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September 29, 2012

In the interests of an honest record, I should, in contrast with the rather chipper last post, report that we suffered a major set back this month. Scrap thieves broke into the shop and made off with all of the bronze we had been collecting over the entire project, including the vast collection of silicon bronze screws and bolts my Dad has been collecting for 15 years now and all of the hardware from the Sans Souci. We lost beautiful 8″ bronze cleats, portlights, a heavy duty cast bronze bow roller, travelers, and most devastatingly, our rudder post, the fabrication of which is outlined two posts down. It breaks my heart all of this stuff will be sold at pennies of its actual value and melted down.

On the bright side they did not find our ships wheel or the manual winch (also brass/bronze), and are now safely in storage at home.

It puts us in a hell of a bind as total replacement cost is just shy of $9,000, and we spent a long time finding and making the previous rudder shaft. I’ve spent much of September scouring scrap yards and rebuilding the back wall of our shop to make it harder for thieves to get back in. At this point I think all hope of recovery is pretty much gone.

I’m looking at putting together a kickstarter so that we can replace at least the rudder shaft quickly and not fall any farther behind. A fall launching is now out of the question. Maybe if the kickstater works we can shoot for the spring.

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