Saturday, 7 January 2017

Land Yachting

 As much as I long for those lazy, warm summer days afloat on board Shoal Waters during the midst of a cold winter, with her tucked away in hibernation, I also quite enjoy the winter time and being free to play around with my other little boats. This winter I've moved a couple of steps forward on a spot of land yachting I had been contemplating for my 12' punt, Winkler.

 I didn't think too much about how I was going to go about adapting her other than I wanted to try and see if I could steer her as one does with a tiller. And, for wheels use the trolley wheels I already had and, in fashion with Winkler's initial build, do it at minimal cost... I'm pleased to be able to say I managed all the above with minimal effort and this time no cash outlay.

Initial land trials found life evolving around the rhythm of nature just as much it does with my cruising year in Shoal Waters. Without sail set Winkler rolled surprisingly free on urban tarmac, but it was a different matter altogether on the sticky Shoebury sands where tide tables are scanned in reverse for low water times and a force two fails miserably to move her more than a few inches...

After more trials I came to conclude that for land yachting one wants a very strong wind indeed, and lots of it, and a firmer packed surface... Then I must remember this is a Mk 1 version and things can be adapted or tweaked further... The fun continues!

 Photos speak a thousand words so here's a couple of pics of Winkler adapted for land yachting (Mk 1 version). The tiller pivots up and down and, with regards the science of leverage, is probably not ideal, being the shorter lever, but it works well enough when Winkler is moving...

Good sailing, and land yachting, Tony


4 comments:

Paul Mullings said...

I love your free spirit Tony, this post took me back many years when we tried to make a land yacht using a couple of launching trollies and a rigged OK dinghy...Well I can safely say we scared the wits out of ourselves, not so much the starting but how did you stop when flying down the road at what seemed like 100mph! Many many years later my wife's cousin developed the Blokart here in New Zealand, a very different kettle of fish and great fun on the beach. As you mention hard fairly dry sand is best as can be seen in this video...https://youtu.be/TXSj0CBKxaI Keep up the good work!

dylan winter said...

excellent - well done that man

Creeksailor said...

Ha ha, our body may age but its spirit can always be free! Thanks for your comment - a lovely anecdote...

Grldtnt said...

Have done proper landyachting,think it best to steer front wheel,you can do this with a home and 2 strings, much as a Soap box, to get the best speed, you need to be sheeted hard in on a beam reach, as for stopping, the way to do it is to tube, sheeted in hard,, or just to heave to, but doesn't stop as quickly.
You do have the room at Shoebury with the tide out,but it is a bit soft,harder ,drier Sand is best,how about out on the Buddy and Ray sand,nobody will bother you out there at LAW.