GP14 Sailing Forums Forum Just aquired GP14


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    • #3621
      Michael Brooks

      Please forgive my needy post.

      I have recently aquired an old glass fibre GP14. Sail number 10216. Having paid very little money for her, she has a few items that will need rectifying before she is ready to sail at my club in Shoreham.

      Could I ask for opinions or advice on a some of its problems.

      The laminated tiller has cracked in half. Hoping to attach photo. Has anyone successfully repaired one of these? If so, what method was used.

      If a repair is not viable I like the idea of making a replacement myself, but am unsure what wood to use. Does it have to be laminated or could I use a block and jigsaw to shape.

      The timber  mast step with the square mortice is also a little unstable and showing signs of old age. I am a little reluctent to take it apart as it does  looks barely serviceable at the moment, but is there an up to date equivalent on the market and how difficult are they to replace.

      The GP14 also has no floor boards.  Cheeky I know, but are there any drawings out there for DIY construction and what material should be used?

      I can’t wait to get her on the water so any information will be a greatly appreciated.



    • #3626

      Hi welcome to the GP14 family.  Repairing any of the wooden parts such as your laminated tiller is normally best done using epoxy resins such as SP106 or similar from WEST , use a filler such a cellulose fibres to make the epoxy act as a glue.  The repair will normally be stronger than the original.  Alternative look on eBay for a secondhand rudder complete.  If your tiller is in poor condition look carefully at the rudder stock as this needs to be strong enough to take the twisting loads when sailing.

      Considering your mast step drawings are available for all versions of the GP14 from the class office you will need the correct sheet for your early fibreglass boat.  I have not looked at the mast step in on of these for a while but I would guess that the mast step would have been made from ply wood, a better replacement would be to use a Hard wood.  If you have the old one use it as a pattern or try to get a look at a boat of same age.  When making a replacement make sure you seal it against water by coating it in the SP106 epoxy.  When cutting the slot for the mast make the width , side to side, as tight as possible to the size of the foot of your mast.  The length wise dimension is set by the class rules, then look at the GP web site for  dimensions for setting up the for/aft position of the mast foot / rake,  makes the boat easy to sail if all is set up and balanced.

      Steve Corbet

    • #3627
      Michael Brooks

      Thanks Steve. Brilliant reply.

    • #3643


      As Steve stays its vital the tiller is repaired securely using a good glue like epoxy and a scarf joint. Alternately you can make one from a length of timber. almost any timber will do. Ash is traditionally popular it straight light and nice to work. Not very water durable. It doesn’t need to be laminated.

      The mast step on the Series 1 is very simple and easy to fix. It needs to be strong so I would be tempted to sort it now while out of season. The downside is that it sits on the hog and if the hog is soft then the boat is normally a technical write off.  Its a weak area by modern standards, but plenty capable of the very modest older tensions, so check it out and make sure the hog is sound.

      The assoc supply plans for a mast step conversion to bring the step up to more modern standards but its not really worth it unless your step is beyond repair or you intend to use more modern tensions.  Probably not wise anyway without fitting  the whole boat out to suit with it.


      Hope this helps.

      <span style=”line-height: 1.5em;”>Kev</span>


    • #3644
      Oliver Shaw

      To add to Kev’s comments,  this is a Mk 1,  not a Series 1;    i.e. a GRP boat.      The mast step is not identical to that of the Series 1;   on at least  some of the early GRP boats there is a stainless steel plate bonded into the GRP,  to which the mast step is bolted.    Further information is available,  albeit with some searching,  in past posts on the GP14 Owners Online Community site,  or some of our GRP experts may well be able to advise.

      Regarding the tiller,  the current class rules leave virtually all aspects of the tiller optional.    If your tiller is straight,  and you wish to stay with a straight one,  then   –   as Kev says  –  there is no structural need for it to be laminated;  lamination is merely a nice cosmetic touch.   However if you want it cranked,  then laminating it is really the only way to make a satisfactory job,  as a sawn cranked one would almost inevitably result in grain running partially across the curved section,  at a point of maximum load.

      You don’t state whether your one is straight or cranked,  nor do you describe the nature of the crack.   If it is merely that the glue has failed and the laminations have separated you could do worse than take it apart and relaminate it.  Or even attempt to reglue in situ,  without taking it apart,  using a product such as WEST Epoxy Six10 Thickened Epoxy;  this is supplied in a cartridge which fits a standard cartridge gun,  mixes automatically in the extrusion nozzle,  and is capable of being injected into cracks as it emerges from the extrusion nozzle.

      I am not yet familiar with this product myself,  but expect to be using it very shortly on one of my own projects.   However  I have used enough of the WEST epoxy products over many years to have full confidence in the brand.



    • #3645
      Oliver Shaw

      I should have added that the classic woods for laminating the tiller are alternate layers of a dark coloured one and a light coloured one,  primarily for cosmetic reasons.    Pine and mahogany (sapele is perfectly satisfactory) are a popular choice,  and that is the combination used by Ben Dallimore (Boats & Tillers Scotland) who builds bespoke laminated tillers professionally.


      If you can source other light coloured woods such as hickory,  or sycamore,  they would be more exotic options.   But probably not ash,  because of its tendency to rot.



    • #3656
      Michael Brooks

      Thank you guys

      Im totally blown away by the knowledge and information you have between you, and are willing to share.

      I was unable to upload pictures of the affected items on my GP14. The file size was to big…( sorry not very techie)

      My tiller has in fact cranked and broken in two pieces. So I may well see if I can get away with a straight version, if it is not cranked for a reason., as lack of time may now be an issue.

      I will have a go at laminating when time permits.

      I will  investigate the mast step tomorrow, to try and establish as to why it is moving about.

      Thanks once again.



    • #3657
      Oliver Shaw

      “if it is not cranked for a reason”


      The only real reason for a cranked tiller is cosmetic.   They used to be very popular,  as a luxury item,  in the days when tillers were almost invariably wood,  but I have the impression that they have fallen out of favour for modern boats,  particularly with the advent of tubular fixed tillers.


      If making a straight one,  do check that the end will be high enough to clear the side decks;   angle it slightly upwards by adjustments to the top and bottom surfaces at the stock end if necessary.


      Good luck.



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