Saturday, 13 November 2010

On the beach in Jacere,Brasil.

Not quite a beach,more a flat sand bank left as the tide recedes but a perfect spot to dry out beteen those tides.I put the idea to Brian Stevens,owner of a boat building yard and river side bar, that given we could all give a hand with the labour to set it up and if he sourced the timber and bolts,we would all use it once then he would left with a facility that would add to what was available on his spot on the river.

There were about eight South African yachts there then,with at least three of those being from the HBYC,it was a great place to be and Brian Stevens was a huge help to us all at the time,Brian is still there,give him my best regards when your visiting.

The South African boats were,Baraka,Sheleco,Pearl, Durban,Dancing Diamond, FBYC,Simonstown,Gipsy Girl, RCYC,Cape Town, Fiddler,Bay Wood,Ocean Cloud, HBYC,Hout Bay. None of these boats planed to meet at Brians place,we just turned up one by one as the days went by!


Friday, 12 November 2010

Xcaliber Hand bikes from Cape Town

Known as a Low Rider or Recumbent Tricycle,these are made by hand locally,with some of the shipping rates the builder has been quoted coming in at such high rates that export seems unlikly,we have offered to investigate onward sales world wide. Each bike is made to order to suit the rider.Made in a specialist workshop by a disabled rider himself,with twenty years of experiance with these bikes, your buying from a person who understands your needs.

Contact me at for prices and shipping.

The builder,Eugene comments:

Xcaliber Handcycles is a South African based handcycle design and build company. Knowing the needs of disabled athletes from personal experience, we strive to ensure you can still perform at your peak on the sporting front. Handcycles are becoming an everyday part of many people’s lives, in sport and recreation. Our cycles are light, stylish and sleek. We strive to customize each Xcaliber Handcycle for the specific need of the client. And each Xcaliber Handcycle is guaranteed to meet your sporting needs.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Dinghy kit building,Optimists and other.

We are asked on quite a regular basis will we build our kits,its not really what we do but now and again we ask a proffesional or two to look at the project,anything from an Argie 10 dinghy to a Didi 26 so far.One of the builders we work with was here yesterday,I showed him an Optimist kit thats about to be packed and sent to Switzerland,would he be interested in building our Optimist wood/epoxy kits I asked?

One of our Optimist kits built up and sailing.

At first it was clear he was not very keen but as he has just completed one of our Argie 15 kits I asked why not the Optimist,it seems when he tried once in the past,cutting by hand he discovered the plans were wrong and nothing much fitted but as soon as I showed him our special builders jig and precut plywood panels he changed his mind.The way it will work is we sell him the kit and he builds you the boat,the account for his labour is direct to the customer.

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Cape Horn integrated self steering

Its that time of the year again and both local and other yachtsmen are again asking me what vane gears I can recomend? At this time I am sourcing shipping fees to three sets of Cape Horn gears for local yachts,thats Canada to South Africa. Prices on the vanes vary from around U$3450 to U$3890,plus delivery and local vat,so please be aware they are not inexpensive but against having crew to watch out for and feed they will seem cheaper once your under way! We now  have brochures and a 100 minutes DVD from the suppliers,it will cost printing and postage,allow R75 if you want a copy.

"I bought the Caphorn as a backup to my electronic autopilot for the Governors Cup Yacht Race, 1750+ miles in South Atlantic. (...) After the first day of sailing and using my Auto Pilot, my motor packed up and I was left with no means to recharge my batteries, so for the rest of the way I used the CapHorn. It was marvellous, allowing me to get sleep while racing single-handed against crewed yachts, and still came second in my class against these yachts.

Ian Williams, Ultimate 30, MOMENTS

The Cavern Club Wall

This was a club I would often visit on weekday lunch hour or a friday or saturday night,the bands were great and normally more than one would play each evening,as one act was leaving the next was on stage and pluging in,the music hardly ever stopped! The first thing that you noticed when entering the cavern club was the smell of Detol disinfectant,it must have been used daily for cleaning.Going down the flight of steps,were there two,you arrived first at the cloak room opening on the right,Cilla Black worked there once.

There was the three long brick arches,not too high either,there were people and music,loud music,dancers did the Cavern Stomp and swinging arms often resulted in a burn from dancers cigerette,there was no air conditioning,there must have been extraction fans though? As I remember there was just,tea,coffee and soft drinks on sale,no beers or wine,no drugs either,these were good and safe days when you could catch the Ribble 321 bus into the city,walk on your own the entire width of the main center,never be worried about attack.When it was eventually time to leave,the first thing that hit you as you went back up into Matthew Street and clean air,was the cold and the silince,yes,the silence,it was very noisy down below!

I never saw groups like the Beatles in the Cavern Club,they became instant stars on the release of their first album,the club was simply too small for them as a venue and they never played there again but I did see and hear Gerry and the Pacemakers,it may have been a saturday afternoon session,they were filming for the movie 'Ferry Across the Mersey',I may be in the crowd scenes?


Its said that one of the names on this wall is of the band Pink Floyd,which leads to this fact,or is it fiction?

heres the real answer. when Pink Floyd first formed and started touring they performed at the old original Cavern club in liverpool England (I think in 1968)

When the original Cavern was demolished to make way for a shopping center called Cavern Walks the Cavern Club was rebuilt on the opposite side of Matthew St and 4000odd bricks were cleaned and sandblasted with the names of all the groups who ever played at the original cavern club.and set into the front of the building. The wall is still there today. Thus Pink Floyd were" just another brick in the wall"

Left click the picture to read some of the names better.

The Beatles made their first lunchtime appearance at the club on Tuesday 21 February 1961. They had returned to Liverpool from Hamburg, Germany, where they had been playing at the Indra and the Kaiserkeller. Their stage show had been through a lot of changes and some in the audience thought they were watching a German band. From 1961 to 1963 The Beatles made 292 appearances at the club, with their last occurring on 3 August 1963, a month after the band recorded "She Loves You" and just six months before the Beatles' first trip to the U.S. At the time, Brian Epstein promised the club's owners that the Beatles would return someday, but it was a promise that was never fulfilled. By this time, "Beatlemania" was sprouting across England, and the small club could no longer satisfy audience demand for the group. During 1962, The Hollies took The Beatles' slot at the Cavern Club. The Beatles had graduated from the club and had been signed to EMI's Parlophone label by producer George Martin. The amount of musical activity in Liverpool and Manchester caused record producers who had previously never ventured very far from London to start looking to the north.

In the decade that followed, a wide variety of popular acts appeared at the club, including The Rolling Stones, The Yardbirds, The Kinks, Elton John, Queen, The Who & John Lee Hooker.

Future star Cilla Black worked as the hat-check girl at The Cavern in her pre-fame days. A recording studio, "Cavern Sound" opened in the basement of an adjoining building, run by Nigel Greenberg and Peter Hepworth.

The club closed in March 1973, and was filled in during construction work on the Merseyrail underground rail loop. Jan Akkerman with Dutch group Focus were the last to play The Cavern a few days before the club was shut down in May 1973.

Liverpool's Cavern Club Bricks,sold originally for U$7 each for Liverpool charity,one was auctioned at U$500,

The Cavern Club opened its doors on 10 Mathew Street in Liverpool, England in 1957, as an underground cellar jazz club. Above the cellar, a fruit warehouse operated in the daytime. Soon, the skiffle craze hit England, especially Liverpool, and skiffle acts were given top priority at the Cavern. Skiffle is an improvised form of jazz with hillbilly touches, such as washboards. John Lennon's first performance at the Cavern was with the Quarrymen skiffle group on August 7, 1957. Ringo Starr was most likely the drummer for The Eddie Clayton Skiffle Group's performance at the Cavern that same month. John Lennon and Paul McCartney of The Quarrymen performed their first Cavern performance on January 24, 1958.

In 1973, the fruit warehouse above The Cavern was demolished and the cellar basement was filled in. The Cavern Club was shut down from 1973-84. Shortly after John Lennon's death in 1980, Liverpool was saddened and discussed a possible memorial. What better tribute to the John Lennon they knew than to bring back the old Cavern Club and to revitalize the area that was the stomping ground for the early Beatles! In 1981 they excavated the cellar, and the foundation of the building was deemed architecturally unsound, so the cellar was rebuilt to its original specifications at 75% of its original size to allow for reinforcement. The unused bricks were treated and saved for rebuilding the Cavern. The remaining salvage of bricks, owned by Royal Life, were certified and sold, with the proceeds going to a Liverpool charity. This original brick from The Cavern Club has a certificate plaque of authenticity from HB Johnson, General Manager of Royal Life, as well as R. McFall, founding owner of the original Cavern Club. 4 1/4 x 9 x 3

Monday, 8 November 2010

Mabu Vinyl,Rheede Street,Gardens,Cape Town

It was some months back I discovered a shop selling old records,plus CDs and related music,I was at the time trying to source a drive belt and stylus for my Yamaha turntable.I emailed Mabu and Stephen the stores owner replied and recomended a place just outside town,they had the parts and stylus and I have been replaying my own LPs ever since!

Try :

I asked Stephen if he had a number of artists in stock,some we were in luck with,others he has made a note of and when a copy comes in he will contact me,the picture is of Stephen searching for one of the albums I requested,its quite a store,something for everyone I think,he will also buy in your old discs if you want to sell?