Four terms which didn’t mean much a few weeks ago, but which were very much part of recent days spent aboard Spellbinder en famille over half term.
Torqueedo is the make of Spellbinder’s new outboard. It is novel in that it is electric – no more petrol, outboard engine or gearbox oil on board, and no more starting with a pull cord – you just twist the tiller handle. It comes in three parts – shaft and propeller, battery and tiller. Putting it together is simplicity itself and takes seconds. Being able to break it down into its constituent parts makes it very transportable and light. The tiller has a built in GPS and computer which shows residual battery power and range. Reports suggest that with the chosen battery, and if you don’t go at top speed, you will get at least a couple of hours motoring. Tom and Jonty certainly enjoyed using it in the Beaulieu river in the 3D tender, a French make which comes with removal black and white neoprene covers (useful for protection against the sun in the tropics). They found the combination very manoeuvrable with the outboard delivering instant torque.
Parasailor is a type of sail. Rather like a spinnaker, it is a downwind sail but unlike a spinnaker it doesn’t need a pole, and can be flown with two sheets (ropes). It is symmetrical in shape but the key feature is a large wing about two thirds up. This wing fulfils three functions – lateral stability, lift and a place through which the power of sudden gusts can dissipate. This makes it a really versatile, powerful and reliable sail. We had great fun with it, sailing between Yarmouth and Seaview at over 8 knots through the water in about 12-15 knots of true wind. A couple of other yachts took photos – it is quite a rare sail to see in the Solent, and is typically used for long trade wind passages.
Boracol is a treatment for teak – and Jonty spent a couple of hours painting it on the deck for me. It gets rid of the inevitable greening and spotting which our humid climate encourages and after 10 days the teak is whiter and clearer. We await the results!
Tom and Jonty playing with the Torqueedo, and the new Parasailor sail roping us along eastwards down the Solent.
It was a fun weekend, in company most of the time with the Hickmans, aboard Alberta Rose. From Gosport we headed to Beaulieu, then Yarmouth, then back to Gosport via Seaview and a walk along the beach towards Bembridge.