Sunday, September 6, 2009
Romilly Pocket Cruiser
If I was to build another boat right now, the Romilly, a yawl from the hands of Irens and Burnett would definitely make my short list. A very pretty boat and a nice rig, too.
Her big cockpit makes her an ideal boat for camp cruising. There are a lot of inland waterways within a day’s travel that need exploring!
Phil Holden visited a previous post about Romilly and writes to me to explain that he has a web site dedicated to Romilly and Roxanne her larger sister, Romilly Sailboat. He hosts a forum for owners and builders to share ideas and would love input.
He tells me:
"I own a Romilly called Riant. I'm 6'2" and have slept in the cuddy cabin very comfortably. There's room for two adults but not much else. (The sitting headroom measured from the berth surface up to the cabin top is about three feet). There is also a cockpit tent, which extends the usable space."
"I fell in love with Romilly years ago when she was on the front of Classic Boats Magazine but I never thought I would be able to one day afford her."
"Most folks don't notice her on her berth but many sail over for a closer look when we have her out for the day. She really is a stunner."
It's the sails that make her a beauty everyone can recognize! That high peaked yard is simply beautiful.
Romilly's plans call for a strip-planked hull covered in 300gsm glass, but here is a cold molded version being built in Germany.
The plans also call for carbon spars, the main yard, the boom, the boomkin, the mizzen yard and the mizzenmast are shown in the photo.
"I would strongly recommend the carbon fibre mast and other spars. No one, even other boat owners will know and they make a massive difference to stability and sail handling. Please don't make the mistake of making wooden spars."
I found this a little intimidating, since I usually build the whole boat, but have never made a carbon mast. As this video shows, it’s not exactly rocket science, so I’ll have to give it a go. (Sorry, there is no "part two" that I could find).
Apparently the hard part is engineering the mast for stiffness, since there is a fine line between too bendy and too stiff.
Since Romilly uses unstayed masts, error on the side of stiffness seems a good idea. I see Phil’s point about stability, such a fine hull would be easily upset by a top-heavy mast and yard.
Beautiful, but not conceited and above all, nimble and fast. A high performance family daysailer or gunkholer with a lot of class.
Romilly is also available as a kit and a very good article on building one can be found in Luggers for Today.