Wooden ships comments on this Amethyst Bawley gaff cutter
Gaff cutter built by Amethyst Marine, Dorset in 1997, based on the lines of an 1890’s Thames Bawley. These were shrimp fishing boats, mainly based out of Old Leigh, well known for cooking their catch in large copper pots onboard while sailing back to port, so the shrimps could be loaded onto the train and sent to London as soon as they were landed.
This little yacht was built as a prototype with the aim of going into production. Unfortunately the plans changed so this remains the only one to have been built. The original sale price was advertised at £45,000+VAT
Strip plank cedar hull, with 2 diagonal layers of mahogany laminated to the cedar below the waterline, 2 layers of mahogany laid fore and aft on the top sides. Total hull thickness of 7/8”. Finished in an epoxy coating and varnish.
Oak stem, mahogany keel and deadwoods in mahogany.
Painted transom, reinforced to 1 ¼”.
Transom hung rudder on galvanised hangings with stainless steel pin.
1 tonne long external lead ballast keel with 6 x 1” bolts through the laminated floors.
The epoxy and strip plank construction negates the need for conventional framing, however 2” laminated floors tie the hull together across the centre-line and add strength for taking the ground.
Laid teak deck on ¾” plywood sub deck. Deck beams constructed from laminated mahogany. 4” toe rail all round provides good security without being too bulky.
Large coachroof extends aft from the mast. Painted coamings with 3 bronze portholes each side. Cambered coachroof top in plywood over aaaa t&g sub deck. Handrails either side.
Large cockpit with bench seats either side and lockers under. Cleats on the sidedecks for staysail and jib sheets. Mainsheet horse on aft deck with wooden tiller under.
Large foredeck gives plenty of space to work the halyard falls at the base of the mast. Wooden hatch gives access to forepeak. A pair of sampson posts sat either side of the king plank for securing mooring warps. Galvanised stem head fitting incorporating anchor chain roller on port side and gammon iron above to hold the 13’ douglas fir retractable bowsprit. Bobstay chain on 3:1 block and tackle.
Gaff cutter rig with typical Bawley loose footed main on a 26’ douglas fir pole mast.
Mast is deck stepped in a galvanised steel tabernacle.
High peaked gaff yard with leathered saddle.
Varnished bowsprit between a pair of Sampson posts and passing through a galvanised gammon iron over the stem, the heel located in a fitting on the deck secured with a pin so reasonably easily removeable.
Standing rigging is 12mm galvanised wire, parcelled and served in the traditional way.
Dead eyes and lanyards for tensioning the standing rigging to external galvanised steel chain plates.
Running backstays on block and tackles, made up to cleats that are easily reached from the cockpit.
Bronze bar main sheet horse on the aft deck.
Sails, rig and canvas.
All sails by James Lawrence Sailmakers, Brightlingsea, Essex.
Top sail on yard.
All running rigging & blocks
Pair of bronze sheet winches plus handles
Lombardini 17hp LDW602M 2 cylinder diesel engine with Technodrive 40 reversing gear with very low hours to fixed 3 blade centre-line bronze propeller gives 6 knots
Rigid plastic fuel tank in the port cock-pit locker. Approx 50 galls.
Accommodation comprises a main saloon with a U-shaped settee to port around a mahogany table. This table drops into the gap to create a 6’6” double berth.
Storage and tanks under.
5‘11” headroom in the main saloon.
To starboard is a large hanging locker against the aft bulkhead. Forward of this is the galley with a recessed sink, Flavel 2 burner gas cooker with oven and grill. Work surface fwd of this with fridge under. Deep storage lockers behind. T&G finished pine bulkhead to forward area.
Pressurised water supply from 5 gal rigid plastic water tank. Sink drains overboard.
Centre folding hinged door slightly offset to starboard. Door folds to become the heads door. Heads to port with Jabsco sea toilet. Storage locker behind. Large hanging locker to port with shelves for bosuns stores.
A third bulkhead separates off the generous forepeak cabin. V-berths with large storage areas under. Foam cushions. Small hatch into anchor locker.
Built-in buoyancy compartment under the forward end of the berth provides collision security to the fore foot.
This little boat was lightly used for a couple of seasons on the Hamble after her launch before bought by the present owners.
She has been laid up ashore under a tent in Worcestershire for 4 years due to the owner’s health issues and is now ready for a thorough refit prior to recommissioning.
See separate report on current condition.
This is a fine little yacht of a traditional design built using modern construction techniques and materials. A seaworthy vessel with surprising volume, enough space and comforts to allow a couple to cruise the Channel and coastal waters in comfort.
Sadly the owners are not going to recommission the yacht and she has to go, hence the very reasonable price.
Port & Starboard lights in red and green light boxes secured in the rigging in the traditional way.
Sowester CQR Anchor (20LR)
Horseshoe lifebuoy x2
12v Par bilge pump.
Warps – Various
Fenders – various x6
Heavy Duty fitted winter cover by James Lawrence
Internal electric lights