3 October 2004: I have recently acquired a Contender…The boat is all wood, I have the full set of plans as well as building instructions from " Marine Packs" in the UK, so I am assuming it was purchased as a kit and built in the US. I have the envelope that the plans were shipped to the States in from the IYRU…

10 October 2004: …My plan from here is to remove all the existing supports under the fore deck and install new. I am also planning on using 6mm.corecell foam in the area forward of the forward cockpit bulkhead, with a covering of kevlar/carbon hybrid . I think this will add significant strength and minimal weight

29 August 2004: My name is Stuart Sinclair… in the Pacific NW and am interested in possibly purchasing a Contender..


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I have made some progress with my project. I have installed the new forward cockpit bulkhead and completed installing the foam forward of the bulkhead. I am hoping next week to install all the new structural components and glass over the foam in the fore end. I am hoping that this will give significant improvement in hull stiffness and result in a drop in weight from what was there originally. I took your advice about checking the transom structure and decided to remove it and install new. I felt it was important to replace it at this stage so measurements would be consistent.

I  am having a hard time deciding how low to make the floor. I am planning on replacing the centerboard case and all floor structure so I have options…

It appears that the only part of the original boat that I am going to reuse is the hull shell.

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4 January 2005: My brother came to visit from Scotland over Christmas, so I wasted no time in putting him to work stripping the old finish from the outside of the hull. When that was finished we then sheathed the hull in "S" glass with a couple of coats of West system, not a project for one person. I did have a little time today so I was able to remove the centerboard case and hopefully the last of the bronze nails. I was surprised at how heavy the case was. I plan to build the new case with 4 mm. ply sides and clear cedar top and bottom. I am going to glass the insides of the case with some light cloth, and the final coat of epoxy I will mix with graphite powder and sand smooth before final assembly. This should allow for really smooth board operation.
I have not done any fairing in the forward end yet but I think most of the structure is in place. Although it looks rather substantial it is really very light. I used all kiln dried cedar, and the web is 6 mm. ply. I really feel that this should give a stiff light load bearing area for the rig loads.

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23 January 2005: The new centerboard case is installed, the after cockpit bulkhead is now attached , and all the framing for the floor and side deck is cut and ready for holes to be cut for weight reduction, then glued in place. Cutting all the frames was a bit tedious but they are all ready to attach. I am hoping that by the end of next week I will be ready for final fairing and deck installation. The really good news is that I weighed the boat today and it is right at 80 kg. which is right on target for this stage of construction.

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21 February 2005: I was finally able to spend some time on the boat last weekend and was able to complete the floor framing, very tedious part of the project, also cut the floor, and also install stern tubes. I added a couple of support blocks for the main traveler and also for the forward end of the toe straps. hopefully I can get the gunwales faired and think about installing the decking by the weekend.

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14 March 2005: The end is insight! all woodwork is completed and one coat of sealer on the deck and cockpit. Next step is to fair the outside and paint then fit out and varnish. Could be sailing an 4 weeks all going well.

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7 May 2005
I was able to step the mast today. I modified an old 505 Goldspar
that I had. As far as I can tell it is the same section that is used for
the Contender, and weighs about half as much as the one that
came with the boat. - - - >>>

I used the BCA tuning guide to set the starting point for rake, and
used the Spectra that is eventually going to be my trapeze wires to
allow me to get some measurements for new shrouds. I was
pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to dial in the rig. It looks
like the angle of my mast step is just about right.

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<<<<- - - - -
I still have a little work to do on the centreboard and rudder, but I
really need to get on the water. I have reinforced the board with
carbon and will prime and paint it this coming week. I think I
have done enough reinforcing to the original rudder that it will
work, and I reduced the tiller length by about 18" and wrapped
it in carbon, not pretty but it will have to do till I find time to make
a new cassette unit. Tomorrow the progrip.

Can't wait to get on the water, will send some pictures.

24 August, 2005----------------------------------------->>
I finally managed to get some pictures to post. Everything is
going really well so far. The boat is definitely much more
comfortable to sail when the wind is blowing, but I can't
imagine wanting to sail in light winds anyway.
My 60,s vintage sail although hardly used, acts more like
lycra than dacron. I was sailing in a 505 regatta last weekend
and one of the guys from the Quantum loft in Seattle seemed
confident in being able to build a sail for me that would match
my Goldspar mast. If anyone else is interested in a new sail
let me know, maybe we can get a better deal if we order more
than one.

The performance of the boat definitely makes the hours spent
in the restoration project worthwhile. I have found that I am
using a few muscles that I apparently had not been using sitting
in the back of my 505. One 505 innovation that I plan on
incorporating in a new mainsail is a flattening eye about 6" up
from the clew. this would allow for a little more clearance under
the boom and still allow vang tension to be maintained in higher
wind conditions.

Let's get together and go sailing.