New Whizzes

The plural of Whizz should probably be just Whizz, but then how would you know that there are so many new ones? What’s great is that we need to worry about how to pluralize the name for a class which didn’t even exist a few years ago. Jeff Knapp of Rye, NH is completing #14 in time for the coming season, and Denis Guertin in Quebec continues to make good progress on the pair he’s building. His sailing buddy Frank, for whom he’s building the second boat, has dismantled their DN trailer and is rebuilding it to fit the new boats as well as the DN’s. In Maine, Bart Chapin got a great start on the fuselage before leaving for his annual summer cruise. Bill Bernhard in New York and Carl Jelleme on Nantucket are done building theirs and are now just waiting for ice. Well, maybe they’re doing other interesting things with their summer but surely in the back of their mind while messing about on the water with summer boats a small voice is wondering about all this soft water and mightn’t it be nice if it were a bit harder…?
Jeff Knapp’s #14 Whizz-Bang. Jeff’s planning to build a bright finished strip plank mast, and by the looks of the workmanship here, he’ll be varnishing the fuselage, too.

One of Denis’s pair getting fit for the springboard. He’s nicely mirrored the elliptical shape of the nose block in the tip of the springboard. He reports that the bottoms are on, steering installed, with the sides ready to go. We’re only assuming that there is a stern back there…

Bart made a very strong strong-back for his set-up, and managed to get a lovely sweep down at the stern. It looks like he’s going for a very fine point back there.

He has decades of interesting lumber in his shop, saved from all kinds of projects over the years. We all have those special boards that get saved, moved from here to there, too nice to actually use because then we wouldn’t be able to imbue them with possibilities. But Bart’s tough. He’s gone to the heart of the pile, picked out the best stuff, and is milling mercilessly. What better use for a special piece of wood then in an iceboat? The quantity isn’t much, the quality is important, and then that wood becomes a part of one of your most fabulous passions. It grants you flight; a weightless peel off at the windward mark. It whisks you to remote coves deep in the North Woods and by some miracle of its strength brings you home. I do love those special boards, but a life as an iceboat sure beats gathering dust on some lumber rack.

The guy that started it all when he was searching for a small skeeter design and discovered the Whizz, Doug Sharp, had a stroke this past spring. I’m sure I speak for the entire iceboating community we all wish him the best of recoveries. We look forward to seeing you on the ice, Doug!

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