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NZL149 - David's Refit Diary
Many thanks and welcome to new Addict David Haylock of Upper Riccarton in Christchurch. Proud new owner of NZL149. David is in the process of returning Fishy Tales to her former glory and will be sending through updates that will be posted here.
Anyone with any help or advice to offer can email David by clicking

First Update [14-09-2010]


Thought I might try and send through a bit of a diary of the work I do on KZ149 to get her back on the water in good shape. I would like to send a detailed picture diary as well, but instead of buying a digital camera I bought a A-class cat......... Oops. So the photos will be from when i borrow other peoples cameras and therefore may not show things progress very well.

I'm new to A-class and in fact new to cats in general, so when John first delivered the boat to my place the first thing I did was put the rig up and just have a look and get an idea of what I was in for. Then once I measured my garage and found the hulls would just fit, it was time to pull them apart to make them a little easier to work on and get them out of the weather.

Then off to bunnings for me and get a paint scrapper and the cheapest heat gun you can get your hands on. Thanks to the earthquake Uni has been closed and I've been a little limited in what I can do, so as a result (and 8 or so hours) the hulls are now virtually paint-less and ready for a good sand, bog and fair.

The appendages have also been sanded and heavily bogged, but I think I'll leave the fairing of them for a while, especially as I'm thinking some new boards would be a good idea.

Oh and a quick idea of my plans, strip everything back, strengthen and stiffen where deemed necessary (a bit of carbon will be used here), repaint, rename and refit where I can afford.

How can a student afford all this you may ask. Answer, I can't, but a graduate engineer can. So I'll do all the cheap work now.

So the photos, none yet of the stripped hulls, I'll get there.


The rig, what to do with a 30ft rig



The old hulls aren't in bad shape, bit of work to be done though



The ally struts, new carbon ones perhaps, something for me to think about and I swear the boat fits in there somewhere amongst all my other crap



and the boards + bog



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Second Update [01-10-2010]

She's all stripped back now. Have done a bit of sanding and a little fairing. Going to replace the fibre glass along the bottom join of the hulls as it was a bit old. Got a couple of holes to fix as well. All very structurally sound though, which is nice. Got some carbon on the way to reinforce the deck and help stiffen that general area. Does anyone know of other places to get 200gm2 carbon uni, other than nuplex, high mod and NZ fibreglass? Nuplex is all out and nobody else has what I'm looking for.

Anyway, cheers Brent Harsant for the email. I'm looking at building my own boards, in similar fashion as I build my surfboards, are there any objections within the glass towards asymmetrical vertical boards? The old ones look a bit inefficient. Have a paint guy coming round tomorrow morning to sort me out hopefully. Brent made a good point that 1 pot is more flexible than two pot, so will definitely keep that in mind.

Did a weigh in the other day as well, hulls are around 20KG, don't think that's to bad for an old wooden boat.

 Have some pics, that's the main reason for this update.


An idea of the size for family and friends. She looks good



And from the side. Hulls are very fair already which is nice



Last to get scrapped off, all the fibre glass



They fit. Just. I'm trying not to use the laser as a work bench



Making sure the tramp is in decent condition



I think some birds lived in here at some point



That's some old glass, older than me in fact. Condition inside is pretty good



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Third Update [25-02-2011]

Hi there,

It's been a while since my last update on KZ 149. The other day we had a devastating earthquake as I'm sure you all know and I send my condolences to anyone who has been affected. It was a very scary event and I'm very great-full that my work building survived.

 About the boat. We moved house/garage in jan so things slowed down because of that and I'm still slowly organising my garage so that I can do some work on her.

 She's heading into the finishing stages though. I have all my carbon for the reinforcements, all the paint (thanks to international yacht paint, great deal from altex coatings). I've replaced the fibreglass along the bottom seam of the hulls and faired that off (placed 1 layer of 75mm 200gsm plain weave tape). So that looks good. Been trying to fair off all the big dips and hollows and such in the hull, not sure how fair I will be  able to get the hull but I'll concentrate on the wetted areas and the upper areas of the hull I wont do so much work on.

 Over Christmas time I sealed the hulls with thinned epoxy. I've gone pretty light on this process as I didn't really buy enough to do lots of coats and I'm guess that I wont need to much as the boat doesn't spend all its time in the water. She looked good after sealing.

Time frame to get launched has been extended. Looking for next season, so a winters worth of work.

 Hope that's a decent update, got a few other things on my mind at mo, but felt like it had been a long time since my last update so thought I should get onto it.


David Haylock













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Fourth Update [11-03-2011]

Here's a photo update of what I've been up to in the last week or so. Its been quite productive as you can see.

I'll give another good update in a while.












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Fifth Update [28-05-2011]

Update time again. Things have been going along pretty steadily lately. I've started making a few of the bits that go on the boat instead of just working on the hulls though. Its meant I get to finish things instead of just slaving away on the hulls.

One of the hulls now has all the carbon on and is getting ready for painting and finishing, the other hull still needs some sanding before the final carbon goes on. I set the hulls up with all the gear sitting on them to get an idea of how the boats going to look, I start to forget that I'm working on a big boat when I just have a couple of hulls sitting around. It always amazes me how big the boat actually is.

I made a new mast rotation thing (there must be a proper name for these things, but I don't know it) The old one was looking worse for wear, it was stainless but had a piece of steel welded to it, so wasn't in great shape. So I grabbed a piece of 10mm balsa and shaped a new one then coated with the black stuff. I think it'll be strong enough.

And looking at whatever it is that hold the stays on the boat (I'm not doing well with names here), they were looking a bit old and messy, so I now have a nice new set of carbon ones. About 14 layers of carbon in the laminate with different angles to transfer the stress round the holes.

I've also started the process of making some foils. For this I'm using a robot milling machine that my flatmate is working on at uni. So we're trying to sort out the machining code at the moment because we don't have a computer program to convert a model into code, so the code is coming from numbers on a excel sheet. The foil I'm using is a NACA25008 (which is a 5 series foil) This is an asymmetric foil that I'm hoping will help to lift a hull out of the water earlier and decrease leeway when sailing upwind. So for the mold I'm machining out a couple of slabs of MDF to create a female mold.

I think that's about it for now.


Mast rotation thing out of the vacuum bag



Cleaning it up with craft knife an hacksaw. The old one is in the background.



Finished, next to the old one. I've set the new one up with control for over mast rotation as well for straight down wind.



Old next to new



And not only do they look cool, but they weigh about 10 grams, bout a sixth of the old ones.



Testing the machining for the foil molds. Approximate foil shape in the background. Looks a little distorted in this picture.



If only that was it finished and ready to go.



The final carbon on the starboard hull. Continuous 200gsm uni all the way down the keel of the boat. All the carbon on the boat is 200gsm which is pretty light, but its just there for a little added stiffness and a bit of pimping.


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Sixth Update [18-09-2011]

Been meaning to send through an update for a while now. The boat is progressing well. Into the finishing stages.

A few quick points:

Now have a trailer, building a box for it and will have to add rails for the boat to sit on.

All the carbon reinforcing on the boat is finished, I had to fully vacuum each hull 3 times, I'm pleased that's over.

New centre boards are progressing slowly (no molds yet) each time we've tried the robot hasn't quite done what we want, so its taking a bit longer than I'd like.

First coats of paint are on and now I'm going to bog up the last "blemishes" and fair them out before moving to undercoat then topcoat.

Am testing the clear coat for the carbon at the moment.

Have spliced loops for the soft joins from the stays to the boat.

Drilled the holes for the beams.

Assemble the boat, put the rig on and sail up. That was fun.

So currently my life consists of work, paint, sand repeat. The warmer weather is really helping with the speed of things and I'm definitely looking forward to having it out of my garage and on the water.


Box for the trailer, made from some nice cheap ply.




First coat of paint. International Yacht Primer.



Rudders getting finished



Only just fits in the garage together. But can't get it out like this.



Rig on.



Was late once I got it all sorted. Had a big smile on my face though.



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Seventh Update [05-01-2012]

Hello again,

Its been a really busy last few months since my last update. So a quick run down before I get into the whole story. At the last update I was at the primer coats and putting the rig up to check everything/dream of sailing. Since then I finished all the painting, moved house again (third garage the boat had been in), had trailer issues, fixed trailer issues for a warrant the day before I went away with the boat, sailed the boat, broke boat, fixed boat, sailed boat, broke boat, yet to fix boat.

So painting. I think I left the final fairing a little late. I had put two coats of primer on to try and take out all the sander marks and such then applied epoxy mixed with fairing compound. I did this because I figured it would be easier to see the areas that needed it after painting, which it was, but in sanding the fairer back I took off a fair amount of paint. I ended up putting 4 (I think) coats of primer on. These were pretty light and after each two coats I would sand them down to fair. I think what I should've done was use a high build primer (that would've made it a lot quicker).

After the priming I put on two consecutive coats of undercoat and then sanded back to fair (you could see the odd spot of the grey primer after sanding but no longer any wood). I used a brush to tip off the paint after rolling to try and get a fairer surface, and this worked quite well at this stage, I also tried brushing one coat of undercoat on the rudders and that worked terribly ( ended up with far too much paint on).

Then moved onto top coats after sanding with 220 grit I think. I put one top coat on and sanded back, this was a bad idea, top coats don't sand well, used a lot of sander paper and took a lot of time. After this stuff up I applied two consecutive coats of top coat to finish, each coat was tipped with a fine brush.

While all the paint was going on, I was trying to fair the carbon into the hull and itself (this wasn't much fun either). After sanding each of the undercoats and top coats, I would apply coats of marine varnish. I first applied 2 coats, then two coats, then a final after the final top coat. Each time I would over lap the varnish over the painted surface and the paint over the varnished surface to get a good seal. The main problem I ran into here was using a satin varnish. After 4 sanded coats, there are areas where the carbon looks quite grey (the low spots) and really black (the high spots). I used the satin because I didn't want a really shiny (blinding) finish. In fact I should've used gloss coats for the 4 fairing coats and the satin for the final, but oh well. By the end you couldn't tell the difference in surface when you ran your hand from paint to carbon, although I have left the edge from the final coat of varnish on, so you feel a slight sharp edge now, but I figured it's not worth trying to sand off as the carbon itself isn't completely fair due to the weave and my struggling to get consistent vacuum.

So that's the hulls pretty much finished.

While I was working on finishing the hulls, I also got my molds made for my new boards just in time before my mate left UNI and no longer had access to the robot. I haven't done anything with these molds as yet as ran out of time, but they look pretty good, so maybe this coming winter project.

I built a couple of small trolleys by laying foam over the hull at the widest point and sticking it there. Then laying fibre glass over top of the foam. This worked really well. Then mounted plywood bases to them and small inflatable wheels off trademe to the bottom. And after breaking my aluminium axles on my first outing (one of the things I broke) they now have steel axles that I hope don't rust too quickly.

My chain plates were fun to finish making and did look really good on the boat (note the did). They're shown in previous posts made from solid carbon plate. I was always a little worried about their strength, but thought I had tested them enough (by putting the mainsheet block to them and pulling as hard as I could). I also sliced 4mm dyneema in a loop and feed them through the whole because I figured a shackle would break them pretty quick. One of the chain plates however failed on my first sail. Luckily after sailing for an hour and when I was standing in the water holding the shroud, so the mast didn't quite come down, but it was a very panicked time. Since then the old stainless ones have been on. Which luckily smartness dumb luck I had drilled the holes in the carbon ones by using the stainless ones as a guide, so the stainless ones fitted right into the screw holes used for the carbon ones.

My trailer. I'm really happy with how this has turned out. I load the boat on back wards and can do it by myself pretty easily. The boat sits pretty high due to the wheels being below the hulls, but this doesn't seem to be a problem and the boat tows really well (and I haven't hit anyone else with the mast sticking out while going round corners, just the odd tree). The trailer however did give me warrant issue with me needing to replace a wheel bearing and fit forward facing lights at the last minute right before new years, good times.

The first and second sail, 1st and 2nd of Jan 2012.

The first sail was amazing. Had 0 - 10 knots of breeze on Akaroa harbour and really nice hot day. When I got to the breeze I felt the boat power up really quickly, the acceleration was amazing. Got out on the trap and was just flying the hull above the water at times. Went flying past everyone else out there, was beautiful. Then headed back to the dock to pick up my partner for a quick first sail for her and that's when shit hit the fan with the chain plates and the broken axle on the trolley that I discovered as I went to take the boat from the water. So it was back home to Chch that night (not planned) to fix the issues and back and ready to sail the next day. Replace the chain plates, replaced the axles, lowered the trap to the correct height and replace the mast spanner with the old one because really dumb moment, I forgot to release it before I lowered the mast, so the carbon one I built cracked in half.

Second sail. The next day a southerly had gone through and was still blowing about 25 in the middle of the harbour but there was quite a nice region in close that was about 10 knots with the odd bigger gust coming through. So rigged the boat up slowly, not wanting to rush and waited as long as I could for the wind to die, it didn't. Launched, everything fine. Got into a gust near the line of breeze, tried to tack back, didn't know how to tack a big cat in strong wind (didn't back it back properly) and didn't want to gybe as the wind was already to strong. So made the call to sail across the harbour to a bay on the other side for shelter to tack. That was like survival mode, didn't want to trap as I didn't want to fall off, sat with my bum against the traveller and held on. It was a pretty quick reach but the waves hammered me and the boat a bit. About half way across I heard a crack and though it was likely the centre board, but was too busy to do anything about it. Sure enough, when I made it to the other side, I pull up the board, but there isn't one, sheared straight off under load (I don't think I hit anything, boat didn't jerk or anything). So I tacked and swapped the boards over so the board was on the leeward side and sailed back across the harbour. Take boat out of water, think that feels a bit heavy. Open up the hull and find a bucket full of water and later find the centreboard case was punctured when the board broke.

So that's about it. Will get the case fixed, have some carbon/glass/carbon plate here that I will use to cover the hole and fixe the cracks with epoxy glue. Going to borrow some old paper tiger boards before I get round to making my new ones. Will also repair my mast spanner and will look into making new chain plates. But for now it's time to relax then head to Waikawa to sail big boats for the weekend.

I used Nuplex resin; International single pot paints (thanks to Azko Nobel for the good price); carbon from FGI (nuplex), NZ Fibreglass, and deano41 on trademe, whom I can't think what company it is, also got all my vacuum consumables from nuplex. All these companies have been great to deal with and provide good pricing as far as I can tell.

Also like to thank my friends for the odd helping hand, especially during the move and with some of the carbon laying. And my partner Abby for being really supportive.

Also thanks to all the people who have contacted me with advice and support, it's been helpful.

And Phil from Lyttleton sails for doing a quick fix up on my tramp so that I could sail, will get the beer to you soon.

I figure I've spent about $2000 on the boat ($2500 max). The expenses that I didn't really count on was all the consumables. They were a constant drain on my wallet, especially masking tap (I used a lot doing the two tone thing with the carbon and paint), sanding paper and rollers for painting. Also the number of fasteners I bought, I should've been more organised and got these cheaper rather than going to burnsco and bunnings. Those places have far too much of my money. 

And now for the pictures:

A cat in a cat, Panda loves crawling inside the hulls, I figure she'd be good for trimming the hulls.



Robot doing its work on the foil molds



One of the hulls reaching its final painting stages



The rudders and centre boards. At this stage I decided that I wouldn't have enough time to make new centre boards, so I started work quickly on fixing the old ones, maybe a reason why one broke and the other is cracked.



The foam and fibreglass for the trolleys.



Bolted together, properly this time.



First time on the trailer and testing everything.



First time fully rigging the boat on the 29th of December and working out everything that I need to buy and making sure everything else works.



More rigging photos







The boards were topped with carbon and a loop of black rope and sat flush with the deck so that nothing poked up, looked really nice too.



The first sail on the 1st of Jan



And more sailing, you really have to sit a long way forward to get the bows in in light winds, should've left panda in the hull





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