2 years at the yard

We expected to refit the boat in about 6 months, in the end it took us almost 2 years. We exceeded our initial budget by 200%. A normal project! We don’t regret any of it: we could have bought a boat in a better shape but this would mean that we wouldn’t know every inch (it’s an English boat after all) of the boat and wouldn’t be able to fix pretty much anything that’s on it.

We did most of it by ourselves, but we couldn’t have done it without the help of some people. We would like to thank Thijs’ parents Will and Gerrie, for amongst others the awesome wood work, the curtains and beautiful paint job on the freeboard. We would also like to thank Scheepswerf Stallinga for the facilities and all the help and advice (and the beers).

To Hinco and Lianne, and Danny and Ellen, we say thanks a lot for allowing us to intrude your home so often to take showers while we were living on the boat at the yard. Thanks as well to the shop Tijssen watersport for the good advice and (too) many coffees.



To give you an idea, here is a quite comprehensive list of things we did during these 2 years:


  • remove Treadmaster
  • sand and plaster the deck
  • paint deck with normal and antislip paint
  • fix stanchions
  • replace broken handrail and guardrails
  • replace steel jackstays with rope jackstays
  • replace vents
  • replace cover of storage lockers in the cockpit and escape hatches
  • replace cockpit drainage pipes / anchor box drainage
  • relocate the instruments
  • build an instrument panel for the engine
  • get a new spray hood made
  • replace and renovate several parts of the teak “bumper”
  • straighten the pulpit
  • fix the tiller
  • make a new hatch
  • service all the winches + replace winchers
  • replace clam cleats
  • replace chain plates
  • make wooden cockpit floor
  • paint the inside of storage lockers
  • install new anchors
  • renovate all cleats / boulders
  • kit all edges outside


Bathroom / Toilet:

  • install blackwater tank
  • replace toilet
  • clean watertank
  • replace all hoses (drinkwater, blackwater, greywater)
  • replace seacocks
  • replace waterpump



  • install revised engine
  • install new diesel tank
  • install new propeller shaft
  • install foldable propeller
  • build a new engine box
  • insulate the engine box



  • make new wooden table, cupboards, stairs
  • renovate the chart table, doors, floorboards, kitchen
  • place cork insulation
  • build ceilings
  • paint floors, ceilings, walls
  • place alcantara
  • get new pillows made
  • remove gas stove / oven
  • install Origo 3000 alcohol stove
  • clean and paint the bilge
  • repair manual bilge pump
  • make wooden binocular box
  • make new polycarbonate windows
  • make and install new curtains



  • install 2 x 115 AH light batteries + 70 AH starter battery
  • redo all electric wiring
  • install LED cabin lights
  • install switchboard
  • install battery monitor
  • install LED toplight + navigation lights
  • install new VHF
  • install AIS
  • install electric bilge pump
  • install floater switch for electric bilge pump
  • install new depth meter, compass, and windex
  • install USB chargers + 12 V connectors
  • install new VHF antenna and GPS antenna
  • install autopilot
  • install 2 x 50 W solarpanels
  • install 20 AH battery charger
  • install shore power connection and ground fault circuit breaker
  • install ARGO FET diode



  • fix osmosis problem (strip the hull, grind out osmosis blisters)
  • let the hull dry for about a year
  • remove through hull depth meter
  • fix several bad spots
  • plaster the hull with rei-plasser
  • place glass fiber mats
  • paint the hull with several layers of epoxy primer
  • add some layers of antifouling
  • replace the anode



  • sand and plaster the freeboard
  • paint the freeboard with several layers of primer and mauritius blue paint
  • place the name and home port on the stern
  • paint the waterline


Mast, boom, rigging, sails:

  • fix spreaders
  • replace poprivets
  • fix mast step
  • check and test all shrouds and stays
  • make new gooseneck
  • shorten boomtrack
  • install furling mainsail
  • replace all jammers
  • install new running rigging (sheets, boomvang, topping lift etc.)
  • get a new furling genoa made

3 Replies to “2 years at the yard”

  1. Its a complete new boad maar wel een uit duizende complimenten voor wat het geworden is wij blijven jullie volgen good luck en n behouden vaart gr Marian en Cor

    1. Hartelijk dank Cor en Marian! Leuk dat jullie ons volgen! Groeten, Thijs en Sarah

  2. Hi Guys
    I bought a Varne 850 in Antwerp 3 years ago. The work you have done is amazing.Glad you enjoy sailing her. Would love to pick your brains on so many jobs.

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