messing about in boats

Winter berth

Posted in Sailing by Joseph Moore on October 19, 2010

Nervous Tension‘s now tucked up on a pontoon in Southsea Marina for the winter. Long story short, I got bored of waiting for Emsworth to get back to me about spaces once they’d taken my deposit. The chaps at Southsea have been helpful and friendly all season so despite it being a bit more expensive, they get my custom.

More about the comedy of errors that was Sunday afternoon and some great photos soon, I promise.

Bring on the boat fixing, and hopefully a little sailing too.

Bank holiday boat repairs

Posted in Boat Building & Maintenance, Sailing by Joseph Moore on September 2, 2010

It hardly seems possible that the August bank holiday has passed already. This summer’s flown by in a flurry of boat-related mishaps and long hours at work. Summer’s coming to a close and the wind’s already picking up as if it were well into Autumn. Time to take stock and figure out where to go from here…

The good news is that Nervous Tension‘s essentially ready to sail. Sarah, Chris and I spent the weekend hammering, sawing, screwing, scrubbing and painting. The stem’s braced back to the first bulkhead, the old vent holes have some rather fetching plywood screwed over them, the port side stringers are back in place and most of the surfaces down below have had at least one coat of fresh white gloss.

Something had to go wrong though – it wouldn’t be boating otherwise. My shiny new (well, new to me) Mercury 5hp which had done a sterling job starting first pull and chugging us, towing one heavy old clinker dinghy, over to the marina waiting pontoon lost it’s prop just as we tried to leave the pontoon to berth in the marina. Fortunately with a force 5 on the beam we were pretty much pinned to the pontoon so there was very little chance of getting into trouble. Couple that with a Sigma 38 getting itself wedged into a corner and crushing Chris’ elderly clinker boat so it now takes on water and we were a bit stuck for getting back to the mooring the following day. Thankfully the chaps at Southsea Marina are fantastically friendly and agreed that the boat could stay there if Chris went back the following day and helped them tow her back to the mooring using their launch. Nice one guys!

So; taking stock. I’ve got a boat that’s just about ready to use at a time when most people are preparing to put theirs ashore for the winter. Maybe I should take a leaf out of Dylan’s book and indulge in some chilly but peaceful winter sailing. Something needs to be done about that mooring though. I can’t leave an elderly racing yacht on an exposed buoy through the winter storms again – it’s just asking for trouble.

I’ll write more on my thoughts and efforts to find a reasonably priced, accessible and practical mooring soon no doubt. In the mean time, a few photos from the weekend.

Panoramic "before" shot looking forward

"Before" shot looking aft

Port quarter berth with damaged stringer

Starboard quarter berth - what a difference a coat of paint can make!

"After" shot looking forward - mostly shiny and white now

On the waiting pontoon at Southsea Marina

A cockpit full of junk - painting down below

Stem braced back to front bulkhead

Repairs to front of boat - not pretty. Solid though!

Panoramic shot on Southsea Marina waiting pontoon


Eastney Lake from near Locks SC

Southsea Marina waiting pontoon and channel

Repair Progress

Posted in Boat Building & Maintenance, Sailing by Joseph Moore on March 29, 2010

Had a cracking weekend at Southsea marina working on Nervous Tension. As always, boat fixing seems to take much, much longer than you could possibly anticipate but the good news is that the hole in the transom is now watertight! It’s not pretty, but it’s sound and will stop her getting any wetter. Same for the port topside which has had the scuffs filled with a super-bog mix of epoxy, microfibres and some home made chopped strand glass made by cutting up some 450g biax.

Still plenty to do including refitting the bow roller which is currently in the back of the Land Rover along with the br0ken transom crossbeam and doing some serious damp wood replacement and glassing on the foredeck well. I’m still debating actually just removing the well altogether and decking over it. I’m not really sure what purpose it serves; you couldn’t stow a sail in there to avoid windage and you definitely couldn’t stow an anchor and chain in there. It’s most likely to result in scooping up buckets of water in rough weather, but as she’s lasted 35 years in her current setup so until I’ve been for a proper sail I’m not going to fiddle with it.

Was largely hopeless at taking photos, but grabbed a few of Stu running around with the paint roller just before we departed the marina.

Damaged rear quarter where the stanchion has pushed through the deck

Damaged rear quarter where the stanchion has pushed through the deck

A boat full of junk - note the transom crossbeam has been removed

A boat full of junk - note the transom crossbeam has been removed

Damage to starboard topside at foredeck well

Damage to starboard topside at foredeck well

Filled scuffs on port topside - still waiting to be faired

Filled scuffs on port topside - still waiting to be faired


And one very pretty SHE 27 berthed next to us…

SHE 27

SHE 27