Arwen's meanderings

Hi everyone and welcome to my dinghy cruising blog about my John Welsford designed 'navigator' named Arwen. Built over three years, Arwen was launched in August 2007. She is a standing lug yawl 14' 6" in length. This blog records our dinghy cruising voyages together around the coastal waters of SW England.
Arwen has an associated YouTube channel so visit to find our most recent cruises and click subscribe.
On this blog you will find posts about dinghy cruising locations, accounts of our voyages, maintenance tips and 'How to's' ranging from rigging standing lug sails and building galley boxes to using 'anchor buddies' and creating 'pilotage notes'. I hope you find something that inspires you to get out on the water in your boat. Drop us a comment and happy sailing.
Steve and Arwen

Saturday, 28 December 2013

Whilst studying some photographs......

In the yahoo folders, I discovered a number of things which I may need to alter on Arwen. There is no doubt that my mast seems wrong. The sheave box is definitely in the wrong place and I will need to dig out the ans to check but it does seem around 10" lower than everyone else's. this would explain why trying to tighten the luff using the down haul is such a problem and why there seems to be a gap between the luff and the mast.

On the boomkin out back, I think I will replace the current eye arrangement with a metal screw in eye that can be repositioned to face the transom. It will mean the mizzen sheet leads right back to the transom without any turns in it. Less friction must be a good thing.

The down haul is attached to the top of the deck to one side of the mast......a roller arrangement and the halyard comes through a hole in the coaming or is tied to a cleat attached to the inside of the coaming. I actually think I prefer my down through the deck arrangement but I will take another look at it.

I think the top boom is too heavy and I need to taper it and shave some weight off it without losing the stiffness. Again I can take a look at the plans. The length is right and the width at one end is right but I didn't bother to taper it and I think doing so will help enormously.

I like the way some nav owners have drilled a series of circular holes insets of threes along the bottom edge of the internal coamings. Here they have tied on fenders, stored oars etc and actually it is a clever idea. So I will see what it might look like on Arwen. It would mean re varnishing the coaming but then it does need doing anyway.

I need to redo the reeling ties as well. A recent outing in which I had to double reef demonstrated that they were slightly too lengthening them will make life easier afloat.

Someone has made two uprights that slot into the mast holes against which the mast and booms can be tied during transport.....a far better arrangement than the one I have now.  Someone in Sweden had made lovely wooden slatted floor bases out of ash which looked stunning and practical.

I need to alter the lazy jacks. I need a triangular piece at the bottom of the sail either side so that more of the sail is caught between the two lazy jacks as it collapses down.  In the meantime, some people have put a topping lift on the mizzen boom as well and I need to alter the lazy jack there so that it does both functions.

Some people have used halyard organisers to guide ropes back to the cockpit....wooden pieces with holes drilled I which are attached to the small sides running either isle of the centre case.


Lorenzo said...

Looks like a nice jobs list for the off season.... Tweaking the rig is fun, with a bit of imagination and few light interventions the boat turns out to be exactly as one wants it. Enjoy!

steve said...

Thanks Lorenzo and happy new year
I hope that 2014 brings all the peace, good fortune, friendship and success to you that it can

woodbutcher said...

Hi Steve,
I will use the lug yawl rig. I have a birdsmouth mast and looked at doing the yard like that but the small diameter makes jointing fiddly and a waste of resin. I think I will use two tapered halves and chisel out some of the meat in the middle to lighten it up. My mast has a 3" section at the top reduced and shouldered for loop over type of shrouds. My main sheave is as close up under this as I could get.