Nearly Ready…

preparation-boatIt looks a mess for the moment with the boom, yard with mainsail and rudder lying in the hull, not at all Shipshape and Bristol Fashion, but Sarum will be ready when I launch her next Tuesday at the Port of Tinduff on the Rade de Brest. It makes a big difference when the rig is in its proper place and leaves more room in the hull.

These two photos are taken from the Port’s official website.

The amazing thing with this slipway is that it can be used at all tides and enables you to launch a boat into the water at any time. I can then tie up against the wall whilst I go and park my trailer and leave everything tidy for the fishermen and other users.

It is an exciting time, like the children in Arthur Ransome’s novel Swallow and Amazons when they arrived in the Lake District from London by train! My adventure for last year was the Semaine du Golfe on the south coast of Brittany. This time, I will be sailing on the Rade de Brest at the western tip of the Finistère and will go far up the river Aulne inland on Friday 17th to join the Route du Sable, which promises to be a numerous flotilla this year, on Saturday 18th.

I found this fine idea on a sailing forum.

mirrorWhen you row a boat, you have your back to the bow and have to keep turning your head to see where you’re going. Someone in Victorian times came up with a complicated idea of an oar mechanism so that you would face forwards and pull the oar handles in the normal way. The oar mechanism would reverse the direction and hey presto. This convex mirror eliminates the Steampunk mechanics! This idea is inspired by the rear-view mirrors of road vehicles, so that you can see what is behind you. These big mirrors are sold in car accessory shops as safety devices to see the road when you have a blind corner getting out of your gate or garage. I have taken this photo from about where I would be sitting on the thwart for rowing – and the view is very wide. I use a G-cramp to attach it to the lazarette of the boat, and I remove it for when I’m sailing – because it is only needed for rowing. It will be interesting to see how well it works when we pass the first or second lock on the Aulne and find there is no wind. In any case, the mast has to come down for going under the two low bridges of Châteaulin when we go and tie up at the municipal campsite to have lunch on Sunday (I’ll need to say my Office early in the morning at Port Launay).

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