June 23, 2020 at 11:24 pm #7249
Gentlemen,As you all know I have inherited Ashley Marshal’s SUNDANCE through Robert Mahon on August 23, 2019. According to Robert, they had drifted apart and lost contact with each other and has had SUNDANCE in his garage attic for fifteen years until he decided to hand it down to one of the Metro Marine Modellers’ member as he was downsizing and wanted to move up North. Needless to say I had the opportunity to answer to the call first so when I came up to Robert’s house that day to pick up the boat I was so excited that my childhood dream was finally going to materialize after forty five years as I had always wanted a large scale boat since I first saw the Metro Marine Modellers sail their majestic pond yachts by HMS HAIDA at Ontario Place back in August 1974, five days after I landed in Toronto as an immigrant to be with my father. I was fourteen years old at the time and had barely the clothes on my back with my father working two jobs to send money back home to my mother and siblings in the Philippines. All I could do back then was come to Ontario Place after after school and on weekends to watch the Metro Marine Modellers sail their pond yachts and dream that one day I will own one myself.
As Robert led me towards his garage, my heart started pumping harder and when I finally gazed my eyes on the 2 large pond yachts on the garage floor, SUNDANCE just captured my eyes and heart. I had so many questions to Robert that I think I may have even overwhelmed him with questions. Long story short I took SUNDANCE home and when I brought it into our condo the wife did not appreciate the fact that when she got home, this big wooden sailboat bigger than her sat in middle of our living room which took a good amount of space. All that she could do was stare at it and shake her head at me with her eyes wide open. I couldn’t even put it in my hobby room as I do not have the floor space for it let alone put the mast on it even when SUNDANCE’s keel was literally on the floor as it was that tall and we only have a 9 foot high ceiling. Finally before that night was over, my wife had to have the last word as he she could not hold it back no more. Her question to me were, how much I paid for it and where I am going to store it. I replied “None. I inherited HER from a retired fellow modeller and SHE will be in my hobby room when everything is done. Just be thankful that SHE does not have a pair of legs.” Needless to say, I won that conversation.
I brought SUNDANCE to work on August 25th and placed it in a storage room with a 12 foot high ceiling where I would be able to actually put the mast and sails on its deck and find out exactly what parts are damaged and or missing. For the next two days to come I wiped her down, sorted out her inner workings, cleaned up and straightened out her bent spreaders and other brass parts as well as sorted out the mast rigging. After installing the mast and riggings on its deck on August 28th, it was then time to hang the sails on August 29th but I was unable to at that time as both sails were rolled up in a cardboard tube with the main sail’s lower area crumpled and creased up as the cardboard tube it was stored in had been damaged on one end over the years in storage. I had to roll both sails tighter in the opposite direction and stored it back into a smaller cardboard tube over night hoping that it would flatten out for the following day. On August 30th, both sails somewhat flattened out when I took them out of the cardboard tube but the crumpled and creased area on the main sail was still there and stuck out like a sore thumb. Nonetheless, I proceeded with the hanging of the sails on that day where I had to use a six foot ladder to hang the jib sail onto the mast. I then stood back and pulled the ladder away from SUNDANCE to look at it from a distance and even walked around it. I then pulled the main sail into the mast slot where I hoisted it slowly passing over my head to the top of the mast via a pulley. It was a magical moment for me as the main sail made it up to the top of the mast and the only thing left to do was secure the hoist line onto the mast cleat. I stood back soon after I secured the line onto the cleat and stepped back six feet away to soak in SUNDANCE’s magnificence in all its glory after being stored away for fifteen years. For the next following days, I installed all new electronics in her but I only hooked up the rudder as my plan was to deck mount all the new hardware and sheet lines instead of it being under the deck as it was originally configured. After all she deserves an upgrade on her new life with me.
On the morning of September 2nd I had the urge to find out if SUNDANCE’s hull was sea worthy and so later that day I decided that the wife and I would dock her on the water at Humber Pond for fifteen minutes to see if her hull was tight. To my surprise, SUNDANCE’s hull was completely dry, not even a drop of water passed through the rudder block even after fifteen years of it being dry docked. I picked up SUNDANCE from where she docked to wipe her down but my wife had asked me why I am putting her away. The wife insisted that I put on its sails and enjoy sailing SUNDANCE for the day. In hearing her say that, I knew then that SUNDANCE will be with my wife and I for a long time. So I rigged up SUNDANCE’s mast and set her sheets to be fixed for the day of sailing and never looked back. She sailed straight like an arrow skimming on the water towards the middle of the pond majestically heeled port. She even turned on a dime ever so gracefully as if she was on rails. I could not be happier in that moment of time that my childhood dream has come to reality after 45 years to the day of August 23, 2019 that I would be sailing my very own pond yacht. Here is its first sail after 15 years in storage, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CGA7NwQj5oQ .
The 2nd time it was on water was at Lakeshore Promenade to sail the open water of the marina with the members of the Metro Marine Modellers. It was a most rewarding day and an even better experience than my first sail with her at Humber Pond. She sailed the open water majestically that day even though she only still had rudder control. There is just something different about sailing a large wooden boat. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qMxHs6H5J-A&t=205s .
It was then time for me to find out more of SUNDANCE’s history and its class so I began asking around within the club for information about Ashley’s where about. Not everyone necessarily checks the MMM web site so that did not really become fruitful. I did manage to get a phone number for Ashley from Victor Wong but that phone line was no longer in use. I searched the internet for days which became weeks and my research led me to believe that my un-identified SUNDANCE is of either a 10R or “A” Class sailboat. With that in mind and a vacation coming in November to go back home after 45 years of being away from my homeland the Philippines, I set my goal to just layback as I prepared to get back to my roots.
To be continued…June 24, 2020 at 12:17 am #7252
Here are some photos of SUNDANCE when I received them from Robert Mahon.June 24, 2020 at 12:17 am #7253June 24, 2020 at 12:18 am #7254June 24, 2020 at 12:20 am #7256June 24, 2020 at 12:20 am #7257June 24, 2020 at 12:21 am #7258June 24, 2020 at 12:21 am #7259June 24, 2020 at 12:22 am #7260June 24, 2020 at 12:23 am #7261June 24, 2020 at 12:23 am #7262June 24, 2020 at 12:24 am #7263June 24, 2020 at 12:24 am #7264June 24, 2020 at 12:26 am #7265
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