Unknown sail

General chat about boats
Posts: 27
Joined: Sun May 01, 2005 8:45 pm
Location: United Kingdom

Re: Unknown sail

Post by johnconradlee » Sun Nov 21, 2010 5:43 pm

Interesting, I'm not sure which boats they are. Date-wise that falls in between the Portsmouth Sailing Club "Wyllie" Dinghies of the 1930s and the Stormalongs of the 1950s.
This could of course be another club's one design as most local clubs had its own one design boat.
From the Hardway sailing club website:
The first club craft were of all shapes and sizes, a few class boats but the majority home designed and built of the Sharpie type. After a while the club started looking for its own Class. Stokes Bay had the Stokes Bay One Design or Bay boats, Lee on the Solent the Seagulls, Portsmouth the Stormalongs and Portchester the Ducks.

In 1947 Alf Pearce saw a dinghy in an American magazine. It was Cat rigged i.e. no jib, just with a mainsail set right forward in the boat. This design was altered to a more conventional layout and the result was a good looking, round bilged, clinker built, 14 foot dinghy with a Gunter rig, it just happened that the rig was identical to that used in the Royal Navy's 14 foot dinghy. These boats were home built in Norman Pearce's garage at the rear of the club. They were known as the Hardway Winds and with their different coloured sails were well known all over the Solent area and proved very successful in all the local regattas.

In 1949 the demand arose for a more modern Bermuda rigged dinghy and Sid Tanner saw in a yachting book an O'Brian Kennedy 14 footer, the Irish Dinghy Racing Association One Design. He approached the designer who modified the plans to meet the club's requirements, and so was born the Hardway Seabirds. These two classes, the Wind and the Seabird, were the backbone of the club for many years. In 1950 there was racing on Saturdays, Sundays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, and they were still sailing when the club came right up to date in 1955 with the Albacore class. Meanwhile, in 1950, the club also adopted the Yachting World Cadet for the Junior Members, but only 4 were built.
John Lee
Minisail 2666

"A boat is a large hole in the water into which you pour money"

Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2012 9:42 pm

Re: Unknown sail - Stormalong

Post by Robbin » Sat Jun 30, 2012 4:22 pm

Hello, I'm late coming to this but have only recently discovered that the elderly clinker built dinghy I was given as a restoration project is a Stormalong. Her name is Storm, her sail number is 12 and her last sailing owner was Norman Ridgewell, in Bosham. I'm told that her original owner was Len Barber.

I wrote to Portsmouth Sailing Club twice to ask if it might have any more information about the Stormalong class and maybe my boat. Sadly I've not heard anything from the club yet.

I have the hull, steel centreboard, two rudders (one lifting) bottom boards, boom and bowsprit and bermudan main sail, jib and a spinnaker. Sadly, I don't have a mast; that seemingly fell prey to woodworm.

The boat spent several years 'maturing' upturned on a neighbour's drive, leaving me some wide-ranging restoration opportunities! And I'd love to learn more about the Stormalong specification and rigging. I need to find a racing mast or have one made, if the latter, it will be good to know more about dimensions.

I'll very grateful for any help and leads.



Posts: 6249
Joined: Thu Sep 16, 2004 8:40 pm
Location: Cotswold Water Park

Re: Unknown sail

Post by Rupert » Sat Jun 30, 2012 4:54 pm

Hi Robbin,

welcome to the cvrda!

The Stormalong makes it into James Bartlett's 1960 book "Racing Yachts and Dinghies", so I can tell you that she was designed by George Feltham, has a sail area of 100sq feet, and used to be raced at Portsmouth SC. The handicap given in 1960, where the scale was similar to the 1965 handicaps used by the cvrda, was 114. At that time the Firefly was racing off 103, which must have made it a bit of a bandit...

However, I'm afraid I can't help with anything specific to her restoration, I'm afraid.

Posts: 3026
Joined: Mon Sep 20, 2004 12:08 pm
Location: Frome Somerset UK

Re: Unknown sail

Post by roger » Sat Jun 30, 2012 8:12 pm

Hello Robin,

Welcome to the cvrda.

It may be worth talking to Bosham if thats where your boat came from. They have a very active classic fleet and someone may know more about your class.

Andrew Young organised the classic event last year. It might be worth giving him a shout.

his email below

bsc dot cloud at gmail dot com

good luck and keep us informed of your progress

Hornet 191 Shoestring,
Hornet 595 Demon awaiting restoration
Hornet 610 Final Fling
Hornet 353

Posts: 466
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 9:01 pm
Location: twixt Chichester & Pompey

Re: Unknown sail

Post by solentgal » Sun Jul 01, 2012 10:22 am

Hi Robbin,

As you will have read near the beginning of this thread, I learned to sail in Stormalong no. 2.
I live in Havant......is that anywhere near you? If so I could pop over to see you at some point if you would like me to, and see if my memory is any help. I remember your boat from around the harbour in the late 70s/early 80s, along with another.....one of them had light blue sails, can't remember which one though.
I have a couple of photos of ours, but with the cruising rig only, no pics of the racing mast unfortunately :(

Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2012 9:42 pm

Re: Unknown sail - Stormalong

Post by Robbin » Sun Jul 01, 2012 2:53 pm

Hello again and thanks to you all for your help; I've learned a lot.

Yesterday I find that I'd missed what proves a very informative letter from Portsmouth Sailing Club. That included notes on Stormalongs, their rules and construction, plus information on owners and helms and some pictures. The specification data proves particularly important.

I've recently joined Bosham Sailing Club and am finding my way around its Classic Dayboat section and getting encouragement from that quarter. There are also a couple of boatbuilding specialists in the club who've offerd help and advice when I'm ready.

Coincidentally my wife and I recently met Harry Feltham's granddaughter, who has also provided some very useful background information.

We live in Bosham and will be delighted to see other Stormalong folk and show you the scale of the opportunity.

Thanks again for all the help.


Posts: 6249
Joined: Thu Sep 16, 2004 8:40 pm
Location: Cotswold Water Park

Re: Unknown sail

Post by Rupert » Sun Jul 01, 2012 6:14 pm

Will we be seeing her at the Bosham Classics event in September?

Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2012 9:42 pm

Re: Unknown sail

Post by Robbin » Sun Jul 01, 2012 10:13 pm

Hello Rupert,
I'd like to say I hope so, but I wouldn't want to specify which September. There really is quite a lot of work to do, including fixing a two metre split in a plank three out from the keel and finding a mast.
So yes, I'd love to get her afloat in two months, but reality suggests I'll not launch her till next Spring.
But I will keep people posted on progress.

Pete Smith
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Sep 26, 2017 1:35 am

Re: Unknown sail

Post by Pete Smith » Tue Oct 03, 2017 11:15 pm

Hi, I appear to have arrived rather late into this post but as this is my first post I thought I might add some general information that may prove helpful.
I have just purchased a 12ft 6” Stormalong wooden clinker built sailing dinghy her name is “Saggita” with “PSC” (Portsmouth Sailing Club) next to the name. Her sail number is 8, and she has a brass plate which has G A Feltham on it (The builder). She is in remarkable original condition and is complete with two sets of original sails a bowsprit and oars. She was originally owned by a Mr. Ireland. I could go on adding things but you’d get bored!
Regardless, I’d be very interested in any useful information relating to this type of boat. Additionally I would welcome any advice on looking after her and preparing her for going sailing as this is the main reason for joining this forum.

Posts: 500
Joined: Fri Jan 03, 2014 5:25 pm
Location: West Sussex

Re: Unknown sail

Post by Michael4 » Wed Oct 04, 2017 9:01 am

Feltham was a well known and much praised builder in Portsmouth. A few years ago I only just stopped myself from buying a 'reverse clinker' motor launch built by Harry Feltham for yard use.

Never really got to the bottom of 'reverse clinker...'
Tideway 206
Sold the 'Something bigger and plastic', it never got used.

Post Reply