Friday, September 16, 2011

Hastings Beach Boat Part 2

About a year ago I did an article featuring a miniature Hastings beach boat named *‘Finda’. I also wrote another one on the subject of characterful boats in which ‘Finda’ was the principle subject.** Today I am presenting new photos of this charming vessel. I’m pleased that her owner is caring for her. Last year I had my doubts, because she looked tatty, but I observe that she has recently been treated with Deks Olje or a similar preservative. Classic boats of this vintage need looking after; she deserves a caring owner.

‘Finda’ is an amazing example of a wooden clinker workboat that has several interesting features. Her owner has added a mizzen with forward facing stays, which makes a lot of sense, because the sail can be squared off when the boat is running. She has a small bronze ship’s bell attached to her mizzen mast. A carved, painted figurehead that was attached to her mainmast is no longer there. Just look at the large plaited rope fender hanging from her bow – a rarity today. She doesn’t have flimsy mooring cleats; instead, she has five substantial Samson posts, two at either end of the cockpit and a thicker one braced against her foredeck. Under the iron horse for the mizzen sheet there’s a rack with slots in it, for what purpose I do not know, but the slots could possibly be for lines over the stern when fishing, or perhaps they could be for locking the tiller by means of a reverse extension.

In my previous articles about this delightful open boat I have mentioned other features, such as her Yanmar diesel engine, rudder case and her odd-looking stern. She does not have a keel or a centreboard which would not be appropriate for a boat that has to be launched from an exposed pebble beach, as is the case at Hastings; furthermore, she has to be retrieved from the sea by being winched over pit props or similar logs.


*Hastings Beach Boat

**Character Boats

Hastings Beach Boat for Sale £7,250

The twilight of the traditionally-built Hastings beach boat fleet?

Deks Olje

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