Home Projects Services Yacht Sales Stockroom History Yawls Contact

The Concordian

Issue #10, Fall 1990


Yachting season is just about wrapped up on both coasts for the year. The rains have certainly struck the Northwest with a frenzy recently. Now is the time to be concentrating on "in door" projects. How about we examine the investment portfolio? Consulting an issue of Forbes magazine we find a "buy" recommendation for... can it be? Wood boats? The story by Edward H, Baker is titled "And All the Boards Did Shrink," Excerpts: "For some sailors, only a wooden boat, new or used, will do. Neither fiberglass nor aluminum can match the feel, the history or the indisputable beauty of wood. While the making of wooden yachts almost ceased when fiberglass made its big splash in the late 1950s and early 1960s, many wooden-hulled sailing vessels are still stubbornly afloat. Some yachts that were built before the turn of the century still sail regularly. And there remains a handful of yards on New England and the Pacific Northwest where you can commission a customized luxury yacht. While the cost and trouble of maintaining wooden hulls are legendary, many magnificent old yachts can be purchased for only a fraction of what a new boat runs. And many old craft have fascinating histories and provenances.

"Consider the Concordia 39, a class of yawls first built in 1938 by the Concordia Co, in South Dartmouth, Mass. Between 1938 and 1966, 103 were built, the last 99 by the Abeking & Rasmussen yard in Lemwerder, West Germany between 1950 and 1966. The durability of these boats is remarkable, says Gerald Smith, general manager of the current Concordia yard, which still builds and maintains wooden yachts. "Every single one is still alive in one form or another." In September of 1988 the class celebrated its 50th anniversary with a regatta at South Dartmouth, at which there were 65 Concordias on display. The popularity of these yachts stems from their simplicity and practicality combined with their speed and beauty. BABE, a Concordia 39 owned by Arnie Gay, won the Newport - Bermuda race as recently as 1978; the boat was then 23 years old. George Henschel, an architect who practices in Bedford, NY, also owns a Concordia 39, called WHISPER. Built in 1957, she was acquired by Henschel in 1986 for only $30,000. Today, she would fetch perhaps $60,000. Maintenance is only about $2,000 to $3,000 a year, largely because Henschel, like many a wooden-boat owner, likes to do much of the work himself. Still, comparable Concordias have sold for as much as $80,000 and one recently sold for a high of $95,000. That estimate is confirmed by broker Ed Koskella, owner of Nantucket Yachts: "All Concordias have seen at least a 50% increase in value in the last five years." (Excerpted by permission of Forbes magazine, July 23, 1990. Copyright Forbes Inc., 1990.) Just when you thought the old girl was costing too much, now it's time to up the insurance coverage. Certainly a Concordia will be one of the best investments many of us will ever make.


Joe & Sue Callaghan, Cheshire, CT

In a weak moment in April of 1986 we sold SUZANNE #26, our first Concordia, We'd owned her for six years but at the time I was pursuing a new business endeavor, our daughter was in college, and the rehabilitation and maintenance bills showed no signs of letting up. It was the sensible thing to do. (Besides, Bob and Linda Jones were inconsiderate enough to offer us our asking price so there was no way to retreat gracefully. ) Boatless for the first time in years I got my pilot's license in an attempt to fill the void. No soap. We bought a lovely little Herreshoff "Alerion" and I concentrated on daysailing, racing in the local wooden boat races and the occasional overnighter. We kept her for two years and while "Elizabeth" was a wonderful boat she was definitely a daysailer. Sue couldn't really get into it and we both missed cruising so after much agonizing we decided to put her on the market and go back to a cruising boat. We made ourselves two promises:

  1. If we're going to get back into a larger boat let's use our heads and buy fiberglass.
  2. Whatever we do let's not fall into the trap of buying a new boat before we sell the one we've got.
The search commenced. We looked for months, chasing down ads, driving to boat yards from New York to Mt. Desert Island, always hoping the next boat would be the one. Sue kept comparing every boat to a Concordia. I kept reminding her of all those bills, and we kept looking. I thought I was trying to convince her that buying another Concordia just wouldn't be sensible. I was really trying to convice myself. One Sunday morning we saw an ad in the New York Times and that afternoon drove to Long Island to take a peek at ORIOLE #84. We spent a couple of hours aboard her (and enjoying the hospitality of Peter Fleishman and his delightful family) and while she wasn't the one, she gave us the chance to fill our senses with "Concordia" again. On the drive home I went through my repertoire of arguments against Concordia ownership but now they were beginning to sound hollow even to me. On Monday I called Ged Delaney at Concordia Yacht Sales and asked how things were in the Concordia market. He told me there was a pretty nice one for sail but she was out in Santa Barbara. That's not exactly around the corner from Cheshire so I didn't think a lot about it. A few weeks later, though an opportunity arose to visit the West Coast on business. Now I started to think a lot about it. I flew to Santa Barbara on Saturday instead of L.A. on Sunday "just to look." I had an 11:00 appointment to see the boat but showed up at 9:30, By 9:45 it was over, DAME of SARK, was more than "pretty nice." She was beautiful. Stewart and Louisa MacDougall purchased her in the early 80s and moved her to the West Coast. They brought her back to like new condition and she was fastidiously maintained under Steve Yochem's ownership. She was ours on Tuesday. Remember those two promises we made when we started our search for a new boat? We now owned two wooden boats, one on each coast! We had a chance to spend a long February weekend in Santa Barbara and do a little sailing then packed DAME of SARK onto a truck in early March and she arrived back in Padanaram on the 20th. During a couple of months in Concordia's capable hands she received new standing rigging, lifelines, loran, 150% genoa and other assorted goodies. We sailed her back to Stonington, CT on Memorial Day weekend. She now hangs on a mooring at Dodson Boatyard, she's ours, and all's right with the world again. In the future I will not attempt to mix logic with wooden boat ownership and I'm sure I'll live longer as a result. We thought we had the Concordia with the most highway miles but I recently met John McCurdy and learned that CAKER #54, his Concordia 41, has also made the trek from the East Coast to Santa Barbara and back. We do think she may be the only bright 39. Does anyone know of another? How I met John is a story in itself. On my way to the boat one Saturday I saw a tag sale sign and stopped. Among other things I found a few back issues of The Yacht and the homeowner asked if I owned a boat. I said "Yes" and he asked what kind, "A Concordia yawl." I said and his mouth dropped open, his hand shot out and he said, "I don't believe it. So do I!" The coincidence was compounded by the fact that both boats had been brought back from Santa Barbara. There are a few differences between the two Concordias we've owned which are worthy of comment. SUZANNE had a white hull, teak decks a Grey 4-112 and a 7/8 rig. The "Dame" has a bright hull, canvas decks, a Westerbeke 4-108 and a masthead rig. Here's my opinion:
  1. White paint shows off a Concordia's lines better. The bright hull is more "showy" and elicits more compliments.
  2. Teak decks are a definite plus, both practically and cosmetically. We miss them.
  3. The masthead rig is an improvement. She's easier to sail (no runners), better balanced and has the edge beating and running. The 7/8 rig will reach a little faster and is prettier
  4. Both engines are well suited for the boat but it's nice to have no gasoline on board.
We just returned from a 3 week cruise to Maine (9/11) partly in company with WILD SWAN #25 and our first Concordia now MARY ANN #26 and looking better than ever. The "Dame" got a chance to show her stuff when hurricane Bertha skirted by and gave us a couple days of 8-10' seas and 30 knots. She took it in stride. She's given us no surprises. She's tight as a drum, everything works like a clock and we're ecstatic to be sailing a Concordia again. Our plans are to make her as original as possible and there a couple of things we'd like to find. If you have a line on a boom gallows, an anchor rode grate or a Concordia cabin heater we'd like to hear from you. Other plans: No name change as she's been DAME of SARK since christening. No paint. We're getting used to the bright hull, and to be honest, we love all those compliments. She'll be wooded top and bottom this winter and come spring she should look like a million bucks. (It'll cost a little less than that.) No sale. We made that mistake once before. 168 Nob Hill Rd. Cheshire, ST 06410, (203) 272-5043.


Dennis Gross, Olympia, WA

The rebuild project is coming along. Glad the hot summer is over as planks below waterline have separated about 1/32". Generally things look OK and no dry rot found. Cabin top and decks are completely stripped of all hardware and woodwork. Worked long and hard on the cabin sides. 5 coats of varnish so far and looking good. Cabin top is ready for new canvas. I plan to use the white lead method. The bright finished deck covering board that meets the shear plank was badly stained from screws leaching. I tried everything to figure our how to fix this but ended up making new ones. The cockpit is completely stripped of everything but the sole. This gave good access to the frames in the aft section of the boat. I found that most of the frames from midway in the cockpit all the way aft had small partial fractures so I sistered all of them. 8 to port and 7 to starboard. A boatbuilding friend showed me a great way to lift the hull shape for a jig to laminate a new frame: Cut a 1/8" piece of verneer that follows the shape of the hull where you want to sister. Tack this to the existing frame. Cut 10 to 20 small pointed pieces of roof flashing into 1/2" to 1" long strips then trim the end to a point. Tape these pieces of flashing about 3/4" to 1 1/2" apart along the veneer that is tacked to the frame. Be sure each point touches the hull. Remove the veneer with the flashing attached being careful not to disturb the flashing as it has the exact shape of the hull at that frame. Lay this piece of veneer on another piece of stock veneer and mark the ends of the points at the ends of the flashing. Connect the points to get the curve. Cut this out of the bandsaw and draw the shape of a piece of 2 X 12. Cut this out and you have a jig for making the frame. Screw the 2 X 12 to the floor and lay 1/4" oak laminates with glue on both sides across the opening of the curve, forcing into shape with clamps. This worked well and allowed me to do the framing singlehanded. So far 10 months have passed and 10 more hopefully will see a renewed SOVEREIGN. Any suggestions on bottom paint removal?


Jim McGuire, Noank, CT

Improvements continue: keel bolts. head restoration, ice box rebuilt, re-wiring, engine work, bottom wooded, and all those little glue jobs. My celler, attic, kitchen and bedroom continue to be my workshops for the winter months for glueing, painting, varnishing and the like. Many people just don't realize this is my "hobby." The mention about boat insurance from Bob Jones in issue #9 caught my eye since I had been through this scenario recently. I belong to the Noank Wooden Boat Association and we have concluded that Hagarty Classic Wooden Boat Insurance is the most reasonable with the least amount of restrictions. They even give discounts to groups if enough boats are involved. This might be a possibility for Concordias. Hagarty Marine Insurance, Box 87, Traverse City, MI 49685, 800-762-BOAT.


Jesse Bontecou, Clinton Corners, NY

On the subject of radars in issue #9, after a very near miss with a very large freighter off Cape Cod in 1988 in thick fog. I felt we needed a radar. I am not an electronics fan, but when one gets really scared, who knows what will happen. HARRIER has a Raytheon R-10 to starboard of the companionway - out of the way and the weather. The antenna lives in the hanging locker until needed. Then we lead the wire through the forward vent and hang the antenna on a bracket which attaches to the spinnaker pote track. It works well and keeps our classical look when not in use. After three seasons the glue down deck - sounds like TIDA #99 has the same - is holding up beautifully. No problems of any sort. I haven't raced HARRIER all summer - local cruising only - then hauled her on September 1 as we went to Yugoslavia with the CCA for 2 1/2 weeks of cruising. It was great. HARRIER now winters at Connecticut Marine in Jamestown, RI. She has never turned out in better shape.


Dick & Martha Keegan, Shrewsbury, MA

We stored SUMATRA in the water at Barden's Boat Yard in Marion last winter. December was tough in New England with Marion Harbor freezing solid for most of the month. The circulators did a good job of keeping the ice away from the hull though. Some of my varnish didn't stand up too well to the freeze-thaw cycles but all in all the boat did very well. Martha made new sail and hatch covers and a dodger out of white Sunbrella which were ready to go on in the spring. We painted the bottom and topsides in April. I don't know if anyone has tried the Starbrite Compound X bottom paint additive. After some lab work we found it is Tetracycline, same as the doctor gives you. Martha works in genetic engineering so we ordered Tetracycline Hydrochloride powder from a lab supply outfit and added about a tablespoon and a half to each gallon of Petit tin-free Unipoxy. It changes the color of the paint slightly but mixes right in with one of the electric drill mixers. After 10 months we've found absolutely no bottom growth. The amount of Starbrite for a gallon of bottom paint is $11. Perhaps your friendly (sailor) doctor can get you a prescription for Topical Tetracycline Powder. $5 worth should be good for 10 gallons of paint. Speaking of engines in issue #9, my plan was to install a Perkins M- 30 as did WINNIE of BOURNE but then saw the new Westerbeke 30B Three at the Boston Boat Show. It's approximately the same size and weight as the Perkins though more expensive. However, it develops maximum horsepower and torque at a lower RPM, so should have greater longevity. Also, I hope that Westerbeke's reputation for servicability and stamina will offset the extra cost. I want to go to a 3-bladed feathering Max Prop when I repower. Has anyone done this who can recommend sizes that don't require re-working the aperature? Also, if anyone has comments on the dripless stuffing box replacements I would be interested in hearing about them.


Barry Light, New York, NY

New work this year: Rewired and reorganized electrical system including new panels and shore power, stripped and revarnished hatches and cockpit, new sail covers, cockpit cushions, cockpit cover, etc. We're still at work restoring the interior to proper Concordia style by removing wallpaper, repainting and varnishing. With great weather does one work or go sailing?


Tom Franklin, Cambridge, MA

After our shakedown cruise together on Buzzards Bay in July we continued on to Maine, a straight shot from the Canal to Seguin Island after an easy night passage across Massachusetts Bay and the lower Gulf of Maine. I'm afraid with such a ravenous crew DeMaris' cookies did not last until our landfall! We sailed up the Sheepscott River, through the Townsend Gut (past OFF CALL and another Concordia, at their moorings) and made our landfall in Boothbay. We then tacked out of Boothbay and through a beautiful narrow passage called The Thread of Life where the crew was delighted with our first seals and anchored across from Pemaquid in a small unoccupied cove. Next day we sailed around Pemaquid Point at 7 knots and into a calm in Muscongus Bay and past Eastern Egg Rock where we saw nesting and flying puffins, the southern most point in North America where they can be seen and there only in mid-July. From there up into Penobscot Bay via the Muscle Ridge Channel, very scenic, a fast reach across to Isle a Haut and into the anchorage at Hurricane Island where we found great hospitality from the proprietors the famous Outward Bound School. After two weeks of Maine cruising we had a magical fast cruise home, just Leonie and me. 28 hours from Maine to Provincetown, mainly in a westerly making 6 1/2 knots or better under full moon on a glassy sea with a virtually neutral helm and that great hissing sound that a Concordia makes at speed in a calm sea. I have since made another two-week cruise to Maine, in early August, overnight to Matinicus Rock, cruising the Mt. Desert and Vinalhaven areas, this time with a little fog but featuring a record-breaking run back, from Monhegan to the Cape Cod Canal, roughly 140 miles, in 26 hours, this time in a gusty south-easterly and moderate fog but certainly good boat speed. The real news, however, is to report a truly glorious victory by HARBINGER #48 in the Opera Cup Race in Nantucket. WESTRAY was the only other Concordia entered but the scratch boat was Shamrock V and other entrants included Whitehawk, Gleam, Neith and a bunch of 12 meters. Last year HARBINGER finished third on corrected time and missed first by only thirty seconds, but this year's race was a little different. Sunday morning (August 19) it was blowing about SW 25, but at mid morning a predicted front passed and the wind instantly shifted to NE 30 and building. First the race was postponed, then shortened from 28 to 12 miles and the field was reduced from 74 to 32 in 6 to 8 foot seas, a windward leg and return. The windward leg, obviously, was very sloppy - seas occasionally swept the decks. We sometimes had as much as 18" of water in our cockpit and our leeward winches were sometimes buried and I'm sure conditions on HARBINGER were about the same. (Both were sailing with reefed mains and working jibs and mizzens although HARBINGER shook out her reef halfway down the return leg, a strategy that I doubted but which proved valid as she pulled even further ahead of us.) WESTRAY and HARBINGER were rated 48 and 50 out of an original field of about 75 and finished 1st and 16th out of a field of 32. Only 5 boats rated behind the Concordias even finished the race and only two of the boats that finished ahead of WESTRAY were rated slower. Finally, all but 2 of the boats finishing behind WESTRAY were rated faster and both WESTRAY and HARBINGER beat all 5 of the 12 meters that competed. Hats off to Larry Warner for a really rugged and well-earned victory. The next day Leonie and I sailed home to Red Brook Harbor breaking all records from Nantucket, again in 8-10' following seas, hitting 8.48 knots surfing along and making the 42 mile trip in 6 hours flat.


Larry Warner, Mattapoisett, MA

1990 has been a strange year for HARBINGER. Until August we had not done any racing nor had we slept aboard. This was not a great New England summer. With a little pushing from friends we were persuaded to go to Maine. The routine is to leave bright and early, reaching landfall around Matinicus Island during the day. True to form this year we left at 2130, thus arriving at Rockland at 0130 hours. No fog. A gorgeous NW wind, 15-25 knots, allowed us to crack the sails and HARBINGER sailed herself to Maine. Who needs an autopilot? Thursday morning we got up at 0730 and waited for the gas pump and beer store to open, then motored through Fox and Deer Island Thorofares. Again, no fog. We arrived in Brooklin about 1700 for the Eggemoggin Reach Regatta. Where is the fog? Saturday dawned with no wind and also no fog. The race started and we tiptoed our way through the fleet with a little skill and a lot of luck. We got a 6th overall and a first in the Concordia Class. It must have been the seals sneaking up behind and pushing. The next morning we headed back to Stonington to fuel up and start back to Marion. Blamo! The fog arrived! Oh well, there is nothing worse than anticipation with no results. Having done well at Eggemoggin it was on to Nantucket for the Opera House. Sunday was race day and we were up early as a cold front roared in. Gitana IV, a 95' yawl, and Signe, and brand new 100' ketch were barely able to get off the dock. As the day progressed the wind was not abating, but the Committee decided to go anyway. It took six of us to muscle HARBINGER our of her slip and once away from the marina she was in her element. Reefed main and chicken jib and we were off to the races. This year, fortunately, the course was shortened due to the 30-35 knot wind and the big boats couldn't save their time on us. It was also the first time in recent memory that a boat under 50' had ever won this race. Having mostly Nantucketers for crew, this was truly deemed a small boat and people's victory. The 12 meter Gleam had won so often that a crew member nicknamed the regatta The Toothpaste Bowl. As to the rest of the year, about all one can say is that a lost summer was virtually salvaged for us by HARBINGER.


Dan & Sarah Beard, Kennebunkport, ME

We only got in about 2 1/2 weeks of serious sailing this summer and a few day sails. We installed a new Harken headsail system and it is a joy. Lots more room below without the gang of jibs and I don't have to fight for deck space with the jib boom. We spent the late spring and early summer wooding the varnished forward bulkhead and locker area. Used cabinet scrapers on the flat surfaces and made some scrapers for the mouldings. Some carving tools also came in handy. Wooded and repainted the underside of the decks in the main cabin. What a miserable job I Heavy paint taken off with a heat gun then scrape and sand. Underside of the cabin top was in good shape so sanding and paint was all that was necessary. This winter's projects look like new stembolts (lower) and drive out and check forward keel bolts. Need several floors replaced also. I am afraid to see what the floor bolts look like. Anyone have thoughts on how to replace them if needed? I' m considering a solution such as shown in WoodenBoat #35 page 30. Also have to replace several plank ends at butt blocks below the waterline. The plank ends seem to have shattered but the rest of the plank is absolutely fine. Has anyone tried a solution to this problem by using variation on "Hide-A-Butt" as shown in WoodenBoat #69 page 98? I may have to span several bays between frames, but if the dutchman is well fitted, glued and thru fastened to new butt blocks it should be as strong as a new plank. Any thoughts? Sarah and I will probably haul PHALAROPE on our railway this weekend (10-6) and get winter varnish on and other projects started. The short cruise on IRENE with you this spring was surely the highlight of our trip to Washington. It will probably be the only time we'll start our sailing season so early by flying 3000 miles to do it.


Graham & Alice Pope, Wiscasset, ME

(4-28) We've been doing spring maintenance as fast as possible. Hope to go sailing May 1st, the date our insurance covers being in com mission. Right now I have two scraped knees. When we were wheeling the mizzen mast down to the pier. I slipped on the wet grass and fell down. Graham asked whether the mast was all right and was relieved to find it was. (The Popes are original owners of SAXON - since 1953 - and maintain her themselves with the help of their backyard marine railway. Ed.)


Ben & Ann Niles, Seattle, WA

As proud parents, we cannot begin without mentioning the birth of our son Halsey on March 6 of this year. A review of ALLURE's log shows that he took his first day sail less than 3 weeks later, and by the age of 5 1/2 months, had spent an enviable 23% of his life aboard. This is primarily because we will also remember 1990 as the year ALLURE circumnavigated Vancouver Island, becoming the fourth Concordia to do so. With a basket for Halsey lashed into his navigator's station alongside the heater stove, where he's handy to the loran and can keep an eye on the radar display mounted under the bridgedeck, we left Seattle in mid-July. Having never sailed in British Columbia north of the Gulf Islands, we were overwhelmed by the beauty of Desolation Sound, Queen Charlottle Strait and all the channels, islands and mountains between. On the outside we had a beautiful stretch of weather and very kind breezes at each of the notorious capes. We never quite caught up with IRENE. seeming to be about a week behind most of the way around. The west coast was wonderful sailing, where most days we saw few if any yachts (commercial salmon season was in full swing) and most nights we had anchorages to ourselves. We caught some fish and crab and saw a wide range of wildlife, including dolphins, orcas, puffins, sea otter and gray whales. Eagles quickly became commonplace, until one gets your attention by diving out of a nearby tree to grab a fish no more than two boatlengths away. Signs of the indigenous culture have pretty much rotted away, but we found an occasional totem at the abandoned village sights we visited. After a month of natural wonder, we returned to Seattle having sailed on all but two days and having been in a different anchorage every night, all but three of which were new to us. Yes, we could have just turned around and headed out to do it all over again! Other highlights? Well, in her third year of trying ALLURE finally wrested the Northwest Concordia Regatta trophy from IRENE at Port Townsend last spring. Doug and DeMaris reportedly couldn't figure out how to get it off their wall, it had been mounted there for so long. Thanks to all those who shared their comments regarding radar installation in issue #9. Our Furuno 1720 antenna fits just beneath the mizzen jumper strut on a custom fabricated bracket. After some chandlery-browsing we came up with a combination of thru-deck fittings which, with minor alterations, allows removal of the 2" display plug when unstepping the mizzen and a tight seal otherwise. For those with weak backs but who are reluctant to hang an anchor over the bow. I recommend taking a look at the alloy anchors from Fortress. We converted from an H-35 Danforth to an anchor weighing less than half as much with only very minor modification of the existing cabin-top chocks. With 12' of 5/16 chain, we've been very satisfied with its holding abilities. I suspect its only limitations are those which would be shared by its Danforth-type brethren. (Ben & Ann were awarded the "Messing Around in Boats" by Concordian John Foley. "Since they live in a floating home and spend their spare time on ALLURE and as witnessed by the arrival of Halsey, they must therefore have been messing around in boats.")


John Lund, Worcester, MA

As reported earlier, RENAISSANCE had a couple of suspect keel bolts so they've all been replaced. And, of course, that led to any number of other projects since the inside of the boat had to be cleaned out. She won't look any younger but most of her infrastructure is new and I'm a whole lot poorer. The Concordian is getting newsier and newsier. Thanks for continuing to be our scribe.

ABACO #102

Jonathan Goldweitz, Stamford, CT

Although last summer's season with a fantastic 3 1/2 week Maine cruise would be hard to beat, we were enthusiastic about the 1990 season. We started off delivering ABACO from Padanaram to Stamford in April and enioyed many evening and weekend cruises until a late June cruise east to Shelter and Block Islands and Naragansett Bay. Discovered numerous quaint towns like Bristol and Wickford and coves like Potter and Dutch Island. We had uncommonly brisk winds for our August cruise to the Thimble Islands and arrived in Newport on 8/31 for the Classic Yacht Regatta. We rafted at Fort Adams alongside ARAWAK #29 and 100 other classics. Don Tofias gave us a tour of the extensive renovations, new radar, Yanmar diesel, etc, etc. Also chatted with Elizabeth Meyer who basked in the compliments received by Endeavour, well deserved from what we saw. Race day of 9/1 was clear and sunny, but winds only N 4-6, very unsusal. The start was postponed for two hours and during this time ABACO's crew feasted their eyes on all the gorgeous vessels, ate Dorothy's delicious lunch and generally lost their competitive edge and zeal for racing. The wind finally turned SSW 10-12 for a clockwise rounding of Conanicut Island. ABACO didn't get the greatest start and the powerboat chop was aggravating. We crossed tacks with WINNIE of BOURNE several times and rounded Beavertail Pt. in a lightening breeze for a run up the west side with mizzen stays'l. High point of the race was reaching the leeward mark just ahead of 12 meter Weatherly and luffing her up after rounding. We saw Endeavour with spinnaker up heading toward us - what a sight. Unfortunately she had 20 powerboats following her and we hit every wake on the beat back to the finish. Ended up 8 out of 9 Concordias. The sail back to Stamford was enjoyable with no rain and lots of sun. We used only 18 gallons of gas the entire 12 day cruise. Will sail east for haulout on 10/27. No major winter projects planned. We look forward to a West Coast cruise on IRENE next summer.


Martha Foley, Port Townsend, WA

The Foley boys, Niall and Ossian and their mother, Martha, went to Roskilde, Denmark this August to participate in the U.S. Atlantic Challenge rowing team. A little background: Several years ago Lance Lee of Rockport Apprentice Shop concieved the idea of building two Bantry boasts, gigs in replica of one of Napoleon's tenders. Two were built and during the Statue of Liberty celebration one was given to France and a seamanshipship challenge offered. This was the third year of competition and teams from France, USA, Ireland, Norway, Denmark and Russia attended. Each team of 25 rowers must have half under age 20 and at least one woman per boat. In addition to rowing there were also knot tying and rope splicing contests. After a week of competition the teams had learned to speak other languages, had traded team shirts and were rowing in one another's gigs. We're hopeful of meeting again in '92 in Douarnenez, France.


Seth Kohn, New Castle, PA

CHOSEN has undergone a great deal of upgrading over the past two years. CHOSEN is one of only five wooden boats in Erie harbor, and is frequently mistaken as a fiberglass craft due to her fair hull. During the 1988/89 season we installed a new galley (keeping with the tradition of the yawls), the hull was wooded and repainted, the jib club was refinished, all new lignum running blocks made and Concordia's folding gallows installed. We didn't get much sailing in, though we did manage a few overnighters. Next season we got serious with our upgrade program. During the winter Kenda & I wooded down, varnished (6 coats), and revamped the spars. All running and standing rigging was reconditioned. And aside from all the sundry improvements, we installed a new Yanmar diesel. Unfortunately, this summer's weather (at least in the Great Lakes) was a big disappointment. I've never seen such a miserable wet summer in all my days. We did get some sailing in but not as much as we would have liked. I would like to point out that all of CHOSEN's projects were carried out with the aim of keeping her a traditional Concordia. A good deal of the credit goes to Alden Trull for his unselfish assistance and information. After considerable thought, Kenda and I decided to take the plunge and try to make CHOSEN one of the fleet's jewels. Last month, Brodie MacGregor visited CHOSEN in Erie to help finalize this winter's work plans. At the end of the month CHOSEN will be shipped to South Dartmouth to begin work on installing a new teak deck. I never did like canvas on plywood. In addition, Concordia will be rebuilding the skylight and main companionway, recanvasing the cabin top, checking keel and stem bolts and strip and varnish all brightwork on deck. We plan to repaint and varnish the cabin interiors next spring before doing extensive sailing in Buzzards Bay. By late August we'll sail CHOSEN home to Lake Erie via the Hudson River and Erie Canal. We've made the trip 3 times but it never gets boring. I'm sure we'll have some great sailing stories by summer's end.

IRENE #103

Douglas Cole, Bellingham, WA

It's been another good year of Concordia sailing although we were off a Httle from our record last year of 82 nights aboard. I managed several days of sailing aboard WESTRAY on Buzzards Bay in July so I'm better able to imagine the territory that inspired the yawls. We spotted SUMATRA, HARBINGER and through the fog, HAVEN. Fog looks the same on both coasts. We attempted to defend the Northwest Concordia trophy at the Classic Mariners Regatta in Port Townsend this spring. The first of three races began in a 30 knot and building southerly and while IRENE attempted to find the correct amount of genoa to unroll (her sail inventory was lacking at the time) ALLURE hoisted her brand new Manchester radial clewed working jib which, along with a reefed main, proved to be the perfect sail. Two yachts were dismasted (not Concordias) and CANDIDE #39 is still making repairs. The windward-leeward course of about lO miles was rather sloppy to say the least with peak winds recorded at 39 knots. In the Concordia fleet ALLURE finished first, then IRENE and VINTAGE. CANDIDE retired to effect repairs. While: hoisting the storm jib and taking in a second reef in preparation race two, the Committee hoisted the "Abandon Race" flag. The final race the following day saw perfect S 10-15 knot winds and the reach out and back saw ALLURE and IRENE within a boatlength or two the entire course. ALLURE's perfect start deciding the race. Congratulations. (We wanted to remodel our trophy wall anyway.) Next year we suggest they leave young Halsey at home - his tactics are wicked. Thanks again to the Foley's for hoisting the visiting Concordia crews to a superb breakfast. In addition to local cruising IRENE completed her second circumnavigation of Vancouver Island, this time taking a "leisurely" 5 weeks to explore areas missed on the 1988 cruise. Weather was perfect (1 day of rain, 3 hours of fog), fishing good and scenery magnificent. We just stepped the masts after refinishing and have been enjoying a few autumn sails before the winter cover goes on.

Waldo Howland

Padanaram, MA

I understand that the canvas you can get today has caused trouble and didn't stand up well on recent new canvas decks. However I am told that some other material like canvas seems to be OK. Several yawls have been given teak decks (over plywood) and are happy with them. I have just one thought about that: It would add a lot of weight high up in the hull. Added weight does not seem to bother the Concordia's sailing qualities but I guess I favor the original canvas (or similar) as my choice. About heating stoves, if it is vented and radiates from hot metal it is especially good. On our schooner Integrity the cast iron Shipmate stove was heated by a diesel burner hooked up to the main diesel tank. On Escape we had a nice Franklin stove type wood or coal burner that made the cabin very comfortable but required attention and trips ashore to get more wood. Our Concordia smoke head was just a refinement of the old Escape smoke head. I see Dorade is still sailing in the Northwest. She was really a good boat and changed people's minds about racing boats and meter type boats going to sea. Bylek was similar in shape and action, very able. Because the International Rule favors big displacement these boats were very round in section, quite different from the Concordias. But both had ample keels and attached rudders. Ray Hunt, having successfully sailed and raced 8 meters, understood these boats and was cognizant of Dorade's virtues when he designed the first Concordia yawl. Having sailed hard chined boats he also knew what father wanted when he asked for hard bilges and tumblehome. I was told that two Concordia sales recently were at $100,000 figures. It is good to learn that in spite of very slow market conditions the Concordias continue to do well. By the way, all the Concordia newsletters are now in a loose leaf book of mine and it makes a wonderful up to date record of the class history.

Brodie MacGregor

Concordia Company, Inc., South Dartmouth, MA

Yes, Alden Trull has retired! Fortunately for all of us, he still comes in occasionally to finalize ongoing projects and help us through the transition, but it must be reported that several sizeable areas of Alden's desk have been exposed to daylight after all these (49) years. All of us, both here at the yard and across the country who have contact with Alden know how much he has meant to the company and to the Concordia yawls in particular. He leaves a uniquely large and specialized pair of shoes to fill and we will do our best; meantime, we join in wishing Alden a healthy and happy retirement. Jerry Smith is going to maintain Alden's card file of the yawls and try to keep the records current. He solicits help from all Concorclliw readers to provide him with the information he needs to keep the records current. The requests for information and/or parts that Alden used to handle should be addressed to me directly and I will make sure that an appropriate response is forthcoming. We have had exceptionally good weather since Labor Day and if it weren't for the Hurricane Lili scare last weekend, it's not clear when we would have been able to start our fall work. Since the Lili non-event, nights have cooled down and Fall is in the air. Perhaps the major carpentry project for this winter will be the installation of a teak deck on CHOSEN #31 similar to the deck we did on HARRIER - which has proven to be very satisfactory. Briefly, this will involve removal of the present (locust) toe rails, canvas and (mahogany) deck. Deck beams and other structural parts will be checked while the deck is removed and a marine ply sub deck will then be installed. Next a new teak deck will be vacuum glued over the sub deck. The Kahn's objective is to make CHOSEN (which is already in good shape) into one of the truly outstanding yawls in the fleet, and we believe the new teak deck will go a long ways towards this noble objective.

On a different note, I am happy to confirm that controlling interest in our yacht building affiliate, Concordia Yacht Builders, Inc., has been sold to Bill Steitz of Pittsburg. Mr. Steitz. purchased certain assets of CYB along with a license to use the Concordia name and trademark from Concordia Company. There is no change in the ownership of Concordia Company, Inc. (the boatyard), its Manchester Sailmakers and Beetle Cat Boat divisions or its yacht brokerage affiliate, Concordia Yacht Sales, Inc. Concordia Company had been active in yacht building for many years and the operation developed to the point that it was spun off, forming an independent corporation, CYB in 1986. By 1989, the new company employed 25 skilled people, had moved into a 12,500 square foot facility and had built an impressive array of sophisticated, high quality, high performance cruising yachts ranging in size from 40' to 70' and typically had lightweight composite hulls and decks with beautifully crafted lightweight wood interior accommodations. In 1990 CYB built boats won three classes in the Newport-Bermuda Race. Despite this success and an outstanding reputation for quality and integrity, CYB was unable to maintain an adequate backlog of new work this summer and it soon became apparent that a substantial additional investment would be necessary to permit the company to continue to operate. I am personally delighted that Bill Steitz appreciated what we have been trying to accomplish and is making the investments necessary to take the company to the next level of maturity and success. If any Concordian readers have questions, please feel to contact me.

Steven Otton

Yacht Broker, Boston, MA

I read with interest the various ways Concordia owners install their radar systems. By far the best installation I have seen to date was done by Mr. Taylor Allen of Rockport Marine. He installed a Furuno radar on Guil Ray's LOON on the starboard side of the main cabin which neatly slides up under the deck when not in use. Allen can be reached at 207 236-9651. Also, it would appear that there is frustration, at least here in New England, with finding insurance for these lovely boats. As you know, I have sold a tremendous number of lovely wooden boats over the years and without a doubt, the individual who has done the best job is Mr. Jeffrey Cole of Atlantic Yacht Insurors, Box 358, Kennebunk, ME 04043. Things are working out very nicely for me at Alden's Brokerage in Boston. Many years ago I sold David Wheat TAMBOURINE #97 and as luck would have it, I am graced with her appearance on a mooring outside of our office every season.


Eggemoggin Reach Regatta


Opera Cup


Bedford Heritage Cup


Classic Yacbt Regatta - Concordia Division


Race Rocks Regatta


1990 Newport - Bermuda Race

10th Class E - SHIMAERA (MOONFLEET also raced - no results available)

Maritime Heritage Cup

1st Div. 1 - Dorade, 1st Div. 2 - IRENE

Classic Mariners Regatta - Concordia Division


New Owners

SEVEN #7 (ex-VERITY) - Louis Sauzedde, Jamestown, RI.
OTTER # 19 - Terrance McClinch, Fairfield, CT.
BEAUTY #53 (ex-PRETTIROSE) - Dr. Ted Chylack, Duxbury, MA.
CAKER #54 - John McCurdy, Killingworth, CT.
LIVE YANKEE #64 - Dr. Warren Nichols, Green Lane, PA.
ARAPAHO #85 - Richard Cordsen, NY, NY.
DAME of SARK #86 - Joe & Sue Callighan, Cheshire, CT.
Welcome to the fleet!

Boats for Sale



We have lost track of the following Concordias. Please signal your location.


Brion Toss

Master Rigger, Port Townsend, WA

Most Concordias were originally commissioned with very well made splices in their 1 X 19 SS rigging; a lot of the boats still have this original rigging and many replacement gangs - wire just eventually fatigues - are also spliced. I've mentioned the advantages of this terminal previously: strong, fatigue resistant, inspectable and uncommonly handsome. Now it's time to address how to keep the wrapping called "service" looking good and how to replace if it gets too chafed to maintain. First of all, many gangs have 1/32" wire service "in wake of the thimble," that is, around the circumference of the eye. This is a permanent chafe guard, and helps keep the strands of the wire lying fair as the wire is bent around the thimble. This service was put on before splicing, while the wire was straight, and the service runs the exact circumference of the thimble. So if the service is broken, you can't get the thimble out to replace it. This leaves 2 options: try to cut and needlenose plier the service off a bit at a time and leave the wire bare - an improvement on having short ends of seizing wire sticking out - or replacing the entire piece. The latter alternative might seem drastic, sort of like getting rid of a car because the windshield squirter reservoir is empty. On the other hand, this might be a good time to take a close look at your gang. How old is it and in what condition? If you decide to replace everything, make the eyes on the new gang oversized, and seize the thimble in. That way you can treat the problem should it ever recur. The service on the splice itself is sometimes of wire, sometimes twine. If the latter, it was originally of tarred marline, which eventually rots away if it doesn't chafe. If yours has rotted, peel it off and give the splice a thorough inspection, looking for cracked strands, tucks pulled out or wire showing any signs of elongation (stretch marks) or corrosion. If all is well, rub on a coat of anhydrous lanolin, to seal moisture and air from the wire surface, then parcel and service with tarred nylon seine twine. The lanolin is available through any drugstore - a 1 lb. tub is a lifetime supply and it's also good to prevent shackles and turnbuckles from freezing. It is clean, non-toxic and is even good for chapped lips, diaper rash and sore udders. Theres' nothing better! Seine twine (1/16") is available from fisheries stores. #42, 3-strand, tarred is what you ask for here on the West Coast. My book "The Rigger's Apprentice" describes how to apply service. If you have or can borrow or even buy a copy of that, proceed as for serving a splice, but leave off the worming - 1 X 19 doesn't need it. And you needn't bother with the twine-to-wire finish shown if you're using nylon, which is much stronger and more rot resistant than marline. The serving iron "A.P.," shown in the "Apprentice" is the ideal tool for applying tight, consistent turns. You can get one, cheap, from: Marty Casey, 877 Hathaway Rd. New Bedford, MA 02740. Send Marty $15 (includes postage) and he'll send you a solid bronze beauty of an A.P. (it's called that because it was originally designed for serving with wire and Associated Press is, um, a wire service. Speaking of wire service, any splice that receives a lot of chafe should be served with 1/16" or 3/32" annealed stainless 1X7 (multi-strand) "Carolina" brand seizing wire - riggers stock it. Any splice with a sail on it should be wire served, top and bottom, also the lower ends of shrouds where sheets chafe. For wire or nylon, 30' should be plenty to serve the splice with. For maintenance, rinse the wire service with fresh water periodically. Nylon needs to be "slushed" every 2-3 years to protect it from UV. What you want is a soft, paint-like mixture. Soft, so it won't crack, and paint-like so it won't scuff off on you or your sails. I usually mix oil base black paint with net dip (an asphalt tar available from fisheries supplies stores) mixed 50:50, then throw in some varnish and Japan dryer to taste. If you can't find net dip, try boiled linseed oil, about 1:2 parts paint, and see if it dried hard enough. If not, add a little more paint. Apply with a sponge brush, I know it sounds like a slapdash, arbitrary recipe, but that's all it needs to be. (Brion's new book "Chapman's Guide to Knots" is now available from Norton Press,)

Odds & Ends

Lisa Kenyon, "assistant to the publisher" on the Concordia 50th book reports' from Newport

"Elizabeth Meyer and Michael McCaffrey cruised aboard MATINICUS #78 around the Vineyard and local islands on their honeymoon. SONNET #63 and MAGIC #36 attented the wedding September 15 with dressed ship as well as many other Concordia faces without their boats like MOONFLEET and SUNDA, MATINICUS had not been rigged for two seasons due to the Endeavour program but the crew at Concordia Company surprised the nuptials and delivered her to the Museum of Yachting wedding site ready to cruise. Michael and Elizabeth escaped well-wishers aboard a tender he had built as a wedding gift."

Elizabeth Meyer

"Michael is a boat builder, of course, and is restoring his own S Boat. Now we will have the largest and smallest Universal Rule boats in the family."

Running Fix

Has anyone seen the cover of the 1989 novel "Running Fix" by Tony Gibb? Featured is a Mendlowitz photo of the MIRAGE #32 omniously superimposed in the crosshairs of a gunsight


How about that model of Nicholas Heyl's WHITELIGHT #92 featured in the recent WoodenBoat #97? Incredible

Sail Magazine

The July 1990 issue of Sail featured a long overdue and slightly distant story about the Concordia 50th Reunion... Also noted sadly is the passing of one of Nautical Quarterly the best nautical publications going...

Concordia: A Classic Wooden Yacht

Copies of the video Concordia: A Classic Wooden Yacht are still available from Point Films. 116 Mishaum Point Rd.. So. Dartmouth. MA 02748. $51.25.


Beautiful Concordia note and postcards illustrated by Kathy Bray are available from THISTLE, Box 1243. Camden, ME 04843.


If there is interest in more Concordia burgees I will have some made up, about $20 each.

Editor's Notes

That wraps up issue #10. Keep those cards and letters coming in, they're getting better. It's a challenge to keep up on events 2,600 miles away so don't feel you have to wait for a phone call pleading for project, cruising or racing news. Volunteer reporters are encouraged. Deadline for the spring edition is April 15 or so. And please, please, if your Concordia has a change of ownership contact The Concordian or Jerry Smith to let us know. You can still receive issues if you're not an owner. Most of our readers are not owners. As Louie Howland writes, "The Concordian is a wonderful wide-ranging gathering, with much technical data of interest, and, with Brion Toss's brilliant essays on rigging to top it all off. At $5.00 a year the publication is the bargain of a lifetime." No bills sent, just the news.

Doug Cole

Bellingham, WA