Vayu is an Irwin 40 built in 1981 in Florida. I purchased her in 2006 from BoatUS insurance as salvage. She was in Southport, NC when hurricane Charley hit. The roller furling jib came loose and caused the mast to break at the first set of spreaders. The real cause of this failure was a badly corroded swage fitting located in the discontinuous rig at the spreader tip. Vayu after damage

Originally named Sooth Sayer I renamed her to Vayu, Vāyu (Sanskrit: वायु, Sanskrit pronunciation: [ʋɑːyu]; is a primary Hindu deity, the Lord of the winds, As the word for air, or wind (Pavana) is one of the five great elements. The Sanskrit word ‘Vāta’ literally means “blown”, ‘Vāyu’ “blower”, and ‘Prāna’ “breathing” (viz. the breath of life, cf. the *an- in ‘animate’). Hence, the primary referent of the word is the “deity of Life”, who is sometimes for clarity referred to as “Mukhya-Vāyu”

I purchased her with the thought of flipping her for a profit. As things turned out I ended up keeping her and she soon became my home. Like many boats she is a work in progress although I have been able to sail on several cruises including an offshore trip to Bermuda. She is not my ideal boat for long distance cruising as she is missing some key features, but she is a good boat and will work for us. I am not sure there is anything you could call an “ideal” boat and at this point in my life I am ready to stop working on boats and do some sailing. So we will keep Vayu and make the best of any short comings. If we  wait for the perfect boat we may never get to go, I have seen others fall into that trap.

A lot of work has gone into getting Vayu ready for cruising. I replaced the mast with one from a Cape Dory 40. The mast is a Hood stowaway with in mast main furling. The interior was a bit rough as well so a lot of work has been done throughout the boat. I have replace all the plumbing and a good part of the wiring. I have upgraded both the AC and DC panels and added a second 30 AMP shore service for the Air conditioning I added.

When ever I do a project boat the first thing I try to do is restore the boat to usable condition. There are a couple of reasons for this. The first is you never know what life is going to throw at you, so it is important to have the boat in a condition that should you have to, you could sell her. Health, jobs, marriage, kids, and so on could force a sale. The second reason is it helps your moral if you can use the boat. If all you do is work on your boat you will soon get tired of it and it will become an albatross so to speak. If you can use the boat it really helps to keep your spirit and interest up.

Now that all the basic stuff is done I am working on modifying Vayu for a life of cruising. There is a lot to consider and many new bits of equipment to add to help make cruising safer,  more comfortable, and easier. I will be discussing these changes and additions in another post in this section.

Capt. Wayne


About the author: Capt. Wayne


Boat builder, Sailor, Surveyor, and freelance writer.