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email@example.com her head to wind, hoist the main and off you go.... but perhaps this works best with double-enders?
You can perform all sorts of party tricks taking advantage of your centreboard, the mizzen’s turning power and the natural windage of a light, shallow draft hull. You can also get in a right mess, as I found out when trying to develop a way of reefing the mizzen; what works nicely in a Force 2 doesn't necessarily work when it's gusting Force 6.
Hope these comments might be of some use to those considering a cat ketch or cat yawl rig. Tony Langmead, Edwinstowe
I was interested in the use of the mizzen on Connie Mense's Chebacco. The rig is similar in some ways to the balanced lug and sprit mizzen on my Cardigan Bay Lugger and appears to share some of its characteristics. • Motoring and especially rowing: With the boards up and all sails furled, the cabin windage plus the furled sail above it and possibly the rearward rowing position makes her difficult to row across or into the wind. Dropping the boards a little is no good – the Centre of Lateral Resistance still too far aft – but dropping one board fully and having the mizzen up if necessary helps a lot. • Tacking: I've found that in strong winds, tacking with a fully-reefed main and a reefed mizzen – I'm not happy with my method of reefing this sail yet – is next to impossible! She needs the full mizzen to get her around and I have to put up with a deal of weather helm it produces. Perhaps it's a bit too big? In winds up to Force 4, everything is much better balanced and she tacks easily unless you've been pinching up into the wind too much – perhaps to slow the boat when approaching the pontoon – or have failed to free off the mizzen sheet a little before putting the tiller over. The sheet on the CBL
leads from the end of the sprit boom to the rudder head and from there along the tiller to a jam cleat near one’s hand; very convenient but being a single sheet, it’s not possible to back the mizzen as you can with the double sheet arrangement on the Chebacco and the BayRaider. This is not a problem because if I get caught in stays, I can simply reach up and push the mainsail boom to windward, backing it like a jib, until the boat’s head is forced around. • Heaving to: A piece of cake! Lock the tiller in a central position with a loop of shock cord – or sternway tends to flip it over the side and out of reach
After a certain age... one’s body guarantee seems to run out and lowering and lifting a mast become Herculean endeavours, crucial cotter pins tend to drop increasinly frequently into the water and berthing a boat becomes a high-adrenalin affair when one confuses the outboard’s Full Astern with Full Ahead.
– let go the mainsheet and pull in the mizzen flat. She rounds up into the wind and sits head to wind, riding over the waves like a duck. She'll drift slowly backwards with the mainsail quiet and in just the right place for putting in or taking out a reef. If you prefer to take the waves slightly off the bow, lock the tiller to one side or the other – but the main will need dropping on to the cabin top and tying down. When you've finished reefing, drinking your coffee, fishing... simply loose the mizzen a little, back the main as above and off you go. • Sailing backwards. A useful trick to clear crowded moorings or pontoons so don't be too quick to fit stopper knots. I've replaced my mizzen sheet with a longer bit of rope to make this possible. With the main on the cabin top and lying stern to wind, hoist the mizzen and drop the boards. Let go mooring lines and let the mizzen weathercock back into the cockpit. By holding the sheet one side or the other and steering with the rudder you can – sort of – close reach out of trouble. Once clear, sheet the mizzen in hard to bring
A few years ago, after hoisting the outboard from its well left me a bent old man, I acknowledged defeat, sold my pocket gaffer and committed sacrilege by buying a boat without a sail But I have to say that the joy of hav.ing 40 reliable horses by simply turning a key was a welcome revelation, the more so since my gaffer’s outboard had stalled on occasion at inappropriate times. Of course, in order to prevent any feelings of hubris, some god ensured that I recently steered my boat into an area with unmarked fishing nets, which brought home that even a diesel is no good if your propellor is fouled.
So although my sailing days are over, I am looking forward to some more years afloat. For me, a large part of the attraction of being on the water is the freedom to dream. The many beautiful boats you put centre stage in Water Craft make it easier to bring shape to our dreams and who knows, eventually live them in reality. Dietert van der Baan, Hasselt, Netherlands www.watercraft-magazine.com Matt Newland's Tricks of the Light
Lightweight epoxy-ply construction and carbon spars combine with water ballast to create a new kind of trailer sailer. We sent trailer sailor Tony Langmead to Swallow Boats to sail the BayCruiser.
With photographs by Peter Chesworth
It was interesting to eavesdrop on the conversations at the Southampton Boat Show this year. Once I'd got my head out of the off-cuts bin at English Braids – always my first port of call – it became obvious that, as well as those who'd come to gawp at the Super Yachts, there was a nucleus of visitors who were actually looking to buy a boat. I soon found myself following the same bunch of people from stand to stand; evidently we were all interested in the same type of boat. We were the Small Boat Posse. No VIP Range Rovers would whisk us off to an executive lunch – we either did without or had a sandwich while perched on a trailer wheel – but everyone seemed quite happy and there were plenty of trailer sailers to look at this year.
În my opinion, a good trailer sailer is easily trailed, launched and recovered
– otherwise you won't be going anywhere
– sails well single-handed, has accommodation and facilities for extended cruising, looks good on the water and can comfortably ride out an Atlantic storm. I have to tell you that no such boat exists but in 2006, I came close to most of these criteria when Matt Newland of Swallow Boats in Cardigan came up with the Cardigan Bay Lugger… and the Four Sisters and I have been happily trundling around Europe ever since. Now, 3 years later, Matt has had another look at the concept of an easily trailed cabin boat – and I, posing as an expert in such craft, was going to have a test sail.