The London Boat Show begins againThe first day of the 47th London Boat Show opened with the Press and Preview day, the majority of stands looking finished but the usual last minute stocking still taking place.
There is plenty for everyone with over 600 exhibitors and 800 boats - everything from a "Clamcar" to the latest luxury yachts and powerboats, fittings and chandlery to holidays and yacht brokers.
First public day is Friday and the show runs until the 14th with extended hours this year. Until 8pm on weekdays and 6pm hours on weekends.
Features on the first day included a live conversation with Ellen MacArthur direct from the Southern Ocean which was beamed onto the large video screens overlooking the pool.
While the London Boat Show is all about the mainstream cruising and racing sail and powerboats, the major dinghy producers are also there with a comprehensive range of their boats. Laser, Topper, Ovington and LDC are among the dinghy manufacturers showing here.
The LDC Racing Sailboats stand was well populated with a mixture of their RS range of racing dinghies and the first release of their three new boats for the 2001 season. The asymmetric rigged two or three man keelboat, the K6, the asymmetric single-hander the RS700 and their first non-racing dinghy (at the moment) the Vareo.
The K6 mini keelboat is now in production form and looking much slicker than the prototype. All the recent development work has been in the deck and cockpit area aimed at improving crew comfort and control and providing clean control line runs.
The foredeck now takes a shallow dish form with non-slip providing a safe area for the crew going forward and this also lowers the self-tacking jib track providing a much clearer run to the mast area. The jib also incorporates a barber-hauler control led to the control console.
This console now incorporates a "perch" area for the crew when sitting inboard and control lines have been carefully re-sited to reduce friction. The side tanks are gently curved, 505 style and incorporate large side lockers. LDC are also looking at a small outboard, possible electric, to provide an auxiliary power unit.
As normal for this event, all the boats on the LDC stand are available at special "show prices" and most of the chandlers and fittings stockists are running special offers.
Madforsailing.com is at the Boat Show each day and will be reporting on the events, the news and the latest boats and gear so check back here for the latest updates.