Laurent Giles levers and misleading labels.

The weekend started badly, having grown used to not working Fridays it is always a shock to the system on the rare occasions when I do have to go in. My body clock is thrown, as is my colleagues. The day is peppered with….. ” what day is it?” and “but… but… RR is here so it can’t be friday”

Not content with shortening my weekend with work, fate had another treat in store in the shape of a visit to Southampton University with Toby. Though it was a treat to look around such well equipped  workshops and studios, and to talk to the staff and students who were equally enthusiastic about the course (Mechanical Engineering) it was still another day out of the weekend, another day not working on the project. However, Sunday dawned bright and dry and I set about finishing off the shelter.


Handy Billy
Handy Billy

A makeshift handy billy, a kicking strap from a dinghy in a former life, helped tension the triangulating wire as I seem to have lost the fencing pliers and after a lot of wobbly ladder climbing, bruised knuckles and traipsing back and forth to the workshop, why is it that the battery always runs out when you are at the top of the ladder on one leg and just about to get a batten screwed in perfectly? Anyway, finally, I think the shelter is about ready.

Time to carry on with ridding Flamingo of the accumulated junk that is making it hard to see her potential below decks.

The previous owner didn't believe in throwing any piece of wood away.... no matter how small.
The previous owner didn’t believe in throwing any piece of wood away…. no matter how small.

From under the fore cabin bunk I liberated another piece of of mast ironmongery which, like all the rigging is neatly labelled… I sincerely hope the rest of the labeling is clearer than this though…

OK so this is the front …
Huh? If that was the front, shouldn’t this be Port?
Another Starboard….
Well which is it!?

In the process of clearing out all the bits of ply and scraps of hardwood I enlisted Tilly’s help to see if some of the more intricately shaped pieces had a home in the locker as they looked like they’d been cut around the frames to make a floor in there. Having exhausted that activity in about five minutes, Tilly declared, “Daddy, when the boat is finished I think I will like it, I don’t like it now though, so I’m going back down to the house. Exit fickle daughter, stage left, or should that be stage Port?

Another discovery, the ‘Highfield’ Levers that tension the backstays turn out to be Laurent Giles Levers….. is this good? I don’t know but it feels good to have a something aboard from this prolific designer.

A touch of class

Finally, two nice solid winch handles were unearthed but popping them in immediately highlighted an issue with the position of the winches. Every pump of the handle would scrape your knuckles across the guard rail wire! Thinking about it maybe the solution is just rotate the winches so they pump port and starboard not fore and aft… plenty of time to think about that.

I can see some sore knuckles resulting from the position of the winches
I can see some sore knuckles resulting from the position of the winches

Lawn mowing took up a large part of the afternoon as apparently, unfair as it may be, all my other chores still have to be done….. it seems the world doesn’t stop turning just because I’m sitting in the cockpit in the afternoon sun dreaming of muddy estuaries and the smell of the sea….

3 thoughts on “Laurent Giles levers and misleading labels.”

  1. Hello Jonathan,

    I recently found your page while searching for Laurent Giles levers. I was wondering what length your levers are. I have a set of 24″ levers; too large for the Giles yawl I’m planning to build, I was hoping if yours are smaller that I might ask for some measurements to make a set of my own.

    Thank you,

    Dave Boboc
    Connecticut, USA


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