Get the latest news at...
Necker Belle

We're on the water!

Hi all,

The last time I wrote, Necker Belle was out of the shed and was awaiting her reunion with the ocean. Two days after she saw sun for the first time, she was on the slipway ready to be lowered into the water!

We did this by lowering her on the slipway via a hydraulic winch whilst still on the cradle that had brought her out of the shed.

On the slipway, on her way down

On the slipway, on her way down

Once she was in the water, still supported by the cradle, Goce and Nudge completed the through hull penetration' checks of the spots below the waterline that could possibly leak.

Of the 34 spots one needed attention, so like the space shuttle Discovery, just shy of the countdown we had to delay our lift off. Three hours later, she was back on the slipway and with everything watertight, we had lift off as she floated by herself for the first time since March 2007.

Before she was completely free of the cradles, we had to ensure the steering and propulsion were fine.

As all worked perfectly, Necker Belle was able to float off and be free at last. She's now floating at the end of the dock with the team of shipwrights working hard to get her ready for a November departure.

The next big thing is to step the mast, which we'll be doing this week. So I'll send you another update soon!

Jono
And here she is!