S & S 34 Grapevine Edition 15 - 25th Janurary 2006

S & S 34 Grapevine Edition 15


Welcome to the first Grapevine of 2006. The S&S34 committee hope everyone had a safe and joyous Christmas and New Year. Summer still hasn't really started in W.A. but hopefully others have had some great sailing weather. As I write this, it hasn't stopped raining for several hours and we have had thunder and lightening. Worse still, power cuts, so the Save button is getting pressed continuously.

The following boats have joined or renewed there subscription in the last month: Bird of the Morning, Morning Star, Polaris and Solandra. Thank you all very much. Subscription details are available on the Assoc's website.

Jon and Nadia Armstrong have purchased Roma II from Jane and I. They were the first people to view Roma but it has just taken a little time to get everything organised. I never realised how much gear we had accumulated in 15 years of ownership. Thus I will be resigning from editing the Grapevine and as webmaster of the S&S34 association's website. I would very much like to hear from anyone who may like to take over one or both tasks. With the contributions from S&S34 owners near and far it really doesn't take that long and is very rewarding. Jane and I have made fantastic friends worldwide through the Assoc. Even if you are just thinking about it give me a call on 08 9592 2122 (or email) and I can give you some more details.

Thank you everyone for contributing. The Grapevine is nothing without everyone's help.

Deadline for the next issue of the S&S34 Grapevine is Sunday 19th February 2005.


The S&S 34 Association website has a great new feature - A Discussion Forum.

One of the main aims of the S&S34 Association is the sharing of knowledge among like minded owners.

Thanks to member Chris Jackson (Wilparina) all members can now easily ask questions and share their knowledge in the Discussion Forum.

There is a link from the S&S34 site (www.ss34.org) to the discussion forum.

Chris only purchased Wilparina last year and has already become an active Association member.

The forum only went live on the 23rd January and there are already several posts.

Thanks Chris and Well done!

Sailing Exchange

From Morning Tide, Trinidad (Peter Morris) - 22/12/2005

Is anyone in the S&S34 Association interested in a sailing exchange?

We will be racing my S&S 34 Morning Tide in the Angostura Tobago Sailweek 14th to 19th May 2006.

Details at : http://www.sailweek.com/

We depart Trinidad Friday 12th May and arrive after a night crossing in Tobago next day.

There is racing every day and parties every night with one day off for sightseeing.

We sail back to Trinidad on Sunday 19th May usually arriving back pretty late.

I have an apartment for accommodation adjacent to the Hilton Hotel at Sugar

Mill Suites - Tobago Plantations.


I would be willing to take 2 (possibly 3) crew (male and/or female) from Australia or New Zealand for free if they can get here in exchange for a similar exchange for some sailing in the Southern Hemisphere at a later date. The crew just have to get here next May and like sailing in crystal clear water in the sunny Caribbean. Because the wind is usually fairly strong in Tobago we normally sail with 6 or 7 crew and everyone sleeps ashore unless they really prefer to sleep aboard.

The Capital of Trinidad is Port of Spain and there are regular flights every day from Miami, Washington, New York, Canada and Europe. Alternatively there are flights direct to Crown Point, Tobago from Europe and the USA.

Contact Peter by email pmorris@caribinfo.com

News - Western Australia

News - New South Wales

From Morning Bird (John McCormack)

[John purchased Morning Bird in Aug 2005 and has been busy fixing her up. Ed.]

Just to inform you that Morning Bird is again a sailing yacht, after 5 years of being a mooring minder. The rerig was completed yesterday and a few of us sailed her from Sydney to Pittwater in a fresh W/SW breeze and bright sunshine.

Apart from a few troubles setting the main, I doubt the previous owner ever put a reef in and the reefing horn setup is atrocious, she performed superbly. We achieved a best speed of about 7.5 kts in 25 knots of wind with a Yankee headsail and a single reef set. A beautifully balanced helm and a very comfortable motion, admittedly in quite calm seas. She would sail herself for considerable periods.

The work is paying off at last.

News - Queensland

News - Victoria

News - Overseas

From Morning Tide, Trinidad (Peter Morris) - 22/12/2005

[Peter purchased Morning Tide in Feb 2005. There are photos available on the Association website. Ed.]

When I bought her she had been laid up for three years and was in a fairly poor condition. She has been completely re-furbished inside and out, with new instruments, GPS, auto-pilot, new teak and holly floor, re-constructed joinery, new winches etc. etc and a new twin spreader mast will be installed in the next few weeks. She is racing again every week and competing strongly in our local regattas. We are planning on going to the Grenada Sailing Festival in January and Angostura Race Week in Tobago in March not too sure what after that.

Notes From Afar

From Tony & Marj Clarke (Reveille II) - 20/12/05

Our journey around the south of OZ continues at slower rate than planned. The weather has not been kind with one cold front after another with hardly enough time in between to get anywhere! We were holed up in Eden for 2 weeks and another 10 days at Refuge Cove (Wilsons Promontory). We arrived at Apollo Bay (Cape Otway) during a gale and had a heart stopping time getting into the harbour - surf across the entrance and 35 Knts!! We are now at Portland and hope to leave in the morning to head up the SA coast to Kangaroo Island. Would like to be there for Christmas but not that confident as the forecasts are not that promising - may end up putting in somewhere.

Arrived here a couple of hours ago to find SS 34 Mendana at anchor. Seems they are on their way to Tasmania. There is also another Fremantle boat here ( Cartref an Adams 40) so we are beginning to feel at home again!!

Crossing the Bight some time during Jan/Feb is still on the agenda but the weather will have to improve. We are hoping for a "normal" summer weather pattern with some SE winds. This may be wishful thinking as I know that it didn't happen last year - we shall see.

From Tony & Marj Clarke (Reveille II) - 06/01/06

Have made it to Adelaide. Has been very hard going so far but the weather does look as if summer might be here at last. There has been a High (the same one) in the Bight for several days now with SE winds for a change!! Had a really unpleasant sail from Portland to Kangaroo Island. The wind was from the right quarter but very squally and we got caught out in the middle of a really black night with too much sail up. Ended up with a badly torn jib and a broken vang fitting. Now in Adelaide and repairs are well underway. Hope to leave here in a week or so and will spend some time in the Port Lincoln area - will then move up to Streaky Bay and wait for the right conditions to cross the Bight.

Spent Christmas in Portland and enjoyed the company of Peter & Lorraine Colman (Mendana). Also another Fremantle boat Cartref (Doug & Mary). They should be in Tassie by now.

From Peter and Lorraine Colman (Mendana) - 05/01/06

Here's hoping that 2006 treats you well.

New Year's Day 2006 found us struggling with mild hangovers and incipient seasickness whilst leaving Port Fairy in Victoria, heading for King Island off the north-western end of Tasmania. For the first few hours we both wished we'd indulged our instincts and stayed in bed. As it turned out we had one of the best overnight sails we've endured since leaving Perth and arrived in Grassy Harbour at the bottom of King Island just as our fair?weather window closed and the south-westerlies climbed up to gale force.

We had arrived in Port Fairy via Portland, Victoria and American River on Kangaroo Island, South Australia, where we spent a lazy two weeks adjusting to the constraints of life aboard without the comforts of a marina and nearby supermarkets etc. Six months over-wintering alongside at the Cruising Yacht Club of South Australia in North Haven, Adelaide, had left us soft and flabby. Strangely we soon adapted to cold water, washing clothes in a bucket and donning foul weather gear to go ashore to the toilet. What was harder to bear on the moorings at American River was the odd motion of the boat as she lay side-on to the prevailing wind, pulled round by the keel to face into the ebbing or flooding tide. We left Kangaroo Island alongside our friends Doug & Mary aboard 'Cartref' (Welsh for home) confident that we'd re-acclimatised to the cruising life. We'd been very blasé about the forecast weather along our intended route to Portland, having (we thought) experienced similar conditions in the past. As we headed south-east through 'Back Stairs Passage' to the open ocean it soon became apparent that we were going to have a brutal reminder of:

1. Conditions can always be considerably worse than forecast and

2. Two weeks sitting on a mooring after a casual daysail down from Adelaide is not adequate preparation for 5 metre seas and 35 knot winds with frequent squalls above 40.

Fortunately our vessels were up to the task even if our feeble bodies weren't.

An old friend in Adelaide had given us some aircraft life-raft rations to test out in sailing conditions. We were both too queasy to go below and prepare food so these marvelous self heating packet stews (complete with knife fork and plastic plate) seemed ideal. I'd already enjoyed mine and started heating one for Lorraine. Unfortunately even the smell of food tipped the balance, and in one motion she passed me her bowl then dived for the leeward rail. It was too bumpy to set the bowl down, and safe in the knowledge she wouldn't come back for more, I enjoyed hers too. Not to say that I wasn't sea sick as well, though I managed to hang onto my food. Perhaps I'd have been better off getting rid of it like Lorraine, as the action always seemed to give her instant relief from her misery.

All the comedies of life at sea in a small boat were played out over those two days and nights. During a particularly bouncy phase I slid off the toilet in mid-***p. It was pretty nasty, but could have been far worse. Both of us suffered 'locker avalanches' - where the entire contents of a locker (on the uphill side of the boat) back up behind the door, waiting to jump out and surprise you when you open it for one tiny item. The other little treat that still catches me out is the vessel rolling heavily just as I stand to pull my trousers up when dressing and I can't move my feet to keep my balance. Even making a cup of tea is a challenge of mountaineering proportions. Getting boiling water or milk to flow politely down from the spout into the mug rather than up or side-ways over you or the galley is only half the battle. I've turned my back for a second to return and find my mug tipped over and the teabag (the last Earl Grey) missing - it took half an hour of frantic searching before I eventually located it hiding behind the fridge. The conditions abated to allow for us to recover a little before dropping anchor in Portland harbour, and we had time to wash the streaks of vomit off the side of the boat before our Adelaide sailing friends arrived the following day.

Portland was a great spot to spend Christmas and relax in the company of friends, old and new, before moving on to Port Fairy and more celebrations to greet the New Year.

Leaving Portland was intended to be a smooth well planned and prepared operation. We began lifting our anchor just as Cartref sailed out through the harbour entrance, and finally retrieved it an hour and a half later. A nasty front had swept through the Portland anchorage a couple of days before Christmas, forcing one boat onto a mooring and another into the fishing boat harbour. We'd remained at anchor and been pleased, surprised and perhaps a little smug not to have it drag. I discovered on diving down to investigate the snag that the weather had dragged our chain full circle around two separate rocks. It was very fortunate that I'd recently finished a homemade 12v diving hookah (plans supplied free on request 'at your own risk'). I could perhaps have retrieved it with just a snorkel, but it would have been quite a struggle in 5metres of water.

In a couple of days, weather permitting, we plan to continue south-east down Tasmania's west coat and through 'Hells Gates' to Strahan, where we should catch-up with our Adelaide friends.

The Racing Guys

SoPYC Night Race - Friday 20th January 2006 (by Timbo Dallas)

A disappointing turn out for the night race was only matched by poor organization. Contradictory sailing instructions and a no show by the starters led to confusion on the few boats that made the start line, but despite all that SuperStar and Swagman had an interesting race and didn't fall too far behind the two Thompson sports boats they were pitted against. SuperStar got the drop on Swagman with a smoother spinnaker launch at the delayed start, however Andrew easily passed Tim on the long beat up to Point Resolution. Both boats suffered in the gusty conditions that tend to be prevalent when rounding Point Walter, but managed the short beat to the windward mark just off Meads Restaurant without incident (though there was a close call between SuperStar, one of the Thompson's and the Point Walter sand bank!). Swagman elected to reach back to Como under white sails only giving SuperStar a chance to make up the gap under main and asymmetric. Unfortunately both boats had trouble finding the final mark and by mutual consensus both hardened up beam to beam for the short sprint to the finish line, Swagman's superior upwind performance took the line with just a few seconds to spare. Despite the issues surrounding the race both crews had an excellent evening out on the river and are looking forward to the next opportunity to race again.

15th January 2006 Trade-A-Boat S&S34 Series Race 6.

1st Sirius R Collins

2nd Morning Star T Taylor

3rd Lionheart G Middleton

Wot's On

All S&S34 Assoc. members are invited to attended the following events.

Thursday 26th January - FSC - Australia Day JAM Race to Rockingham

For any enquiries, call the Sailing Office on 9435 8809 or sailingadmin@fsc.com.au

Saturday 28th & Sunday 29th January - HYC Cruising in Company - Longreach

Cruise Captain: Chaya

Contact: Mark Morrow Mark.Morrow@weirwarman.com

Sunday Jan 29th 9:30am - Trader-A-Boat S&S34 Series - SYC (Vic)

Contact: Sandy YC www.syc.com.au or on 9598 7444 or

Geoff Middleton (Lionheart) geoff.middleton@tradergroup.com.au

Saturday 4th - Saturday 25th February - FSC Cruising Section - Bunbury Cruise

For more information, please contact Jim Putt on jimputt@ca.com.au or 93839823.

Friday 10th - Sunday 12th February - FSC Cruising Section - Rockingham Night Sail

For more information, please contact Bernie Siddall on bsid@iinet.net.au or 0419-926-847.

Saturday 11th - Sunday 12th February - RFBYC Cruising in Company - TBA

Briefing: 9th February

For more information, please contact Dick Newnham on newnham@iinet.net.au or 9385 8098.

Sunday 12th February 9:30am - Trader-A-Boat S&S34 Series - SYC (Vic)

Contact: Sandy YC www.syc.com.au or on 9598 7444 or

Geoff Middleton (Lionheart) geoff.middleton@tradergroup.com.au

Saturday 18th & Sunday 19th February - HYC Cruising in Company - Pig Trough Bay / FSC or CPC

Cruise Captain: S&S34 members Le Jag

Contact: Norman & Stella Magill smagill@abacus.com.au

Friday 24th February - Friday 3rd March - Geographe Bay Race Week

Sunday 26th February 9:30am - Trader-A-Boat S&S34 Series - SYC (Vic)

Contact: Sandy YC www.syc.com.au or on 9598 7444 or

Geoff Middleton (Lionheart) geoff.middleton@tradergroup.com.au

Saturday 4th - Monday 6th March - FSC Cruising Section - Labour Day Long Weekend Cruise

For more information, please contact Bernie Siddall on bsid@iinet.net.au or 0419-926-847.

Saturday 4th - Monday 6th March - RFBYC Cruising in Company - Cape Hookway (Warnbro)

Briefing: RFBYC 2nd March

For more information, please contact Contact Ron on 0408 958 323, Email: rfbyc_cinc@yahoo.com.au

Saturday 4th - Monday 6th March - HYC Cruising in Company - Rockingham

Cruise Captain: Sei Sui

Contact: Mark Morrow Mark.Morrow@weirwarman.com

Quote of the Week

From the Preface of "Come Aboard" by Eric Hiscock,

Wanderer IV, Bay of Islands, N.Z. July 1977

When sharing an anchorage with a handsome yacht which we know has found her way across the oceans to faraway places, Susan (my wife) and I usually row over to have a closer look, and if there happens to be someone on deck we probably make a complimentary remark. How pleased we then are if he proves to be the owner and says 'Come aboard', for such an invitation will give us the opportunity not only to examine the details on deck and aloft and the general arrangement below, but perhaps a chance to hear the ideas, impressions, practices and experiences of another voyager: the methods of navigation he uses; his procedure in heavy weather; how he makes a living as he goes; what his thoughts are on compasses, flags, other people's children, writing letters, port officials, yacht clubs, self-steering gears, the environment, the Panama Canal... There is a lot that we would like to know, and his answers may give us much to think and talk about, and perhaps even incorporate, when we return to our own vessel.

Joke of the Week

Hi sailor", said the barmaid, "you look like you're a little down."

"That I am lassie", said the sailor, " It saddens me to say that I serve under a very tough Captain!"

"That's a shame sweetie, how bad does it get?"

"Well lassie, recently I complained that there were roaches in me bunk. The captain gave me three demerits for keep'n pets!"

Definition of the Week

Yacht Club Troublesome seasonal accumulation in coastal areas of unpleasant marine organisms with stiff necks and clammy extremities. Often present in large numbers during summer months when they clog inlets, bays, and coves, making navigation almost impossible. They can be effectively dislodged with dynamite, but, alas, archaic federal laws rule out this option.

Sail The Web

Check out the following site, two blokes (Alex Whitwirth and Peter Crozier), sailed the Sydney-Hobart in 04, around the worlds southern capes, Fastnet in 05 and back to Sydney for the 05 Hobart. All in a 10metre Brolga 33 (Peter Joubert design). It's not only S&S34 owners who do crazy things!


S&S 34 Association Discussion Forum (see www.ss34.org)

Readers Mart

Let me know if you have anything to advertise or questions to ask for the next issue (Ed).