Sailing yachts

45′ W. H. Thomas Gaff Yawl

(REF: 29048)


  • Builder: W. H. Thomas of Falmouth
  • Year: 1906
  • Location: Devon
  • Length on deck: 45'
  • Beam: 10'8"
  • Draft: 7'6"
  • Tonnage: 17TM

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Full specification

Wooden Ships Comments on this 45′ W. H. Thomas Gaff Yawl

45’ Gaff Yawl built by W.H. Thomas of Falmouth in 1906.

Built as a private yacht, she was found in a neglected state in Glasgow in 1998.  She had a major rebuild in Suffolk and was re-launched in 2001.  It is believed that she was one the first yachts in the UK to be built with an engine and electric lights, called sparks at the time, according to the Lloyds register.

Owned and run by The Island Trust since 2012 as a commercial sail training vessel for young people.  The yacht also serves for teaching RYA sailing courses and has proved to be very successful in that field.

She currently has a commercial licence under the MCA to Category 2 for 8 guests + 2 crew.  The boat will be sold with all gear and equipment required for commercial sailing to the above standard.

Having been subject to regular surveys for her commercial licence, she has always been well maintained with major work carried out as necessary.  Between 2015-2016 she had a major period of work where the ballast keel was dropped and the bottom end of the hull strengthened with enormous new wooden floors and corresponding stainless steel plates then all new keel bolts.  In 2017 the stem was replaced and she had a new teak on ply deck which is in superb condition.

Her low aspect rig makes her easy to handle and she will ride through heavy winds with ease.  She has a large spacious cockpit and a large volume interior that is currently fitted out with 10 berths for commercial sailing.  This could very easily be altered to make her more suitable for private sailing if required.

A well equipped attractive yacht with a full commercial licence.


Length on Deck                      44’8” (13.63m)

Length Overall                       55’5”(16.9m)

Length Waterline                   36’6” (11.13m)

Beam                                       10’8” (3.26m)

Draft                                       7’6” (2.3m)

Thames Tonnage                  17TM


  • Planked in oak and iroko of 1” thickness.
  • Sawn oak frames with 2 steamed intermediate timbers.  Various new timbers in laminated oak.
  • External lead ballast keel with stainless steel keel bolts.  Bolts new in 2015.  Ballast keel removed and rebidded in 2015/2016.
  • Galvanised strap floors across the centreline.  Very large grown oak floors fitted new in 2015.  These are fitted in way of the mast step and further forward, they have reinforcing stainless steel plates side bolted to the floors with welded plates to pick up the keel bolts.  This new structure makes her incredibly stiff and solid.
  • New stem in 2017.
  • Yacht laid teak deck joggled to a king plank.  Teak is glued to a marine plywood subdeck.  Painted covering boards and toe rails.  Deck believed to have been laid in 2000.
  • Mostly bronze deck fittings.  Galvanised stanchions with bronze bases.  Galvanised stemhead fitting.
  • Iroko coachroof coamings with bronze portholes.  Coachroof deck is laid teak glued over a marine plywood subdeck.  Varnished iroko grab rails.
  • Large self draining cockpit with iroko thwarts.  Scrubbed teak cockpit sole grating.
  • Teak lazarette hatch aft of the cockpit.
  • Tiller steering with a stainless steel rudder stock.


  • Gaff yawl rig.  Solid wooden keel stepped spruce main mast.
  • Varnished spruce bowsprit, boom and gaff yard.
  • Varnished spruce keel stepped mizzen mast and spars.
  • Galvanised wire standing rigging new in 2016.  Galvanised rigging screws and external galvanised chain plates over small channel boards.  All chain plates removed and re-bedded in 2015.
  • Main mast running backstays on 4:1 tackles.
  • Slab reefing mainsail.
  • Mizzen has galvanised wire standing rigging from 2016 with external galvanised chain plates.  Simply rigged with a pair of widely spaced cap shrouds each side.
  • Full set of sails in good condition.  Full list of sails in the inventory below.
  • Staysail hanked to inner forestay.  Jib sets on a traveller to the end of the bowsprit.


  • Yanmar 4JH475 75hp diesel installed new in 2015.
  • Centreline fixed 3 blade bronze propeller gives 5 knots cruising speed, 8 knots max speed.  Consumption of 7 litres/hour
  • 400 litres of diesel is 2 x stainless tanks under the quarter berths.
  • 250 litres of fresh water in a plastic tank under the saloon cabin sole
  • 2 x domestic batteries and 1 x engine start battery.  Charging through engine alternator or Victron 240 volt charger.
  • 1 x manual bilge pump and 1 x auto electric bilge pump.


  • 10 berths with 6’6” headroom in the saloon.  5’11” headroom forward.
  • Steps down from the companion hatch with the galley to starboard and chart desk to port.
  • There is a quarter berth either side stretching aft under the cockpit thwarts.
  • The galley is to a commercial standard made from stainless steel.  GN Espace Levante 4 galley stove with oven and grill.  Single stainless steel sink with manually pumped fresh water.  Manual sink pump out.  Integrated lockers and rubbish bin.
  • Chart desk faces forward with a dedicated seat.
  • Main saloon with excellent headroom and a long settee berth either side.  Centreline dropleaf varnished teak table.
  • Above each settee berth is a pull out pipecot berth, making for comfortable and secure sleeping berths.
  • Storage shelves outboard under the side decks.
  • Starboard side passage going forward with a wet hanging locker to port and heads compartment to starboard.
  • Heads has a Jabsco manual sea toilet which discharges directly overboard.  Stainless hand basin with manually pumped fresh water.
  • Forecabin has 2 single V berths with a pair of pipe cot berths above.  Storage space right in the bows for warps, fenders etc.  Anchor locker beneath.


  • Steering compass
  • Raymarine sounder
  • Raymarine log
  • TackTick wind indicator (2023)
  • Standard Horizon Explorer DSC VHF
  • Raymarine Quantom radar (2023)
  • Raymarine Axium Pro 122 S chart plotter (2023)
  • Standard Horizon HX40 handheld VHF
  • Handheld compass


  • Ocean Safety 12 person life raft.  (Service due 11/2023)
  • 2 x life buoys with lights
  • Danbuoy
  • 14 x life jackets with life lines
  • Throwing line
  • Flare pack
  • MOB rescue sail
  • Jackstays
  • Thermal Protective Aids
  • Fire blanket
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Gas alarm
  • Carbon monoxide alarm
  • Emergency seacock bungs
  • First aid kit
  • Bilge level alarms1 x manual bilge pump
  • 1 x auto electric bilge pump
  • 1 x engine driven salvage pump
  • Emergency VHF aerial
  • Day shapes


  • Lofrans Royal manual windlass
  • 24kg CQR with 50m x10mm chain
  • 10kg Danforth with 10m x10mm chain and 50mx16mm warp
  • Fenders
  • Mooring Warps
  • Remote anchor light


  • Mainsail                      Gaff Sails        29m²                2023                Excellent Condition
  • Topsail                                    Gaff Sails        6.8 m²              2018                Excellent Condition
  • Mizzen                        Ulman Sails    11 m²               2011                Fair Condition
  • No.1 Jib                       Ullman Sails   14 m²               2008                Good Condition
  • No.2 Jib                       Gaff Sails        12 m²               2010                Good Condition
  • No.3 Jib                       Gaff Sails        10 m²               2011                Good Condition
  • Staysail                       Ulman Sails    7.5 m²              2015                Fair Condition
  • Mizzen Staysail          Ratsey                                                                         Fair Condition
  • Storm Jib                     Dolphin Sails  4 m²                 2008                Good Condition
  • Mainsail and Mizzen sail covers


  • 3 x 12 volt batteries
  • Victron battery charger
  • Shore power lead
  • Sprayhood
  • Hatch covers
  • Deck brush and buckets
  • Boat hook
  • Vetus 2.7m air deck inflatable dinghy (2020)
  • Torqeedo 603s electric outboard (2022)


  • Bunk and berth cushions
  • GN Espace Levante 4 galley cooker
  • 2 x gas bottles
  • Galley equipment
  • Jabsco manual sea toilet

Wooden Ships classic yachts brokers have an extensive database of boats for sale. With a wide range of sailboats, classic yachts, motor yachts and small classic boats, Wooden Ships has one of the largest selections of traditional wooden boats and yachts for sale in the UK.


These particulars have been prepared in good faith from information provided by the Vendors and are intended as a guide, Wooden Ships cannot guarantee or warrant the accuracy of this information nor warrant the condition of the vessel. The Purchaser should instruct his agent or surveyor to validate all details as necessary and satisfy himself with the condition of the vessel and its equipment.

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