Tag Archives: FSMBC

Constructing the Hebridean day 8

The title of this post is a bit inaccurate, since I did no construction today at all. But I did bring the Hebridean frame, vane, and mount bearing to Tammy Norie and worked out how they will fit.

The first job was simply to locate a good position for the Hebridean on the stern.  This was quite easy.  As you can see from this picture, the Hebridean looks made for the boat, with its trunk angle nicely matching the top angle of the transom.


There’s plenty of clearance all around, but the end of the pivot pin (resting on my toes) is just outside the boat. The mount bearing will sit here.


It will be sandwiched between two planks which will be fastened to the boat. After a bit of thought, it’s clear that I should cut planks that are bolted down to the top of the transom, on the 80mm-wide flat part of the deck, but then are shaped to rest on the top slope of the transom to bear load.  This will keep the mount clear of the stern lockers and anything else going on in the cockpit.  I’ll make a proper diagram later and share it.

I also checked how the Hebridean will act when it swings.  I have yet to determine the correct length for the outriggers, and it’s not clear how I can do that before mounting and rigging the whole thing. There will be pulleys suspended from the stern rail taking lines from the outriggers to the tiller.  At the angle shown in the photo below the outrigger is exceeding the height of the rail, and that means the gear will stop working.  I wonder if it will have enough movement.


One possible refinement is that the Coromandel’s tiller could be adapted to be reversible.


Here you can see the tiller when vertical.  By making the bottom bolt removable (using an anchor pin, for example) the reinforcing the top link, the tiller will swing back over the stern lockers.  This would allow the Hebridean to connect without the usual cross-over of its lines, and also mean that the cockpit is clear then using the self-steering.

Anyway, I now have enough measurements to determine the correct length for the pendulum.

The rest of the day was taken up with a wonderful sail from Warsash to Fareham with my friend Gareth and his nephew and niece, Kyle (12) and Cara (10), neither of whom had been sailing before.  I’ll let the Met Office tell you about the weather:

Selsey Bill to Lyme Regis – Strong winds are forecast

24 hour forecast: West or southwest 6 to gale 8, occasionally 5 later. Moderate or rough. Mainly fair. Good.

We came out of the Hamble and messed around in Southampton Water for a while. The winds were strong, but it was also sunny and warm. The others weren’t due back until the late afternoon so we decided to take Tammy home to Fareham. It was a delightful run before a force 7 in 1m seas, and once again we had the Solent to ourselves.


I also got to measure the distance from Tammy’s stern deck to the stern wave (about 310mm) while doing 6 knots in front of a force 7. That’s probably a good working figure for the Hebridean.

I will be sailing again tomorrow, and then I will need to return to work for a few days, so construction may be suspended for a short while.

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Filed under Constructing the Hebridean, Equipment, Logs, Repairs and Modifications, self steering

Tammy Norie in Bembridge

My plans for the weekend worked out well. I caught the afternoon tide out of Fareham, down to Portsmouth, then out and across to Bembridge.

It turned out that the Fareham Sailing and Motor Boat Club had an organised meeting and dinner over at Island Harbour Marina on the Medina on the Isle of Wight, but I didn’t find out about it until Saturday lunch-time. I had a go at beating up towards Cowes to meet them in the morning, but it was choppy and would’ve taken many hours. The forecast for Sunday was even stronger westerlies. So I decided to reach over to Bembridge and reach back the next day.

Nothing exciting happened, but then it is the Solent. Here’s a nice picture of Bembridge Harbour.


I’ve selected a few other nice ones for this album including a picture of Tammy Norie with a spinnaker at her bow.

Engine hours: zero. (OK, I did run the engine for five minutes to stop the fuel gumming up and make sure it worked.) Sailed solo upwind onto the pontoon at mid tide in Bembridge in a very stiff breeze and a tight space.

The two important things for me, this weekend, are (1) that Tammy is at last feeling like she’s back in one piece, with nearly everything in the right place, and ready to go, and (2) I am feeling like I’m back in one piece — able to use my left arm almost all the time without difficulty. I was told it would be one year to recover, but I think I’m 80% of the way there after six months. I think I can confidently plan some more adventurous sailing for the rest of the year.

If I’m to take part in the Jester Azores Challenge in May I’d better get going!

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Filed under Logs

Little adventures in Portsmouth Harbour

My sailing has had a very late start this year due to illness and injury, so I was absolutely delighted to finally get out on the water last weekend, and then get involved in a rescue (of sorts) within an hour of casting off!

Friday night was dark and stormy, and I spent a lot of it in the bar at the Fareham Sailing and Motor Boat Club chatting to Bob, whose large centre-cockpit cruiser was on the club pontoon next to Tammy. He mentioned his ideas about circumnavigating Europe, and I told him about the Rhine-Main-Danube canal and my ideas for a trip through the Black Sea. “So I’m not the only one who thinks about these things!” he said.

No indeed. Next summer I hope to be in the Jester Azores Challenge, which means I’ll wind up in the Azores. Rather than heading straight back, perhaps I could sail in to the Med. Even more ambitious, my friend Tan has just taken up a research post at Eilat. Could I sail through the Suez Canal and round to Eilat? And then back via the Bosphorus and Danube, finally popping out at Rotterdam?  Maybe, maybe.

On Saturday morning I waited for my friend Chris to join me on board. I finally rang him at 10:00 and caught him still in bed! It was too late for him to join me before his work, so I set off solo. I made a couple of turns up and down Fareham Creek with Tammy being knocked over by 30kt gusts through the trees and buildings on the bank. It was great to be back on board, great to feel her move, and to be able to deal instantly with the changing wind in a tight space thanks to the ease of handling of the junk rig.

Then I set off downstream into Portsmouth Harbour proper.

Tammy never fails to turn heads, and I greeted people as I passed. One chap seemed particularly interested, standing in the cockpit of his moored cruiser.  Just as I passed he called out “Can I have a lift? I’ve dropped my paddle!”

This confused and intrigued me and I tacked back up towards him. He gestured at the kayak on tied to the yacht’s rail. It wasn’t his yacht at all! He was out in his kayak, had dropped and lost his paddle, and it’d been quickly blown away on the persistent 20kt winds. I invited him aboard and we tethered his kayak to the stern.

His paddle was likely on the mud downwind, but we couldn’t see it.  The falling tide would’ve stranded Tammy for some hours if we went over to look.  “Don’t worry,” he said, “I’ve got another one on my boat. Can you take me there?”

“Of course! I’m only out here mucking about. It’s no problem at all.”

So we beat our way back up against wind and tide towards the Royal Navy Sailing Association pontoons. There he showed me his rather magnificent steel cruiser and made me tea. He’d sailed her back from the Algarve and has been working on her for the past three years. She’s just the kind of boat I was thinking of when I was thinking of a larger boat.


Satisfied that Dave was no longer in mortal peril I set off back downwind towards Portsmouth and Gosport, borrowed someone else’s buoy within sight of Gunwharf Quay for a rest, and then caught the flood tide back up to Fareham.

What a lovely day!


Filed under Logs

Launching for the summer

I plan to launch Tammy Norie this Sunday (tomorrow) at the public hard next to the Fareham Sailing and Motor Boat Club in the early afternoon. We’ll tow her down in the morning, get some lunch at the club, then get her afloat and on to her new mooring. High tide is at about 15:15. There should be some time for some messing about in Portsmouth Harbour. Let me know if you fancy coming along.


Filed under Plans

A mooring in Fareham Creek

Tammy Norie now has a permanent mooring in Fareham Creek at the Fareham Sailing and Motorboat Club right here:

Mooring maintenance is the responsibility of the club member at FSMBC, so Dad and I rowed out and checked the sinkers, shackles, and chains on under a promising buoy pointed out by Sid, the mooring master. This particular trot mooring had two concrete sinkers about three quarters of a metre across, and some very heavy chain and shackle.


Tammy Norie will be sitting dry (ish) on the mud for a few hours around low tide, but she’s good at that.

Now I just have to get her in the water!


Filed under Logs