Our website is now 7 years old and I am pleased to report that it is shortly to undergo a complete redesign by Andy our website designer, with much more emphasis on Sadlers and Starlights. It will be much easier to access and find what you want. This will proceed during the next two months and should be finalised by end December.
Sadlers and Starlights
Business has been brisk during the past 12 months for St35’s with particular interest in well presented boats, which do sell quickly.
- Slipstream Chichester – an early boat, but super condition
- Ripple being a recent Bowman build, now in Plymouth
- Wandering Star – sold in Jersey – now sailed off to the Baltic
- Sarabande in Germany – coming on to the market soon
- 39s – We have been involved in selling several 39s
- Betelgeuse of S’ton – now sailed off to south Coast
- Leemara of Northern Ireland now sold and being refurbished for serious voyaging
We increasingly find that boats are being sold privately and potential buyers phone me for my opinion and to assist in the purchase procedures; we charge a small fee for this, then advise on documents, survey and funds management. We have completed 12 boats in this manner during the past 12 months, so it does seem worthwhile for the buyer – we can also do this for the vendor.
The best of the Sadlers
A real joy for me is when we get a cherished and much-loved yacht to sell, which has just arisen in the form of Cherubino. This is a 1989 Sadler34 which I sold to my Bank Manager in 1991. This Sadler exudes the love and affection bestowed upon her, but for health reasons she is now on the market, after 30 years of proud ownership.
The MAGIC of the STEPHEN JONES Wing and Fin Keel
My first awareness of the Stephen Jones wing-keel was soon after I joined Sadler in 1989, when Stephen had already designed a super efficient fin keel for the Sadler 34. The first keel arrived in 1989, probably for Cherubino – a flange fitting at the top to distribute the load, then elliptically contoured to produce a bold entry at the forward end and fine at the aft end; the keel was narrow at the top, then progressively widened at the bottom so as to produce the effective under-water shape required and to carry the keel weight to a lower position, thus enhancing stiffness for effective windward sailing.
Ten years later I demonstrated this boat with David Harding for a PBO report; David was impressed by the enhanced windward ability and extra stiffness resulting from the new shape. Stephen Jones designed for us the Starlight 39 and the 35, both with his wing keel to the NACE section, also to follow was a suitable fin keel as an option.
By 1990 we were building our first Starlight 39, being Spring Gold 2 for Hugh Farrant, who was indeed the first Chairman of the Owners Association. Most of the first forty of the 39s were fitted with a wing keel, which was a stunning success and widely acclaimed by the yachting press for windward performance, particularly in heavy weather. Downwind they provide for remarkable confidence when steering through waves, with the realisation the yacht is completely under control, however bad the weather.
A few of the later boats were built with fin keel, which provided enhanced windward ability particularly in light airs, but in heavy weather the wing is preferable. The Starlight 35 followed soon after, also with the wing keel for most of the first 50 yachts, up to about 1996, when Bowman became involved and decided to change to fin keel, with a few wings when requested. This was mainly for racing reasons, so as to marginally improve the rating.
There were many sea-trials and tests by Yachting magazines, all of which David Harding and myself were involved with, being YW,YM, PBO and Sailing Today
Without exception, they all rated the Starlights as the best of all sailing yachts they had tested in terms of design, performance, deck layout and so on.
For next Gazette, I will briefly return to wing keels and show a few pics.
Enjoy the winter period doing all those jobs you have had no time for!
All the best, Mike