Who's got the oldest Mirror still in use?

The group "People who love Mirror sailing dinghies" has been joined by a lady who owns "Amazon" with sail number 1529. If that really is also the hull number, she has the fourth-oldest boat on the roll call, since #1 does not count as she is a museum display and, I assume, never sailed any more. I have very little information on the other three boats, #3, 14, and 773 .
Any one else got a real vintage craft with a four-or-less digit hull/sail number not yet on the roll call?

Cheers,

Gernot H.

Tarka's picture

Hi,

Last week I purchased Mirror number 1892, "Tarka" in Buckinghamshire. She is is good working order although looks her age being built in 1964. I have brought her over to Greece where I live and will be sailing her this summer as is. Later as the season get colder I plan to strip her of the multiple layers of paint and varnish and restore her, whilst still keeping all or as much as possible of the original gear intact.

I am really exited to own a Mirror especially such an early one, and looking forward to new adventures, and participating in this forum.

Cheers,
Peter

PuffinInTegel's picture

Welcome a-online!
I believe we had a discussion about moving a Mirror to Greece before ... was that you?
That boat is really one of the oldest in the list. I assume you are in a coastal region of Greece - we are always happy to have pictures. Data for the Roll Call are :
Sail no ;Boat Name; Country; Helm / Owner; Crew ; Club or town (if no club) ;Remarks/comments .
but you are free to omit personal details if you prefer.
Gernot H

Hi,
My Mirror has sail number 1206. The hull is certainly old but as there is no carved number on the transom I can't guarantee that the sails match the hull.

PuffinInTegel's picture

I hope that "People who love Mirror sailing dinghies" on Facebook will not become competition to our forum, but that the services complement and support one another. For instance, people who have no own web-sites or picasa or other picture-sharing accounts can post pictures on Facebook and link them to be shown here.
To my surprise, James Littlejohns and Nicky Mitchell reported on Facebook that they had #281 , but were unsure. I was sceptical, suspecting that they might just have a "hand-me-up" mainsail. But the hull does have the number carved into the transom.
Number
Here's the whole lot (note aluminium and wooden masts!).
Number

Congratulations!

I have a Mirror with sail number 682, which is also neatly carved into the transom. Regularly sailed in Scotland, and on holiday in Wales it must be 50 years old + now, but still gives a lot of sailing pleasure! I'm sure there must be more old Mirrors out there, stored forgotten in shed and barns!

PuffinInTegel's picture

682 is definitely antique. Considering the amount of rot I and others experienced with newer boats, could it be that the real "originals" in the <1k number range were made of better-quality plywood ?
Is it alright to put your boat on the roll call and, if so, does she have a name?

By the way ... has anyone ever worked out what the relative cost (e.g. in comparison to the average income of the time) of a complete Mirror kit was in the 1960s and what it is nowadays?

Gernot H.

dictate's picture

Gernot, a quick search about and I come up with;
Kit cost 1963 UK£69 with average wage of £960 7.2%
Kit cost 2014 UK£2330 with average wage of £26500. 8.8%
Note that the 2014 "kit" has to be purchased as three items:
Hull kit £1090
Epoxy kit £200 (basic requirements, not coating quantity, which equates better to a 1963 kit with polyester)
Sails and rigging £1040
2014 prices are those charged by Trident-UK

S411orgirl's picture

I am very excited to have recently purchased a mirror with the number 32 on the transom and sail! How do I put it on the roll call?

S411orgirl's picture

I am very excited to have recently purchased a mirror with the number 32 on the transom and sail! How do I put it on the roll call?

Collectors' item, I should think. Look after it well.

PuffinInTegel's picture

Hello S411orgirl,
Welcome here too.
Does the boat really have just the "32" carved or imprinted inside the transom?
If so, you win by far. Have you any idea about the boat's history? There must a wealth of stories about the boat, unless it has sat in a garage or boatshed for the last 40 years.
Gernot H.

S411orgirl's picture

I certainly will be looking after her David. I sailed her for the first time yesterday and it was a real trip down memory lane. I must have been 11 the last time I sailed a Mirror, apart from a quick go in a friend's a couple of summers ago. My Dad built a couple, the sail number of the first was 3046, he can't remember the number of the second one.
I am pretty sure that 32 is genuine and still can't believe my luck getting it. I saw it at the boat show last year and spoke to the owner who said it was for sale. When I told a neighbour I had been to the boat show he asked if no 32 had been there. It turns out that he had sold the boat about 3 years before to the last owner, it had been in my neighbours barn for a few years. His mother had bought it for him when he was a child! I need to chat to him to find out if he had it from new and if he did I must only be the third owner. It does have 32 on the transom. I will take a photo and post it on here if anyone is interested.

It isn't unknown for a number to be transferred to a replacement hull. This happened to 15345, the original hull being given to my sister and me (instead of being burned, which had been the owners' original plan). [If a 15345 is still in use somewhere, it is certainly not the original - the original is now a pile of rotten wood serving as a home for insects in my parents' garden. I had hoped to restore it some day, but it was beyond saving - the plywood sheets just shattered to bits when tapped hard.] Given that this can happen, is isn't impossible that some owners of boats with much more attractive numbers might have done the same. Even so, the odds are that yours is the original 32.

PuffinInTegel's picture

Quote: >>> It does have 32 on the transom. I will take a photo and post it on here if anyone is interested. <<<
... definitely interested. I see a story in the making.

Gernot H.

S411orgirl's picture

How do I get my boat put on the roll call?

PuffinInTegel's picture

The file is in my keeping, I can enter your boat when I find a moment to spare.
Data submission is voluntary but I think at least the number, country and location should be stated. The full data record is: Sail number; Boat name; Country; Helm/Owner; Crew; Club or town; remarks .
I also add data from published race results as I assume that persons who allow their names etc. to be published on the Internet do not object to this information being copied. It allows us to trace the boats' race records too (in the Remarks column).
Cheers,
Gernot H.

russellz's picture

mine is 140, just bought this month

62816inBerlin's picture

Congratulations on your purchase.
Your boat attracted quite some attention on the Facebook group "People who love Mirror sailing dinghies" when it was up for sale.
It is particularly interesting as it seems to have even the original Mark I rig. While this is not optimum for sailing regattas, it certainly gives the boat character and a charm that the newer versions have lost.
I hope you enjoy sailing her and look after her well!
I've entered her in the roll call but didn't have an owner name and home port at the time. Is it OK for me to put your name in? Where will she be sailing from ?
Cheers,
Gernot H.

Wackysailor's picture

Hi
I have an old mirror which I would like to get on the roll call if at all possible. I would also like to see if I can find out any of the history of it; apart from that the kit was bought in 1970 and that it was signed off as race legal in August '76 we don't know anything. So if anyone knows about mirror number 23833 I'd love to hear!
Thanks

PuffinInTegel's picture

Welcome to the Mirrorists club.
From the above, I assume that you do have the measurement certificate and some kit details.
Let me have the other details you'd like included in the roll call (name, crew, former name(s)?, club or home town etc.)
You never answered the question I sent on FB, but I'll believe that you are a bon-fide Mirrorist!
Cheers,
Gernot H.

Wackysailor's picture

Afraid we don't have the measurement certificate but it has a signature and a date on the jib sail which I have been told by other Mirrorists that this was how the boats could be easily seen to be class legal; J R Rendle August 1976 (does have the full date but I can't remember it at the moment!).
Given the date we believe that the sails are the original ones and there is nothing to suggest that any other parts are not original.

Anyway, for the roll call; the number is 23833, the name of the boat is Peggy-Sue, the owner is Zenna Kingdon, my mother and I am the crew! The boat is sailed at Roadford Lake, Devon alongside some others from the roll call.
Hope this helps
Billy

Wackysailor's picture

Just seen an advert on ebay for a mirror dinghy supposedly with number 39. If this is the case then it is the 5th oldest in existence. If I had the space I'd be tempted to buy and restore it! For anyone interested here is the link; http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Mirror-Dinghy-/161806030546?hash=item25ac6416d2

sail_and_oar's picture

If it is one's intention to own a very early boat please note the first 700 (kits) built were Mk 1s. These have no cockpit storage lockers and the gunwales are external to the hull plywood. The following 70,000 boats were Mk2's, for the most part all are very similar to one another and from a historical point of view not very exciting.

The Mirror class rules 2015 lists the differences between the Mk 1, Mk2 and the plastic Mk3. I think the plastic boats built by Jack Holt (the company not the man) were classed as Mk2

If anyone spots a genuine Mk1 for sale on ebay please let us all know. No matter how far gone someone will be delighted to own it. They do turn up and nobody seems to recognise their historical significance.

Cliff

Wackysailor's picture

Couldn't help but contact the advertiser! I have asked whether or not it has the cockpit lockers which may help determine if it is a mk1, however the boat doesn't appear to have the number on the transom as it should do. I assume that this means that it is, as someone further up the thread suggested, a replacement hull. However if anyone knows of any other circumstances in which the boat wouldn't have a number I'd be interested to hear it; perhaps a replacement transom??

There's no real way to see what state it's in from those photos - even the hole isn't shown well. I don't know why the same picture of a Mirror (the one with it sailing) is used on three different Mirrors that are for sale either.

Wackysailor's picture

If you look again they have uploaded some more photos showing the number 39 engraved in the transom and the hull to prove that it is a mk1 design. I would suggest that this genuinely is number 39.

I have just purchased number 39. It does have the original transom with 39 engraved as stated. Has Mk 1 solid bulkhead and mk 1 circular mast foot. All looks genuine. Imagine there will be a lot more than just that hole to fix when I investigate more but it should be a very satisfying restoration.

Paul

Well done.Enjoy the project.

Congratulation on your new acquisition. Good luck on your restoration I hope we can see it when you are done.

Pete

Could you please add 39 to the roll. Can you also please add my other mirrors: 10546, 25184 and 49089.
Thank You.

Paul

62816inBerlin's picture

I couldn't resist putting up Paul's picture:
Number 39, Paul Rogers
Cheers,
Gernot H.

62816inBerlin's picture

Paul, when I entered 10546 in the list, I discovered that 10547 is already in there. That means two tough old boats with consecutive numbers and which have survived are now on record.
Cheers,
Gernot

I think those two boats should meet up and go for a sail together.

PuffinInTegel's picture

I had long doubted the fact that #3 was actually still sailing, as my only source of information was on Herman Janssen's site.
Now Neil and Paul Cooke, who own both #3 and #14, have joined the Facebook group and posted pictures of both boats in action.
Unless someone now finds #2 in action, the Cookes definitely take the prize!
Cheers,
Gernot

i have a barn find boat that has 510 carved into the transom(I believe this is the correct name ) and would like to know how to be sure this is an authentic carving it matches the sale number thankyou in advance for any information given

PuffinInTegel's picture

Welcome to the Mirrorist World, Pengemblue!
Congratulations on the barn find!
Do you plan to sail her/ restore her?
There is quite a large number of Mark I Mirrors being reported on the FaceBook group "People who love Mirror Sailing Dinghies" too.
You all should share experiences, stories and information here and there!

Cheers, Gernot H.

PuffinInTegel's picture

Someone else with a Mark 1 Mirror should confirm the "carved" technique, but if the sail matches the transom marking, that's the correct number, I'd assume.
All the Mark II boats I've come across have the number embossed more or less clearly (not really carved) inside the transom.
As your boat number is <700 (see above), it should be a Mark 1 model.
Cheers,
Gernot.

Hi

I own No19 (sea witch)

still with most of the original kit, and still with some original documents.

Sea Witch was i believe the boat on the trade stand when the mirror was released..

She is currently upside down under a tarp in my parents garden...

What do I do next!!

(hi btw)

Nerys

PuffinInTegel's picture

Nerys - welcome to the Mirrorists on-line hangout! I see that you are also on Facebook Mirrorist group and hope you enjoy the discussions and "ol' talk" (as we call it in the Caribbean) here and there.
As an aficionado, I'm delighted that so many "oldies" are resurfacing. As with antique cars, there are quite a few enthusiasts who enjoy owning / restoring old boats. Only it's not as "sexy" as old cars are. However it's also not as expensive as restoring/owning old cars. So if you haven't the time or ambitions to join that fraternity, you'll probably find someone else who does.
Cheers,
Gernot H.

I have recently acquired Mirror 3614. Originally purchased by my Dad around 30 years ago, I remember going to view it with my brother and my Dad. Once purchased it needed a lot of work which my Dad did himself. We used the boat regularly, taking it to France for all our family holidays, around Brittany mainly but as far as Spain. Once us kids were too old for family holidays, my Dad donated it to my uncle. He lives around 6 miles from Lake Windermere and has 3 daughters VERY keen on sailing. It was used almost weekly for years! Again as the kids grew up and newer faster boats were purchased the Mirror fell out of favour and was laid up in a garage for 5 years. I recently started working in the area and jumped at the chance of taking it on. It's now in my garage as my winter project. It has a small hole in the hull and needs repainting but everything bar the centreboard is original. Can't wait to sail her in the spring!

MrT's picture

I have Mirror number 268.

62816inBerlin's picture

Congratulations on joining the Noble Order of Mark I Mirror Dinghy Owners !
It certainly confirms the success of the design that more and more very old boats are "appearing" on the forum and the Facebook groups. Some of these have been in use continuously, as far as I know, while others have slept in barns, garages and back-yards for decades. To which category does 268 belong?
There are instructions on how to post pictures in this forum at http://forum.mirrordiscussforum.org/node/35 . It's a bit finicky and you need to have stored the pictures elsewhere (e.g. Picasa or a shared cloud service or Facebook) first, I'm afraid, but we love to see pictures of members' boats here.
Browse around and have a look - I hope you enjoy being a forumite and Mirrorist!
Gernot H.

MrT's picture

I bought 268 about a year ago, it had been renovated so I was able to sail it straight away. It is now called "Another Tea" and is sailed at the Waveney and Oulton Broad Yacht Club in Suffolk.

http://www.boatsafe.com/nauticalknowhow/rename.htm This link discusses changing the name of a boat.

I own Mirror dinghy number 1100 which is carved into the transom.
She is called "Oddjob".
She has not been sailed for the last few years and is currently suspended in my garage awaiting next season. Now the kids have left home, I get her all to myself!

62816inBerlin's picture

"Puffin" has become my private toy since we bought the day-sailer. However the "children" (the youngest is 35 now) do occasionally row her across the bay to go swimming. Although they are familiar with sailing, none of them ever bothered to obtain the necessary licence to be able to (legally) sail a boat on their own on Berlin's lakes. Oddly enough, they don't need a licence to drive the daysailer with the outboard motor (licence-free for engines under 15 PS/ 11.3 kW)!
Let me know whether to enter your data in the Roll call! (your full name, where you sail or your yacht club and any remarks other than what you wrote above.
Cheers;
Gernot H.

I have Mirror number 1188. Bought her in Cumbria about 6 years ago and now sail her at Montrose, Scotland. She needed a fair bit of repair/refurbishment after I bought her including a couple of small plywood patches and some short sections of gunwhale, but she's in quite good condition overall and will hopefully be on the water for a long while yet. I bought her to teach my children but usually sail her on my own now. She was named Cat's Whiskers 2 when we got her, but repainting the name hasn't quite reached the top of the to do list since she was refurbished.
The mainsail may be original, as the numbers are stitched on which suggests it's quite old. Sadly the old wooden mast she came with was in poor condition and had to be replaced with an aluminium one after an ominous cracking noise during a force 5!
Here's a couple of pictures of her in action http://montrosesailingclub.co.uk/index.php/gallery/img_9920/#main http://montrosesailingclub.co.uk/index.php/gallery/img_9961/#main

PuffinInTegel's picture

I've taken the liberty of linking them here. Looks in a great condition now.
picture 9920
1188 on the water
picture 9961
1188 with a partner

Looks like you had fun weather.
Cheers;
Gernot H.

Just bought a mirror with a sail that used to belong to 12811, but the old number was changed to 161 at some point. It seems unlikely to me given the state of the hi that this the Hull is either of these, so I would like to find the number on the transom but I can't find it, nor do I know exactly where to look. Is it always in the same place? Does anyone have any pictures of their transom number so I can see roughly where it should be?

Also when people say the mk 1 had no storage, are they referring to those two holes cut in the (not sure what this is called) "fore-wall" of the cockpit?

The number should be on the inside of the transom on the visible part above the rear buoyancy tank, and the digits should be large enough to be obvious. If they aren't, they've either been sanded off (possibly for reasons of theft) or the whole transom has been replaced. (I wouldn't worry about the small possibility of it being a stolen hull - it's too late now for that to matter as such thefts are ancient history, and it's much more important that boats are simply preserved and used.)

The Mk 1 Mirror lacked those holes in the "fore-wall" (I don't know what to call it either), although they could potentially be added to a Mk 1 Mirror. (I saw a picture of a Mk 1 front tank opened up recently and it looks as if the next "wall" nearer the bow doesn't go the whole way across, which means that it would need to be replaced as well to seal off the rest of the buoyancy tank if holes were added to the "fore-wall" of a Mk 1 boat.)

Another Mk 1 feature is the lack of inner gunwale support round the top - there's a fat strip of wood added round the rim on the outside to provide strength, and on the Mk 2 there's another of these on the inside to double the thickness, making the edge more comfortable to sit on and adding a lot more strength, though again this has been added to some Mk 1 boats.

Another feature of the Mk 1 is a structural piece of wood that sticks up through (I think) the side tanks somewhere aft of the thwart, the top being curved and the highest part connecting to the side up to the gunwale - it's highly unlikely that this would be removed on any modified Mk 1 hull, so if that isn't there either, you can be sure you've got a Mk 2.

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