Monday, December 31, 2012

Are we there yet?

Sitting next to the wood-burning stove polishing the new Kromhout engine's badges and listening to #FionaApple's' The Idler Wheel is Wiser than the Driver of the Screw and Whipping Cords will Serve You more than Ropes will Ever Do'.
( - just wanted to type that :)

Location:U T Delfiaweg,Hoogkerk,The Netherlands

Friday, December 28, 2012

Meanwhile, back in the kitchen

Claudia chooses to make a start on the second part of the kitchen rather than help me with the washing-up. A fair division of labour.

Location:U T Delfiaweg,Groningen,The Netherlands

Kromhout 6TS

So suddenly we are the proud owners of a late '50's 6-cylinder Kromhout TS diesel engine.
Today we collected all the loose bits and in the first week of the new year we'll fetch the heavy bit and come up with a plan.

Friday, December 21, 2012


It doesn't help us get everything done before the Christmas break, nor does it look like it'll be with us till Christmas, but while it's white and fluffy it is rather nice.

Monday, December 17, 2012

While with my other hand

(Glad that BlogPress still works. )

Before we had to leave we had our first insurance inspection aboard 'Zwadde'. Our cabin walls and general plan passed with flying colours and we have the go-ahead for stage two.

While we were away Peter has been busy jointing and planing and has got all the doors and frames ready.

Now I'm back on my knees getting the showers and toilets ready for the first layers of epoxy.

Everything at once

Back at work after a week in England and nobody has done anything for us. So it's everything at once in the small gap between now and Christmas.
Here we're scarphing beech plywood for a long work table for a local product designer.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Here we go again

It's back to basics time again as we start work on this winter's project.
The Zwadde is a two-masted Klipper that sails with paying customers in the summer and is a B&B barge in Groningen in the winter.
Not this year though, as we will be busy building four cabins and two bathrooms to the latest charter insurance regulations.
From the ground up.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Workin' on a building

Our trailer full of larch planks and beams is well on it's way to becoming a couple of sheds.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Larch in a trailer

Just back from the saw mill in Drenthe where we filled a trailer with larch planks and beams.
We're going to build a couple of sheds; one for us and one for our neighbour.

Friday, June 29, 2012

How many Optimist sailors ...

... does it take to blow up a buoyancy bag?

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

First nail. #in

Peter shoots the first batten into a frame in the hold of the Watergeus. This is the tjalk that has been with us a couple of times before for the rear cabin. We are gradually working our way from stern to stem.

First nail. #in

Peter shoots the first batten into a frame in the hold of the Watergeus. This is the tjalk that has been with us a couple of times before for the rear cabin. We are gradually working our way from stern to stem.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Small kitchens too. #in

Making a small kitchen can be just as fun as a big kitchen.
Here is a 'drawer in a drawer' kitchen in our VW Transporter; ready for work duty and sailing weekends away.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Ready for the spray shop. #in

Two piles of German* oak door and drawer fronts and three end walls ready to take to the spray shop on Monday morning.

(* Don't mention the football)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Em does what Holland couldn't

Don't know what we're going to do with it but Em has won a football table at our local supermarket!

If Bert van Marwijk reads this, she'd be happy to give him some tips before the critical game against Germany tomorrow ( and she'd like to know why he continues to play the left footed Robben on the right wing :).

Monday, June 11, 2012

Pictures tell the story. #in

My friend Tsjerk ( @eilandhopwj ) once said i was tweeting long before Twitter was invented.
It's true that most of my blog posts are a photo and a few lines of text. The story is in the picture and the camera is in my phone and therefore always in my pocket.

This extra long post is in response to a question posed by Tillerman over on

The picture is of the dishwasher door in the oak kitchen.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Compass window #in

A compass window ( kompasraam ) sits on the table waiting for varnish, glass and putty. It'll soon be crossing the IJsselmeer to be put in place aboard the 'Dankbaarheid'.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Another day's work. #in

All of the oak panels are now glued up. Next week we will start sawing to size, routing for handles and hinges, then lots and lots more sanding.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Oak kitchen project update. #in

With all of the doors and drawer fronts glued up we turn our attentionto the thick side walls. These will be a double layer of 24 mm oak planking to make them more stable. And heavy!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Tall doors #in

The kitchen we're working on at the moment has floor to ceiling cupboards.
Here we are gluing up the right hand doors in one piece, 3 metres long, so that the grain runs through all the doors. Later we will cut the door panels to size.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012


After three Sunday morning club races I'm in equal first place. As we'll be all over Holland with Em and her Optimist for the next four month it won't stay that way for long.
On Sunday I ran out of boat speed as the wind dropped and I failed to change gear. Martien and Peter passed me and Martien went on to win the race.
I've just learned that being passed by a lady, as happened to Peter and I on the last but one beat, is referred to as being 'chicked'.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Remember this?

Forty-odd years ago the Sadler boys could be found in one combination or another racing 11-foot Gull dinghies around the lower half of the British Isles.

This weekend Em joined her Optimist girlfriend Mette in the Flits Easter Regatta on the Sneekermeer. The harder it blew the faster they went, finishing the last race with a fourth in the A-fleet and smiles from ear to ear.
As much fun, and as practical, as an Optimist or Laser can be, there's something about two-handed sailing that's hard to beat.

Thanks to the Rijk family and the Flits Club for a great weekend.

Friday, April 6, 2012

New Team Kwark Transporter #in

Team Kwark's primary sponsor is delighted to announce the aquisition of a new Optimist Transporter to take our sailor to Medemblik, Workum, de Braassem, de Grevelingen and further South during the 2012 season.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

German oak. #in

Yesterday we chose the first half of the oak planks needed for the next kitchen project and brought them to the shop.
Planing and jointing rough sawn planks is always a pleasure and I'm really pleased with this lot of wood from Dikhout here in Groningen.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

One more door

This fridge door will be the finishing touch to Harry's FSC mahogany kitchen.
Next we're off to Dikhout for three quarters of a cubic metre German oak for another kitchen.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Portholes #in

More detailing aboard 'Samenwerking'. Having finished the square deck hatches I'm working on the round portholes now.

Monday, March 19, 2012

A helping hand #in

Helpin the carpentry team on the 'Samenwerking' this week as their list of things to do is still getting longer, not shorter and they have to deliver at the end of March.
Coming on for a week at the end of the project means I get the nice jobs :)

Friday, February 17, 2012

Oil or varnish? #in

With temperatures back above freezing (reminding me of the Dutch joke that you can tell which season it is by looking at the leaves on the trees but in all four seasons it'll be 10 degrees and raining ) it's time to get back to painting and varnishing.

A couple of coats of two-part varnish on the walnut kitchen top gave me a chance to show the next clients the effect of either varnish or oil and wax on oak kitchen drawers and doors.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Only the sun comes up for free*

With nighttime temperatures down to minus 19 degrees seems we're having a winter after all. But the February sun is strong enough to fill our batteries right up. Long live the solar panels.

* A Dutch proverb

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Big freeze on its way

I thought we were going to get away with not draining the DAF 575 this winter.
Afraid not; with forecasts for minus 8, 9 and 10 later on next week I spent an hour in the engine room with spanners and a screwdriver. Now we're ready.

Friday, January 27, 2012

14 drawers up and running #in

A kitchen unit full of self closing plywood drawers.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Monday, January 23, 2012

More drawers

I've lost count of how many drawers we've made in the last six months.
I'm sure Kroon, who supply the Hettich runners, could tell me though.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

I couldn't 've done it alone

Imke sands that little spot half way up the door that I must have missed.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Follow that kitchen

I loaded the car with tools and set off early this morning, heading West towards Zaandam where Dankbaarheid is now moored and where I could find the last kitchen, fit the drawers and hang the doors.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Non-slip bathroom

Final bit of painting done in the bathroom with a non slip area on the shower floor. ( No it's not; I'd forgotten the doors. Oh well :)

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Tide is high

Heavy rains have left the water level in the Hoendiep higher than we have ever seen it before. The mooring piles get shorter every day.