Wharram Builders and Friends

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A few years ago we thought we might need to put this lovely boat on the market because we were feeling too olde for the life.  But then Nev felt physically better so we withdrew from that just in time.  There was a lot of interest and we had good offers too, but we still could sail and enjoy the boat!


Recently Nev had both knees replaced and we were again wondering if we should sell the boat and we even contacted a few people about it.  But since we left Providence, the boat's physical fitness program has caused Nev to regain a lot of his strength and it has limbered him up as well as those new knees can be (they can only bend 125 degrees).  He had rather poor balance when we left Providence, but now he is moving around a lot better and even carrying 5 gallon petrol containers like he did 4 years ago.  He gets in and out of the dinghy pretty well even though I must admit that he fell in the water last week but that was just caused by something that rolled under his shoe. First time for me having anybody fall in and I have sailed 70,000 miles now.  Guess it was just time. 


I am here to say that building your Wharram will take dedication, cost a bit, and if it is a bigger boat it will also take time.  But once you have the boat built, you really need to gently sail her around in a protected bay somewhere while you get acquainted and make modifications to both the boat and yourself so you match up right.  This will take about a year and it is what we call "newboatitis".  Sometimes the boat will zig and you will zag so there may be some nervous moments and maybe even some yelling while you get yourselves under control.  Wharrams are a bit excitable when the wind blows....


Then your cruising can begin and we call this next phase of getting acquainted "firstyearitis".  Once again, this may be a bit too exciting just at first while you learn to navigate a bit faster and make a few more adjustments to both the boat and yourself, and there could even be a little more yelling.  Nev and I had already sailed together over 10,000 miles in my old monohull including a trans Atlantic together, but we had some newboatitis and some firstyearitis in Peace IV and there was a lot of yelling too during the first several months.


But now we have over 50,000 miles and everything is familiar and handy and even with Nev making more adjustments to his posture and gait as demanded by Peace after his surgery to replace both knees, we are settling in again and the yelling has come and gone during this reacquaintance process.  We had not sailed Peace for over a year so she had some stiff cables, needed new halyards, engine overhauls, etc and we both needed to get stronger and quick on our feet again.


Post surgery, Nev had proper physical therapy several times a week for many weeks.  It was painful and tired him.  But Peace IV had an entirely different physical therapy program in store for him this autumn after he graduated from the doctor required physical therapy.  Peace's fitness program has been painful and he has been tired, but now I see him regaining strength and agility.  It is just amazing how boats and people join together in the cruising effort. 


I know this cruising life will not last forever because we are both in our 70s and Nev is pushing 80, but it was so lovely cruising through the Carolina tidewaters today seeing several white egrits and more blue herons in one large pine tree.  A very fancy Christmas kind of decoration.  Then the eagles were not out done and there were a bunch of them just around the corner looking fierce and beautiful too in the morning mist.  I believe that when you see a lot of beauty, it helps keep you contented and healthy.  It inspires you.  And keeping active keeps you healthy too.  Your Wharram will do this for you...  Just give her time and be willing to make adjustments to the boat and to yourself too.  Keep adjusting as you grow older together.  It is a wonderful life!


Ann and Nev





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Beautiful post.

  We had until recently here a man of very advanced years who swam every day all year round in the open waters of the Shannon Estuary. He was interviewed on local radio. He explained he no longer swam in Jan. or Feb.

"Weather too bad ?"

"No but I live 7 miles from the sea. I no longer enjoy 14 miles in winter weather ON THE BICYCLE ."

Sure I couldn't make it up.

In his time he was credited with several life-savings. We have placed a plaque on the pier in his memory.

We are as old as we feel ?

I wish you both Peace.

Ann and Nev,

Your last line says it all: "It is a wonderful life!"



Ann and Nev,
We just returned from a 20 hrs nonstop glassing and fairing marathon. Wonderful and motivating words! All the best and have a great Time.
Demi and Dirk

Hi Demi and Dirk,

   We remember those marathons...  I still help a Rhode Island friend glassing his boat and it is really a pleasure when it is a smaller boat and I just help him out for the main jobs and he does all the set up and clean up after.  I breeze in and he puts on jazz music and the glass gets rolled on with epoxy in rhythm to the music beat.  He has much greater skill as a boat builder than we do and his boat will be a jewel.  Don't know what he will call her, but she will be a lovely Tiki 30.  I believe he will launch in the autumn 2014.  Already he has mega experience sailing multihulls so his firstyearitis may last about 10 min but his newboatitis might take a few weeks while he gets sheet leads in place etc.  But he has built many multihulls and sailed them thousands and thousands of miles and made long passages.  But likely he will also have some awkward moments in his little jewel just at first.  Likely he will singlehand so the yelling will not be heard or recorded. 

Keep mixing the glue, cutting the wood, and rolling on the glass.  It will be worth it!  Take pics and put them up here so we can all enjoy seeing each stage of your progress.

Ann and Nev

Ann and Nev,
Without any doubt you guys are the fix!

I mentioned on another post recently about my Uncle and Aunty, both in their 80,s, they have just returned from 5 or 6 months touring around Europe somewhere, on their tandem bicycle, wilderness camping, up and over mountain ranges, truly and honestly inspiring.

Whenever the details become much bigger than they really are, or the back aches from tens of hours hunched over making lines, cutting carefully, trimming, fitting and fairing and it all just seems too much, your words really do inspire.

Sincerely, thank you,

Thanks for this inspiring post, Ann and Nev.  Medical practitioners seem to agree that the very worst thing anyone can do is to stop moving their bodies around as they become older.

Who needs aerobics sessions or gym subscriptions?  Peace is the perfect place for you to stretch those limbs gently and to keep yourselves young.  

Meanwhile, on a more modest scale, I feel happily exhausted after a day on my Tiki 26, and I am half Nev's age!  My muscles may feel weary, but my little boat feeds the spirit.  As you say, "It is a wonderful life!"


Ann and Nev,

Your words on this forum never cease to inspire, but I have a suspicion you might also have inspired me many years ago, although I had no idea who you were...

I was on holiday in the West Country, maybe fifteen years ago, with my wife, two young sons and an outrigger canoe we'd built.  We were staying in Bigbury, just behind Burgh Island.  One morning we walked down to the deserted beach and there in the sand somebody had carved one word in big letters - "PEACE".  We looked out to sea, and there, disappearing over the horizon, was a big Wharram cat.  We had already heard about James, his designs and his philosophy, but that morning showed me that there really were people out there living that life.  Was it you?


Hi Rob,

     I guess your mystery is still unsolved.  Nev and I launched Peace IV in 2002 so that was not within your 15 year time frame.   We only sailed in Britain to two ports - first to Swansea in South Wales so Nev's mum could see the boat (she said it was funny looking) and second to Milford Haven for the night.  Then we were off to Spain and points south. But many thanks for your kind words.  Perhaps the mystery boat will come up on this web now and identify themselves.. 

     We are up early today planning to sail a little farther in the beautiful ICW through the tidewaters south of Charleston, SC and we have a friend along who grew up sailing these waters and loves to tell the history and take us along side trips up tiny creeks in this big boat to special spots he remembers.  He often amazes me when he says "On your chart, there will be no mention of any particular water depth around the next bend, but it goes from the usual 8 to 12 feet all the way to 60 feet and there is great fishing here all year around but nobody knows it"  Then I see the depth sounder go 12 - 60 - 12 just like that.  Last time he would have been here would be maybe 10 years ago.  He remembers a whole lot of these places and tells of his exploits as a boy out in his salvaged boat enjoying this beautiful life. 

     All the best,  Ann and NEv

This is the most inspiring thread on this forum, thank you!

You two are so inspiring and really fill me with hope. I spent the day today on Element my Tiki 21 rearranging things below and cleaning the carb on my outboard. All the while daydreaming about my next sailing adventure and watching the sea birds hunt and the fish help me clean my hulls. I look forward to one day living aboard and traveling with my wooden home wherever the winds may take me. Life seems so much richer aboard a boat than in a house on land. I ordered the design book recently along with study plans for the Tangaroa MKIV and Tiki 38. We'll see what I end up choosing to build. I look forward to meeting you once you make it to Florida.


We are expecting to be in Florida in about a week or two and will linger a bit in Titusville with friends there who are Wharram wannabees.  Hope you will call then 401 261 7816.  If I were single handing, I might select the Tangaroa Mk IV with a cutter rig.  But as a couple, I would select the Tiki 38.  We will have a Tiki 38 with us in Titusville and there is a Tangaroa Mk IV in Florida at the Wharram meet there in the spring. 


Sounds great! I'll call then. Where abouts in Titusville? It looks like that would be about 2.5 - 3 hour drive from my home port of Sarasota. I'll be coming alone. Is there anything I should bring to help the cause?

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