Friday, April 8, 2011

More About Roon II - Design 28

Last Thursday we posted an article about Roon II. We were pleased to receive a letter from her current owner. The boat is being fully restored at the Koehler Kraft Company of San Diego. Here's an excerpt from the letter that gives some interesting insight into her recent history:

..."I have never been able to find a picture of her in Kretzer's yard and your picture was a wonderful sight. You see I have restored her to her original condition. I was not sure about the font and the sign on her transom but your picture was perfect. I have it right!

You see she was a very forlorn looking "Wind Song" when I found her. She had been ignored for over 30 years. The before picture I have attached doesn't give one a true sense of how horrible she looked. I attended a wooden boat festival and there she was in the corner…her owners abandoning her. They were the third owner and got the boat by being crew for the 2nd owner. They are in their 80's now.

I saw the lines…. She was near the gang way and I hung over watching her, thinking to myself what a horrible shame. She is so pretty… Little did I know that she was for sale… No one wanted her. They assumed that she would need replanking/ refastening etc… I swear I saw her bow go up and down… It was not windy and it was not choppy… A typical July morning in Southern California overcast skies…

I have her original charts from 1934, her original lanterns and I was able to obtain her plans from Mystic Museum as your company released them and I paid the appropriate fees. I have restored her monel galley with a Shipmate 211 stove just as her plans stated.

I did the rig myself as Olin Stephens stated that all standing rigging was to be 1 x 19 wire spliced with large eyes to loop over the masts. No one wanted to do it…. They said it couldn't be done… Well my daughters and I learned how and we did it! I will put the rig on this weekend. Everything is pretty much the same. I did have to have the cap rail remade as it had lost too much wood. I also had to get new hatches as they had been kept together with some 5200. But one would not be able to tell the difference!

I sent an email of your site and her picture to all the many shipwrights who have worked on her and I was told that it was eery for them she looked like a ghost from the past as she is identical.

I contacted Koehler Kraft boat yard and they said you may use any of their photos. They are a wooden boat yard and have done a marvelous job working with me. This is indeed a special boat. I have a rough draft of the autobiography of R S Kellogg and two articles from 1934 and 1935 all discuss Roon II and the making of her. Apparently the Kelloggs went to Olin with 20 type written pages of what they wanted in a cruising boat. He told them he had not really done this type of thing but he worked with them. In other books Rod states that Roon II was a great indication that they could give the owner what they wanted and still provide a fast and stable boat. Her lines are gorgeous!

I can't wait to sail her. R. S Kelloggs unpublished autobiography stated that they took her to Cuba from New York every year. Funny when I first went into the boat I said "this is a woman's boat!" it all made sense inside and in the autobiography Kellogg states that his wife Janet stayed at the yard and made sure that Kretzer himself followed the plans for the inside as she designed it and Olin worked with her. I am so very excited!

Owner of Roon II (Olin did see the boat in its horrible condition and he remembered her… Alas I wish he could have seen her now)."

Thanks for contacting us.

Here's an image prior to her restoration.

You can access a slide show which shows her transformation by clicking here. I look forward to seeing some sailing shots in the near future.

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