Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Beer Tender

The scale is difficult to gauge here!  
Combining traditional craftsmanship, with whimsy, sailing, and malted beverages, James McMullen has put smiles on many people's faces and beer in their bellies.  Debuting at The Port Townsend Wooden boat Festival the newest incarnation of this rocking baby cradle now soothes sailers from port to port, carrying mini kegs of golden elixir.  Once a model, holding boat building merchandise, the petite vessel became the perhaps the most photographed boat in the festival, her photograph published in 38 Degrees North and featured in a few Youtube videos.

At the 2012 Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival
Photo by Michael Bogoger
In James' Words
"The little keg tender did amazingly well towing across Admiralty Inlet. I put it in the water soon after leaving Keystone just to see how it would fare, and it totally exceeded my expectations so well, that I simply left it in. Through tide rip and tugboat wake, it didn't ship a drop! As this little boat is purely a scaled down version of the round-bottomed lapstrake prams I have grown to prefer above all others for a towed tender, this was a gratifying confirmation of the type.

On the way out of the festival on Sunday, though, I managed to slip the painter right out in front of the beach where people were starting to gather to watch the schooners sail by. How embarrassing! I had to heave to and wear around and chase it down off a rapidly approaching lee shore with a fair amount of chop in the full view of a whole bunch of critical eyes. . .yikes! I was mortified. . .but the only thing worse would have been to lose it to shipwreck, and I just barely pulled it off without running us both aground. It did work out okay in the end though, and I even got a facebook message from a guy I had talked to in the festival saying, "Thanks for that great tacking and gybing demo you did right there off the stands." Cripes! "

Movie snipit of this little boat in action --> A very nice tack!

Snugged up tight, ready for refreshing action

Finishing the bow
You can see the boat nails shining a bit!

In her early days she was in advertising!  Photo by David Best

We can clearly see where the party is!

Mini kegs securely lashed in!  Photo by Michael Bogoger

Proper and Salty!  Photo by Michael Bogoger