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President's Report

28 June 2010 Noel Paterson

Australian President, Noel Paterson

"Australian President, Noel Paterson"

Over the past few months, the Australian Association has been working towards the replacement of the tooling that produces Etchells in Australia. Specifically, this includes the construction of new moulds for both the hull and deck, combined with a new approach to the build in general and a change of location for the manufacturing of Etchells, from Redhead to Nowra, in Southern NSW.

The boats will now be built for Pacesetter Etchells by Innovation Composites, which operates from the ex-Azzura Yachts location. Mark Rowed, a highly respected identity around the foreshores of Sydney, heads Innovation Composites. Chris Capel is also part of his team. Chris built Etchells with Phil Maloney at Pamcraft and subsequently, also with Bashford Yachts. Chris has personally had a hand in building over 300 Etchells. The new boat will be known as the 'Pacesetter Mk II'. Phil Smidmore will be doing the fit-outs, just as he has done for some time now. Recently, Phil said, "We're really very excited by these new moulds and the ability to go to even higher levels of build construction and quality, as a result. They're going to be fantastic boats."

The new deck will feature a revised, finer deck tread, recesses in the cuddy for jib/fine tune etc, jib tack recesses in the side deck and traveller recesses. Optional recesses are also available in the side decks. The sizes and volume of the available recesses are currently the subjects of a review by the ODT.

A very important innovation that has been incorporated in the new build, will be the implementation of the 'Heritage' style hull to deck joint. The Heritage system presently involves joining the deck to the hull at a point about 50mm in from the gunwale, on the deck plane. The deck fits into a rebate/overlap situation. However, the really great news is that we intend to further reduce the 50mm span, to eliminate all of the cracking that occurs near the gunwale. This has been a constant source of problems for both owners and builders alike.

It is the Australian Association's desire to produce a new hull mould from scans generated in Chicago in 2006, where Etchells from Pacesetter, Ontario and Heritage, were all subjected to the scanning process. The IECA has requested permission from the International Governing Committee to use this technology. The IECA is currently in discussion with a professional mould building company, with a view to using this technology for the construction of the new mould. Once we have the necessary green light, we will be proceeding forthwith.

Regrettably, after two years as our Publicity Officer, Tracey Johnstone has resigned. I would personally like to thank Tracey for her marvelous contribution to this Association. She is very driven and her efforts have greatly increased the communication to Etchells members, not the least of which is this very newsletter that she created. We all wish you the very best for the future, Tracey.

I am happy to say that John Curnow will be the new Publicity Officer and his first role has been to produce this June Newsletter. John has done many pieces on yachting, some of which you may be familiar with and I am sure he will be an asset to the team. Welcome aboard John. All future script for the Newsletter should be directed to him at

Member's subscriptions will be due again on September 1st, 2010. For some time now, we have promised that you could pay your subscriptions online and I am delighted to announce that as a result of Kylie Wilson and Dave Ritchard's efforts, you will be able to do this. As of September 1st, you can simply go to the Australian Website and look for the heading, 'Members Area' and simply drill down to the payment section. The page is self explanatory and easy to read.

Many of you would be well aware by now, of the untimely death of Peter 'Spike' Dorien. Peter was a professional yachtsman and when in Australia, he loved to sail Etchells. Spike chartered an Etchells and sailed in the Brisbane Fleet Championships, just prior to flying out to the Caribbean to compete in another series on Rambler. Peter died during that regatta. I know that Spike was a very close friend to many an Etchells sailor. I am sure that all of the Etchells fraternity will join me in wishing his wife Nikki, along with their children Jemima and Fox, our deepest condolences and very best wishes for the future.

Finally then, just a quick reminder that our next season is just around the corner, so don't leave it too late to do your maintenance.

Noel Paterson
President IECA


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