is the anchor that keeps you
Image "Andromeda cruising at sunset"
The Story SO FAR
This is the story of a project to save a small wooden sailing cruiser. My name is Clive and I've grown up sailing wooden boats on the East Coast of the UK. In the year 2016 I found myself the proud owner of a rotting, flakey, leaky...but beautiful little boat called "Andromeda". The journey I've taken to restore this little boat has opened my mind so much that I want to share it in hope that you may find inspiration to overcome your own personal challenges and goals.
Throughout my first 30 years I've been lucky enough to sail lots of dinghies, yachts and working boats from the youngest age possible. With my parents and friends I've sailed on adventures far and wide around the UK and Europe. Before I bought Andromeda in 2016 however, I had very little experience of boat building or the shipwright skills required to restore a wooden boat. I've since discovered these skills can be learnt through a vast array of sources online, in the library and just talking to the most salty people you can find in the nearest boat yard.
Hannah and I both teach young adults and as such really embrace the idea of being lifelong learners ourselves. Our philosophy is that if a human being can build something, why can't we? The only thing stopping us from seeing this philosophy come to life is knowledge and determination. Knowledge can be learnt and determination, well that's the tricky bit sometimes.
We've both learnt that success in a project like this really does hinge on understanding what is in your control but more importantly what isn't. A fool is the person that gets stressed out when the weather unfavourably changes, better be prepared for all eventualities and embrace the change.
So I hope that you find some inspiration from our learning journey, similar to that we have found from others.
Andromeda is a gaff rigged sailing yacht built in 1966. She is based on a "Bawley Yacht" design by John Leather but adapted slightly by her first owner. Andromeda has three half-sister ships but is slightly bigger than all of them due to the design adaptation. She was built by Smith & Tucker on the River Crouch in Essex and is constructed of hardwood planks on oak ribs with copper nails and roves.
Andromeda's accomodation consists of two large quarter berths and two single saloon berths in one main cabin. She has a taylors paraffin oven and cabin heater along with various electronic gadgets. The cutter rig on Andromeda has been increased in size fore and aft since her original build and she now sets a jib, staysail, jib topsail, mainsail and topsail. There are also configurations for a genoa, asymmetric spinnaker and reaching headsails, as well as storm sails.
Andromeda was built as a Bermudan rigged cutter and immediately converted to gaff rig (hence the very tall mast) and she can now be sailed as either a Masthead Sloop, Fractional Rigged Sloop or Gaff Cutter. Her underwater profile is a long keel with slightly cutaway forefoot typical of most "modern" gaffers.