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Apr 01, 2018, 08:51 PM
Mad on modding
robcrusoe's Avatar
There is a non-bowsie way to fit that lower stay. you simply disconnect the top keeper cord at the mast tops and then apply just enough forward pressure on the foremast tip to allow the hook to engage the bow ring. I prefer the bowsie but it is not essential.

Gary may well take all his Irene upper works (non-technical term for standing, running rigging and sails ) off between sailings.
Wikipedia provides this concise explanation on rigging

Rigging comprises the system of ropes, cables and chains, which support a sailing ship or sail boat's masts—standing rigging, including shrouds and stays—and which adjust the position of the vessel's sails and spars to which they are attached—the running rigging, including halyards, braces, sheets and vangs.[1]

Gary will always give meaningful and concise explanations on anything like this.
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Apr 02, 2018, 12:54 AM
Cheers and beers!🍻

It's funny, I was just now telling my wife about you and your curdled paint episode....

Ha! This is so great! Right after the paint curdled, I instantly remembered our 26’contessa which I completely stripped and repainted. Faired the whole hull with epoxy filler. NEVER set! Miss match from the factory! Had to completely scrape off all that goo, and there is one heck of a lot of hull on a Contessa!
That was in the late 80s and that goo is still oozing along in some forgotten landfill!
So, yes...All I could do was chuckle about the paint and the minuscule amount compared to our Contessa!
Apr 02, 2018, 10:24 AM
Registered User
Zbip57's Avatar
One more silly question. I'm still a newbie with all these nautical terms.

What's the proper pronunciation for "bowsie"?

Is the "bow" pronounced as in bow and arrow, or as in bow and stern?
Apr 02, 2018, 10:35 AM
Registered User
The later ...
Bowsie ... sounding like “Bow” ...
like Bow n Stern
Apr 02, 2018, 12:27 PM
sailtails - YouTube
Gary Webb's Avatar

Bowsprit Rigging

Originally Posted by Zbip57
So definitely don't glue it down. Otherwise it ain't ever going to be removable.

To remove the bowsprit just slacken the bowsie on the lower stay and then pull out the pin from the samson posts. or merely tilt it back around the hinge pin?

You pretty much have to use a bowsie in order to do that. If the lower stay has an eye-loop for the tip of the bowsprit and is then solidly looped through the anchoring hook, doubled back and seized, how would one ever be able to slack off the tension enough to remove the bowsprit?

I see on Gary's original Irene the pelican hooks on the mast shrouds allow the masts to be easily removed, but on his "set up & sailing" video it looks like he leaves the bowsprit installed when storing the boat.
Hi All,
Will explain how I deal with my own schooner bowsprits. Zbip is right that I leave the bowsprit in place on Irene. I can do this because I have a place to put her (alongside my bunk) inside Sparkle. I stow Tramp (my gaff version "Irene") aboard in another spot which requires the bowsprit be removed. The bowsprits and their rigging are made same way both boats. The bowsprit lays loosely between the Samsom posts and in the cut out in the bulwarks and is NOT glued to anything. Note that there is gap (about 1/4") between bowsprit and deck. The Bobstay and "sidestays" (called Whisker stays or Bowsprit shrouds) are made of twisted 3 strand tarred nylon twine. I made an eye splice in each which slips over the round end of the bowsprit and the other end of each is secured to its' place on the hull. To install the bowsprit, I lay it between the samson posts (relaxed, with pin removed) and slip the rigging eyes onto the end of the sprit. Then I push the sprit forward with my thumb, tight against the rigging, and slip the pin in place through the samson posts. The jib, and jib boom are mounted on, and stay with the bowsprit.
Sooo - that's what I've been doing, works for me, though I'm sure folks will devise other ways.
Another topic, Zbip asked about making the halyards fast to the pin rails - I do this exactly same way I do on full size boats, simple, but not easy to explain with words - will try to shoot video - Stand by Y'all -
Cheers, Gary
Apr 02, 2018, 02:27 PM
Registered User
Zbip57's Avatar
Originally Posted by Gary Webb
Will explain how I deal with my own schooner bowsprits...
Brilliant! That sounds simple enough.

I haven't made any of the masts or rigging stuff yet. Just trying to puzzle stuff out beforehand so I don't end up making any (or too many) regrettable mistakes.

Originally Posted by Gary Webb
... making the halyards fast to the pin rails - I do this exactly same way I do on full size boats, simple, but not easy to explain with words - will try to shoot video - Stand by Y'all -
Cheers, Gary
Looking forward to that!
Apr 03, 2018, 12:25 AM
Flying Models Plans

Thanks for the clarification, that helps a lot.

Apr 03, 2018, 09:48 PM
Registered User
Zbip57's Avatar
More progress. The inside of the hull is now painted white and the winch assembly is fitted. Have to string the winch line next.

Here are the fin pins and wire keepers installed in the fin box.

I will trim the ends of those wire keepers a bit shorter. Wouldn't want them catching in the winch line or sheets.
Apr 03, 2018, 10:04 PM
Registered User
Zbip57's Avatar
First photo is the front sheeve.

Then the layout I'll use for the sheets. Red-Mainsail, Blue-Foresail, Yellow-Jib. The sheets pass up through the deck via copper tube fairleads.

I had at first intended to run the mainsail sheet (Red) through the existing hole in the rear bulkhead station. I glued a small block to the bulkhead to hold a brass screw eye guiding the sheet smoothly through that hole.

But that was a mistake.

With the deck in place I would no longer be able to see that screw eye. Trying to blindly feed the mainsheet through that unseen screw eye would have been a challenge. So I drilled a second hole through the bulkhead for the main-sheet to instead pass through on the inboard side of the already glued in place wooden block. That works much better.
Apr 04, 2018, 09:20 PM
Registered User
Zbip57's Avatar
Lots more fun. I started making some blocks for the rigging.

I didn't have any 5/16 square stuff handy, but Home Depot sells 9/32" x 11/16" x 8' dressed pine trim strips that are handy for a bunch of different applications.

Photo-01: I measured up a dozen blocks, plus a couple of double-blocks, and drilled 1/16" holes.

Photo-02: Holes enlarged to 1/8".

Photo-03: Ripped up the middle.

Photo-04: Sliced off two sticks of six.

Photo-05: Trimmed the two double-blocks.

Photo-06: Sliced and diced.

Photo-07: Using my favourite 1/8" Dremel tip, and vice-grips. I wasn't brave enough, or stupid enough, to try to hold that small piece in my fingers.

Photo-08: Chewed a nice slot, both sides, using the Dremel tool.

Photo-09: You can see the slot on both sides.

Photo-10: All dozen are slotted, as well as the two double-blocks.

Photo-11: Next drilled holes for the wire loops.

Photo-12: A variety of configurations, sanded and rounded, and ready for stain and varnish.

Photo-13: The double-blocks will go with the throat halyard on the gaffs, as well as a couple of those double-ended blocks. I'm not really sure yet how many of the single blocks I'll need in total. But it can't hurt to make a few extras now for spares.

Sanding is my least favourite part. Those things are small. I'm tired of sanding my fingertips.
Apr 05, 2018, 03:12 AM
Mad on modding
robcrusoe's Avatar
Great technique Zip, I'll do it that way next time. I think there were 13 standard blocks. Only failures (2) where when the wire loop at the top came away. Surprised me that they ALL didn't do likewise, but I used Gary's test on each. Both were the block fastened to the deck that the sheet goes through.
Apr 05, 2018, 03:04 PM
sailtails - YouTube
Gary Webb's Avatar

Blocks & Function

Nice work on the Blocks Zbip ! -
Appears you made quick work of the project. Yes, the sanding is tedious, and fingers might suffer, but great satisfaction comes with the finished set of Blocks.
It is worth noting that if the schooner's sails are hoisted and remain hoisted, only 3 Blocks (those on the 3 booms) actually cater to running lines while sailing. The others serve as "Dummies". So, test them all, and pick 3 of the best smooth running blocks for the booms.
Cheers, Gary
Apr 05, 2018, 04:01 PM
sailtails - YouTube
Gary Webb's Avatar

Solution for plans Printing

Hi Gang,
I am happy to let everybody know that there is now a way you can purchase Bearospace Schooner Irene and Sloop Emma plans printed on paper which can arrive at your mailbox.
The plans previously were available only as PDFs, leaving you to find a local printing service to put them on paper. This was sometimes a challenge for folks who lived in a rural area, or did not find a competent print service nearby.

Bearospace Industries is pleased to have partnered with FLYING MODELS.
They can take your order for Schooner Irene and Sloop Emma plans and mail you the plans on Paper.

Digital plans (PDFs) are available as always at

Thanks to the entire fleet of Schooner Irene and Sloop Emma builders for support and encouragement. - Gary
Apr 06, 2018, 11:31 AM
Registered User
Zbip57's Avatar
The blocks, and cleats, are all stained and ready for varnishing.
Apr 08, 2018, 08:32 PM
Registered User
Zbip57's Avatar
My wife dragged me (despite my obvious reluctance) to a Vintage & Antique Market today so we could waste nearly four hours walking back and forth from one booth to the next browsing the stunningly boring collections of old teacups, old lamps, doorknobs, etc. Yawn.

Then I thought to myself, ya know, amongst all these various piles of assorted junk, maybe someone has a small brass bell I could use for a ship's bell on my model boat. It helped pass the time having an actual target to look for...

Four hours later, and many too large bells later, I still hadn't found anything remotely suitable. Nor had my wife. Astoundingly, despite the temptation to buy something, anything at all, she hadn't found a single thing worth spending money on.

I, however, came away with something far cooler than a tiny model ship's bell. I bought an old sextant!!

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