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Growth = Parts Sales

15 December 2013 Phil Smidmore

The new console

"The new console"

Photo by:
Phil Smidmore

With the Queensland States being held in October this year, followed by the Australian Championships in November, the season'down under' got away early this year with the activity centred on the Brisbane and Gold Coast Fleets. The Brisbane Fleet has expanded considerably over the past couple of seasons and I have sold several masts, booms and numerous other items to Brisbane, as the fleet gets more competitive and in preparation for the two regattas.

Michael Manford won the Syd Corser Regatta in Perth, which is the regular early season opener, in his new mould Pacesetter boat. He subsequently elected not to travel across the Australia to Southport defend his Australian national crown.

Tapered sheets, halyards and new standing rigging have sold well in the past couple of months and I have also sold several masts, both as voluntary upgrades and as a result of collisions. As usual, the first windy day finds pumps wanting some TLC and parts for these have also sold well.

Main and jib halyards are items that need frequent inspection. Jib halyards with balls wear on the lock while those going to a cleat wear at the cleat. For those going to a cleat, simply cutting the wire at the shackle and reswaging means the rope will cleat at an unworn spot, but this must be done well before the rope gets too worn overall. This is so easy and cheap to do once a year. I do make a custom cuddy lock for the locking ball variety, but the halyard wire will still wear and the only solution is a new halyard. I make my main halyards long enough to re-ball several times, and again, with regular inspections this can be done prior to the halyard breaking, which usually ruins your day!

The new floor and console I installed for Nev Whittey on Jeanne Claude Strong's, Yandoo XX, earlier this year has subsequently led to several enquiries for this work. Meanwhile, my comments on spreader tip corrosion and wear in the last newsletter has inspired some owners to check that area and subsequently order new spreaders. The amount of wear from dyform wire has surprised many, myself included, and it varies a lot from boat to boat.

Although the Nationals are already over, there are a number of State Championships to be held in early 2014. The ever popular Mooloolaba regatta and of course the next Worlds in Newport Rhode Island, both to be staged next June, will be upon us soon, so don't let gear failure ruin your fun at these events.

Good sailing,
Phil Smidmore.


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