Destined for the Paddock.

There are two additions:  Pink Gum (E. fasciculosa), and South Australian Blue Gum (E. leucoxylon).

The collection of  dune-care seedlings  includes Ficinia nodosa (previously Isolepsis), which has a charming common name: Knobby Club Rush – and the shrub of intoxicating scent, Olearia axillaris, otherwise known as Coastal Daisy Bush, or Wild Rosemary.

These  little  plants have acquired the potency of totems: companions of our youthful days – the long days of summer – as we explored the  adjacent dunes, or set sail for distant lands just across the Bay….

Watertight 5

An under-coat unites the patchwork…or, if you prefer, covers it up.

Shearwater looks to be as solid and stable – and heavy  – as ever.

Next, and possibly most difficult task of all: moving our little ship out of the Boatshed. The remaining work will be completed in the open, as autumn weather allows.

Transom 2


As far as any small boat can be watertight, Shearwater is now watertight….

Next task:  repairing our new mainsail, which has been damaged by an enterprising rat. He, or she, gnawed three almost perfectly circular holes in the lower fabric. I suppose that is one interpretation of the nautical phrase – shortening sail.

Our last voyage in the Bay was long ago (around 2007).  Almost time to get out the beach rollers, and return Shearwater to her native element.


I have already glued four Lute Ribs edge to edge, and to their shared point of contact: the neck-block (temporarily attached to the mould).

Here I am fitting Lute Rib number three on the treble side.

Sam has photographed the various tasks as they arise: shaping the rough-cut Rib on a Bending Iron (so that it lies snugly against all points of contact along the curves of the mould); removing excess wood by means of an upside-down Block Plane  – and fine-tuning both edges on the absolutely flat surface of the Emery board.

It is an absorbing and frustrating and satisfying process….


Transom 1

As you can see below, Shearwater has two areas of dry rot along the top edge of the transom.

I admit to purchasing the Hishika Azebiki Saw primarily for its looks – but already it a has become a necessary luxury, as I knew it would.

These excellent saws with their curved blade can begin a cut in the middle of a flat surface….hence their traditional use in Japan for inlay work, butterfly joints, and (for all I know ) – boat-building.