Swan of Zwijn

While living in Antwerp- Belgium, Dick Carter designed this successful IOR 3/4 toner for the 1971 Admiral Cup and the round the UK Race. Built in Greece by Olympic Yachts, it features a very sturdy fiberglass / divynicell sandwich hull where woodworkmanship abounds. It conveys a sense of old marine in a new design.

Original Brochure
Specifications - Data - Measurements and Inventory
Under Sail
Flickr additional details
Spare spars available
Sister ships


Brotherhood of the Coast - USA

E-mail to The Big Hopper :  belwoodny@optonline.net
E-mail to The Big Hopper

Some news from Swan...

Dear Ward
These are some news! The hull/deck joint is fiber-glassed combined with bolts going through the deck's toe-rail. I really doubt there is a leak there. However, there might be some at the chain plates, especially the starboard ones - although I re caulked them in September. Another series of leaks might occur at the jib sheet rails which I had never re-bedded and at the cosmetic teak trim on deck which is screwed onto the fiberglass. Other leaks are "normal": through the mast sheaves and through the propeller shaft stuffing box. I never experienced it, but "green water" could also rush on deck and flow in the anchor chain deck pipe. I always secured it from the inside with a tensioned shock cord. The chain locker is not isolated from the inside hull. Water would go in the bilge. The keel bolts and grid are solid as a tank. No leaks there!
The F8 must have been impressive. We went through some water sprout on Long Island Sound. It was scary. I had had the time to douse all sails. On bare mast, we were still maneuvering 120-150 degrees from the wind, with a little push from the engine, because of the proximity of rocks. It lasted some 3 hours.
Main shackle down haul was" meant to break". I always left a spare one on board because I wanted a weak point at the furling boom/mast mechanism. It makes it easier to repair while en-route. I never had to do it though. I replaced this shackle once in 25 odd years - once it had twisted on itself.
The Azores are great after the US hurricane season. Mind the depressions coming from the North of Bay of Biscay. This is where I really got rinsed even if they lost most of their blow south of Portugal. This will be a sweet trip!
Did you have time to install your stereo? What radio could you receive? How was your cooking? What harbors did you "hit" before jumping? Any wild life, whales or dolphins experience? Did you fish?

Thank you Ward: I fell you develop a lovely appreciation for Swan. Keep in touch!


Subject: RE: Swan of Zwijn Hi Robert
Sorry for the delay in replying, been a bit hectic to say the least. Swan is a good sea kindly boat, loves going to windward, hates down-wind sailing.
Trip was eventful, wind direction was never what I expected from the pilot charts I had but thats sailing for you, Most of the early days very little wind, F1 gusting to F2.
Had a F6-F7 one one day for about 6 hours, Then about 1200 miles out, just south east of Grand Banks, a proper F8 gale hit with absolutely no warning, I'd been in F4, with a few white caps, nothing to worry about, barometer steady, then within 30 seconds wind completely changed direction, chose to hove to, even though it was making ground northwards, thoght this was only real choice, deck work singlehanded in F8 was not my cup of tea! Lasted 8 hours then calmed down. Lost the radar reflector. main downhaul shackle gave way but nothing serious.
Couple of days after this autopilot stopped. 1200 miles from US. 1600 TO UK 800 TO Azores. Opted for the Azores, took 10 days of long hours, not nuch sleep, but reasonable weather and got there ok
Swan is in a marina, Horta, on the island od Faial. having some work done on the deck fittings, taking water on somewhere, don't know how the boat was built, but it looks to be a hull and deck one piece moulding, but I may be wrong, maybe there is a hull to deck joint, just does'nt look like it. If you know either way let me know.
I'm back on Swan early October, will post your US flag back to you then,
Azores are really nice islands, scenery, people etc, but plan now is to head for the med, maybe via Madera, Canaries, we'll see, plans can change.

Regards Ward
> Sent: Thursday, July 22, 2010 1:22 PM
> Subject: Swan of Zwijn
> > Gongrats Ward! I always thought that the Azores were a good way to go,
> > enjoying more of the current ( even if a bit too shoutherly for a UK destination...)
> > The pilot is 3 years old and is not under warranty. However, I do not
> > see what could be wrong with it. Is the motor still working? Is it
> > activated by the compass? I suggest you test it again by directly
> > connection the wires, by-passing the plug. Be careful with the polarity!
> > I often repaired the 2 previous ones I had.over the last 30 years.
> > Usually, the bushings were mis-aligned. That's it ! Or, the fuse was
> > blown. There was a spare fuse in the little plastic box in the
> > electrical panel "closet". It is of a very small size. I suspect that's
> > all there is. Be very careful to reset the joint/gasket correctly in
> > order to keep it waterproff. I notice the pilot is often getting too hot
> > because of its intense work and because of the sun hitting its black
> > color. I suggest to put a white towel over it to protect it from the sun.
> > Some more notes about "single handling". Swan does keep its route with
> > the pilot disconnected - but installed into the helm - very well, when
> > close mto the wind.
> > The pilot ( named Webster ) is louzy by heavy sea and heavy weather.
> > However, by heavy weather ( 6 beauforts and up ) the 90 to 120 degrees
> > can be held by reducing the main to 2 reefs or more and by keeping just
> > a bit of the jib. Swan will keep it at 4.5 knots with no problem.
> > Swan does not like the run 180 degree. 170 is great.
> > I have a couple of small pieces I want to mail to you as soon as you get
> > home. Keep me abreast of what's going on! Give me your phone number. I
> > hope you'll write about your trip, the good, the bad and the uglies. Did
> > you use the storm jib? Any luck with fishing?
> > PS I really miss her...I often regret to have let her go. Any news from
> > your good friend in the UK ?
> > - robert -
> >
> >

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