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Jezebel

Vessel Number: HV000539
Date: 1937
Designer: AC Barber
Dimensions:
Vessel Dimensions: 11.28 m x 7.62 m x 1.98 m x 1.71 m (37 ft x 25 ft x 6.5 ft x 5.6 ft)
Classification:Vessels and fittings
Significance
JEZEBEL is an International 6 metre class racing yacht designed by AC Barber and built in Woy Woy NSW in 1937. It is an early example of an Australian designed metre class boat, and the only metre class yacht designed by Barber, one of the principal naval architects and yacht designers from the 1920s through to the 1960s.
DescriptionJEZEBEL is 37’ (11.2m) long, 6’6” (1.98m) beam and 5’6” (1.67m) draft. The designer AC Barber was well-known through various different yacht designs such as the Derwent Class, RANI and other canoe-sterned yachts, along with the plans he prepared for 12’ Cadet Class dinghy based on the original design by James Alderton. JEZEBEL was built in Woy Woy NSW by Gordon Beattie, who was one of the principal boatbuilders on Brisbane Water. It was carvel planked in New Zealand kauri with a flush deck and was going to be Barber's own racing boat to compete against the Wm. Fife designed 6 metres racing in Sydney at the time, including SJO RU and CLIPPER. However JEZEBEL was apparantly sold to James Aldertonin order to repay a debt towed to Alderton before it was ever raced by Barber. Soon after the transaction James Alderton passed away and JEZEBEL was inherited by his son Jim. Jim had just won the World Championship 18 footer series and the prize was 1,000 pounds. Jim wanted to buy a trawler and needed more funds, so he sold JEZEBEL for 400 pounds, but he added a small coach house, a self-draining cockpit and four bunks to make it more versatile.

It is also understood there were some other problems. When launched, it showed more buoyancy aft than intended, so the keel was modified and the steering was altered to the current “whipstaff” arrangement to allow the helmsman and crew to move about four feet (1.2m) further aft to help trim it better. This is disputed however, with a former crew memebr recalling it was added by a later owner to give more space in the cockpit. The yacht was also said to had atrocious weather helm, a tendency to head up into the wind all the time when sailing. This was reduced soon after launching by a significant reduction in the mainsail luff length and area, but this seemed to only affect its speed in very light conditions.

Mr Alan Rich bought the craft from Alderton and named it HURRICANE. He then sailed it on Sydney Harbour and Pittwater for over 60 years, an unusually long period of ownership. Alan Rich had been asking Barber to design him a fast cruising yacht but Barber persuaded him to buy the 6 metre, as “she is a lot better built boat than you can afford”. Rich had joined the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club (RPAYC) in 1934, and up to the time of his death in 2000 was the oldest and longest serving member of that club. He raced HURRICANE every week for many years.

Alan Rich initiated the Cruising Division at RPAYC and converted HURRICANE to a more comfortable cruiser/racer configuration. The hull and deck were sheathed in fibreglass by Top Hat Yachts in 1972. It was originally fitted with a Dolphin 2 stroke petrol engine but a diesel was fitted in 1977 along with a new mast, both are still on the yacht in 2012. It is also understood that it was used as the start boat for many years after Rich stopped racing, apparently they often did 'gate starts'. HURRICANE was the non-racing gate boat sailing across the JOG yacht fleet and they would sail around pass its transom and start. He sold the boat in 1998 (when he was 84 years old).

It has since had three owners. The second owner Jacques Sapir transported HURRICANE by road to Brisbane. When he was transferred to Hobart, he had the boat sailed single-handed to Tasmania. It was reported to be a very dry boat, with a sweet motion. He fitted a new cabin and cockpit in 1999. In 2003 it was sold to the next owner Roger Aldridge, a member of the Kettering Yacht Club. Roger changed the name from HURRICANE to JEZEBEL and modified the rig to the current proportions. The top of the mast was tapered, and an adjustable backstay fitted to allow some mast bend. The roller furling main was removed and replaced with a fully battened main and the diamonds were removed. It was also fitted a new jib furler and No. 2 jib with 110% overlap proportions.

The third and current owner was looking for a yacht, but did not have anything like JEZEBEL in mind until he came across it for sale in 2007. In his words “it was a case of 'love at first sight' – how could you not love those beautiful lines, and the way she glides through the water? She is a bit like a swan. From afar she looks elegant and serene, but in the cockpit it is all action - the big mainsail requires good muscles and she can be a handful with a big kite and a good breeze."

JEZEBEL still races regularly and remains in good condition, one of the few surviving 6 metre class boats from the 1930s when there were fleets in NSW and Victoria, and they raced for the Northcott Cup.

Vessel Details
Ballast:external
Ballast:lead
Cabin or superstructure material and construction:timber plywood
Current status:floating
Current status:operational
Deck layout:cabin
Deck layout:decked with cockpit
Deck material and construction:timber plywood
Hand propulsion/steering mechanism:tiller
Hull material and construction:carvelcarvel-planked
Hull material and construction:timber
Hull shape:displacement
Hull shape:monohull
Hull shape:overhanging stem
Hull shape:overhanging transom
Hull shape:round bottom
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:full keel
Keel/centreboard/rudder type:keel hung rudder
Motor propulsion:auxiliary motor
Motor propulsion:inboard
Propeller:single
Rig type:sloop
Additional Titles

Previous title: Hurricane

Primary title: Jezebel

Alternate Numbers

Sail Number: 28

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