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Messages - Alan

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Restoration / Re: Restoration of S Class #831, #835
« on: May 14, 2013, 02:02:43 AM »
You will find yacht photographer, Cory Silken's gallery of S Boats, Papoose and Squaw, sailing in the Antigua Classic here:

While Cory has the most extensive collection of S boat photographs anywhere, these are perhaps the most unique since they document the only S boat presence in the Caribbean. S boats have sailed many places, including Hawaii, but I believe this Caribbean presence is a first for the S boat.

Angus Davis is giving a presentation about the restoration of these 2 boats and their Antigua adventure at the Herreshoff Marine Museum on Thurs. May 30th, 7PM. It should be a worthy evening. 

Specific Herreshoff Vessels / Re: What S-Class....
« on: August 20, 2012, 04:19:31 AM »
I am the Secretary of the Narrganasett Bay S Class fleet and owner of FIREFLY, hull #956. Several of the active boats have reef points, and I know some S boats in the Quissett fleet have reef points. Reef points on a sail are not preferred when racing, although I am not sure it would affect performance much if the sail is otherwise well cut. If conditions demand a reefed sail, racing should be reconsidered, if for no other reason than the cost of a new mast. In the 2010 Museum of Yachting regatta, four S boats raced in a steady 25-30 kt SW wind with no reefs. PIRATE was the only S boat to set a spinnaker. SURPRISE broke her boom. ARGUMENT struggled with a small crew. FIREFLY won the race. In contrast, the 2012 Leukemia Cup Regatta was held in a gusty 25 kt wind. Three S boats (SURPRISE, WISTFUL, SHONA) attempted to race without reefs, and all of them withdrew before the race started because they felt conditions were not safe.

The heavy weather sails depicted on DILEMMA in Herreshoff of Bristol p. 155 shows a vertical seamed batten-less storm sail set above the regular full size sail that remains on the boom in its sailcover. The storm sail has a set of reef points as well. This arrangement makes a lot of sense for crusing in heavy air since it would be difficult to reef the mainsail underway.  Of interest, DILEMMA is actively sailing in the Larchmont fleet.

Whatever / Re: Need HELP answering this Question.....
« on: May 23, 2012, 06:19:16 PM »
I don't know if we ever answered the original question in this thread, but the photos of the restored Comet are great.
And I enjoyed reviving wonderful memories of sailing at Narrasketuck YC on LI. It is fascinating to learn that there was a Herreshoff at Narrasketuck all these years and I never knew it!

Mischief owner, Walter's last name is Bopp. Sorry for the typo.

I have posted photos of the May 19 launch of Mischief here:

Whatever / Re: Need HELP answering this Question.....
« on: May 21, 2012, 04:08:49 AM »
That's me age 16 on the tiller with my older brother crewing on my Comet "Intrepid." My father bought the boat for me from a Mr. Kilgour for $300. I kept the name, which pre-dated the 12 Meter named Intrepid. The race start photo shows a number of classes including Sunfish, Lightnings, and I think the boats to the right of the committee boat are Comets, including the red boat. I would guess there are some Narrasketucks too. I didn't know there were any Herreshoffs there. I know my boat is there somewhere. My family owned a Chris Craft cabin cruiser and the photos were taken from that boat by my father. I wish I had more pictures.

Whatever / Re: Need HELP answering this Question.....
« on: May 20, 2012, 03:07:26 PM »
Narrasketuck YC 1966 photos:

I tried posting images from Picasa but didn't work.
Here is the Picasa link:

Whatever / Re: Need HELP answering this Question.....
« on: May 19, 2012, 03:21:00 PM »
Adam and Jon, yes, I was a member of Narrasketuck YC when I was in high school, back around 1965-1968. Somewhere in my attic I believe I have the old yearbooks. Correct me if my memory is wrong, but I believe Pat Christy was the one who had a fiberglass Comet (all the others being wood). Her crew was my geometry teacher. I only beat them in one race, and I will never forget because they protested me for having a "non standard" rudder. I withdrew from the race rather than risk failing geometry.

Yes, Steve-- Walter Boop purchased Mischief, which will be moored in Newport.  Walter has sailed with me aboard Firefly and it will be great having his participation in the S boat fleet. I suppose the Registry should be updated. I plan to get some photos of Mischief splashing this Saturday.

The Narragansett Bay S boat fleet allows any Herreshoff designed S boat to compete as one-design regardless of builder. Of course the majority of Herreshoff designed S boats were built by HMC, but the Lawley built boats do complete in the same fleet. There are a few Lawley built Herreshoff S boats that compete in the Western LI Sound fleet as well. I am not aware of any Lawleys in the Quissett fleet.

BTW there are 3 more Herreshoff S boats joining the Narragansett Bay fleet. Mischief was restored in Brooklin ME and is being launched on Sat. May 19 at 10 AM at IYRS in Newport RI. There will be a launch ceremony.  Squaw and Papoose are undergoing extensive restoration now.

Whatever / Re: Need HELP answering this Question.....
« on: May 17, 2012, 01:40:55 PM »
What is the hull # of your Comet?

I have some pictures of my Comet "Intrepid" in 1966, but I don't know how to post them.

Whatever / Re: Need HELP answering this Question.....
« on: May 17, 2012, 04:06:57 AM »
Fletcher Marine Products was a boat building company in Westmont, NJ. They built 16' wooden Comet class sailboats. I owned a 1946 Comet #2357, an 8 stay model, when I was in high school, and raced at the Narrasketuck YC on Long Island. The boat was originally in Tom's River, NJ. Not sure, but I believe it was a Fletcher. I don't know if the company still exists but I suspect not.

She may be a Lawley S boat, but I can attest to the fact that Lucky Pierre is in very good shape and is no slower than HMCo. built S boats, having raced against her many times.

Adam, I especially appreciate your mentioning Firefly (hull #956), since I own her, and if all goes well, she will be launched in Newport in 4 days. While Firefly was contracted in Aug. 1925, her HMC hull # plaque says 1926, so I assume she was actually built or completed in 1926. Firefly was the first of 12 S boats built to the "956 Class," most of which went to Bar Harbor, although a few went to Marblehead.
One other bit of trivia-- the Sparkman Stephens ad that you reference has a picture of a HMC S boat (with a carved sheer), not a picture of Lucky Pierre (Lawley S boats do not have the Herreshoff sheer strake). 

Whatever / Re: What is it ?
« on: May 14, 2012, 05:25:02 AM »
The first yacht in Mystic Seaport's collection was Annie, an original sandbagger, built in 1880. The term sandbagger is derived from the fact that 50 lb. bags of sand were used as ballast, dragged from side to side by the crew when the boat tacked. The boats raced on LI Sound.

Specific Herreshoff Vessels / Re: BB-25 Tarantula
« on: May 02, 2012, 11:05:41 PM »
We have at least answered Adam's initial question about whether TARANTULA was raised after sinking in the squall on July 17, 1915, as MINK was. We know that TARANTULA participated in the Langshaw Cup regatta reported in the Boston Globe on Sep. 12, 1915.
And thank you Adam for clarifying that the TARANTULA sinking did indeed occur in 1915. The story cited in HMM Chronicle is based on recollections of Bob Stone, who was there that day and whose family owned the Vitessa, and there is some corroboration in the Boston Globe of 8/16/1914 that there were squalls that affected BB-25 racing. So, these may well be two separate incidents and the 1914 date in the Chronicle is not necessarily wrong.
I agree that we don't know for sure that TARANTULA had different specs than the other BB-25's even though it is written in the record. All we need to do is find her and measure her to answer this question...

(And of course the other question is: how did a sailing yacht get a name like "Tarantula"?)

Specific Herreshoff Vessels / Re: BB-25 Tarantula
« on: May 02, 2012, 05:30:50 AM »
The HMM Chronicle #23 1994 indicates that there was a violent squall on Aug. 1, 1914 during a BB25 race at Beverly YC in Marion, MA. The BB25's in that race were Mink, Bagatelle, Vitessa, and Whitecap (currently Aria). Vitessa was half full of water, and according to the article (by  David Cheever) this incident lent support to classes with self bailing cockpits (except for the S boats that came later). Well, Tarantula was not in that squall/race because although she was contracted Jul. 16, 1914 as "stock," she was not sold to W. H. Langshaw (her first and possibly only owner) until Apr. 5, 1915. Langshaw, a self-made millionaire and President of Dartmouth Mills, was a member of Beverly YC. According to the article, mention of Tarantula in the Beverly YC records ends around 1920. It is interesting that Tarantula was the last BB25 built and the Herreshoff record shows a slightly narrower beam and deeper draft than the other four BB25's. This is certainly a reclusive Tarantula.

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