I picked up my new (old?)Merlin last weekend,MR2720. Apparently from 1972, but how do I put a name and age to it?
Name is Spokflygare built 1973 is a Phil Morrison design Phantom Kipper and was built by Aln Boatyard in Alnmouth. That's according to the 2008 book. No MROA owner mentioned for he year.
From the year book (you get this when you join the association) circa 1973, name Spokflygare (uh!!),apparently a Phantom Kipper design built by Aln boatyard.
snap, same minute
Actually in its day quite a well renowned winner
More information from the Year Book. She was 4th in the 1973 Championships at Poole sailed by David Speirs and Lou? Dann.
Good to hear that 'Spokflygare' is still alive and being cared for.
I remember that 1973 Championships at Poole very well. If I recall correctly it was David Spiers' swansong in the Merlin Class as he had emigrated to Vancouver and came back to defend the title that he won with Roger Taylor the year before. Rog was now helming his own boat so Spiers teamed up with his old friend from South Yorks - Lou Dann (he is a male Lou).
The Phantom Kipper was a very successful design in those days - BS&T (winner in 72) was one and I think Philistine may have been one too, can anyone recall? Jilly was sailing BS&T with Robert Tricket at Poole and they won the Ranelagh Trophy - it was first time either of them had won a Championship race so it was some celebration!
Arnot Dobson was the man at Aln boatyard who built beautiful boats. They were on of the only ones to rival Spud Rowsell's yard for craftsmanship and wood woodworking skills.
So Frank you have a lovely boat - hope you enjoy her.
I think Chris Andrews' 'Philistine' was a Rowsell built September Girl.
The first Phantom Kipper 2558 was at Draycote and so was the second, my brother's 2574. They were both built by Bob Hoare.
2595 BS&T was the fourth to be registered and I think she was the first to be built by Rowsells.
Poole '73 - remember it well, 12 general recalls and then the race officer sent us home. Also remember being T-boned by Blood Sweat and Tears! And Jerry Rook's joke about pigs at the prizegiving.
Thanks for all the input. She seems to be in pretty good shape. There is one holed plank. It looks like an easy repair, but its the only one I wont do myself. I have a local guy recomended by a friend, just need to give him a call. The Centreboard case is good, but there is a bit of water damage where the foot of the mast sits. The deck is almost stripped, and it looks like there is some colour under the sun bleached wood. I'm going to need a few bits, ie jib and spinaker. A mast wouldn't be a bad thing either, It has one but wouldn't trust it in a proper blow! While on the 'want' list, what glue do I use for the stray bits that need sticking, and which varnish? I have read a dozen reports with a dozen opinions regarding both glue and varnish. The opinion of a few MR owners would be a good thing!
I am renovating MR 908 a 1958 Wyche & Coppock XI, which at this atage wont mean much to you but....... in terms of either joining sprung planks or filleting joints I have used SP epoxy mixed with Micro Fibres as this provides a good water resitant solid bond. As for finishes I would suggest a single pack varnish, either Blakes (Diamond Gloss) or Epifanes. Because older boats flex a lot more than the modern counterparts two pack would crack pretty quickly and you will find yourself forever make minor repairs.
I'd definatly use two pack on the decks but maybe not on the hull. The decks won't flex enough to worry two pack varnish and they need to be hard wearing. The beauty of two pack is that once done it's not going to need rubbing down again for a long time provided you put enough on (Five coats) and if it loses it's gloss a run over with a polisher and rubbing compound will bring it back up.
The problems are that it's very hard and awkward to rub down properly if not on an open flat surface. This makes it less desirable to use inside the hull because there are lots of nooks and cranies!
Re mast, I've still got one fron our ole Smokers - if you're interested - drop me an email (slowly) we're on holiday from tomorrow!
Rather a late contribution to this thread.
MR 2720 Spokflygare was owned by my late father John Ibberson. He bought around 1976 +/- 1 year. It was sailed regularly on the northern Silver Tiller circuit until family commitments brought that era to a close. It was sailed as a club boat from South Yorkshire Sailing Club in the North West of Sheffield. SYSC had, in it's day a very strong MR fleet.
I had my first racing experience with my father on Spokflygare at the tender age of 8 or 9. I recall having to kneel on the foredeck to fit the spinnaker pole. From the age of 12 I crewed regularly at the club and local open events.
I started helming Spokflygare aged 14 in 1983 at SCYC, then effectively 'stole' it when I stopped sailing mirrors.
She was sailed regularly at SYSC, Abersoch Dinghy Week and club racing from South Caernarvonshire Yacht Club in Abersoch. She was dry stored every winter, and had very little use from 1988 until she was sold in about 1995.
I'm currently looking to get back into a MR, having toyed with twin wire a-sail boats for a while. Just waiting for work to give me time to get back on the water in the UK.
Jerry Ibberson (ex MR 2720)