Four Whizz a’building

Now that we’ve decided the season is over and the sweet soulful sound of a certain soprano fills our ears, we can get back to serious iceboat building. Whizz # 8, 9, 10 and 11 are coming along very nicely. Henry Bossett is building the sails, hardware by Steve Duhamel, and masts by Apache Boatworks.

Denis Guertin is building a pair in Quebec for himself and sailing buddy Frank. He says that since he’s building two at once he’s able to make twice as many mistakes! Just outside the window of his shop he can watch the ice on Lac St. Francois slowly recede from the shore, confident in the knowledge that when it returns in the fall he and Frank will be ready for it. These guys are not afraid to travel either, so we look forward to seeing them around New England next season. Do I hear rumors of a Whizz Regatta in the offing? Frank, we know for a fact, loves a good race: the more wind the better.

Carl Jelleme in Nantucket has done a fine job with his Whizz. Note the exceptionally graceful stern on his model. Carl says: ” I have had a ton of fun building it and it really is a pretty little vessel….what a great design for its size.” Now that the steering is in and all the other small details taken care of he’s ready for the deck.

Bill Bernhard in Adirondack NY did a wonderful job of hiding the fact that plywood is only eight feet long. We’re not permitted to simply varnish the butt joint on the deck so this solution works great. The pin striping at the sheer and wrap around cockpit upholstery complete the package. And the plank is just the way Dicky Saltonstall liked them: flat at the ends with all the bend in the center. This gives them that nice S shape when loaded up, presenting the runner nicely square to the ice.

We’ve updated the plans, adding some more information and correcting some errors that only the builders are able to find. It’s amazing: you go over each detail, convinced that it’s all good, and then a guy who’s actually doing the building calls up and asks a very simple question about why Tab A doesn’t slot into Slot B, or some such thing, and bingo: he’s right. There it is in blue and white. So now all you potential builders can rest assured that Tab A does indeed slot into Slot B and all is good with the project.
Ted and Carolyn Vaughn are off to Vermont to pick up an Arrow. They showed up a lot this past season and sailed whatever was offered. That’s just how you do it: show up and learn, and now a boat has dropped right into their laps. Maine, The Way Life Should Be!
And don’t forget the Spring meeting and pot luck at Lloyd’s on Saturday. All are welcome. 140 Porter St. Rockport, 04856. Showing up starts now.

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