22 June 2017

As it’s just over a year since we launched Terror I thought it would be good to update the site especially with some pictures showing some of the elements that I worked on during the winter.

The pictures on the water were taken by Nigel Sharp, a journalist who has been commissioned to write an article on the boat for Classic Boat magazine. Assuming it goes ahead I’ll update the site when I have a publication date.

To start with I added cam cleats, fixed to mahogany blocks, to hold the jib sheets.


I added a bronze collar to the end of the boom to provide better fix points for the mainsheet and the mainsail clew. I also put together a clew outhaul system. You’ll need to blow up the picture below to see this detail.


I hadn’t fully fitted the bowsprit before so this is now done, although I’m yet to build the spinnaker chute.


The most interesting thing to do has been the topsail. Paul Gartside provided some detail on how to rig this, but I had to resort to Google to work out the detail. It requires three lines – a halyard, sheet and downhaul, so adds a lot of extra rope to the whole set up!

Here it is in action. We didn’t have any real wind that day, so the sails aren’t as taught as they would be normally.



Week 23 – We launched!

Well, we made it and I still find it difficult to believe! The pictures tell the story……

Working on the rubbing strake which was made from oak. The stern section was made separately from oak laminates.


A slightly arty shot of the deck fittings – the stand up pulleys are very funky as is the leather finish for the mast partners!


The aft deck with the bronze traveller to which the mainsheet pulleys are attached.


An even artier picture of the tiller and traveller.


Getting the boat out on the morning of launch. We’d been working until 2am that morning and were in again at 6.30am.


On the slipway…


And with the sails up!

Terror 2



Coming back into Lyme harbour. The outboard and its bracket worked really well.


Putting her back on the trailer and celebrating!


Back in the workshop with Matthew looking relieved!


With my mate Steve who was a huge help in the last 48 hours getting her ready for launch.



Week 22 – Launch next week!

Will we make the launch on Thursday? Yes, we should do. ┬áJust a brief update this week because I’m in the workshop most of the time.

Here are the thwarts cut out in oak and I’m fitting these at the moment.


We have focused on the teak deck this week and here is the aft deck partly done – you can see the little spacers that also hold down the planks as the glue dries.


Same for the bow.


This is the finished deck before putting in the black caulking. I’m really pleased with this – it looks very straight and the teak is good quality.


Putting in the caulking – we used Sikoflex. This will be sanded off when cured – hopefully on Sunday and leaving neat black lines.


And we put on the first top coat on the inside – International cream.


Oh and the trailer has arrived!


We also managed to get the centreboard in its case and it seems to move up and down without catching on anything – a great relief!

Week 21 – 9 days to go!

This blog is a bit late because I’m currently spending most of my waking hours in the workshop – not that I’m complaining, I love it!

I’m aiming to have Terror largely finished by Monday night (6 June) because the sail makers are coming on the Tuesday to help rig her.

Lots done this week. We glued in the sole board edges early in the week.


We also put in the deck coaming which you can see temporarily clamped in place below. I made templates for these. We had to joint them and steam the ends to achieve the bend around the cockpit.


But the main focus has been the teak decking. It took me all day on Saturday to map this out on the ply sub deck – you have to draw in all the boards so that you can be sure it is symmetrical and fits properly. Here you can see the first piece that I actually fitted – the margin boards round the tiller. This will surround a shaped piece of wood which will hide the tiller tube. Teak is lovely to work with.


Here you can see the piece surrounding the mast.


Here’s the piece surrounding the chute for the spinnaker , temporarily screwed down ready for gluing – I haven’t cut the hole in the deck for this yet. Took me about an hour to make this which I thought was pretty good going!


And here is where we had got to when we finished tonight. Fortunately we’ve had Bob, a previous tutor, helping us today and he is making the teak cover boards around the coaming. We should have all the main structure of the decking done by lunchtime tomorrow then we need to lay the straight boards.


Week 20 – less than 3 weeks to go!

We concentrated on the half beams early in the week and here you can see them all in place.


Here’s the view from the front from where you can see the mast partners. This is essentially a large chunk of wood which strengthens the deck where the mast passes through it.


This photo also shows the mast foot. The mast has a tenon on its base which fits into the slot.



We decided to fit a rear bulkhead which wasn’t on the plans. It’s partly to tidy up the stern area but also somewhere to keep the beers – a request from Warren, one of the co-owners! Carson has also made the hatch door for this.



And this is with the sub deck nailed & epoxied. This is 9mm plywood on which the teak strips will be laid. Looking more like a power boat than a sail boat!


The lead ballast arrived today – this weighs 365 kgs so required unloading by forklift, kindly supplied by the harbour master.


Here it is jacked up under the boat ready to be bolted on next week. The gap is deliberate (honest!) because working on the assumption the fit will never be perfect (given the measurements came from the lofting) it’s easier to infill when working under the boat than chopping out wood.


Lots to do next week including fitting the lead ballast, making the sole boards, fitting the coaming (which protects the cockpit from spray) and laying the deck.

Week 19 – Good progress on deck structure

We’ve mainly been working on the deck structure this week, but I’ve included the picture below to show that the centreboard case is now just about finished, and to illustrate the templates we’ll use to make the sole boards. Like everything the sole boards are more complicated to make than I first thought. In particular you want to avoid any pointed pieces of wood which is what you would get if you laid the planks straight from end to end. Anyway Carson is working on these!


We also epoxied in the rudder tube – here’s Carson positioning the rudder to ensure everything lines up as it should. You can see the bronze rudder foot temporarily fixed with rods. The only item to finish now in the bottom of the boat is the mast step. We’ve made this but can’t finalise its position and cut the slot for the mast foot until we have the mast partners in place (which form part of the deck structure).


Here are the deck beams epoxied and screwed in place for the foredeck. There’s not much of a camber to the deck so we were able to jig saw these out of solid wood (douglas fir) rather than laminating them. This is good news because it saves a lot of time which is now very short! They involved cutting some multiple angles where the ends meet the hull, which is always interesting!

In this picture you can also see the end of the carlins. These are the deck beams that go fore and aft. These were made from three strips of western red cedar with extra laminates put in where the bend is most extreme, and then glued in their actual position with some temporary half beams in place, to achieve the correct shape. This worked pretty well although they did need some fairing to obtain the right shape and to ensure both sides were the same.


Here are the beams in place for the aft deck. You can also see the other end of the carlins, a half beam and the rudder tube in place. All together there are 21 beams and half beams to make, so the next job is to finish the half beams – these support the carlins and create the cockpit shape.


On Thursday we turned Lucille over, Bob & Dan’s boat. If you’ve ever wondered how you manually turn a boat this sequence of photos should illustrate. You can actually turn quite big boats using this technique. I can vouch for this having been part of a group of about 40 people who turned a 38 foot sailing gig!







Over the weekend Richard & Jan are here and they will help us prime the inside of the boat, complete the glassing of the rudder and put a final coat of oil on the spars. The boom is now finished (thanks to Harry) so all 7 spars and the tiller are done. By the end of the coming week we should be putting on the ply sub deck.

Week 18 – Only 5 weeks to go!

This week started with oiling the spars. Here’s Sarah applying danish oil to the mast. You keep applying the coats wet on wet until the wood won’t take any more. This took about 3 hours for the mast!


Here we are fitting the floors. I spent most of the bank holiday weekend making templates for each of the 11 floors which gave us a good head start this week. You can see one of them next to Carson in the boat. The floors are made from sapele.


This picture shows Adam making the tiller out of ash laminates.


We’ve also continued work on the centreboard, here applying a layer of 300g bi-axial glass cloth. Next this will be sanded, filled and the pivot hole drilled. Both this and the rudder will be painted with primer and anti-foul before fitting. You can see the panel under which 16kg of lead has been epoxied, to ensure it actually sinks when in the water. Wilbur calculated the amount of lead required so it must be right!


Here you can see us putting the seat risers back in. The cross pieces are temporary, and were screwed in place before we took out the risers with the moulds, so allowing us to re-locate them in the right place.


Here we have the floors, centreboard case, seat risers & one of the harpins in place. The sides and top of the centreboard case are still being completed. It needs two sheaves (the internal part of a pulley) fixed on the inside, on which the wire from the top of the centreboard (used to haul it up) will run to a pulley system. We’ve already drilled the holes in the side of the centreboard ready to accept the bronze rods which will hold the sheaves in place.


Last thing Friday we painted the white boot top – we will put on two more coats over the weekend. For each coat we mask off the surrounding tape and remove it, to avoid a build up of paint along the masked off line. I’d forgotten how shapely this boat is, having had her draped in plastic for some time to protect the paint.


Next week we start the deck structure and with 4 weeks to go until launch we need to work flat out to finish her.