Monday, December 05, 2011

Sven Yrvind, Ocean Sailor and Yacht Designer

Sven left Porto Santo, Madeira on 12th October and arrived at Fort de France, Martinique on 26th November, having sailed a total of 2,870 nautical miles in 45 days, at an average speed of 2.64 knots.

On the whole it would appear he enjoyed the experience, including the 1,200 nautical miles voyage from Kinsale in Southern Ireland to Porto Santo, Madeira.

Without a doubt this 73 year old veteran sailor is a remarkable man. His website/blog* contains words of wisdom that could only be expressed by one who had experienced sailing thousands of miles crisscrossing the oceans in small boats of his own design. Much of this voyaging under sail has been done without the use of specialist self-steering equipment. Most of the crossing between Madeira and Martinique was done with the rudder locked. He trimmed his micro-yacht by the stern, and by adjusting the set of her sails up forward he was able to make the boat keep a consistent course, day after day running before the trades. Even when there was very little wind, the yacht maintained her course, and because of the design of her sails they held their shape without the usual wear and tear caused by constant movement.

His biggest problem was one of constipation. He explains how at the outset from Kinsale he failed to regularly relieve his bowels. His intention was to defecate over the side, but the weather was not conducive for doing it without getting water into the boat. Consequently he had to suffer, and only by taking severe measures with a spoon, was he able to extricate the blockage and coax his body into a regular rhythm. Both at Madeira and Martinique, mosquitoes took a particular liking to his blood, with the result that bad blisters occurred where the bloodsuckers struck. Reluctantly he applied repellent to keep them at bay, but too late. Infection of the blisters could have had very serious consequences. I do not know if Sven had mosquito baffles for the openings into his yacht, but if he did, they were ineffective.

Well, he did not stay at Martinique longer than a few days to recover from tiredness and arrange shipping for his boat back to Sweden. On 3rd December he wrote on his blog that he was in Paris. His intention was to visit the Boat Show before returning home. During many hours at sea his fertile mind was at work designing yet another small yacht for ocean cruising.

Text for the Day

Romans 8:25 ‘But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance.’


*Sven’s Website

Martinique – Fort-de-France - Sven Yrvind

Out of Sight, but not out of Mind – Sven Yrvind

Sven Yrvind Sails Again

Progress of Sven Yrvind

Paris Boat Show


cornishhh said...

It will be interesting to see what the new boat will be like.I'm guessing another collaberation with Matt Layden

William Serjeant said...

I think she's going to be a bit longer with an aft control port. He didn't like the central position. The rig may also be simplified. Sven recognised his boat was too heavy; therefore he'll be reducing the number of fittings.