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Sparkman & Stephens 52 ft Yawl 1975 - Sold



Sparkman & Stephens 52 ft Yawl 1975

Designer Sparkman & Stephens
Builder Aage Walsted, Denmark
Date 1975
Length overall 51 ft 6 in / 15.7 m
Length deck 0 ft 0 in / 0 m
Length waterline 37 ft 6 in / 11.43 m
Beam 13 ft 6 in / 4.11 m
Draft 7 ft 9 in / 2.36 m
Displacement 22 Tonnes
Construction Double planked in teak on laminated oak frames/ bronze fastened
Engine Yanmar 75cv Turbo Diesel 2002
Location Italy
Price Sold

These details are provisional and may be amended



At her launch in 1975 Rod Stephens described this yacht as "...the world's finest example of wooden boat building today….." Perhaps better than anybody; he would have known.

Designed by Sparkman & Stephens and built by the Danish master boatbuilder Aage Walsted, PARSIFAL, ex AKAYA, ex KAY (I) is an extravagant ocean cruiser - although she has proved herself a potent classic racer when the breeze blows hard. Her design and detail were for blue water voyaging in total luxury.

The hull form, with cut away forefoot, allows huge tacking stability and her long, full keel, carried aft, allows the nearly vertical rudder to be hung below the mizzen. The hull is double planked in teak (reportedly 19mm each) on laminated oak frames and bronze fastened - the wood floors are white oak, and the metal floors are bronze. The mast area and chain plates are massively reinforced by three stainless steel ring frames. The quality of build is outstanding - if all wooden yachts had been fashioned in this way, there would be many more still afloat.



Arne Frisell, KAY’S original owner selected Aage Walsted to build her on Rod Stephens’ strong recommendation as the best; then spending much time at the Walsted yard during the build. Having declared she was to be his last yacht; on completion he departed in her - more than satisfied - for the Mediterranean. On arrival there, in short order as he tied up, the man who took his lines, apparently already seduced by KAY, invited Arne to sell her to him. After much discussion with this potential buyer, who was unwilling himself to get another built, Arne decided to accept his offer; considerably more than he had paid, plus expenses and sufficient incentive to go back to Walsted himself. Thus two near identical yachts were built for the same owner - who had of course some explaining to Aage Walsted. He, while surprised that KAY was not to be Arne’s final yacht, was very pleased at the turn of events.



The keel, backbone and rudder are Iroko. Further to the construction of the main frame, hull, and mast fixings, otherwise already detailed above, the teak deck is laid in 29 mm planks over 12 mm marine ply. The deckhouse elevations, toe rail, caprail, cockpit coamings, cockpit well and seats are all of teak, as are the hatches, which are bronze hinged and have canvas dodgers.

Stemhead fittings and chocks are stainless steel. All cleats and pad eyes are bronze or stainless steel and through - bolted with backing blocks and plates. Five Dorade ventilator boxes with 125 mm cowls are fitted to the deck and provide ample ventilation to the accommodation. Two cowls can be removed and replaced with removable Barient winches. Genoa tracks are of single sections of stainless steel affixed either side over the caprail.



The accommodation is spaciously laid out and constructed of teak and walnut joinery, with neat joints and fits to a very high standard of workmanship. Corners are rounded and doors and traps fitted with positive latches. Handrails are installed throughout. The woodwork finish is in satin varnish with the overhead painted white. As the furniture, so is the upholstery of a high quality. Skylight hatches and port lights provide a good level of light, enhancing the beauty of the interior finish.

Descending the companionway steps from the cockpit, the chart table to port is spaciously laid out with comfortable seating and with navigation instruments clearly arranged plus locker and shelves. The pilot quarter berth is immediately abaft.

Across the companionway to starboard is found the galley, comprising a stainless steel sink with pressure hot and cold water, a gimballed 3 burner gas stove and oven and a large fridge freezer. Stowage and shelves are found above, outboard and below.

Moving for’ard to the main saloon there are settees, with additional pilot berths outboard either side of a gimballed table. The port pilot berth converts to a double. For’ard is a solid fuel stove / heater with a tiled surround recessed into the bulkhead.

Beyond that to port is a large head with Blake marine WC, sink, shower and stowage with shelves, the overall decorated in Formica. Across to starboard is substantial stowage including substantial hanging locker spaces.

Next for’ard is a further large cabin with single berths on both sides, ample stowage above and below and a corner sink in desk top.

The forepeak fitted with shelves, bins and drawers provides substantial stowage.


Rig, spars and sails

PARSIFAL has a masthead yawl rig with double head sails. Both masts are keel stepped hollow Sitka spruce sections with custom made stainless steel fittings. The booms are also Sitka spruce with stainless steel goosenecks, roller reefing gear and outhaul fittings.

All standing rigging is of 1 x 19 stainless steel wire with Norseman terminals and Merriman open barrel turnbuckles with toggles. Wires are 12 mm and 16 mm for main mast and 6 mm and 9 mm for the mizzen.

The lower end of the inner forestay attaches to a quick release deck fitting with a tie rod bolted to the base of the forepeak.

Halyards and most running rigging are braided line and or 7 x 19 wire rope. The wooden blocks are by Merriman.

A straight taper, round section aluminium spinnaker pole with dip type end fittings is stowed for’ard on deck to port. A Sitka spruce reaching strut is similarly stowed to starboard.

PARSIFAL has sets of sails for cruising and racing as follow:

Cruising set: 1 x main, 1 x mizzen, 4 x stay, 1 x fore stay.

Racing set: 1 x main, 1 x stay (genoa), 1 x fore stay, 1 x yankee, 1 x mizzen stay, 2 x spinnaker, 1 x gennaker.


Deck equipment ground tackle and safety

Pulpits and stanchions are stainless steel tubing with sockets securely bolted through the deck. Life lines are 7 x 7 white plastic covered steel wires.

- IDEAL electric anchor windlass with wildcat and drum on foredeck
- IDEAL electric drum windlass on a vertical shaft on the aft deck.
- 1 x 125 Kg CQR anchor and 110 m of 12 mm dia chain
- 1 x 150 lb Luke anchor stowed on deck
- 2 x life buoys on aft pulpit
- 1 x life sling on aft pulpit

- Fire extinguishers; Halon 1211 and ABC powder, cockpit, engine, chart, galley, fore accom
- 406 MHz EPIRB No 207600

Winches In cockpit:
2 x Barient 35 spinnaker sheet.
2 x Barient 36 ST jib sheet
1 x Barient 26 Main sheet on pedestal

Winches on deck:
2 x Barient 16 backstay
4 x Barient 28 ST staysail, downhaul and reefing

Winches on mizzen mast:
2 x Barient 16 halyard
1 x Barient # 3 mizzen halyard reel

Winches on main mast:
1 x Barient 26 jib and spinnaker halyard.
1 x Barient 28 halyard
1 x Barient main halyard reel


Propulsion control and steering

The engine is a Yanmar 75 CV Turbo Diesel driving a 38 mm Monel shaft and 2 bladed bronze propeller. Steering by a teak wheel is through an Edson pedestal with cables, sheaves and bronze quadrant.


Tankage, pipes and systems

-1 x Tank for diesel fuel (84 gallons / 380 L), stainless steel and fitted under the cockpit sole.
-2 x stainless steel fresh water tanks installed beneath saloon sole. Each approx 50 gallons; total water capacity is c 100 gallons / 880 L.
-1 x Sea Recovery water maker with 90 gph output is in stbd cockpit locker with pressure vessels and membranes to port.

All seacocks and valves are bronze with some additional plastic valves. Piping is copper and flexible hoses neoprene.

A Rule bilge pump with float switch is in the bilge aft of the saloon table. There are 2 Edson diaphragm hand bilge pumps; one in the cockpit.



- General 24 V system with Shorepower connection to 110 / 220 V AC isolating transformer via Marinco stainless steel boat inlet. The control panel has 4 circuits (fridge / freezer compressor and 4 sockets.
- 2 banks of batteries 270 AH domestic and 240 AH for the engine are located beneath the companionway ladder.
- 1 x TECPRO 24 V 50 A battery charger is mounted on the bulkead for’ard and below the chart table.
- Main electrical distribution panel is on the bulkhead behind the chart space.
- Stainless steel water heater located under the cabin sole by the engine starting battery.
- Fridge / freezer GRUNERT compressor in the starboard cockpit locker.


Electronics and navigation

- Furuno 1710 radar
- Furuno GP 500 GPS
- Navionics Geonav LCD11 chart plotter
- Brookes & Gatehouse Hercules 390 Navigation system
- Segatron auto pilot
- Brookes & Gatehouse Hercules 2 depth sounder
- 8 x Brookes & Gatehouse repeaters; navigation zone and cockpit
- Brookes & Gatehouse Homer 2 radio
- Sailor compact C 402 VHF radio
- Skanti Debeg 3150 SSB radio
- Fastnet radio MAD 44 marine automatic decoder
- Compaq SLT 286 laptop computer
- Kodak Diconix 180 printer
- Brookes & Gatehouse Fluxgate compass
- 3 x magnetic compasses ( Pedestal, auto pilot and starboard pilot berth


These particulars have been prepared from information provided by the vendors and are intended as a general guide. The purchaser should confirm details of concern to them by survey or engineers inspection. The purchaser should also ensure that the purchase contract properly reflects their concerns and specifies details on which they wish to rely.


Sandeman Yacht Company

Brokerage Of Classic & Vintage Yachts