Wednesday 16 December 2015


 The cabin sides are now being constructed from the iroko we planed down last week. Shipwright Dave is building the port (left) side and apprentice Dave the starboard (right).
After much fitting ,tweeking and refitting, the planks are now being glued and screwed into place. 


 The cabin is now taking shape .
It is surprising how much space there is inside.

And being our last Wednesday before closing for the holiday, Pat  decided we would have a party on board.
Pat brought meat pies , crackers and hats . Dave produced the chips and salt and vinegar.

Apprentice Dave sat on his own... traumatized  by an horrific apparition.


Shipwright Dave gave his impression of Hannibal Lecter before gorging on pie ,chips  salt and vinegar.

While Wednesday Phil ,being on a diet to protect his slender physique ,only ate pie and chips!

Whilst enjoying our party, we occasionally popped our heads over the side to surprise passers by causing double takes from the confused visitors.
What fun we had ! 

And due to our considerate natures, we even allowed FANG our guard dog to join in........

Our thanks to Pat and Dave  for the grub!

And as we prepare to close for the holiday, we would like to thank all our sponsors, supporters and friends for their continued support and to  say..........



Wednesday 2 December 2015

This week the two Daves have begun the cabin front using the new Iroko timber.
Having made the patterns last week, the wood was cut and then planed in three planks. 
The first plank goes on 

and the corner posts are positioned.. 

In order to join the planks together and make the joints water tight,a rebate (groove) is cut into both planks as below. Dave creates the groove and it will be filled with a thin strip of wood to make a water tight seal when the next plank is pushed tightly on top.
In the final fit these will be glued before fitting.

The three planks are in place for the first fit . Both Daves seemed happy with the result and allowed themselves a smile and a cuppa via Wednesday Phil !

The view from the bow (front) into the inner workings.

The right hand picture is the view from the stern (back) looking forward .

Today, Wednesday  Phil counted the donations money given in the last 10 weeks. The trustees would like to thank all the visitors for their generous gifts
 It keeps us  afloat !

Wednesday 25 November 2015


This week the Daves have created a mock up/ pattern of the cabin sides and roof in ply.

This will form the basis of the patterns for use with the iroko
planks bought last week.
It is great to see the planning moving so well.

A side view of the mock up.


 No one could name the rear portion of the cockpit so we all agreed to call it the " whooshy bit "

So the two Daves began creating the side pillars for the cabin using the first pieces of iroko.

Thursday 19 November 2015


After the blast of Abigail closely followed by Barney ,the ship was protected from the gales' full force by the castle walls, so work carried on as normal.

Apprentice Dave made a template for the final bulk head (wall ) and cut the finished piece from 1 inch thick ply and fitted it .This will support the chart table and beneath it the sink.

Shipwright Dave cut out and fitted the mast hole which will take a mast of 10 inch diameter.
( a telegraph pole is 8 inches in diameter ) 


 As the Iroko timber has arrived from Anglesey, Dave began to map out the cabin sides in ply


and then went walkabout to view the proportions from a distance.
He seemed quite pleased with the result but I dare say there will be many inputs before final design is implemented.
The temperature begins to fall and a chill is in the air but Pat arrived with cake and that spurred us onward !

Wednesday 11 November 2015

Big Blow Expected- Abigail   11th November

Because a storm is forecast for Friday, the annual boat" lift out" has been brought forward a day and started today, which took most owners by surprise.A number of skippers visited us in the hope of gaining wedges and props which we supplied for a donation ! Then one person asked if we could supply  4" x 4" sections so we told him him NO or words of similar meaning.

But the work continues on Helen II.
Apprentice Dave shows the art of Limbo dancing within the confines of  the forward bunk area he is building.This picture  shows the initial frame to support bunk 1.

The whole forward section is looking great !
I almost booked a berth in advance.
The white area will accommodate the toilet ( heads ) ,so any booking by me may need further consideration and distance !

Meanwhile shipwright Dave uses an adze for shaping a chunk of oak for the mast step .

Work suddenly halted this afternoon at 2-00 pm as the Daves went to Anglesey  to view and order wood for the cabin construction and Wednesday Phil went to a trustees' meeting.

Wednesday 4 November 2015

The Bunks Are Going Well      4th November 2015

 Shipwright Dave continues to work in the saloon creating slatted bunks. This will allow air to flow beneath them to prevent condensation and rot.


Dave prepares the port saloon locker above the bunk.

Apprentice Dave develops his love of grey .Having painted his sweater first, he continues the theme in the bow priming all bare wood.

This is today's view towards the stern (back) showing Dave's preferred colour scheme !

Some people ask," how come you still volunteer to work on Helen II ?"
I'll let tonight's picture at 4-45 pm explain .......................................

                                                          Enough said !

Wednesday 28 October 2015

A GREAT WEEKEND WAS HAD BY ALL.....24-25th October 2015

The Conwy Feast proved a great opportunity to show off Helen II
Trustee Murray wowed the visitors with magical knots while shipwright Dave showed the guests the doings in the boat.All the volunteers took time to participate in the week end and we raised over £250 in funds.Many thanks to all who continue to support us !
When we had time off we went to view the stands and exhibits and to our pleasure Adrian our saw mill supplier was in show.
His wood work is an art form in itself !
When I asked what the construction was, he laughed and said it's  an dino kennel !
"What a daft idea !" I said ."What would live in a kennel like that ?  

You get all sorts at the Conwy Feast !

Meanwhile back to this week's  continued work. Both Daves are now focused on creating the bunks in the forward and central sections. Once mapped out, the designs need testing again for fitness of purpose.

Wednesday Phil unselfishly volunteers for this task once he has elbowed all rivals out of the way !
Apprentice Dave helped put him at ease with a lovely bedtime story about Viking burial rituals .
But we were all stopped in our tracks by billowing smoke from Deganwy and sirens.

With both Daves now working speedily, Wednesday Phil ,after suitable training ,supports by supplying the required wood for each task with a smile and a swear box.(both of which are hidden !)

And Duncan from  Llandrillo College  continues to home his skills on a boat in the compound which is his sole project.