Wednesday, February 26, 2014

McCutcheon Shdi - K839

Mike Liggett from the UK sends along pics of the McCutcheon built Shelley design that he has become proud owner of. Details from Mike:
"My name is Mike Liggett and I live near Cambridge in UK. Most of my life has revolved around the Merlin -Rocket and I have still have a couple of vintage boats from the 40's and 50's which I race at vintage events. However I have recently acquired Int 14 K.839 "Trumper" a Shelley "Shdi" design built by Mc.Cutcheon in 1964. She has been modified to take crew on trapeze but no other mods. I have been working on her and she has yet to take to the water under my hand!"
I realize this blog is supposed to be about North America 14's and I remember a Shdi making it to this side of the pond and being based out of Severn Sailling Association in Annapolis in the late 1960's and early 1970's. In talking with fellow ex-14'er Tom Price, he recalls it was painted green. I had no idea where this U.S. Shelley 14 ended up until Tom took the bull by the horns and tracked down Bruce Empey, who owned the North American SHDI. Bruce's story:

"Yes, I owned a 14 at one point. I believe the actual design was a Shidu or Shidu II. Maybe she was a Shidi and Stoney named her Shdu. She was home built by Stoney Duffy over in Queenstown / Centerville area. Stoney still races Comets, so he can be found if more history wants to be known.

"I bought her for $5 at the SSA opening day lost and found thing in probably about 1974 or 1975...maybe a year or two earlier. She was probably overpriced by then. I had great plans to square off the two gaping holes, chisel back an inch around of each layer of plywood, and piece her back together. Notice the adverb "had" in that sentence. Instead, I went to Florida for the SORC, skippered a boat in the Caribbean for a winter, and sailed over to Europe and back and poor old Shdu didn't get rebuilt. At some point in the 1970's, we dug a 14' long boat-shaped trench in the backyard -- out just beyond the septic tank - and planted her in there with about 10" freeboard; then backfilled with the trench dirt and some peatmoss and for several years my mom had a unique planter for her impatiens. Eventually the plywood weathered, glue failed, and as I recall whatever couldn't be pulled up and put in the neighborhood dumpster was rototilled into the yard and grass planted. I do know that about 15 years ago when I dug some French Drain ditches out there, I found a couple of bits of Mahogany plywood about the size of a silver dollar and painted green on one side. Ashes to ashes.

"I forget how much rocker she had or how rounded she might have been, but with her chines and firmer back end, I always thought she was ahead of her time and wondered how she would have stood up to a trapeze or two.

"Ciao, Bruce

Shelley was one of those underrated dinghy designers who was quite ahead of his time with U'd forward sections and flatter rocker hull shapes.

The pictures show a typical layout of a 1960's seat tank International 14. The bridge reinforcement on top of the bow tank is something I have not seen before

The view from the bow:

The stern with the trademark Shelly concave topsides at the transom.

See John Shelley's comments on the SHDI over at this post.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Harvey Brothers at Speed

One of my favorite Classic International 14 photos was taken by Ellie Martin of the Canadian's Doug and Al Harvey at full chat under spinnaker. I think this was from the 1980 U.S. Nationals in Annapolis Maryland. The hull is a McCutcheon KV.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

1925 L.S.S.A 14-Footer "Hyking" Out

Picture from the Toronto Star newspaper, circa 1925, of two National Yacht Club sailors hiking the cat-rigged L.S.S.A 14-footers that were the precursor to the International 14 and a extremely popular racing fleet in Toronto Bay.