3 Tonner 


3 Tonner



Hi John
Have been trying to find some time to write and give you an update on our boat Celtic Lass but, like everyone else this time of year it has been difficult to prioritise.
It is likely that we will change her name for various reasons. Kenny is Scottish and gets frustrated by the religious innuendos of the word Celtic, it has already been frequently mispronounced. Also we are a family of 4K's - Kenny, Karen, Kerry and Kieran, so the letter K figures strongly in our household. For this reason we thought it might be appropriate to rename her 'Keltic Klass'.   We keep the theme and some originality but we make it our own!
Have attached several photos for you which hopefully are self explanatory, but if you want to ask US anything please don't hesitate. There are a few from when we  first took ownership in August and then motored her across to her new home  (Kenny me and the children), 
Once again, thank you so much for your welcome support and advice and we wish you and your family a very Happy Christmas and New Year.
Kindest Regards
Karen and Kenny   Dec 05



The main news is that we sold our BMC engine, purchased the Yanmar 2GM that I think Kenny had notified to you and on a particularly unforgiving stormy weekend a few weeks back we hired a crane to lift one out and lower the other onto the boat. I have enclosed a few pictures for you of this operation as well as a few of our boat as she is at the moment.
It was quite a logistical feat as the previous owner had replaced the roof with a non hatch/ fixed option and Kenny actually had to cut this to allow crane access. Our Marina locals were really helpful. We motored over to the crane site (and she moved without any trouble at all), the next day our buyers travelled down from Lincolnshire to meet us on site and we achieved the lift without incident. We utilised the crane time to drop our new engine on board to save any awkward lifting later on. We then got a tow back. The weather was appalling but that's the next stage completed.
That's as far as we have got so far as we just haven't had any time to progress the fitting. I note you said in an earlier reply that many owners have changed engines. Although Kenny is extremely competent we would never refuse any invaluable advice on fitting the Yanmar, especially from those with experience of such a project. If you have any info you think would be worth looking at before we do this in the New Year, or any web sites/ articles you can recommend, we would really appreciate it. We have already located a full copy of the Yanmar engine manual which we have downloaded.
The space now cleared by the BMC is amazing and will now allow us to have a really good look at how best to refurbish inside.


 Left, he old BMC in situ, being lifted out to make room for the new Yanmar.





I am having real problems getting insurance sorted out for Celtic Lass. I only wanted third party fire and theft at this stage but everyone is asking for a full survey before they will go ahead. Do you know of any appropriate Insurers we could perhaps use for basic cover until we have finished the work and can then get a survey done? 

Look at the Advisors page or the gear that works pages, there is the contact details of 'Craftinsure' there. They arranged  insurance for me.







The inside after we got our hands on it!,  

 She has lovely portholes and the covers look like they could be brass but are in quite a state. Any useful suggestions on how I might be able to restore them? I don't mind using elbow grease if that's what's needed but on the bits we tried I'm not making any impact. Would we need to get them dipped or something similar? They need to be removed anyway as the glass is crazed and needs replacing but they are such a lovely feature I really don't want to replace them with anything modern. 

Any ideas anyone?  I have taken them to metal finishers, the sort of people who polish golf clubs etc..  they make a good job of them, otherwise a buffer and some paste on an electric drill, that's how I polish my prop every year....  John



I have attached a pic of the varnished base plate that we have just got made out of Mahogany to replace the old one. See pics.

 It looks really good and too good for the boat now!  I glossed it with the proper stuff three times and rubbed down in-betweens.

 On the final coat yesterday I got a small run on the edge but this will cut out once fully hard. (You can just see it in the picture).   I was annoyed at this as I am quite a good painter when I put my mind to it? The varnish will continue to soak and shrink on and into the wood so I will give it a final coat in a few days or so. 

I have just sourced a drive coupling for the new Yanmar engine and need to pick this up in Portsmouth. Then I need to get it turned out to about an inch and an eighth. All takes time and I can’t get enough of that at the mo. But things are moving in the right direction at least. I am reconditioning the mast heel at the moment and stripping paint off the boom ready for re-paint or other…? 

I am also going to get steel support plates together/made for the final bolting of the mast plate, heel and under deck rigid support. Getting the mast up and refurbished and the engine running are our two vital tasks at the moment.  After that I will be able to get stuck into the joinery and make her rain tight etc.

 Anyway many thanks for your support and effort. Just a quick note to let you know what’s going on.

Kind regards 

Kenny and Karen

What a nice looking bit of joinery and varnishing!  If the standard is kept up you will have the rest of us looking seriously at our paintwork and varnish too!


October 2013.  Sadly Kenny and Karen have been forced to give up  'Celtic Lass' due to ill health.  We do wish them well.

The good news is she has been sold and the new owner Bob Wheeler, has set too to complete the restoration. 

Here are a few pictures from Bob of her as she is now.

The high standard Kenny and Karen got the interior to is apparent!



Update from Bob. 

She's coming out of the water 2nd November and I shall continue his good work over the winter with modifications to the galley, forward cabin, doors, adding a fridge. 


I have already done a good bit of re-rigging as Kenny never sailed her.

I will add plotter/fish finder, vhf, (I'm also a diver)

I will send in a few more pics when completed.

Bob has been in touch and we are trying to source sails for the boat. Seems the mast may not be standard though so measurements will have to be made first.








February 2014.


Here's a selection of pics of the major restoration so far.


Port side and deck replaced. Roof replaced. All hull timber epoxy sheathed. All top glass sheathed. 3 weeks done. 3 weeks still to do. At one point early in project I nearly scrapped her but relented. Cost so far 1200.


Another 1000 odd to go.


A labour of love alone.


Hope you are well.



Major surgery but will be worth it in the end!







April 2014.

Hi John,

I did promise to send you any new pics of Celtic Lass for your site.

As you browse these you will see that she had some serious rot issues due to many years with a leaking roof and decks. This  left me with loads more to do than I would ever have contemplated. When I first realised the extent of her issues, a Viking funeral was considered.

However, my wife and I do have a soft spot for old pretty things, so we bit the bullet and got on with it.

4 weeks solid work by both of us, an indeterminate amount of money,  and much gratitude to Ridge Wharf for the use of their workshop and she is now ready for launch.

In addition to the replacement of much wood, all the outside of her hull is now epoxy sheathed, and all the deck and cabin have been GRP sheathed, sanded and filled before paint so she still looks like wood.

The list of new, good used and extras is too long to write but she has everything she needs for some serious sailing, including a nice 2nd hand racing sail from a Brightlingsea one design with 4 battens, 2 tuphnol winches, and a fair array of good jibs donated free by a very nice person.

She is due for launch just before Easter and we plan some sailing around the Swanage/ Bournemouth area over the Easter hols to give her a shakedown.

As usual, there are other things we’d like to do to her, but I think this’ll do for one year.

Hope all’s well with you and yours,

Bob Wheeler

Bob has sent a whole batch of pics of the rebuild.  Seems the rot had gone much further than he first appreciated, but bob and his lady decided it was a project they would take on and congratulations to them for the perseverance.  i know many would have thrown the towel in when it got anywhere near this state.

The painstaking work to remove all the soft timber must have been heartbreaking and doubtless the job seemed endless.  Yet they achieved all this in 4 weeks!!!!

But the finished product looks just right.

With any luck  Bob and his lady wife will be enjoying sailing her for years to come.




October 2014.

Bob has been in touch to say he has had fun with the boat this year, but plans a few modifications.

In conversation it transpired  Celtic lass probably has the lighter 1200lb keel so as the bilge plates need attention it is a good time to drop the main keep and add 400lb plus and at the same time to have new, deeper bilge keels made.  this will bring her in line with the later designed boats and her sailing abilities will be transformed.  Look forward to hearing more from Bob.




March 2015.


Robert has just sent in these pics to show the additional man keel, filled in back to the skeg, and the new bilge keels.



Eventually all nicely painted and awaiting launch!


The timbers for the skeg show up nicely that infill will make a lot of difference to the way she sails and  though she maybe could do with a deeper main keel with more weight, for now Robert is plumping for adding interior lead weights.


Next season he should be enjoying her more!




April 2015.

Hi John

Added 200kg ballast to keel plate as pics, but when launched we found we had to move it aft quite a bit.

Guess the iroko full keel added buoyancy aft.

Trims well now. Sea trials Thursday on.



Hi Robert, 

the boat should be slightly bows down when on the mooring, with all the kit on board, tanks full, but no crew.  Then when you step aboard you make it level!  Crew are normally in cockpit of course.  My cockpit floor is sealed and slopes aft by 1 inch so that when our boat is on mooring and slightly down by the head the cockpit still drains aft to the 2 drains as the rear of floor....

Make sure when you are aboard the mast is vertical or at most leaning aft 2 to 3 inches.  Use a halyard from the mast head on a calm day, not today, Storm 10 here! 

How have you fixed the lead down?  I burnt out a drill drilling holes through the lead to use long screws!  Some use battens over it, but whatever you use it must not move!

You will really feel the difference this year, she will be steadier and plough though small waves better, and stand up to canvas better, as she is now slightly deeper in the water, and has that infill bet she sails to windward better.

Good job Robert.  Wait till this storm passes before sea trials!




April 15.


Discovered the best way to fix lead is to drive a hardened steel screw through as a drill then fix with stainless. Inch thick ingots cut with a chop saw.

She sits level with crew aft.

We've gone home till Thursday because of storms then we'll try her out. Posh job done by riggers to your specs. Tiller pilot fitted by me.

Made my own fittings as theirs are robbery!





Hi John

Tests today in light winds were very positive. If anything she turns away from the wind.

That will change in higher winds I'm sure. Tiller pilot works well, and extra ballast feels good.

Full keel has changed her turning axis from mid-ships  to rear of cabin!

Looks good, more tests over next 2 days.



 2020 and Celtic Lass is up for sale, as the advert says, not a project a sail away boat.


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