Spark, being a traditional built GP14, was fitted with stainless "holt allen" hardware. While perfectly serviceable, it failed to meet my expectations for how such hardware should look. Much of it, as fitted to a once racing dinghy such as Spark, was also undersized, or in the case of racing, "just enough" to satisfy any rules and regulations. I also prefer bronze of the looks of SS.
Soon to be sitting proudly on the foredeck will be this lovely bronze cleat, reminiscent of the original holt allen piece, but more robust and with more style.
While this week was not a good one for working on anything, or going sailing for that matter, due to the heat and the massive swarms of greenhead flies, I did manage to get some work done. One of the very few places I found any rot on my GP was on the stern where the lower gudgeon pin attached. The screws had obviously pulled out in the past and had been replaced with machine screws and nuts. Perfectly serviceable, but it did not keep the water out of the mahogany. The repair was easy, I drilled it out oversized and filled it with a mahogany dowel that had been covered in epoxy. Once it hardens, I can sand it flush and varnish over it.
I think the new gudgeon pin will look just lovely on Spark's pert little polished stern.
And last, but certainly not least, the drain plugs. The GP14 as designed has two half inch drains built into the stern to let water aboard escape when underway. All well and good, but of you put any weight on the stern and submerge them, water will come rushing back in. The plastic tubes were also past their sell by date and needed to be replaced. These two bronze drains are JUST the right size as the bottom of the flange just sits flush with the bottom. JUST! They can either be set to either barely drain by unscrewing them half way to expose a small drilled "weep" hole or removed completely to allow full drainage.
Some racing "GeePs" use drainage flaps to more quickly drain the boat in the event of spray or knockdown. As I will be using Spark as more of a day sailor and camp cruiser, I would prefer not to let water in when I an trying to rest, so you will not being seeing anything like these flaps on her stern.