For Sale by


David Jones Yacht Brokerage

P.O. Box 898
Rockport
ME
04856
United States

Fax:  (207) 230-0177

Contact Seller

1909 12 meter A. Richardson design Gaff-rigged classic yacht

EUR 100,000 (Listed price: US$139,150)

Unknown,Italy

Photo 1
Close up_crew aboard Varuna
Crew aboard
Under sail_bow view
Under sail_stern view
Layout drawings
Sail plan
Interior
Interior_II
  • Boat Summary
  • Full Details

Description/Condition

Varuna is one of the very first 12 m yachts built under the international meter rules established in 1906. She was built according to the drawings of A. Richardson in Dartmouth by Philip & Son Shipyard and launched in 1909. Her original name was White Heather. Richardson's design was built upon the need to create a hull which was appropriate to the formula of the 12 meter class, but in doing so he created a design similar to Britannia, King George V's royal yacht (though smaller in proportion.)
After a very careful restoration at Cantieri di Imperia, Italy between 2000 and 2003 she has taken part in many classic yacht races in the Mediterranean and her lovely and graceful shape is one of the nicest of the classic yacht circuit.
Varuna looks like an old fashioned fast English gaff cutter. She is an extremely fascinating boat with elegant lines and a simple yet lovely interior.



Boat Details
Fuel DieselHull Material Wood 
Engine Make VMEngine Model 2002 
Length Overall 21.34 mNumber of Engines 1 
For Sale by

David Jones Yacht Brokerage

P.O. Box 898
Rockport
ME
04856
United States

Fax:  (207) 230-0177

Dimensions

Beam: 12.54'
Max Draft: 8.9'
Displacement: 27 T

Engines

Total Power: 100

Restoration

The war destroyed the shipyard archives therefore not much is known about the original construction of VARUNA, save for some archive data recovered from the British Museum. In May of 2000, VARUNA and the Imperia shipyard arrived at what was deemed "a historically important restoration."
Remarkably the original planking, aside from the fasteners, was in near-perfect condition. A legend has it that Burmese teak used in her construction was imported at the beginning of the 1800?s by an ancestor of the ship owner. The exotic wood was stored in an English coastline peat bog until it was ready to be used.
  • Hull:
  • The lower planking was removed to examine the condition of her keel and frames;
  • All fastenings were removed and the soft iron strongback were re-coated with zinc and reinstalled;
  • The sternpost and approximately fifteen frames were replaced;
  • Original planking was re-used
  • Rudder: reconstructed;
  • Ultrasonic examination established the condition of the bronze bolts connecting ballast to keel;
  • On deck:
  • all original iron fittings were replaced;
  • All deck beams were replaced;
  • The deck was rebuilt using two layers of teak 22 mm-thick in keeping with the original design;
  • Teak capping rail;
  • Hull returned to original black.

History

When A. Richardson set about designing White Heather (VARUNA's original name) it was just after the 1906 International Rule concerning the subdivision of metric classes for yachts. He more than likely was creating a hull which was appropriate to the formula for the 12 m class.
The war destroyed the shipyard archives therefore not much is known about the construction of VARUNA, save for some archive data recovered from the British Museum. It is thought that VARUNA was used as a trial horse for other 12 meters and embarked on many long cruises in the Baltic Sea and along the Scottish coast. Living space aboard such yachts allowed for only a minimum of comfort.
The 1930s brought changes to White Heather: her gaff rig was changed to the more easily handled Marconi rig, an engine was installed and she was given a new name: Classic yacht VARUNA. An Englishwoman, a descendant of the first owner, and herself owner until the 1970?s, recalled a time when VARUNA cruised frequently. She acquired the nickname ?Little Britannia? due to her resemblance to the King Henry V's Royal yacht.
The last thirty years of the 20th century brought about long-term neglect as VARUNA sat in Caribbean and Mediterranean ports. It was with great luck that she came to rest in Italy surrounded by the fine craftsmen of the Imperia Shipyard - where she underwent a three year complete restoration.

Sails & rigging

Mast and spars were built by the Frenchman Gilbert Pasqui in his Villefranche shipyard pitch pine and silver spruce. The rigging of the newly restored VARUNA followed the original 1909 plan: gaff mainsail, gaff top sail, working jib, jib top sail, jib, gennaker.
All sails are made of artificially aged Dacron.
  • Gaff Sail 389 sq. ft. (2007)
  • Gaff top Sail 112 sq. ft (2007)
  • Jib top Sail 105 sq. ft. (2007)
  • Jib 99 sq. ft.(2007)
  • Working Jib 112 sq. ft. (2007)
  • Drifter 148.5 sq. ft. (2003)
  • Gennaker 429 sq. ft. (2004)