Baggy Wrinkles

Baggy Wrinkles
S/V Nautica, Hull #614, Built at Whitby Boatworks Ltd., Ontario, Canada 1977, one of the most recognizeable Carl Alberg designs. A masthead sloop displacing 9000 lbs, keel hull, Yanmar 15 hp diesel, LOA 30.27 Beam 8.75, Draft 4.29, roller furling headsail, tiller, berths for 4, interior teak bulkheads, teak cap rail and cockpit teak coamings, 12 volt lighting, aluminum mast support, Harken self tailing winches, in its day was designed for customers as a Cruiser-Racer, the Alberg 30 remains a Classic design of the large Alberg inventory.

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Saturday, May 4, 2013

I've always had a sailboat of some kind or been near sailboats or fascinated by sailboats.  So my search for a Cape Dory was not a novelty but more a passionate interest.  I found her moored on James' Island in Charleston in this swift moving river looking a bit forlorn, tethered to a dock, the elements having worn her bright-work down to a rustic grey, the tell tale sign of a once passionate interest overcome by other agendas.

But the Cape Dory design is unique and timeless, classic.  Other places tell of the rubrics of this particularly stylish design by Carl Alberg.  And if you look closely in this photo you will see several vessels one of which is the wine glass transom.  Others may be larger, faster, brighter, or louder, but the Cape Dory at that time called "La Belle Vie" was certainly the more interesting vessel and drew the eye. 

The posting photos illustrated how well cared for she had been in her day.  A boat 39 years old has had many owners of course.  When I saw this photo I knew she had had quite a bit of care and had charmed someone's interest to be so well-maintained.  Bright blue Awlgrip on her decks, the teak was well finished and her rigging was tidy.  She appeared ready to sail and I thought I could not resist snatching this classic vessel.  But of course the sales photo and her actual condition were separated by the lapse of time during which an interest had waned and her condition had deteriorated.

Weathered lines, grey teak comings, indentations from docking lines, sanding and refinishing over the years, and the penetrating beatings of the elements had punished La Belle Vie.  Her current  ownership was a bit confused between two people.  One had listed her, but another was actually doing the selling, and I seemed to profit from the arrangement securing her at a price many Cape Dory Typhoon's seem to draw even if worn and a bit tattered.  She was still a classic.  She had an historic value and the essential elements of design that drew looks. 

The seller helped me pull her out of the James River on a pleasant winter day in December and I escaped James' Island and its Pirates to head for her new home and her next owner.