Saturday, 28 June 2008

EU and RYA Certification

We are asked for a certification policy on our kits very rarely but did do a little asking around as a result of such enquiries,that last such time was when a chap from the RYA in Britain contacted me asking if we required their help in this matter? I asked him to view our web site and the materials and kits we sell but to understand that while we do supply dinghy and yacht kits,we do not build them or sell them as finished units in any way whatsoever,he came back agreeing we did not need any certification from his department,I have asked the local CE person here in Cape Town,he also agreed but in any case,we supply our plans and materials in good faith but will not be held liable for any error in design or shortfall in a materials list taken from the designer in question design plans materials list,I should add,its not been much of a problem in our last six years of trading.

What is possible is that we can offer selected materials that are CE certificated,this can be a change from the far east marine ockume plys we normaly use,which is stamped with a BS1088 mark but carries no certificate,which is allowed I may add,or use french made ockume plys which also carry a BS1088 stamp but also a certificate number.We do not have a copy of this certificate but it will be available on request,changing to the french ply will add about 30% more to the cost of the ply part of our kits.Our epoxies and Superform bending plys are already CE approoved,so no problems there,all timbers we sell to be used on the boats build are kiln dried and should be acceptable,the SA Pine we supply for things like building stocks,is tanalith treated (copper solution) and carries an SABS approoval too.It is worth noting,that our keel boats are normally designed to the american standard ABS rules, a standard which in its self is world wide accepted,we supply to the same standard as asked for by the designer in question.
All export orders are fumigated as required by international law,a full certificate is included with the orders bill of lading documents.

Friday, 27 June 2008

First National Bank Currency Rates.

Friday once more,so here are the bank rates as of the last issue by me for the full list.

Forex Rates

All exchange rates are updated regularly. However, the rates that you receive in a FNB Branch may differ to these rates due to changing market conditions and the amount of your transaction. Please contact your nearest FNB branch if you wish to buy or sell foreign currency.

For your convenience, our Forex Calculator is available online.

Please note
Bank charges and commissions have been excluded

You can receive these rates by subscribing. These rates will be emailed to you at 09h00 and at 16h00 on valid business days.

The following European monetary area currencies have been incorporated into the Euro currency:


Public Exchange Rates against the rand for amounts up to R50 000.

Published at 2008/06/27 10:02:00 AM

Rand per foreign currency unit

Description Code Bank Selling rate Bank buying TT Bank buying TC's Bank buying notes
EURO CURRENCY EUR 12.7235 12.2168 12.1856 12.2044
BRITISH STERLING GBP 16.0319 15.3924 15.3418 15.3768
US DOLLARS USD 8.0448 7.7957 7.7397 7.7878

Thursday, 26 June 2008

Resolution 816 Epoxy information

Table Bay,Cape Town,Royal Cape Yacht Club yachts,in 1965 with Astra on the left

At least once a week we get a question or two about the epoxies we sell,what is it,is it any good,why is it less expensive than the others on sale? When I started the build on a Dix 43 about ten years ago,I took advice from the boats designer Dudley Dix and used Shell 816 epoxy,which since Shell Chemicals moved out of epoxies,has now been re branded as Resolution 816.Its a no nonsense type general purpose epoxy,it has many uses but the one we look at is its glue line and gap filling quality,it works so well that we romove all fastners from the build,then back fill screw holes with 816 epoxy and graded teak wood flour.Little Astra was literaly a sunken wreck,it was given to me on the understanding I fix her,so I skinned her with two layers of 4mm ockume marine plys and of course the glue was Resolution 816. Astra was repaired some ten years back now,she will be 74 years old now,she is also boat number 8 of possibly more than 1000 built.


Wednesday, 25 June 2008

Inside our factory

An Argie 15 clear oregon pine boom kit,being hollowed with a 32mm diameter tungsten router bit.

Inside our factory,the 16mtrs long white mast is in for a service and repaint,it will be reassembled using Tef-Gel paste.

Many may wonder where we do the work,we have what I think is a nice factory,its about 275 square meters,plus the offices,part of the factory floor space is pure storage to our stocks of Superform bending and marine plys,the rest we use as work stations,which includes a rip saw,two band saws,radial arm cut off saw,spindle,thicknesser,two compressors,plus the usual hand and power tools,its a set up that is very flexible.At this time we have a set of Clear Oregon Pine stringers to machine for a Wharram Tiki 38 and today ran some timbers for an Argie 15 mast and boom,also in Oregon Pine,the picture on this blog shows the two halfs of the Argie 15 boom,hollowed out and ready to ship with the rest of the boats kit.


Sunday, 22 June 2008

A series of information of specialist woods,Lignum Vitae

From a very soft wood like Kiri,to one of the worlds hardest woods 'Lignum Vitae',we are on a mailing list from a company who trades in such wood,what is it? hard for certain,it may be the worlds hardest species even.Used on ships in the past as propellor shaft bearings,when lubricated with sea water,it would take the strain from the turning shaft,hard wood indeed!
Commercial Lumber cc,our founder company ,specialised in sourcing timbers not normally found on a timber merchants shelf,Lignum Vitea,Greenhart,Purplehart,Spanish Cedar and Mahogany,African Balsa,we can still do the same now.


COMMON NAMES: Lignum vitae, Guayacan, Palo santo, ironwood


DENSITY: 77 - 82 lbs./cu.ft.




DURABILITY: Exceptional resistance to moisture and fungal attack

SOURCE: West Indes, Central America, northern South America

DESCRIPTION: One of the hardest and heaviest woods (three times as hard as oak), lignum vitae is most commonly used for mallet heads, bearings and rollers. Because of its durability and natural lubricants, it is the preferred wood for propeller bushings and other underwater applications. The lignum vitae tree generally grows to a diameter of about 12", although historically, trees in the 18" - 30" range have been known.

Lignum vitae is reddish brown when freshly cut, with pale yellow sapwood. As it oxidizes, the color turns to a deep green, often with black details. The grain is highly interlocked, making it difficult to work with edge tools, but it machines well and takes a high polish. It is a remarkably good wood for turning. A similar species, known as Maracaibo lignum vitae (Bulnesia arboria), which grows in Venezuela and northern South America, is similar in properties and appearance and is sometimes substituted for genuine lignum vitae.

ENVIRONMENTAL STATEMENT: being replanted by our known suppliers: