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All paperwork submitted and Certificate of Compliance approved. The yacht is eligible for all official 580 events.
We entered the race to get some experience of a longer time at sea. In preparation two of us spent a week sailing around the south coast of the UK. Living on board and some night sails and some nights on a swinging mooring. The day to day sailing and living worked well. I installed a compact sea toilet so sailing with others means a bit more comfort rather than the bucket option. I wanted a boat for racing and cruising with friends and family.
Sleeping was fine, the cushions in the forepeak and main cabin mean two can sleep in the V-berth up front and two others in the cabin. Plenty of sleeping space. I do need to make a table for the cabin for playing cards on in the evening though.
The round the island race is a fantastic event, 1,400 yachts entered in 2022. Weather forecast was great, 15 knots most of the day, sunny and dry.
We had a start time of 8am so we got to watch some of the speed machines start before us. We got away well and were soon at the Needles beating all the way with the tide, up round to Ventnor and we could unfurl the A5, then deploy the A3 as we rounded to Ryde. Lots of close racing with boats in our class. Used the A5 all the way from Ryde to Cowes and the finish. The A5 is a really fantastic asymmetric. After many years of yacht racing with spinnakers and spinnaker poles with lots of people needed for gybing, pole setting. The use of bowsprit mounted furling asymmetrics is a joy. Not sure I’d ever go back. Easy to use single handed.
The finish was superb, speeding through the finish line. 9.5 hours total. Downside was I did not remove the outboard from the transom and we got disqualified.
On handicap we came 3rd of 4th in our class which was good, my own calculation.
The time on boat racing was a fantastic experience. Fun party in the evening in Cowes then back to Poole the next day, 25 knots of wind, beating all the way. The boat needs a good set-up to beat, when achieved it goes really well and is very dry. The high freeboard certainly helps with this.
After some set-up and work to tune the rig we entered a race with the local yacht racing club PYRA. Poole Yacht Racing Assocaiation.
The race was from Poole to Cowes. Handicap was VPRS which we had a handicap measured by them. All the sails hand measured and stats for the boat from the Globe 580 website, so accurate.
The boat is fast, and handled really well. We won. Was great. Kept a good speed, some wave surfing. Went along happily at 6 to 7 knots on a reach in 15 knots of wind. Rising off the wind to steady 7 knots and rising to 9 knots when surfing. The A5 is furling and easy to deploy. We had a go with the A3 also furling, again goes out easy and quick to retrieve.
The A5 has an integrated luff torsion rope, this sail goes round to 50 degrees happily which was great for the race. The A3 torsion rope is free from the sails luff, so sailed down to 160 degrees.
We had a fair few boats in our class and got a good start, boat really flew upwind. Rounded the first windward mark well and went for a reach, A5. I put in a Harken MK4 furler on the headsail. I wanted a versatile boat that I would not need to be on the foredeck at all in a breeze. The A5 stayed up, then as we bore off the wind we furled that an hoisted the A3 on a Karver Furler. I needed to work out a system to have this easier to hoist and lower as it needs to come down when not in use.
The A3 really get the boat going. We had a few broaches as the wind picked up, we quickly learnt to feel them coming and as long as we reacted quickly and pointed downwind with the gusts we could avoid the broaches. The boat recovered quickly to the broaches.
So we pushed fairly hard and won the race. Very pleasing. The boat did well, we could have gone faster, but as a first race and only a hundred or so miles under the belt we all felt pleased. 2 adults and 2 teenagers.
Launch was successful, it floats and mast went on fine. Fortunately the boot line was accurate and gives 7cm above waterline which should convert to about 5-6cm when all the kit goes in.
I used the Tohatsu 6hp Saildrive first to take the boat to my sailing club from launch club. I was keen to calibrate the Chartplotter and see the motoring speeds.
Calibration was automatic following a few buttons, GPS v tide. The B&G kit is really good and makes it simple to set-up in minutes.
Full speed saw 6 to 7 knots boat speed and half revs just under 5 knots. Perfectly satisfactory.
Seems like a long time to get the last few jobs done so we can launch. Tiller extension fitting. Getting the lead bulb fitted. Fitting the keel. All time hungry consumers. Fun though. I really enjoyed the electrics and getting them all working and looking neat and tidy. The heat shrink labels are brilliant. I’ll let the photos do the talking! Just quickly, the keel and lead bulb was a tricky bit of work, not that enjoyable. Had to outsource the lead melting, was not comfortable doing it in the garden!
The multi-tasking continues, lots of jobs that need pushing along. Mast is just pending the rivets going in. All lines run and wires. Rolling furler is built and ready to install.
The wiring is pretty much done now, that took a while! Not done the lighting, but that can wait. Solar panel / shore power charging / battery monitors. Two systems, so one battery works for autopilot only. I found an isolator that activates 1 and 2 batteries independently, then if you want you can link them so a bit of a fail safe.
The galley is done, sea water pump tap and a fresh water tap and pump from water bottles.
Got a couple USB chargers. The solar panel seems to work well. 35w, can charge both batteries or prioritise the one needing more charge. It won’t keep up with all the loads running, but will just about keep the chart plotter going.
The bulb is getting done next week hopefully and the keel is being welded aswell.
I think I will launch before all the stantions and push pit is done, see how it goes. Everyone is very busy and getting outsourced jobs done is a bit slow.
The challenge is on to get the boat in the water by April 22. Lots of smallish jobs to do. Keel welding / bulb lead making / electrics / all the deck gear / pulpit etc.
I thought these jobs would be fairly quick, but doing them all just right is taking many many hours. Oversize drilling all holes and filling with slightly thickened epoxy then drilling correct hole size. This is happening on all the holes inside and out. Doubles time but satisfying. Sikaflex to seal everything.
Toilet is in and plumbed in. Sink is plumbed in. I’ve started the electrics, chart plotter in. Still designing the circuit, just waiting for the solar panel and controller.
All lines in the mast are run, just have the the power cable and antennae cables to run. It is getting a bit closer. Late April for launch now I’d say.
The boat has been in storage for a few months whilst I took a break from it. After the Boat Show I lost a bit of motivation and with busy other things I put it in a barn. Anyway just got it out and it fits on the driveway so I’ll finish it off here.
Looking to get it on the water in April 22. Lots to do. First of all I’m going to fit the mast, get the deck organised and all deck gear installed. Basically everything essential to sail. It’s going on a swinging mooring at the sailing club.
The inside electrics can wait and I’ll do if time. There are some skin fittings and keel and rudder to go on, so plenty for 2 months! Luckily all the remaining work should be quiet so no upset neighbours.
Class founder Dom McIntyre put a call out to all Globe 5.80 builders in May for a boat to exhibit at the UK boat show. I decided the opportunity would provide an incentive for me to get on with my build. In mid June, Dom confirmed the exhibit would go ahead.
At that stage I was dry fitting the cabin but had neither glassed the deck, nor got anywhere near fairing and painting. With the support of the boat yard I am building at, I managed to complete the dry fit out, glass and fair the top side and get the whole boat painted.
I used AwlGrip fairing compound, Gurit epoxy and Nautrix metallic ‘Caribbean Blue’ paint.
The painting was complete just 2 weeks prior to the show. As I write this, the boat is on stand J159 inside the “Ocean Hall” in the show and has attracted a fair amount of interest. I have included some pictures below of the boat at the show and me finally meeting Dom in person.
There is still so much more for me to do after the show. The positive comments from UK press and other visitors to the stand has been great.