I was chuffed to read this story on the Classic Sailor website. I greatly enjoyed Ann Davison’s book My Ship is so Small about crossing the Atlantic solo in a 23ft boat some years ago, and it still sits on a shelf above my computer.
Dating as it does from the mid 1950s, it’s the sort of thing you might still find in the sailing section of a good second-hand bookstore.
Felicity Ann sails again
North Kent based marine carpenter Kyle Abingdon reports that he and his parter have built this very striking 15ft6in 1940s class C hydroplane from designer Bruce Crandall’s plans, and that she’s up for sale.
Here’s what he says:
‘She’s made out of Robbins Elite marine ply sheathed in biaxle cloth and epoxy and has Douglas fir for stringers, stem and keel with plywood web frames.
‘We’ve given her a sapele deck, although the racing boats would not have had this. I couldn’t resist given the lovely barrel shape of the deck. Also she has a teak rubbing strakes.
‘The stainless steel fin will help her turn when she’s up on the plane.
‘She’s sitting on a new galvanised trailer.’
Drop me a line at gmatkin at gmail dot com and I’ll pass your enquiry on to him.
Looking at this page about hydroplane classes in 1951 seems to suggest the maximum permitted engine capacity for this kind of hydroplane would have been about 2.9 litres – though the very thought of that big a lump makes a lump in my throat. Take care, Kyle – I think engines may be more powerful for their size these days!
‘As the winning teams take the podium, bowing their heads to receive a wooden medallion Aidan carved from Fogo Island wood in his shop, it seems there are multiple reasons for Fogo Islanders to cheer. After four years, the inn is turning a profit; cod, the very foundation of this place, appears to be recovering; Shorefast initiatives are building palpable optimism and have put Fogo Island in the international spotlight. And punt culture is safe home for another day.’
Smacks and sailing barges have benefited mightily from something similar – but there might be some useful ideas for admirers of some other types of traditional craft here…
Article: The race that saved the Fogo Island punt.