"Kahawa" story

Palle Rune was original buyer of “Kahawa” in 1978.
He was the owner for more than 30 years.
This is his story about Kahawa.


I bought the hull and the deck straight out of the mould and adapted the inside to my own requirements myself over a period of ten years.

She was launched in August 1987 at Mombasa and has sailed ever since with short periods out of the water to have her bottom scraped etc.


I built the masts and spars myself out of irrigation piping laminated with Araldite and had sections tested by PROCTOR of UK who told me they were over designed, as compressive strength was greater than the equivalent Proctor extrusions. Whichever the case, they are still as strong as the day they were made, as are the fittings, which were made from scrap stainless steel from an old dairy plant.
It took me 10 years to finish her outside my home in Thika, ca. 600 km. from Mombasa.


She has sat on a few reefs during the 24 years she has sailed but there is not a crack in the hull and the boat is as good as new.
The Veselys deserve a lot of credit for building such a lovely vessel.

In the Indian ocean where the winds are quite reliable, she sails for days on end with only a bungie holding the helm. I have an autohelm but rarely use it, as the boat is so stable sailing with just a piece of rubber elastic for stability.
I have lately converted my wheelhelm to tiller as I had made provision for this when I built the boat and I get more feel from the tiller than I ever got from the wheel.

I sail in all weathers and have often had the boat out in winds up to force 7 without any problems. The long keel and jiffy reefing makes it easy to reduce sail and just hold her gently off the wind with a stormsail and reefed mizzen.

For most of its life Kahawa was moored in Kilifi, since 2010 in Tudor Creek Mombasa.

Palle Rune,  August 2011



I have recently made Mombasa Yacht Club a present of Kahawa.

The boat will be used as a school-boat for young people sailing a large sailboat.

She has now a Mombasa Yacht Club mooring just opposite Mombasa Island.


Palle Rune,  January 2012