Carlota, a 1971 Cheoy Lee Cadet
In April 2009, Stephen, located in Victoria, B.C. contacted me with news of his acquisition of Carlota, a 1971 OS 27 Cadet.
Stephen explained that his friend Tristan was a very good friend of the former owner of this boat, and suggested that Stephen should acquire her. The previous owner owned the boat for 10 years and made many improvements to her, but over the last few years he knew she needed more, significant work that he was not in a position to undertake. Because of the condition she was then in, with a broken motor and overall rough appearance, he was unable to sell her. At this point, knowing how much Stephen liked the boat and also knowing that he was in a better situation to store and work on her, the owner generously gave the boat to him.
He has included pictures of how Carlotta looked when he found her. What looks like vegetation growing on her backstay is actually a curly piece of driftwood. She has the original towel bar mainsheet traveler, and what looks like either a deck light or a cowl vent on her poop deck.
Stephen says most of the interior is original. He feels that the main problem in the cabin is with the veneer, which has water damage and is coming off. Overall he feels she is in pretty good shape, but adds that, as all of us who have done this well know, there is always so much work left to do.
After acquiring her Stephen prepared the boat for the sail home from Vancouver to Victoria, B.C. He cleaned her and built a temporary motor mount. Because the original Volvo engine was dead he rigged a temporary motor mount off her transom in order to hang an 8-hp outboard for the trip home from from Vancouver, BC.
He explained that the cleaning was quite a job. He first made up a bleach soap solution and used a garden sprayer to soap up the inside of the boat. There was lots of mildew and smoke soot. Then he scrubbed it and used a garden hose to rinse it. He confessed that it wasn’t your normal interior cleaning technique.
He used a plastic snow shovel to scrape the mussels off the hull. To get the rest of the hull clean enough for the voyage he made up a long, bent-shaped apparatus with a wood scraper and a scrub brush attached at the end. It worked quite well for his purpose.
Then a few weeks later his friend Tristan and he sailed and motored her to Victoria.
Stephen says that the voyage took two days, leaving Vancouver under gray skies and a small chop but relatively light winds. He and Tristan mostly sailed and motored across the Strait of Georgia, which took about six hours. They were in a pretty big rush as they had to reach Poilier Pass at slack tide. Poilier Pass is one of the smaller passes that takes you into the sheltered waters of the Canadian Gulf Islands.
They anchored overnight in Montague harbour and the next day headed down Haro straight in a 20kn breeze.
They had big waves and lots of fun. At one point close to Victoria they had to sail through a short narrow channel called Baynes Channel. As the winds were coming straight against them they had to go through at an angle. This was when Stephen really fell in love with the Cadet. The winds and waves had picked up quite a bit, but she held course very well with the rail in the water all the way through. He wrote that she felt very solid.
A few weeks later his dad and son joined him to sail her up to Sidney to have her lifted onto a trailer and taken to his home. He supplied pictures of her lift and power wash.
He is currently working on installing a three-year-old 12hp Vetus diesel, and this is his main focus. He reports that the repowering is all-consuming right now and that it’s a very messy job.
He plans on removing her teak decks as he found that they have been badly abused. He says he would love to put on a new teak deck but in the meantime will be doing a non-skid painted surface.
Stephen’s rebuild is expected to be fairly slow. He has two young children, at the time 10 and 8 years old, and was in the middle of renovating his house, stealing a few hours here and there to work on her.
Although her current name is Carlota, Stephen is planning on renaming her “Piper Jane” after his son and daughter.
Update in October 2016: This boat was not renamed and, according to the Cheoy Lee Assn website, is now owned by Randy D. in Vancouver B.C.