Sunday, October 26, 2008

Details of Wings

Here is a full description of WINGS, Serendipity 43, Custom IOR Race boat and our home for 22 years. A great boat to sail, race, cruise on, and live aboard.

wingssail-Fredrick Roswold
In Thailand, 2008

wingssail-Fredrick Roswold
In Papua New Guinea, 2003

wingssail-Fredrick Roswold
In Mexico, 1997

Click here for some interior shots.

image from King's Cup committee
Kings Cup Regatta, Thailand, 2007

Some times we take off the cruising equipment and bend on the racing sails and go racing. In the shot above we are sailing in the King's Cup in Phuket Thailand in December 2007. We won our class with four straight first place finishes, sailing in IRC.

Wings is a boat originally built for racing, but we have found it to be an excellent cruising boat; it is easy to handle for two people, sails well with small sails, and has good motion in the seas. For living aboard it also suits us well: we have plenty of storage and lots of room. For example, on passages we can keep our dingy and motor below, stowed, all of our sails (14 in all), also stowed, the airconditioner, 140 gals of water, 60 gals of fuel, all of our liveaboard stuff (basically everything we own) and provisions for a 30 day passage, all stowed below, and nothing is on the sole or in the way. The deck is kept absolutely clear, nothing is on deck when we go in the ocean except the dingy fuel (gasoline).

We have a great shower, computer system, galley, and comfortable bunks for sea and in port. We have often been working ashore in office jobs while living aboard and we have plenty of hanging locker space for suits, dresses, etc. So, we think this boat is the perfect boat for us.

Sailing it is also just right for us.

Even though we don't have roller furling sails (can you imagine that in this day and age?) we usually only use a small 85% dacron jib while cruising and this is so easy to put up or down that we don't miss the furling capability. If the wind gets too strong we reef the main, down to the third reef, and then we just drop the jib. Wings sails well with only a scrap of a main, in any direction. It also heaves-to rather well, with a reefed main and the jib, or with just the main; we done it several times.

wingssail-Fredrick Roswold

Our average day's passage in good winds is 175nm. We have exceeded 200nm twice, it wasn't fun, (this is an IOR boat, remember, high speeds are not it's forte).
In this shot we are sailing in the SE Trades from Bora Bora to Samoa, on the windvane, with a full main and a poled out #4 jib, roaring along. There was 23 knots of wind and we were hitting the low 9's on every wave.

The boat has a tiller for steering and we have an Autohelm tiller pilot (ST4000GP) but at sea we use the monitor windvane 99% of the time.

We usually sail double handed without additional crew.

If we have any complaints about the boat it is that we don't have a great cockpit for entertaining; it is a racing cockpit, and rather small at that, but in heavy weather we are sometimes happy for having a small cockpit.

Once I was talking to Doug Peterson about the boat and I told him I thought it made a great cruising boat and was surprised by this. He said, "Really".

Well Doug, it does!

Model: Serendipity 43
Type: Masthead sloop
Builder: New Orleans Marine
Year built: 1979
Designer: Doug Peterson
Length 42.7 ft
Beam 12.7 ft
Draft 8ft
LWL: 36.4
Weight (empty) 16,000 ibs
Weight (in cruising mode) 20,000 lbs
Construction GRP (Cflex hull, balsa cored deck)
Mast: aluminum
Standing rigging: rod
Engine: Yanmar 3JH 34hp
Keel: external lead fin
Rudder: spade

Equipment (rating):
Monitor Windvane (excellent)
Autohelm ST4000gp (good)
PUR 35 Watermaker (excellent but small capacity)
Engine: Yanmar 3JH (1993,excellent)
Charging: Balmar 130 amp dual output alt, engine driven, with smart regulation (excellent)
Solar: 2 x 85 watt panels on side railings (excellent but small capacity)
AC charger/inverter: Heart Freedom 1000 (excellent)
Batteries: 4 x 105 Trojan 6v, 1 X 105 12v (excellent)
Propellor: Martec folding (very good)
Tankage: Water, 4 tanks, 140 gal total-Fuel, 2 tanks, 60 gal total-Holding 22 gal
Anchor windlass: Lewmar Concept 1 (excellent)
Anchors: Bruce 20kg, Bruce 30kg, Fortress 22lb (we've never used the 30kg, the others are excellent)
Chain: 300ft 5/15 high tensile (excellent, 12 years old, regalvanized once in NZ)
Rode: 300ft nylon triple strand (rarely used)
Sailing Electronics: B&G Hercules 390 (excellent functionality, the best, but old, expensive to maintain)
Navigation electronics: Lowrance GPS Plotter, CMAP on PC for charts. (Good)
Computers: Dell Latitude and Inspiron notebooks (3), Lan, Wi-fi, Cannon ip90 printer (all excellent, Dell worldwide on-site service cannot be beat)
Communications: ICOM M700 with SCS PTCIIe Pactor (excellent)
Near shore communications: CDMA EVDO cellular broadband (good)
Heat: Highseas Diesel heater (good)
Air-con: basic window unit sitting on deck in port, stowed underway (good)
Stove: Force 10 three burner (fair)
Refrigeration: 12v ice box conversion, generic unit using Danfoss 35 compressor (excellent)
Hot water: Challenger propane instant califont from NZ (excellent)
Dingy: Avon 3.4 rover with inflateable floor (very good)
Outboard: Mercury 15 2-cycle (excellent, 1 pull)

Sails (14)
Dacron cruising main (Lidgard, good)
Laminate cruising genoa (Lidgard, fair)
Dacron #4 jib (Sails Tech, very good)
Dacron Storm jib (never used)
Kevlar racing sails: Main, & #1(both SeAir, 2006-very good), #3(SeAir, new 2008), #3 (Fraiser, poor)
Kites: 1/2 oz (Lidgard) good), .7 oz-symmetrical(new, SeAir 2008) .7 oz-assymetrical (new SeAir 2008), 1.5 assym (Good), plus 2 3/4 oz all-purpose cruising kites.

If you have any questions you can email us, svwings at

More photos of sailing on Wings and places we've visited:

Fred & Judy, SV Wings, Phuket, Thailand

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