Page Published: 6 October 2016
The following was found a few years ago at this URL:
which has long since been taken down or its content moved. It is less a review and more a commentary on his SeaHawk, but nonetheless offers useful information.
I was looking for a traditional type of boat with a bit less maintenance that was light enough to manhandle.
A Seahawk 17 fitted the bill, especially as it was clinker-effect GRP. This one was available on the web and had been on Derwent Water in the North Lakes. Most of these boats are around the Broads, as that is the sort of water they are designed for, with a lifting keel, ability to take ground and built-in ballast in the stub keel.
I got the boat and did a few (very few) jobs on her before taking her to Ferry Nab on Windermere for a test sail.
Despite her cockleshell looks she sails really well. I now use a GPS to tune the sailing performance. She will achieve hull-speed (5.1 knots) in any brisk breeze over 9/10 knots.
Learning from previous experience I fitted a headsail furling system (Barton, cheaper and more effective than Plastimo. You can't reef using this system, only deploy or furl). Again I had bought a boat with a bed sheet for a mainsail (but there was a trailer included) so I sourced a replacement, which turned out to be a decent Osprey dinghy sail. This fits perfectly.
I've also modified the rudder dramatically which has improved it's grip on the water (no stalling) and the boat's balance so that it now sails hands-free.
More can be read about the revised rudder in the Owner's Customisation area.