at the boat, polish it, care for it and as you say 'bond with it'....and if the weather was right I would go for a sail. But if it was blowing a hooly and I wanted a blast, I would take something else out.

Some specific answers:

Much of the rigging, even if put away, will need to be carefully looked at. Check, ask whether it is all stainless or if any is galvinised. All galvinised wiring will need to be replaced imho.

The transom rubbing strip has come up, not because the wood has shrunk, but because the brass screws have rotten. These will need to be removed and new ones replaced. (yes, we can tell you how).

From the photos.....I can see no or very little evidence of drying out. She has been kept in a perfect surroundings: dry, but external.

Inspection hatches are not original, but not added to give storage but to allow effective drying out of interiors as the tanks most probably leak like sieves. This is also why bottom of tanks are sealed with mastic. These can be a sod to fix. Most pragmatic way forwards is to accept they leak and fill them with plastic bottles, etc, then dry after each sail.

Don't underestimate the work, but as long as you have; plenty of time, a fair bit of money and somewhere to store her which is dry.....I would say go for it.

I look forwards to seeing more photos, and hearing more from those with real I14 experience.

Ed Bremner

Jollyboat J3
Firefly F2942
IC GBR314 ex S51 - 1970 Slurp
MR 638 - Please come and take it away
Phelps Scull
Bathurst Whiff - looking for someone to love it

Michael Brigg
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Re: Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by Michael Brigg » Mon Aug 25, 2014 1:19 pm

Hi Dave,

If you get Jill, and have a good size shed to keep her in then I guarantee that with patience you will hve an endless scource of entertainment for the rest of your life. Especially on evenings when there is nothing else on the Telly.

It is a good idea to have SWMBO on board as she will need to know that this is a hobby that will have costs. She is the most important person to have on board in your project and if you can persuade her, bring her along with you to bond with this new addition to your family from the first point of contact. Joking aside this is heartfelt advice!

Where I work in Gosport we have a facility for retired gentlemen, run as a community project, known as "The Shed." It is a kind of Boy Scouts for old gits, and I believe there are many springing up around the country. The concept is for men who haven't got hobbies, and offers n outlet for those that haven't the personal resources to have a shed of their own. I am not a member (after all I am still working) but I can see the purpose and believe the CVRDA membership is in its way similar. The point is, a Project like Jill is good for your health.

Even Oscar Wilde knew it...From the Importance of being Ernest... a passage where the eponymous "Ernest" is being interrogated on his suitability as suitor...
Lady Bracknell. "Do you smoke?"
jack Worthing "Lady Bracknell, I am bound to say yes, I do smoke
Lady Bracknell "That is well. A man should always have an occupation."

So I would say go for it.

On the matter of sailing there is often a need for crew at various events.

It is my intent to sail at the Bosham Classic revival, (on the 6th / 7th September, two weeks away from today) if I can dust down my Firefly for the event and although she leaks she has a respectable performance. I am short of a crew... PM me if you are interested.
Michael Brigg

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Re: Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by Obscured by clouds » Mon Aug 25, 2014 8:09 pm

You need to have a long chat with Chris Barlow.

Blue Peter [1946 vintage] was out on the water this w/e at the cvrda nationals and looked wonderfull, sailed well and seemed fairly straightforward to handle.

No trapeze, but the mast looked like it would pick up TV.

There will be photos to follow I'm sure.

MR 2404 Julia Dream
N18 276 Sibrwd [ongoing project]
Hirondelle catamaran Kalipse
[down to 3!]

Itchen Ferry
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Re: Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by Itchen Ferry » Tue Aug 26, 2014 1:09 pm

Hello everyone,

Thanks very much for the really great response to my posting.

I have read and re-read all the replies, I've searched the forum and read everything I can find about vintage I14's, all I can say is that I do feel the responsibility.

I am certainly under no illusions that I'm just going to be able to pop Jill in the water and sail off, I anticipate a challenging 12-18 months to firstly make her sound and secondly learn to sail well enough to sail her.

I appreciate all the replies and the offer of a crewing spot which I would gladly take up if it weren't for the fact that my RYA Dinghy Level 1 (Start Sailing) course is on the 6th/7th September followed up the weekend after with Dinghy Level 2 (Basic Skills). I'm also hoping to get the Level 3 (Better Sailing) done before the end of the season.

Now that I have received some more photos from the owner I thought I might be best off creating a gallery online and linking to that as the resolution is massive, however that does mean you can expand the photos to see very great amounts of detail.

I asked the chap to take photos, preferably of the internal and external planking, any damage, the contents of the canvas bag full of fitting, the mast, foils and sails.

These are the pics: ... brary/K512

Hope that works?

The vendor did attempt to answer my questions, he does sound genuine and is being very cooperative:

He said:

Good to talk to you about Jill.

The hull is perfectly sound but the metal edging on the transom needs to be re-attached. She has been dry stored for the last 35 years but in good conditions. Comes with mast, rudder, centre board and 3 sets of sails (1 x firefly cotton, 2 x Terylene)

I have attached some more photos of the joints in the outside of the hull near the centre board, one of the inside, removed fixtures/fittings and some detailed feature shots.

The mast is anchored to the boat via a bolt (in the fixture photo) that mounts in the holes channel pictured. The gaps in the outside hull are very small and i cannot see any gaps on the inside.
The text in red worries me! My years in the bike trade have made me cynical to words like "perfect" and "very small"

Still, ever the optimist, I shall be very grateful if anyone here is able to offer a view on the condition of the boat, as much as that can be judged from these photos anyway?

Thanks ever so much.


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Re: Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by Rupert » Tue Aug 26, 2014 2:09 pm

Can't add anything too much to what has been said above, except words of encouragement!

Sailing and boat restoration are really 2 different occupations. It sounds like you have lots of knowledge of restoring things, whatever they are, so you know it will be a slow process with lots of surprises.

On the sailing side, as has been said, an Uffa Fox designed boat would give you both a feel for that era, a boat to inspire you and a boat to learn on. If there are 2 of you, then the Albacore would be a good choice (and maybe even go for totally GRP - you want to be working on the 14, after all), but if a mix of singlehanded and with a crew, and you aren't too big, then a Firefly will give you a feel for the tippyness Uffa's boats tend to have. It is also worth thinking about smaller sails for the 14. If you got a Firefly, the mainsail would be good as a learning sail on that, too.

Best is to try the boats - plenty of both around the place, if not near you, then I'm sure owners on here would be happy for you to have a go once you have the basics in place.

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Re: Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by Michael4 » Tue Aug 26, 2014 3:49 pm

Here's a thought.

Over in Emsworth Marina at Harbour Chandlers I think the son of the owner (Jim) has been restoring an Int14, which when I last saw it looked as if it was almost ready to go.

I'd suggest you get in touch and see if you can have a chat and find out more.

Tideway 206
Sold the 'Something bigger and plastic', it never got used.

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Re: Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by chris » Tue Aug 26, 2014 9:54 pm

Hallo Dave,
You don't have to be mad but it certainly helps! My wife and I took up sailing just over twenty years ago when we were nearly 40. When we told people we had bought an old merlin Rocket they laughed heartily saying it was not a beginners boat (how were we to know?) It is still our favourite boat and having spent much time working on it well that just adds to the pleasure of sailing it. I've restored several ribbed boats since and have recently finished Blue Peter which is a 14 just a few years older than Jill. Certainly a vintage International 14 is a very special boat some would say a heritage boat and I would certainly agree. But from the few times I have sailed her so far she is less tippy than a merlin of that age. ( but if you do capsize, as people do from time to time, then I would rather capsize the merlin!) I agree with everything that has been said so far on this thread, whether it be warnings or encouragements. The only thing I would add that hasn't been mentioned is the crew. Any double hander needs a crew and if you have a regular crew that will make a huge difference. A novice helm with a variety of novice crews in a powerful boat will not be a happy learning curve. My wife and I learnt together and survived! So one thought would be to learn together or to consider learning to sail single handed with the possibility of sailing two up. ( Firefly perfect for that).
Indeed Jill, or Blue Peter, will never be an everyday boat. We came off the water early in one race at Clywedog because the wind was too strong for the old boat. Having spent months working on the boat why break it? A 60-70 year old boat will never be as strong as the day she was built however great the condition of it.
I live about 1 1/2hrs from Southampton. You would be very welcome to come over have a good look at Blue Peter and come for a sail in her. Just let me know when would suit.

A few thoughts when you go to look at Jill:
Weak spots: 1) Gunwales, probably used glue and the glue used probably had a life of about 40 years so the chances are that the glue holding them together will fail as soon as any stress is put on them. so look at these very carefully, they may need taking apart and regluing.
2) The worst weak spot is where the skin and ribs join the keel. I can see from your photos this has already been reinforced with tape and probably polyester resin rather than epoxy. In other words this area has already been a problem. Look really hard at the ribs where they join the inside part of the keel (the hog) They may look OK but may be cracked or just brittle. Re-ribbing is possible but not for the faint hearted on something like this.
On the other hand the planking does show some small cracks between them but they are a fraction of what Blue Peter showed so I really don't see a problem with that.
My philosophy is always to dismantle the important parts a boat of this age. Whatever screws (maybe brass rather than bronze) that hold the centreboard case, thwarts etc will have corroded and have very little life left in them. I like to sail a boat I can trust whatever the age so any metal fixings needs replacing. I would never consider using old rigging even if it looks OK. In Uffa Foxes specifications many parts are bronze or gunmetal but the fastenings he lists as copper or brass. Original brass screws will definitely be useless now.

By the way Jill's first owner was a G F Gillham followed by an E Webster.
Good luck and keep in touch.
Chris Barlow

Itchen Ferry
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Re: Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by Itchen Ferry » Tue Aug 26, 2014 10:02 pm

Just wrote the below before Chris replied above....

I wrote to Tony Dixon, Uffas' Nephew, who runs the Uffa Fox Website, to ask if they held any information on Jill in their archives.

Here is his reply:
Hi David,

The International 14 footer "Jill" {K512} was built in 1948 for the original owner H.F. Gillham. It was built from a modified mould of the 1935 boat "Alarm" with which Stewart Morris won the POW cup in 1935 and 1936. Uffa built 14 boats in 1948 of which "Jill" was one of them. Thats about all I can tell you of her.

All best wishes

Tony Dixon
Brilliant to get a swift response like that, certainly worth asking about your Uffa boat if you haven't already.

Anyway, this information would explain why the measurement certificate is a replacement dated 1953, presumably when L.R. Tilney purchased her.

Do any forum members have any references to any of the three known owners? :

H.F. Gillham

L.R Tilney

J. Webster

Furthermore does anyone know anything about the referenced "Modified" Alarm Mould.

Going to view Jill on Friday in Norfolk, if anyone local cares to join me please let me know.

Best regards


Itchen Ferry
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Re: Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by Itchen Ferry » Tue Aug 26, 2014 10:12 pm

Then I do a little digging and found this in the CVRDA archives!

See for sale section page 3

So my guess is the E. Webster was the brother who had passed, John being Martins Dad, Martin being the vendor now.

Hmm so 2 boats owned by E.Webster at some time?

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Re: Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by Pat » Wed Aug 27, 2014 8:31 am

Hi Dave,
Sounds like two boats would be ideal for you - a Firefly (maybe even a plastic one) for everyday sailing and the 14 for special occasions. One to use, learn in, be buoyant so easy to capsize and right and not be too precious about when you bump the jetty or shore a little hard and then one to cherish.
You definitely need to visit when Chris has Blue Peter out but we're only a Sunday outing ride up the A36 from you at Shearwater.
Before you do level 3, you need time on the water after level 2, which is why I got level two and a half back in 2001 when I did my course (at SWAC by the Itchen Bridge) as I'd got the knowledge but lacked the practical experience. There are several good clubs in the Southampton area to choose from - you have to visit a few and chat to people to judge if they suit you and your sailing. Netley held our nationals a few years ago but we don't have any regular event entrant members from the area.
Good luck and I hope the course goes well and the weather is kind that weekend.

(Half Cut and What a Lark Removals Ltd)

Itchen Ferry
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Re: Introduction and vintage International 14 query.

Post by Itchen Ferry » Thu Aug 28, 2014 9:57 am

Well I have been turning this over in my head for a week now....

Sounds like this is the wrong boat, plain and simple?

Heart says "Yes, yes, yes, go for it it's a proper keeper, heirloom project".

Head says "Don't be daft, start with something less important, less complex and a lot easier to sail"

This is the classic restorers quandary: How much is it? - Not too much - How long will the project take? - No idea, but endless if sailed regularly. - What are the material costs? - No idea at this stage - How far away and how awkward is it to recover? A full day and assistants needed.- How much of the work can I do myself and how much will the outsourcing cost? - Some/all/no idea

I can't even guesstimate half the answers there. If it was just for the boat herself it would be fine but the SAFE sailing part of this that troubles me most.

I'm pretty close to backing away, have to make a call today. Love the idea of owning and restoring Jill, but she's 3.5 hrs away and I could scarcely choose a worse vessel as a first restoration or as a first/second sailing dinghy for that matter.

If anyone is interested in stepping in to rejuvenate Jill themselves then let me know and I will gladly put you in touch with the vendor.

I think I'm going to wait until I've done the sailing courses before buying a dinghy, although I know it will be a classic or vintage.

Vintage/old National 12's look fun! There's loads of choice and plenty of interesting design elements and a load of interesting stuff out there still to "barn find". I find the research almost as much fun as the hands on stuff.

I could live with messing up a 12 but not a 14, is it ok to express that?

Thanks for everyone's input on this.

I'm not 100% convinced I ca do this project justice, and I feel like I should be convinced or else a 14 like this probably is a bad idea.


Best regards,


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