Jim Vandenbos builds a sailing canoe

Zanzibar Zanzibar

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Over the past couple of years my pal Jim and I have been colluding over a sailing canoe project – I drew up the hull and rig, and he developed the interior he wanted for a boat that would double as a sailing canoe and as a two-man paddler.

The result is Zanzibar. Although there’s still more to do, including making some decent sails instead of the prototypes made from the cheapest kind of polytarp, the boat’s first season ironed out a few bugs, and gave her a chance to show she could sail and was rather more stable than he expected, as Jim explains in his account here:

Zanzibar article

PS Rather mysteriously, Jim says the name Zanzibar is a literary reference but won’t reveal its source. If you can see what it might be, please put us out of our misery – even his family can’t guess!

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10 thoughts on “Jim Vandenbos builds a sailing canoe”

  1. ? Stand on Zanzibar by John Brunner, a SF novel about overpopulation, in which the entire world's population could be stood on the island. I believe that today, we could all just about stand on the Isle of Wight, incredible as it seems. At 1sq ft / head, 1 sq mile = ~ 28 million of us, so 6 billion = 214 sq miles or about 10 miles x 20, about the size of the IoW…

  2. That's a nice idea – though only Jim can confirm it.

    Not being especially an SF fan, I remember reading one of John B's novels only once. What I do remember about him is the late-night hospitality he and his wife used to offer musicians playing at the South Petherton Folk Festival. Great parties, and kind people…


  3. Good try Dick.

    My good friends Ruth & Tony even gave me a copy of this book thinking they had cracked it… but no.

    Neither is it anything to do with a Michael Morpurgo book, 'The Wreck of the Zanzibar'…but could Mr Morpurgo have been inspired by another literary vessel, the same one that inspired me?

    Sorry Chris… the Seven Seas of Rye maybe?

    It's already stumped the fine ladies of the Tunbridge Wells Grove Book group, but I'm sure Intheboatshed readers will soon be there…

    Jim van den Bos

  4. Does it have anything to do, in the words of Gonzo the muppet, with being off to Zanzibar to see the Zanzibarbarians?

  5. Paul,

    I'm afraid not.

    Fan as I am of the Muppets, it was the only TV I ever saw at college, we are talking literature here….

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