Petestack Blog

31 July 2019

Fly is afloat!

Filed under: Sailing — admin @ 10:33 pm

It’s not quite the end of the saga yet, but surely now into ‘endgame’ as far as the refit’s concerned…

Yesterday, Fly was launched at Creran Marine, taking to the water for the first time in 14 years! John Grant from Owen Sails was round to measure up for new lifelines (guard rails) while Peter Watt and I worked through the conundrum of new Harken foiler furl and inadequate clearance through the deck at the front of the bow well (solved with joint ingenuity and the tools Peter had in his containers), and then she was into the travel hoist and away when the tide was up far enough:

To say that I was close to tears as the hoist approached the water, the keel and the rudder touched it and then she was fully afloat would be, well, true! I’m always struck by how Fly turns from being quite a ‘big’ boat in the garden or on the road to a comparatively ‘wee’ one when the bits necessitating a ladder ashore drop nearly six feet into the sea, but that’s by the by; she’s perfectly formed as she is, I don’t want a bigger boat, a smaller one or a different one, and we’re talking years when perhaps nobody but me (or even me?) truly believed she’d ever sail again. If some emotion was involved, and still is, it feels good and perhaps I’ve earned that particular kind of feel-good…

Time for some levity, perhaps, so here’s the laughing fly brought to the boat so many years ago by regular crew and dear friend Gill Reavley, still laughing (amazed the battery hasn’t run out!) and now back onboard today:

And here’s Fly today on her way back from Loch Creran, this time by sea rather than by road. Peter and I had a tidal deadline at Ballachulish narrows (aka Peter Straits and, no, I didn’t make that up!) with little wind and some rain, so done mainly by engine with no mainsail, but we did get to try the old No.2 on the new foil. Fly will be moving to a mooring at Glencoe Boat Club in due course, but happy to have step-on access from the pontoon for a bit while I finish sorting her out:

And that’s (not quite) that. There will be further blogs with some refit content as I fit the new cabin sole, washboards, guard rails and stuff like that, but hopefully also some actual sailing this year because it’s been long enough coming! :-)

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