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February sail will mean vastly different things to different folks.  For some, it’ll mean curling up with an inspiring sailing story like this one from Small Boats Magazine written by a retired USN sailor and partner rowing and sailing the 17′ dory he built down the Mississippi, camping on sand bars along the way.  

For others, February sail means celebrating the completion of a 8.75″ model of a 12′ 6″ cat boat, approximately 1/22 scale.  Steve Turi writes as follows:

“Finally done!   In the early 1990s Lynn and I visited a Beetle Cat boat shop in SE MA.  We smelled the cedar sawn for the planks. We saw them steaming oak to bend into ribs.  I tried lifting a used boat onto the car roof with no success. I had to settle for promotional literature and plan sketches.

When we got home I used the sketches and cut out a boat-shaped block of balsa on the band saw.  I meant to use the block as a form to shape individual ribs and then planks to shape the hull.   Far too ambitious I realized and put the project aside……for thirty years.”

Note:  Steve’s models have appeared on this blog previously here.

“In 2019 I took that balsa block out and began tinkering. Here I am, finished tinkering. At last!   I didn’t intentionally “weather” the model but in the course of building it got beat up enough to make it look like it was sailed long and hard.”

I think it’s a beauty, a work of love.

And an aptly named one also.





Then again, February sail might mean basking in a location where February is warm, like the Bahamas.  Don M wrote recently as follows:  “I am anchored in Mayaguana as we get pummelled by 20 knots of wind in an anchorage that is open but for a reef keeping most of the sea at bay. I looked up this beautiful boat I saw here and found your posts about the schooner.  She is a beautiful boat.  Interestingly she has three masts now.  Haven’t seen sails up so don’t know if the third mast is functional or just pretty. “

Thanks to Steve and Don for sending along these photos and stories, and to David for the story about his Mississippi adventure.

For everything and more you ever hoped to know about Beetle cats–named for the Beetle family–click here.

For model ships in bottles, click here. For RC models of tugboats click here and .. oops!  looks like ..  I’ll have to complete that one soon, like for tomorrow. 


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