Thetis2013 11:05pm, 15 December 2013
Well, I've got to the end of my first season as owner of an A24, & what an enjoyable season it was! Only on a lake, but I'm making my transition from years of dinghy sailing into the world of 'proper' boats, so one step at a time eh?

Thetis is still on the mooring, but I've taken the boom off & folded the sails away so the only windage left above the cabin is the mast itself, I have treble checked the mooring chains, especially after last weeks gale, and seeing some boats having suffered as a result. One poor Gib-Sea owner had to have their boat dragged ashore after it broke its mooring and found its way ashore, the hull is seriously scuffed & gouged from all the rocks & it has little ballasted stabilisers (rather than outer keels like the triple keeled version of the A24), one has ripped clean away from the hull & you can see right up into the cabin through the hole!

Going round the Ferry Nab car park (which has become a boat park over winter) I have noticed two A24's parked up, the Lake Wardens can't disclose details of other owners, but I'm going to leave a note in the boats to say hello, as it were. For those unfamiliar with Windermere; Ferry Nab is like the main marina/central hub/meeting place for the Windermere boating population, and is the main office for the Lake Wardens, equivalent of harbour masters.

This brings me onto the next dilemma I find myself in...

I would have brought Thetis out of the water for winter, but I've nothing to put her on. I notice that A24's are often photographed on trailers being towed by 'normal' cars as opposed to lorries or gas guzzling 4X4's, would anyone know if suitable trailers are readily available & where to start looking? Can one hire a trailer or do you have to own one? what do you do with it the rest of the year if you own one? ...and that really crucial question; is it OK in the water over winter, and how often would you recommend taking it out (hull/rudder/keel maintenance etc.) The problem with a lake is the tide doesn't go out!

Any hints & tips would be gratefully received, especially those aimed at the shoestring budget owners! It's alright for these well off 33' Bavaria & Beneteau Oceanis people, they just throw money at it, but when you haven't got any money to throw...
busy home [deleted] 5 years ago
Good to hear ,, glad you enjoyed her.
The boat will suffer generally if left on the water .. Fresh water is osmosis friendly.
I would try to bring her home.
Ring some small trailer /boat mover guys, One might have a suitable trailer. /flat bed (tripple)
Then a decent JCB to lift her off . (use the lifting eye in the bilge with a guy rope to the stem)
(Merlin has not got one) They weigh 2600lb a jcb lifts 3000.. Empty the boat first , helps a lot,
A Mondeo diesel will tow ok, See if you can hire just a flat bed ..
Bert towed an Achilles from SW england to Belfast with a Mondeo. No probs.
Super Snoopy 050 5 years ago
Flatbed lorry with a hiab worked for me.
busy home [deleted] 5 years ago
But you are a wealthy man
Super Snoopy 050 5 years ago
No, I know the right people. Hundred quid per way.
BERT A24 5 years ago
The only snag with Super Snoopy's solution is £100 every time you want to move the boat. Much cheaper to build a trailer, start with a twin wheel caravan chassis (easily obtainable from caravan breakers) which can be picked up for about £200. In your case with bilge keels there's not a lot of modification needed. The one which I built was for a fin keel and required a bit more work, but was all done in one day. Photos are on flickr.
Thetis2013 5 years ago
I need to get her out at some stage, if only to check the hull & especially that rudder, after reading some scare stories on here about rudders coming adrift!

I'm hoping to get her to the sea sooner or later, & might have a word with Bob Ellin again, the one who shifted her from Port Edgar. Like the idea of using a scrap caravan chassis though, even if it's just something to put her on & store in the Ferry Nab car park.

Quite a few have left boats on, & I regularly visit her even if it's just to make sure she's still where I left her! Went today for a check over after yet another gale, and sure enough, there she was, exactly how I left her last time, but my neighbours weren't so lucky, one side was a Benetaeu Oceanis 33 (not much change out of £100.000!) on a brand new mooring with brand new mooring strops, the other side of me was a Gib-Sea 24... Both have slipped their moorings & ended up on a rocky lee shore with inevitable damage. (Pictures posted in flikr photo section)

Thanks for advice anyway, main problem would be somewhere to put it once she's out of the water, she has to be moveable if in the Ferry Nab car park. she can't just sit on her keels. I wondered why there was a piece of plate steel bent upright, down in the bilge with a hole drilled through! Now I know! I thnk it comes down to organising some wheels though, the lake wardens will pull her up the slipway with thier tractor, if I had something to put her on.
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