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We are getting famous :)

The San Diego Union Tribune, to my great surprise, contacted me and asked for an interview! Of course I said yes! A captive audience, who could resist? Pam Kragen and Charlie Neuman came and listened to Ivar and me, and took lots of photos. This is what they wrote: https://enewspaper.sandiegouniontribune.com/infinity/article_share.aspx?guid=a2f862b9-75f5-407b-bb59-d6a1fa8d5b17.

showing how rivets are installed in the planking by Ivar and Thomas on the viking ship Sleipnir
installing rivets. Photo by Charlie Neuman

Hoist up the Sleip-nir sails… see how the mainsail sets… call the Vikings ashore and let’s go and sail!….

Wish apologies to The Beach Boys….

We had a great day at the shipyard, finally putting up the sail! There was a tiny breeze, enough to make it look like she was breathing…

I keep saying it, but there are only a few things left so I’m confident we’ll be in the water soon, raiding and pillaging!

Some of you have asked, and the launching place will be Mission Bay’s launch ramp, which is just off the 5 by Clairemont Drive. Going on the 5, take the Clairemont Drive exit West, then take a right on Mission Bay Road, a short distance to the launch ramp which has a large parking lot adjacent to it. The date is March 12, Sunday, at 11am.

I will post a confirmation of this in a couple of weeks, when we can be absolutely certain we’re a go for launch….

Also, in case you are interested, I will be offering sailing/rowing day adventures, out of Shelter Island, and I will also post dates for your consideration. We are limited to 6 passengers at a time (insurance….). If you want to plan on an outing with a group or as individuals, please let me know the dates you have in mind so I can work out a schedule. I will be away for about 4-5 weeks from the middle of June, FYI…

Thank you for following our adventure, and for your support!

Tom

Fully-rigged mast is up!

Today we put up the mast with all the rigging on it, and I’m very happy with how she looks fully-dressed! We’re going to put hoist the sail on Thursday and “see how the mainsail sets” as the song goes… It’s so tempting to think we’re close to finishing!

There’s still some stuff to do but we’ve tentatively set the launching date for March 12, Sunday, at Mission Bay launching ramp in San Diego, at 11am! You who are interested in being there please mark your calendars but please wait for the confirmation, which will be in a couple of weeks…!

Thanks again for following our project!

Tom

Merry Christmas!

Well, as Robbie Burns said “the best laid plans of mice and men go oft a-glay!”

Which is to say we are again delayed, and we can’t get Sleipnir finished before Christmas, and since my wife is going over to France to visit her son, so we’ll wait till after she comes back in late January, by which time we’ll have all the bits done and we can have a proper launch in Mission Bay, complete with mast, sail, oars, the whole thing!

It is now 3 years since I started building her, thinking it would take, what, a year, 18 months???? I did get derailed for a few months to build my sweet little Chaconne 15′ sailing dinghy. Covid didn’t really impinge much, as I kept working all through that (are we done with it yet? Seems we’re not…) as I was working on my own until Ivar joined in, so we didn’t have concerns about germs.

I hope all of you who follow my project are well and have a lovely Christmas, and we look forward to starting the next phase soon!

Take care, and as we say in Sweden, Hej Då (See ya later!)

Tom

The mast is UP!!!

We finally got the rigging set up for the mast and up it came! In the pictures you can see the post attached to the bottom of the mast with a hinge so it can be removed: its purpose is to provide leverage for the line from the top of the mast (the forestay actually) which goes to the top of the post and attaches to the block-and-tackle which I got online (it’s rock-climbing gear, very well-made and robust), which in turn attaches to the eye on the foredeck, just behind the stem. Then we rigged stabilizers (black rope) from the middle of the post out to the outriggers, to which the first shrouds (stays) also go. This made for a very stable (no wobbles sideways, which would be deadly!) and strong system to raise the mast. The block-and-tackle is 4-part, and Ivar figured that the force needed to pull the mast up (it weighs about 100 pounds) would be something like 150 pounds because of the angle it’s being pulled up at, so the effort needed to pull is 1/4, or about 35 pounds, more with friction )))). The great thing is that one person can rig it all up, once the mast is in place on the cradle at the stern and in its step (the “shoe” that in the middle of the ship). So launching, which is when we’d need to raise the mast, every time))), won’t require a team of 10 football players! As you look at the pictures, notice the mast first resting on its cradle, then lift slightly, then it’s UP! At the same time the support post goes from vertical to almost horizontal… it’s rather magical, no?

Next we have to finish the rigging, adjusting the lengths of all the lines, and we’ll be able to test raising the spar (boom) with the sail on it! We’ll do that at the shipyard when there’s no wind…….

Launch date set for Sleipnir!

After 3 years’ work we’re finally ready to join Sleipnir with her element! We’ll be at the Mission Bay Launch Ramp, on December 4th (yes 2022!) at 11 am. That’s off the 5 at Clairemont Boulevard.

I look forward to seeing you there! Media will be in attendance, so there will be lots of pictures and video to share, which I will do!

This is the end of one chapter and the beginning of a whole new set of chapters, with adventures and experiences that I have been looking forward to for so long, and hope to share with many of you.

Thanks again for your support: I literally could not have done it without you!

Hej!

Captain Tomas (I think I can start calling myself that….)))))

Making oars for Sleipnir!

We’re getting close to finishing! This video shows the hull after we cleaned the planks with acid (!!) and neutralized with ammonia… That treatment got rid of the blotchy weathering that built up over time, and needed to be cleaned before we could varnish. We chose chemical treatment over sanding because it’s very difficult to sand the planks with all the rivets: we would have had to go carefully round each rivet which is impossible, and the finish wouldn’t have been good. So, she’s now ready for varnishing!

The main subject of the video is to show how we made oars. We started with 2×6 boards, cut them into square 1 3/4″ lengths, and ran those through a big round-over router bit to take the corners off and so we ended up with round shafts for the oars. To those we glued blocks which we then carved into the shape of the blades. Each oar takes 2-3 hours to make, and they weigh only about 4-5 pounds, so they’ll be easy to handle.

We’re getting quite close to finishing her, next is the varnishing and after that all that remains is completing the rig: we have to shape the mast and make the stays that hold the mast up, as well as place the cleats to which we’ll tie the various lines that control the sail.

Stay tune for more, soon!

Thanks for following us!

Tom

Vista Viking Festival and latest pictures… including a test launch today!

Sleipnir had a great time at the Festival over the weekend, with hundreds of people coming by to see her, ask questions and were excited to see her! We met so many interesting people, and so many want to be at her launch and to participate in adventures aboard her!

Sleipnir at the Vista Viking Festival
First time in her element…. Oceanside…

Sleipnir will be at the Vista Viking Festival!

The Sons Of Norway have invited Sleipnir to participate in the Vista Viking Festival on September 17th and 18th! We are proud to bring Sleipnir back to where she was born!

The festival is a yearly tradition at Norway Hall (except for the last 2 years due to Covid!) where up to 10, 000 people attend, many dressed in full Viking gear, to take part in a broad range of activities, enjoy food and beverages, and just have a good time!

Check out http://www.vistavikingfestival.com for information and tickets! Their website is under construction but will soon have more details about events, times, etc..

We look forward to seeing you there!

We’re in the news (yeah, again…..)))

Out local PBS channel (for those who don’t know, PBS is the Public Broadcasting Service in the US) sent a reporter out to do an interview with us and the ship, and a few days ago aired the video on the Evening Edition.

I really liked what they did, as they included outside footage that they found themselves (I have no idea how they would have found the clip of Munin sailing in Vancouver….!).

I hope you enjoy it!

https://www.kpbs.org/news/local/2022/07/06/san-marcos-man-nordic-roots-replica-viking-ship

Thanks again for following my tiny odyssey!