Varkoula – elderly Centaur with a newish engine

On the way back from Inverness I called into South Ferriby to look at an elderly Centaur

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cabin 1

front cabin

cabin 3

cockpit 1

bog 1


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This is about Dylan Winter's Blog, Sailing around Britain.

18 Responses to “Varkoula – elderly Centaur with a newish engine”

  1. 21 August, 2015 at 6:55 pmBilly says:

    Just got back from South Ferriby. Bit silted and weedy, filter got clogged on the way in and out but I liked the place. Have the keels been done? Have the lowers been reinforced over the windows? I take it the crack over the window is the aft lowers. Re-engined, looks pretty tidy.

    • 21 August, 2015 at 6:59 pmdylan winter says:

      it is a wonderful yard full of oddities

      I wondered about re-routing the inner stays to the existing toe rail attachment points

      fail to understand why the boat has both

      the engine sounds brilliant

    • 21 August, 2015 at 11:13 pmdylan winter says:

      keels have been done – window crack is a bit weird

      but if it is not moving then not a problem until it comes to reselling

      but my aim is to keep this one for four years

  2. 22 August, 2015 at 5:55 pmWarren says:

    The window crack looks easy to fix , just grind away and all a couple layers of cloth and epoxy and some white paint.
    I doubt it’s caused by the cabin top inner shroud. Maybe somebody thought shroud location was the latest thing and it would improve Somthing! Ha!
    With all that crap in the water and the outboard bracket I suspect he was have engine trouble for years……buy it quick before he fries another engine!……. Mainsail looks awfully thin in the boom….is it the original?.
    Certainly looks well looked after inside, outside not so much……but a good scrubbing?

  3. 23 August, 2015 at 3:50 amTed B. (Charging Rhino) says:

    At this point all Centaurs can be considered “elderly”, the last one was nearly 35-years-ago.

    I think that’s just the mainsail cover lashed in-place to the boom and mast. The main itself must be below or ashore.

    On, their pic of a Centaur has the inner-shroud anchored above the forward-port main-cabin wind, same as this one has. And there is one at the same location on one of the Westerly factsheets I have — right above the center of the window.

    The other odd thing I noticed on the Westerly factsheet is in their outboard-profile line-drawings, their mast has a considerable rake. The masthead is directly in-line with where that inner-stay anchor is located above that window, maybe 2-ft aft of the mast-seat on the cabin-top. In most of the pics of Centaurs I’ve accumulated, the mast is much more-vertical.

  4. 24 August, 2015 at 8:01 pmDave says:

    Crack by window is classic flexing caused by lower shroud. May have jibed her and given that shroud a good whack. If you move it to the toe rail it will restrict space when moving along side deck being at a different angle to the uppers. Fit longer ones and bring then down to a Deck anchor just below the window but against the cabin side for good access

    Otherwise boat looks good, fit a folding prop——– and look where you are going when motoring!

  5. 24 August, 2015 at 9:46 pmMark the Skint Sailor says:

    If you get it, looks like another job for SuperDave! Or do the Scots have their own version?

  6. 24 August, 2015 at 11:52 pmPaul Rogers says:

    I agree about the folding prop. It makes a big difference to you sailing, and less for lobster pots to catch on.

  7. 25 August, 2015 at 9:48 amPaul Thompson says:

    I vote for a Kiwiprop over a folding one any day.they are not much more expensive than a good folding prop. Give a similar reduction in drag and you still have decent forward and reverse thrust. What’s not to like?

  8. 25 August, 2015 at 9:49 amPaul Thompson says:

    I vote for a Kiwiprop over a folding one any day. They are not much more expensive than a good folding prop. Give a similar reduction in drag and you still have decent forward and reverse thrust. What’s not to like?

  9. 25 August, 2015 at 7:02 pmAJC says:

    Learning a great deal about the boat I’m trying to sell. Thank you everybody. Dave’s theory of crack generation sounds good. Fortunately, crack has not progressed since I’ve owned the boat (4 seasons). See page 11 of the survey sent to Dylan. The previous owner says it was there when he bought the boat too.
    Current fixed prop is highly effective against very strong local tides when required. Would the other designs be so powerful ?
    Concerning fried engines, Warren. Your theory is interesting but incorrect.

  10. 25 August, 2015 at 10:14 pmDave says:

    AJC, all this free advertising, I’d put the price up!!———– are—— sorry Dylan

  11. 26 August, 2015 at 2:01 pmTim says:

    Let me see if I have got this straight.

    Somebody queue the “twilight zone” theme while I say my word of caution.

    You a 60 year old, want to get out of a boat who has a proven track record (Katie L.) to jump head first into a unknown hole in the water? Plus…How far from home would you commute to work on this one? I believe you are going to need some deep pockets. That said, I hope the professional survey will be positive. Best Wishes for speedy return to the prime mission…. sailing.
    Disclaimer: The expressed opinion may differ from staff and management of this blog and in no way should be considered a condescending view of one man’s dream boat.

    • 26 August, 2015 at 11:44 pmdylan winter says:

      you make some excellent points. However, I need the space for when it rains for three days on the west coast. Jill and I spent ten days on Katie L in Edinburgh and we need a bit more space, I need a table for the journalism/editing/eating and a front cabin for jill to go to sleep while I work or read or browse the web – and space for the bikes. I am confident that this one will be ready for the water by Easter – actually I could sail her now but she could do with a deep clean, the electrics need simplifying, the toe rail needs replacing and the decks need painting, the cockpit woodwork needs replacing – all quick and cheap jobs – £500 for winter storage and £500 for gubbins and petrol. All simple stuff. This one is 2.5 hours away from home – I spent a year on the Humber so it is a doable drive.

      Logically I should sell Katie L and buy a better Centaur but I want to keep her for when I do the Welsh rivers. She has got me to places I would never go in a Centaur and she is a perfect boat for an 85 year old bloke to end his sailing days bumbling around my lovely East coast salt marshes. She could also do with some garden time – the spars need some attention and the sails also need some work done on them, the inside needs varnishing and the trailer needs fettling. So my plan is to put her in the drive and spend some time getting her back into good nick while I sail the socks off Centaur 2

  12. 27 August, 2015 at 5:29 pmTim says:

    Dylan, In Eastern NC one boat is never enough to “cover all the Bases” Sea Boat, gunkholer, Little fishing boat big fishing boat, kayak, canoe, Hobie cat, sneak boat(duck punt), you get the idea.
    I wish you every success and your logic makes perfect sense. You realized my point concerning as we become “aged things”.

    Katie L appears to be a special little ship.
    Here’s to hoping that Centaur 2 is every bit as special too.
    Sail on Dylan,
    Sail on Katie L,
    Sail on Centaur 2 to St. Kilda – Vatersay Iss.

  13. 28 August, 2015 at 12:20 amSteve says:

    Looks good. Lots of electronic marvels-you’ll be able set a waypoint for the fore cabin if the plotter is as accurate as mine! (Often ten or eleven feet.)

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