October 26, 2015


Ex Lex is an experimental boat. On her I will test ideas for my next boat. Therefore I pay more attention to details than I would otherwise do. Here is an example.

There is 11 compartments below my bed for stovage.

I will screw down the hatches covering them to be shure that things do not start flying around in strong winds. The hatches will be made of 12 mm birch plywood. On top will be an 3 cm thick mattras for me to rest on. I need an washer to distribute the force of the screw so that it does not eat into the plywood after repeated use. Also I do not want to many loose parts.

After trying a cupper pipe rivet I decided that it was not satisfying.

Tjust Mekaniska turned out the ones I wanted in bronze on their lathe.

The drawing

The products on the drawing

Testing on washer on a scrap piece of plywood. There are small ridges on the washers, also they be set in epoxy after first washing them in aceton. That way they stay in place.

This gives a satisfying feeling.

To be continued…

Regards Yrvind.

October 23, 2015


It started when I realized that I was doing wishful thinking. I was doing the calculation for how many calories I needed, based on a 78 year old man weighing 70 kilos, with sedentary activity, and little or no exercise. Then I converted the calories to kilos assuming 350 calories per 100 gram on the average for my type of food. I was quite pleased to find that I needed about 0.5 kilos a day or 135 kilos for 270 days. Reality is of course that on my small boat volume is the limiting factor because the food has a density of about 0.4 so 135 kilos becomes nearly 350 liters far more than my available storage space.

Of course I could divide the passage into shorter parts, but once I had the longer passage in mind, a shorter one did not appeal.

After considering several options I decided to raise the freeboards by 5 cm and build a storage space under the bed 20 cm high. That would decrease the standing headroom by 15 cm. A mock up showed that I could live with that. The space under the bed became 250 liters. That together with already existing stowage gave me plenty of room for everything.

To use the space efficiently I did remove the attachment pipe for the safety belt. That took some doing.

For the third time I moved the big anchor, padding the space with Kevlar for wear. I also moved the four 19 kilos gel batteries. There are now 11 compartments under the bed.

An other big change is to add a mast, making it 3 in total. The third mast, a short one, will be placed at the transom when in use or flat on deck when not needed. Its to give the boat weather helm and as a spare.

This allows me to move the leeboards further back where they are more parallel with the hull. Also I now can move the forward mast positions nearer the bow. That way they are easier to reach from the hatch.

Below are some pictures for illustrations, click on them once or twice for enlargement.

The bed before the change. The attatchment pipe in place.

The removed pipes. I had to use ealbow grease and force.

The storage space. The anchor and the batteries are well sexcured. There are two batteries in the picture. They are dummies, no weight at all. There be a total of four Exide, Sonnenschein 55 Ah

The modell with the big mast in the aft position. Giving the boat good weather helm in light wind. Having reread Knox-Johnston, Moistessier, Alec Rose, Duma, Alain Kalitka, Yves Gelinas and others confirming my own experince that there is plenty of east winds in the west wind belt 40 degrees souht. The three mast can be mowed around at will. The long one is 2.7 meter, the short one 1.8 meter.

To be continued…

Regards Yrvind

October 10, 2015

To my friends at

Angélique is right. 1947 they opend my stomach and removed an appendix becouse I told the grown ups that I got stomach pain when I had to go to school. It is unlikely that there is an other one left, so the chanches that I turn up at Houtbay to say hello to Manie in his ten feet boat becouse an appendix are small. Besides I do not think, appendix or not, that I will make it in time.

It worries me that Manie will make his trials in a bay, even though it might be a windy one. To test a boat for an ocean passage one should, in my mind be far out to sea so that one can spend days riding out a gales far from shore.

If I may suggest something it would be to sail the south east trade wind up towards St Helena. Often nice weather and one gets to know the boat, then south towards Tristan da Cuhna group and back to South Africa where stronger winds may be encountered.

Repeat that a few times. Of course first make sure in Houtbay, that all system work.

Of course it is easy for me sitting here safely in my armchair to give advise, but it is what I would consider if I was testing an offshore boat in those waters.

Regards Yrvind.

WordPress logo