This kills me, but the time has come for us to part ways.
Island Belle is an 80-year-old block island schooner. Originally built in California, this beauty has been owned by film director Preston Sturges, was used for a short time as a Hawaiian mail carrier, and crossed through the Panama Canal by renowned wooden shipwright Allen Taube. In Key West, Allen used her as the FIRST schooner charter in the island. He later sold her to upgrade to a larger boat and the following owner had her coldmoulded - a process whereby fiberglass was layered over her double wooden hull - and continued to do charters out of her for another decade. She's still Coast Guard certified for tourist charters if you wished to refit her for that. Her next owner took her to the Bahamas and back before also upgrading wherein I found her. Under my watch, she's gone to Guatemala and back with a full crew of five. A few months after returning to Key West, I completed my first solo sail on her to bring her to my home port of Jacksonville, FL.
This is all to say that despite her age, she is blue water certified and a very, VERY, comfortable ocean going vessel.
Unfortunately, I am young, broke, and unskilled in maintaining her. She's just a bit too much of a boat for me. While I absolutely think she still has a ton of life in her, I don't have the ability or means to get her there. She is going to be a project boat for her next owner. A lot of the interior and exterior wood (as showcased in the photos) will need to be replaced. The masts have some signs of deterioration but will still withstand at least five years with proper care. Her Yanmar engine works good, but I had constant problems with the electrical system and so I kinda tore it out with the plan of refixing it. I'm not sure what else to add here. She's near the bare bones right now, that last sail took a lot out of both of us, and will need a lot of work.
This is a ONE OF A KIND BOAT. If you ever wanted a schooner, if you love the beauty of old school rigging, this is your baby. A bit rough around the edges, but true sweetheart