Cornish Crabber Mark I for sale

Emsworth, United Kingdom

Listed price £18,500 GBP

General information
Cornish Crabber Mark I
Used sail boat for sale
$23,881 USD | Listed price £18,500 GBP
Name of boat
Roger Dongray
Length overall
Length waterline
Length on deck
2.40 tons (U.S.)
GRP professionally re-sprayed in Grey
Lifting Keel
Emsworth, United Kingdom

About this Cornish Crabber Mark I


“Zéle” is a Cornish Crabber Mark I that combines the traditional look and feel of an old gaffer with the reduced maintenance of a GRP hull and modern diesel inboard engine. She has just undergone a major professional refit and is in excellent condition. She has been fully commissioned and is absolutely ready to sail If you have ever hankered after an old gaffer but do not have the time to maintain a wooden boat then take a look at “Zéle”! There is a mooring available in Chichester Harbour.


LOA: 31’ 3” (including bowsprit)

LOD: 24’ 0”

LWL: 20’ 3”

Beam: 8’ 0”

Draft: 2’ 8” keel up, 4’ 11” keel down

Displacement: 4,800 lbs (includes approximately 200lbs additional ballast over standard boat)


GRP Hull painted Marlin Blue

Wood Epoxy Laminate deck and superstructure

Lifting Keel in steel with twin side keels

Aft Cockpit with teak facings

Tiller steering

Full interior refit in 2020 by professional shipwrights in Emsworth. Deck totally replaced including all deck beams. New deck laminated from ply and epoxy. All varnish work taken back to bare wood inside and in cockpit. Hull professionally painted in two-pack.


Yanmar 1GM10 9hp Inboard Diesel (1992)

Last service May 2019

Shaft Drive to bronze propeller


12-volt Battery

Charged by engine alternator

Spars and Rigging

Gaff Cutter Rigged

Wooden Spars in very good condition

Wooden Bowsprit extended 2’ longer than standard

Stainless Steel Standing Rigging (new 2020)

Traditional Gaff Rig Mainsail Reefing

Wykeham-Martin Headsail Furling on Foresail and Staysail


Traditional Tan sails.

Mainsail, Foresail and Staysail

Jackyard Topsail

Additional unused set of foresails (c. 2006) with Wykeham-Martin furling gear

Several older sails

Deck Equipment

2 x Anchors (10 & 20 kgs, one new CQR), chain and warp

3 x Cockpit Covers – 2 almost new

Bilge Pump

Boarding Ladder

Warps and Fenders

Navigation Equipment

Garmin Echosounder (new)

Garmin Chartplotter (new)

VHF Radio

Navigation Lights – copper, traditional oil lamps

Sestrel Compass

Wempe Hamburg Clock and Barometer

Safety Equipment


3 Lifejackets (may require servicing)

Radar Reflector


“Zéle’s” interior has a very traditional feel very much in keeping with a classic old gaffer.

2 Cabins

4 single berths

Saloon Table

Sitting Headroom

Sea toilet in forepeak

Light brown vinyl upholstery

Cold freshwater system by hand pump

Gas cooker


Owner’s Remarks

“Having sailed for 50 yrs with traditional boats and built and restored quite a number I wanted a GRP low maintenance boat that looked like a wooden one. A rare beast. The problem is they were all too small. I looked seriously at Shrimpers but they were expensive and again too small for a comfortable motion in a serious sea and the cockpit too cramped for four to be in anything but a huddle. I looked at the bigger modern Crabbers but they were (to my mind) an ugly modernisation of a traditional boat, ticking neither box. I was then advised to look for a Mk1 Crabber - a truly traditional design and major part of the success that put the company on the map. Many went to Holland and are rarely on the market here. Most who see them mistake them for a small wooden smack yacht. The interior is compact not cramped, and wide as the bunks go right out to the side, it has four full berths, unobtrusive centreplate so will go anywhere with the shallowest of water, has a decent sail area and a very large cockpit that will take 6 easily. The engine is not in the cabin either and has wonderful access. It also looks right without any compromise.

I was (born) lucky to find one in my home port that had been shipwright built and loved by one man for 34 years. This owner, a professional seaman had sailed her singlehanded (no youngster) all over the channel, in all weathers. He lavished care on her as is evidenced by two files of receipts for everything, as it needed doing and most before it needed doing. The engine specialist in the Marina said he was their oldest customer and had almost a complete filing drawer just for him. The boat wanted for nothing (spare new unused sails- two spare covers- £1000 worth of traditional oil navigation lamps with their own insect repellent oil). I leapt at the chance to buy her and commenced a survey as a past boat builder. She was indeed sound but i found some soft patches in the wooden deck (hull GRP). Suffice to say we negotiated and she went to a shipwright straight away who removed the entire deck and interior and over a six month period rebuilt her from the inside out with a completely new laminated and epoxy encapsulated deck (full pics available). The interior was also renewed, the bilges and lockers stripped and painted and the topside refinished in two pack as well. The previous owner got to know this boat well and added a lot more ballast to stiffen her up and also extended the bowsprit by three feet. Both foresails have wonderful bronze Wickham Martin furling gear.

Zéle (Zeal in French named after a famous Privateer) went into the water a few weeks before lockdown and was sailed immediately and as soon as was allowed after. She is a truly remarkable boat and in all my years of sailing I have never had so many others sail up to a boat to pass favourable comment when she has all the sails drawing.

Why am I selling is an obvious question? … My wife and I have decided (post C19) that we want to sail further and longer and more often so have, with heavy and (happy) sad hearts bought a bigger boat that is more suitable to be on for extended periods. Zéle is one of those rare boats that satisfying to be on even when she is not moving. She requires nothing and is in first class condition.”

Read more

Yanmar 1GM10 9hp Inboard Diesel
Maximum speed
6 mph
Cruising speed
5 mph
Number of cabins
Number of berths

The Company offers the details of this vessel in good faith but cannot guarantee or warrant the accuracy of this information nor warrant the condition of the vessel. A buyer should instruct his agents, or his surveyors, to investigate such details as the buyer desires validated. This vessel is offered subject to prior sale, price change, or withdrawal without notice.

This Cornish Crabber Mark I has been viewed 475 times
Broker/Dealer Information

Ebbtide Yacht Brokers

Mr Clive Brandon
Emsworth Yacht Harbour
Thorney Road, Emsworth
PO10 8BP
United Kingdom
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