In the most exciting development to Firefly manufacture for some time, see below for an account of the latest composite Firefly…..WELL DONE TONY!
After nearly 15 years in production the Rondar Firefly has established itself as the team racing boat of choice in the UK. It has also gained favour amongst many of the fleet racers winning the National Championships on many occassions including last year. Even so the old wood Fairy Marine hulls have remained competitive with owners putting in many hours keeping them looking beautiful and up to competitive racing standard. This has included converting old wood hulls to the MK4 version which allows wood boats to ‘dry’ capsize like the Rondar. This is an expensive option unless owners undertake the work themselves and can cost as much as a new boat.
Finding good sound wood hulls is and will become increasingly more difficult so in order to to keep the ‘wood’ option available for those who like the cosmetics of a wood boat and perhaps want something a little more individual Rondars working with Tony Thresher have this winter produced two composite boats built to the MK4 wood deck specification. The prototype has been sailing since the beginning of January and is performing well. The second hull which can be seen on the Firefly Class stand at Sailboat is the production model which is finished and ready for fitting. There will be plenty of pictures of the prototype in build and performing on the water on the stand and Tony Thresher will be available to question on Saturday afternoon and most of Sunday
It is anticipated that there will be three options for the composite boat, a kit of parts to complete the Rondar shell, a completed boat varnished and ready for fitting out and of course a complete boat ready to sail. Tony Thresher will be building the boats for Rondars and customers can contact him directly regarding the specifications they may require. Prices are yet to be finalised but the boat on the stand will be offered at a special show price to anyone wanting a new Fly.
The other boat on the stand will be one of West Oxfordshire S.C.’s two new standard Rondar Fireflys which were delivered in October and were funded by Sport England. The arrival of these two boats brings the Club fleet up to six, a team racing fleet. The Club chose to invest in three Fireflys four years ago with the intension of getting the fleet up to team racing size within 5 years. The boats have proved very popular at the Club it being particularly suited to its small lake and the Junior and Youths sailors. Add this to the team racing possibilities that open up when a Club has a team racing fleet on site and you have a fantastic Club boat which can be used by everyone from eight to eighty.