Triola is the perfect boat for a family of four, however, with Matthew, our fifth and youngest crew member, now growing, it has become more challenging fitting us all comfortably in. Added to this, we now have the funds to purchase a larger boat, so it is with a heavy heart that we decided to sacrifice the great sailing ability of Triola to buy something with a shower and three cabins. Ho hum!
To the boat: She is a fast cruiser\racer based on the out and out racer Joker 30. Triola is Ballad number 51, built in Sweden to exceptionally high and strong standards (“Over engineered” by todays standards) by the passionate and skilled boat builders of Albin Marin. The Albin Ballad was the top of the Albin range (see more in About the Albin Ballad), and it shows in her finish.
Triola, herself, has been on the cover of Yachts and Yachting in the 1980s (a year before I was born!), and has been in many magazine articles covering both our adventures in Triola and the improvements we have made to her. To see more about Triolas history, please see here.
Great for Families
As constructed, she was already great for families, being solid in any seas and wind conditions and with a big, deep and safe cockpit. Over the some 12 years I have owned her, she has been modified to even better for a family, or grandparents.
- Two ISOFix positions for car seats to be fixed to the boat for when at sea.
- The Fore cabin has a modified stair gate across it so that the whole for cabin can either be separated for sleeping, or as a safe play area.
- Netting has been put around the deck to limit the chances of the smaller crew members going for an unscheduled swim.
- Split Fore cabin. A divider can be erected or removed from the fore-cabin that splits the double into two single cabins. Great for separating two siblings and stopping any squabbling.
For more details on how we sailed her with our kids, please see here.
Her sails are Vectran (the stuff space suits are made out of!) with taffeta on both sides, and are the best £5k I spent on the boat. Before we had a family I raced her and wanted the best sails I could get. The sails still have perfect shape and she pulls like a train on the wind. They are ten years old, but they have another ten in them and longer with care.
A Yanmar 2GM20, which has been faultless. It is old fashioned technology, with lots of big tolerances, unlike modern, high pressure, common rail diesels that must adhere to strict emission regulations. Parts and expertise are plentiful and maintenance is simply a breeze. It has never let me down in all the years I’ve owned her.
Great for Single Handing
Sailing with your family of three children, even with an experienced first mate, means most of the time your are sailing single handed. The boat is easily sailed in this way thanks to a number of modifications.
- Strongly geared Antal W40 self tailing winches.
- Our Autohelm ST2000 tillerpilot (Bob!) who can steer the boat in just about any conditions.
- Midships cleats for easy single handed mooring.
Rocna Anchoring solution
Being at anchor is one of the most magical (not to mention cost effective) parts of sailing. I wanted to be sure I could rest easy at anchor so invested in entirely new rode and the anchor. The Rocna self launches and recovers, see more about the solutions here.
Main saloon double conversion
The main saloon can be spanned to make a huge double berth. The sleeping arrangement we use is the youngest in the pilot berth in the main saloon, the first mate and skipper in the main saloon, spanned to a double, and the forecabin split into two little cabins for two eldest crew.
Habitent Cockpit Enclosure
The Habitent Sirroco can be erected in ten minutes and gives a massive amount of private extra space aft. Technically you should not have it up in a blow, however, it has survived a couple of overnight storms we have had completely unscathed. With its sides up it can act as a bimini to keep the sun off the cockpit, with the sides down, but the window blinds up you can sit in the cockpit and watch rainshowers pass over you, with the window blinds down, the cockpit has full privacy and can be used as an additional cabin or just a good, dry place to store stuff (those damp oilies for instance!)
Galley and Fridge
We completely refitted her galley with a good sized and efficient fridge and a new Dometic StarLight oven. Added to this, we replaced the work surface with a beautiful and durable Corian worktop that I wrote an article for PBO for.
Heating with Propex
Cruising earlier and later into the season gives better value to the boat and there is something magical about a clear winter morning in a deserted anchorage that would in summer months be heaving, and the Propex heater is a great, efficient way of heating the boat safely, quickly with a lovely reliable dry heat.
FlexoFold Folding Propeller
In light airs, every bit of drag matters and can be the difference between turning the engine on and doing some hateful motor sailing or being able to ghost along through still water.
Newly painted deck
Triolas deck was worn and the gel-coat chalky. I made the decision to repaint the deck and to do it right and with epoxy primer and two pack paint. It was the hardest, most technical and backbreaking job i have completed on Triola, it was also the most satisfying. She now looks like a new boat and she shines next to other boats. It was the best thing I ever did and was also written up for our friends at PBO.
Initiatory to follow…
She is well kitted out, and I will update this as I go.
- Garmin GPSmap 620
- Honda 2hp outboard