2024-06-22 23:55

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Our Boat
Here you can find more details about our boat called 'Lawur', which is Viennese and stands for Little Bathtub derived from the French word Lavour, a phrase my Dad formed when he first heard about this crazy sailing business of ours ... "Your are taking MY grandkids out on the BIG ocean on a 'lawur'?", said my Dad sometime in August 2002.
Technical Specs
Length 43ft / 14m
Beam 13ft / 4m
Designer Ron Holland
Year 1983
Built in New Zealand
Type Sloop
Material Cold-molded (Wood and epoxy)
Engine Perkins 4-108, 50hp Diesel

Our sailboat is a New Zealand built sloop and was first launched in 1983. The boat was designed by Ron Holland, a fairly well known designer here in the US. We actually met the person who sailed with Ron in his early years and accoding to the story he got Ron started in sailing and the love for boats ... maybe just a saga, for sure a nice story. This boat was designed with off-shore sailing in mind; not only is she a cold-molded construction considered in general as 'bullet-proof' but all the construction is super strong and all the details on the boat show her desire to take you out onto the 'big sea'.

'Lawur' was designed as a racing yacht in its days, the early 80s, and has participated in quite a few races in the US after she was sailed to the US from New Zealand. Funnily enough, our neigbour in Santa Cruz, Randy Jr, remembered racing against her when she was still called 'Spinner'. We converted her now into a cruising boat, added storage space, took out the racing accomomdations, but She remains a hell of a sailing boat even today ... when we took her out for our 'Bon Voyage' party in October, 2003, she carried 27 people and was making a comfortable 8 knots ... OK, I had all 27 sit on one side and we might have been a bit over-canvased for family sailing, but it sure was fun ... ask Dave who was holding on for his life against a strong weather helm ... J. Her sailing characteristics where a big decision factor when purchasing her in May 2003; we wanted a boat that was laid out for a family AND sailed well. for the non-sailors among us, my comparison was that we didn't want a Chevy type full-keel boat but a European style Audi type sailboat, not a race car but she sure 'corners' nicely ... J.

Talking about layout, its space and interior cabin arrangement was proably THE deciding factor for this boat. She has 2 cabins, one in the aft and one in the front with a v-berth. The aft cabin is very roomy and a person my size (Ok, Ok, I am not a giant, but no insults here ...) can easily stand up, which is not the norm. We use the aft cabin mainly for the kids, except when we are on passage and we sleep in the kids 'play-bed'. The forward cabin with the v-berth, I completely remodeled into a nice owner stateroom with ample storage space and a big 'play-bed for adults' ... I mean vberth.
The main cabin hosts a nice size navstation, a big seatee, the galley and adjacent the head. We preferred the New Zealand design / layout that often features the head in the middle/aft part of the boat rather then in the forward part, typical for the European charter layout.

From a technical perspective, we tried to keep the equipment simple but still practical. We carry the typical equipment most off-shore cruising yachts nowadays carry.
Here a list of some of our equipment for the sailor audience:

  • NKE instruments integrated with the computer,
  • NKE hydraulic autopilot integrated all instruments,
  • MaxSea electronic charting with CMap charts (paper backup charts),
  • Furuno radar,
  • Cape Horn self-steering windvane,
  • Raymarine tiller pilot attached to the windvane for motoring and backup,
  • Lewar 1000lb windlass,
  • Two 75W Siemens solar panels,
  • Link 2000R battery monitor panel,
  • Standard Horizon VHF radio,
  • ICOM HAM/SSB radio with a packet radio for email,
  • 406 ACR EPIRB,
  • AirX wind generator,
  • 9 sails all together (2 jibs, 1 storm jib, 1 main, 1 trysail, 3 spinakers, 1 gennaker),
  • 3 anchors (Bruce, CQR and a Danforth) with 100ft chain and 200ft rope, and last but not least
  • a life raft.
  • For ours and the kids entertainment, we carry a large library of books, quite a few computer games and ... no laughs here ... our Xbox, which we use both for watching DVDs as well as playing games ... I couldn't completely go cold-turkey on the gizmo front ... the step from a home theater in our ex-house to no XBox was just to big ... J.

    On the safety front, we got the usual, an EPIRB, life jackets with harnesses (yes ... the kids are always hooked onto something when up on deck), thanks to my Dad a life raft and the usual coast guard required stuff (flares, ...).
    One thing we did when we got the boat, was replace almost all of the old electronics with new ones that also have the latest emergency features that allow us to reach out quickly if needed. In addition, we are trying to practice emergency procedures on a regular basis ... though we haven't done enough of that yet ... can you ever!?

    The things we like about 'Lawur':

  • She sails great
  • She feels safe
  • Her layout is great for our size family and our needs
  • We feel very much at home because she is super cozy
  • The things we like less about 'Lawur':

  • Until last year it said here 'leaky teak decks' but that we fixed now so which leaves the next bullet ...
  • ... hmmm cannot come up with anything else yet ... give us a few more months
  • History

    Honestly, we know less about our boat's history, then we would like. But here is what we know and what we have done to her.

    As mentioned earlier, she was built in New Zealand in 1982 and launched in late 1982 or early 1983. From there, things get a bit fuzzy but the story goes something like this:
    She was sailed via Hawaii to the US and then spent some time in Seattle; her name then was 'Spinner'. She was then moved to either Newport Beach or San Diego, not quite sure, raced quite a bit down in Souther California according to the registration papers on and in Mexico according to some racers in Santa Cruz until she was purchased around 1999 by the previous owner in San Diego. His intent was to sail her to Mexico and spend some time coastal cruising. This must have been the time when her name changed to 'Legacy', the name under which we purchased her.

    It seems to us that was the time when she was somewhat neglected and some projects where done 'half-a..' ... hence whenever we find a problem with something, we blame it on a 'San Diego' project ... a nice excuse but we are soon through with those problems, we think.

    Things didn't work out as planned for the previous owner and his plans for the Mexico tripped were put on ice resulting in putting 'Legacy' on the market for sale sometime in 2002. Unfortunatly we never were able to contact any of her previous owners to get a better history of our boat; most of the above is based on broker talk and documents we found on the boat ... who knows what is fact and what was sales talk.

    When we started looking at boats, we came down to San Diego to look at a few boats, 'Legacy' as she was called then, was one of them. However, she didn't make the top of the list right away and we first pursued unsucessfully another boat in Berkley, also a New Zealand design. We knew by then, that the Kiwis made great boats that fit most of our needs. Finally in May of 2003, after a detailed survey by Bunker Hill (yes the name is not a joke ... he was GREAT by the way), we decided to purchase her. We brought 'Legacy' up to Santa Cruz from San Diego. Dave Robinson, one of our great sailing instructors we met at Pacific Sailing in Santa Cruz, helped me bring the boat back (there is a story of giving up and sea sickness there to be told in person ...).

    The next 2 years split into 3 pieces, (i) boat work in Santa Cruz, (ii) cruising to San Diego and (iii) then a year and a half boat work in San Diego ... I am done with boat work for a while but they say another way of looking at crusing is 'boating fixing in pretty places'.

    At first we thought we would start our cruising adventure right there and then in 2003 the year we bought the boat ... keep dreaming. So while still working and harbored in Santa Cruz, TheSchmids family spent June thru early November of 2003 working on the boat while mostly living on it too. Here is a sumarized list of work we did on the boat in Santa Cruz:

  • Renamed her from 'Legacy' to 'Lawur' following all the necessary protocol to thank Neptun and all the other gods
  • Completely removed old bottom paint (what a chore) and repainted bottom including fiberglass work on the keel
  • New windows throughout the boat
  • Removed all 20 yr old instruments and installed new NKE instruments (depth, speed, GPS, anaenometer)
  • Removed and redid most of 110V wiring and lights
  • Installed inverter and charger
  • Replaced all running rigging, lifelines, anchors and anchor lines
  • Replaced windlass
  • Repainted cabin top
  • Painted new antiskid
  • Rebuild forward cabin including vberth
  • Added a lot of cabinetry for additional storage throughout the whole boat
  • Installed self steering windvane
  • Unstepped the mast, fixed mast leak, installed mast steps, redid mast top and wiring, repainted mast
  • Added a radar arch and installed radar, wind generator and solar panels
  • We then took the boat to San Diego and had a fabulous cruise down south but in San Diego soon reality hit and we realized that we weren't going to make it out for 2003/04 cruising season ... not a difficult decision for us given that we have family there and work was also around ... I actually ended going back to Deloitte for a while and did a few more projects most notebly:

  • Removed leaky teak decks ... one little 4 x 1 piece at a time
  • Layed new synthetic teak decks from Tek-Dek ... we love them but looking back we really underestimated the effort
  • Repainted the whole cabin top again due to the deck removal this time with a two-part paint
  • Replaced some of the older hardware such as traveller, wood cleats, ... the 'might-as-well' syndrom ... while I am at it might as well do this one ... and this ... you get the idea
  • Did you notice that there are things that we redid such as the repainting part ... wait it gets better ... my dark sense of humor comes in handy now looking back on this ...

    Well fall of 2004 came around and deck repairs were way underway with standing rigging tied off but only temporarily and as our luck had it a storm passed thru San Diego early for the season and the MAST BROKE IN THE MARINA ... unsalvagable ... here go our plans to leave that winter and quite a bit of change ... so we decided, this time a much, much harder decision emotionally, to stay in San Diego another year. The biggest project for this year was obviously:

  • Replace mast with a brand spanking new one
  • New standing rigging ... something we should have done anyhow
  • Polished fuel tanks and added big access ports to all tanks on board including water
  • Added a solent stay for better short-handed sailing ... what a great addition and surprised not more people do it
  • Many convenience items are now done too such as a washdown pump ... I always said when the washdown pump gets on my boat I am READY to leave ... J
  • The list of things to do never ends, but we felt we got the most important things done and ... we still don't quite know what to do with them ... any creative ideas!?

    Our plans are now to take her back to where she came from ... New Zealand ... I am known for ambitious plans, this is another one of them. We think 'Lawur' is ready for the challenge ... the real question is: Are we ... J