Monday, July 23, 2001

Romany Boats

The Romany was built in England in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Mine was a lumbering 6 - 8 knot tub, but unbelievably good looking.

These two photos aren't publicity shots. They were taken by friend John Lindholm ca. 1972 on our trip from Norwalk to Block Island

A few of these were imported by McMichaels - a large yacht dealer in New York. My in-laws were associated with McMichaels Yacht Brokerage in Connecticut, where I bought mine new in 1971. The fourth owner completely refitted the boat to better-than-new condition.

Here's a shot from the original Romany Works in Poole, Dorset. England. They made quite a few of these beauties. The site still exists with that name, although now it's an industrial park.

In mid-December 2007. I got an eMail from the fourth owner. After 7 years of being owned by the Romany, and completely rebuilding her, she's been sold to owner #5, in Albany. I wish him (or her) good fortune with the old girl, now pushing 37 years of age. I'm sure he'll love her as much as all us former owners did.

As good looking as the Romany was, she had some issues.
The rope was attached to the hull with copper wires running through pairs of vertical holes and then twisted together inside. On mine, they didn't seal these holes before gluing the vinyl-on-foam liner to the cabin's interior. Water on the rope followed the copper wires in and came out behind the liner, which absorbed it like a sponge. This made a mess, eventually resulting in all the liner having to be removed.

The original steering mechanism was a sprocket and chain and cable arrangement ("chain-and-wire"). Unfortunately, the sprocket was lightly attached to the steering wheel shaft with only a single set screw that loosened at very inopportune times. After being towed in by the police, I had a keyway machined in the shaft and sprocket and the problem was solved. A better arrangement would be hydraulic or Teleflex steering. The chain/cable assembly was good inasmuch as the boat came with a tiller as originally outfitted, and could be steered from the stern with the tiller. Of course, you couldn't reach the engine controls from back there. Anyone looking at one of these boats should look at the steering that's on it, and avoid the sprocket/chain arrangement if no keyway has been installed.

The 21 is NOT self bailing, either. One or two electric pumps are needed, especially if the boat has no cockpit cover. The boat came equipped with a Henderson diaphragm pump that was excellent! The boat also had an old-fashioned (and now illegal in the U.S.) through-hull overboard discharge head up forward, just aft of the chain locker. But... it was situated in such a place that your legs had to stick straight out and across a bulkhead to sit on it! So a woman couldn't sit on it, nor a man kneel in front of it! The 2 holes for the head should have been glassed up somewhere along the line. We ripped it out and simply put a Porta-Potty between the bunks; we moved it to the wheelhouse when we slept aboard. THAT worked!

We also had a 3-panel drop curtain made for the back of the wheelhouse. This is absolutely necessary if one intends to sleep aboard. Originally, the Romany came with a large cockpit cover (see the photo below).

There was a teak step on each side glassed to the inside just aft of the pilot house. The steps were small and glassed in poorly. I removed both of them and designed and made two very nice battery boxes out of 1/2" teak plywood with 1" solid teak tops. These were excellent additions, although they took up a couple of square feet of cockpit space. But the battery shelf under the engine box made a nice place for a more permanent box for tools and spare parts. I still have one of the original steps here (just the step, not the mounting block that was below it), so if you need it, make me an offer. It's 10" X 3 7/8" X 7/8" solid teak.

The original fuel tank was a 20 gallon terne-plated steel tank (lead plating over steel) across the stern. This tank has a limited life and should be replaced if still in place. There was also a nice folding teak slatted seat across the stern (in front of the tank and under the stern top deck) that folded down to give more cockpit space for fishing.

The bow rail was vinyl coated steel. This had to be replaced once it was nicked and rust started to form (Take a look at the POPEYE, below).

The cabin needs ventilation! I installed a Vent-O-Mate, but it wasn't adequate to keep the mildew down. Originally, there was a small round butterfly vent in the door -- too small for the space. We kept a spray pump filled with Clorox aboard and used it regularly. Water accumulated in the bilge below the cabin sole, and there was no limber hole in the bilge bulkhead for the water to drain aft. I put a hole in there, and also a round threaded 6" access hatch in the cabin sole between the berths so I could get to it and pump it dry with a hand bilge pump. Deck water always got under the teak between the cockpit and the cabin. Caulk-Tex was the only thing I ever found to seal the joint, but I don't believe the product is available any more. I bolted two teak rails to the bunks and cut a plywood bunk filler to fit, and had three 4" cushions made. There was plenty of sleeping room once the bunk filer was in place.

Here's a scan of the 1971 brochure, a bit worse for wear.

And here's the builder's certificate that came with my Romany. I think all of these boats had the same hull number, though...

They also made a 26 footer.
I never saw one, except in a print ad. I thought the boat below (on a mooring, with the cockpit cover) for sale in England was a 26, but Mrs. Parsley (see the comments) stumbled on this blog and has informed us that TEMPEST was their old boat and it's indeed a 21. The original 21 RBI has 2 round ports forward, as shown in a photo (but not the drawing) in the brochure. I wondered about this here, but then learned that the Parsleys added the third portlight during their restoration (see the comments below). My thanks to Mrs. Parsley for this information.

This is the Parsley's Tempest.

And here's the POPEYE, In San Francisco

And here's one in Rhode Island, for sale 1/2010. Looks pristine!
P.S. I knew a guy named Ev Dunn who bought a Romany and moved down East. He had repowered it with a 65 hp Perkins back them. I wonder if this was HIS boat.

Sundance for sale in Dover...

and Colette
for sale in Cowes...

and one with an I/O and trim tabs.

This was advertised as a Romany 30. Really?? They made a 30? It does indeed have Romany lines -- look at the bow and how the deck is angled back, and there's the groove where the rope is supposed to go, so I guess, yes. Looks like mid-1960's design.

THIS is a real Romany 31 (built 1975, and refitted/restored 1985 on.). The builder's plate calls it a 30, but it measures out to 31, I'm told. Chris LeBrocq was kind enough to send me these photos, and I'm delighted he did so. Please read his comments below. Great restoration, and the loving care really shows. Note 7/14/10... I noted that it was up for sale, and on 7/19 I got a note from Keith Hardy that he bought it -- the day after it was first listed. Keith promised to send us pics as he refits her.

And here's a real 26 for sale in June 2010:
At least the advert says Romany, but I'm not really sure. Could be, of course. Maybe the owner will find this site and email me with more information.

Here's a boat that LOOKS like a Romany but isn't. It was built of plywood by a guy who loves teak as well as Romanys!

You came here because you're interested in the Romany 21. Drop me a line and tell me WHY. Do you have one? Are you thinking of buying one?? C'mon. share.

Leave us a comment or share your Romany experiences here.


maryruth said...

Purchased the boat last year. 600 man hours - four guys. Repowered w/ Merc 190hp alpha drive, goes 38mph. Boat painted Hinkley green and Hattarus white.

Sally said...

We are thinking of buying a Romany. Looks like a good boat for our needs on the Chesapeake Bay. Thanks for posting the brochure! It gave us a lot more info about the boat. Maryruth - how do you like your boat?

nynynyny said...

Should be a good choice for the Bay. A very easy cruising boat, so long as you don't want to go faster than hull speed. On the other hand, 1/4 gal per hour is what it burned. Where did you find one? I was looking to replace the center console with another Romany, but the boss said no. sorry about my sketch for a cover on the brochure! I don't have the brochure any more, so I'm glad I got to post it on the web.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting the old Romany brochure. It's very interesting to see it.

My family has a "general" Romany 21 (DVGI on the brochure) from 1970. It was purchased in England and brought to Italy where my uncle and grandfather fitted it with a wood cabin. My father took it over and used it as a generic family/transport boat. Since he passed away my mum and I have been looking after it, but sadly it is proving too much for us and we want to sell it and buy something easier to manage.

My dad fitted it with a Volvo Penta MD 11 engine in 1983. The engine is in good working order. Structurally the boat is also in good condition, but it does need some work. It would be ideal for anyone wanting to do it up.

I've seen a few Romany 21 fishing boats for sale. Anybody have any advice for avenues for posting an ad for our family boat?

Can anyone provide me with an estimate for the lowest price the boat could go for based on the above description?


nynynyny said...

Probably around $2 - 3000 U.S. today. There's a round bottom cabin job for sale in the US for about 8000 with no takers. They started much higher.

I'd love it, but it would cost too much to ship, alas.

Anonymous said...

yes, I think I saw the one you are talking about.

Hopefully I will be able to find someone locally that will be able to look after it well.


Kim and Joey David said...

My boy and I just bought The Popeye. It is the 21 footer with Perkins 4107 diesel and was used in the San Francisco Bay for the last few years. It did tug duty, charter fishing, fueling service, and zinc replacement service. It has seen some heavy use. We will be restoring it and the boat will be assigned to pleasure use and fishing only. One look at it and the boat said "Take me home with you." We will put it back into excellent shape after we get it on the trailer where we can do some serious repair and rehab. It will probably be kept in the Martinez Marina 30 miles up river from the San Francisco Bay, close enough to Angel Island, Marin, Alcatraz, and the San Juaquin Delta.

nynynyny said...

Please keep us posted on your progress. Send pictures or at least start your own blog about Popeye. Yeah, we miss our old girl, slow as she was...

Kim said...

We would like to put the rope back on Popeye, our new Romany 21 treasure. Does anyone know what size was installed at the factory?
It looks like 2 1/4" but would like to verify before ordering. Thank you...

nynynyny said...

I think it was 4". It was secured to the boat with copper wires twisted together inside the boat. The holes were not sealed, and I had lots of dripping in the cabin behind the foam-backed vinyl and the hull. I eventually had to rip all the vinyl off. I'm pretty sure of the rope size. Don't order until we get the better information! I have asked the fella who rebuilt mine to show up here to help you. He replaced the rope with new, braided rope, so I'm sure he has the answer. If you email me through the blog link, I'll forward it to him.

Keep watching the blog.

Cornishman said...

When I renewed my fender rope I ran a wire through it to form a core, with an eye at each end, and tightened the ends together across the transom with a rigging screw. If your Romany has the moulded grove beneath the gunwale this should work well. Andrew

Mik m said...

Real blast from the past..(My first Command!)I operated one in 82,twin Perkins 4108 with Enfield outdrives.She had been well used by the time the owner purchased her,it took 6 to 8 weeks to get her ready for survey,thanks to the engineer/deckhand(A Star man!).The fendering was horrible stuff 4" Coir(Coconut fibre)Copper wired through the hull,wires kept parting as they had gone pink (Lost zinc,Old)and the coir held water,I think we cut it all away in the end.We had her licenced for12 passengers to service a local island,carrying coal,gas,diesel and stores.She was a handy vessel holding her own in some interesting conditions,conveying up to 100 passemgers a day during that season. Interesting Days....

Admin said...

4" Coir is smack on! I remember that note from some advert, but it's not in the flyer. How did they fit TWO 4-108s? Or did you have the 26 footer??

Mik m said...

Yes,she was the 26 footer,the 4108`s("Pinky" and "Perky" {Perkins} Clive the eng/deckhands idea !)were fitted tight to the transom for the legs,and the engine box high enough to make a seat/step up,the fuel tank was mounted aft (only one strangely).There was protection for the legs in the way of a 3" semi circular "Cart (wheel)band" attached just above the waterline,This was useful to access the legs/props,Also when going alongside to load,as we had to berth "stern to" at the low water landing stage.The legs had to be manually swung either up or outboard from the keel line and locked with pins (No hydraulics).The coir was lighter than hemp (dry) and drained faster when wet,hard on the hands too.

Admin said...

I've never seen the 26. I only knew about it because I subscribed to a British boating magazine for the time I had my own Romany. Have you got a photo? I'll put it up here if you email me with it.

Anonymous said...

Searching the boxes for a picture of her, (Still!)

Anonymous said...

Hi I too have a Romany21.

Purchased her last year and still doing her up slowly. Mine has a 2.5ltr desiel with Volvo outdrive and is kept in Poole, Dorset close to where they were built.
If anyone has any plans or drawings I would love to see them.


nynynyny said...

Reads the last post on this forum:

Maybe you can get lucky. Report back.

Good Luck

Anonymous said...

Hello from Vancouver island, Canada.
I have a Romany 21 with 6 cylinder Nissan diesel, approx 75hp.
she does 12 knots max but cruses nicely at 5.5, using 3.75 liters per hour.

I would send in a picture but I dont know how.

I am wondering which Romany has traveled the furthest from England ?

Kim and Joey said...

We got our Romany up and running. Everybody who sees it loves it. I put 2 inch hemp rope around it as the 4 inch would cost more than I paid for the boat. I would like to see other Romany boat pics and hear from other owners. I posted my home built window wipers on Youtube...look up kimmer6 or Romany. Post a private message and I will reply with my email. Cheers...Kim

Anonymous said...

Hi everybody.
I was a lucky owner of a 21 ft RBI powered by a 47hp Perkins.
I used it mostly in Lisbon and Cascais (River Tagus) and I miss its slow and peaceful bahaviour.
I had to sell it because I had no marinas available near home, but I still regret that decision. I am a boatowner that will always compare present and future boats to that lovely hull.
Best regards to all Romany fans!!
Saudações Náuticas!

Kim said...

The Popeye is running well despite 40 years of service. It is very slow but has towed several other boats recently. I have been thinking about repowering it with my 200hp 6.5 liter GM turbodiesel and 1:1 transmission. Of course I will still plod along at 13mph and enjoy life much more knowing I have the power to respond quickly.
I made the window wipers and they are the best improvement I have do so far:

Clive Crisp said...

My father has had a Romany 21 for 27 years now, He is owner no3 and not looking to sell. She is his pride and joy. She is now refurbished and newer than new. I would very much like to compile all the info i can abut the vessel and its builders to compile something nice for his birthday. I really like the brochure-is it for sale?

Clive Crisp

Admin said...

Sorry Clive...
I gave it to the chap who acquired MY Romany (from its third owner!) and I no longer have the brochure.

Admin said...

Clive -- as I told someone else... see:

This chap claims to have EVERYTHING about Romanys. Maybe you can get lucky. Report back.

Good Luck

Mik m said...

Hello..Anon Vancouver Island,Canada
I`ve got a Nissan Patrol with a straight 6 , No turbo no terror,only fill the tank and dip the sump,
Safe Sailing,

Mik m

Admin.. Still trying to find pictures of the *26*

First said...

Hello John Rea Hampshire Uk

I am now a proud owner of the romany 21 Dvo
Cant wait to pick her up,

Kimmer6 said...

Proud owner! Congrats. Being proud of the boat comes naturally as this is a fine design and is so very good looking. I would like to hear from other owners. My email....chopped up so spam bots pass it by: cbx_kim at
hotmail period com. Cheers!

Mrs Parsley said...

Hi there, my husband stumbled across this site recently while surfing on google. He was amazed to find a picture of our old romany on here. The picture you found in a british ad was infact his old boat, we sold it around 3years ago and believe the person we sold it to didn't have enough time to use it and was selling it on again after (in our opinion) ruining all the work it had taken my husband to restore. We loved the boat and were very sad to see it go, we sold it due to expanding our family and needing something a little bigger but wish we had kept it now.
According to your text under the photograph you have of it it is a 26. Unfortunately you are wrong. It is infact a 21. It was a lovely surprise to see our little boat (incidently it is named Tempest) on this site. I believe it has now been sold on again andwe do know where it is. I just hope the new owner takes better care and time over it than the previous one did! Xx

Mrs Parsley said...

Hi there again, thankyou for amending the text above the picture of Tempest. I hope you didn't take offence at my informing you the picture was infact a 21 and not the 26 you thought it to be. My husband didn't even realise they had made a 26 and therefor didn't realise why you thought it to be one. I would have explained about the port holes in my previous comment otherwise. You are right that the 3rd porthole was added at a later date. When we got the boat it was in a very poor state of affair and my husband spent many months trying to restore her. It was during this restoration that the third porthole was added. I hope this clears the confusion up some. It really was a beautiful boat and it is lovely to see that other people have the same opinion as us and love the Romany 21's too.

garry said...

hi stumbled on this site while looking for bits and bobs .i recently bought a romany 21 dvo called river scouti does any one know this boat

Anonymous said...

Hi everyone - has anybody seen the Walt Disney comedy film - "The Boatniks" - starring Phil Silvers, made a few years ago? The character boat featured in that is a Romany 21 Deep Vee.
As we all know in reality, she's a tough little tug boat, and a good sea boat - so what they do with the boat for the film's storyline is a bit absurd and over the top,(to say the least)but good fun - as you might expect from Walt Disney.

Boatman said...

Hello Anonymous from Vancouver Island, Canada (May 4th,2009) answer to your question the furthest distance a Romany 21 Deep Vee was sent was to... Japan..for use as an inshore rescue boat there.
The next furthest was Argentina - for British Petroleum. Two of the General 21 Versions had originally served as tenders on one of their large oil tankers. One Romany 21 Deep Vee was seen on Lake Lucerne, Switzerland, and another on Lake Bodensee, Switzerland.And many more places round the world of course.

Admin said...

From Kevin C (via email):
I just found your blog from 2001 about the Romany 21.  My father bought one new from the New York Boat Show in the late 60’s/early 70’s. He later sold it because it wasn’t being used as much when I was away at college.  We berthed her at the Shinnicock Canal on the south fork of Long Island, just a short hop from our home in Southampton.  My father taught at Southampton College, and we had small power boats from The time we moved there.  Started with a 14’ Jon boat and Evinrude outboard.  The Romany was our favorite play toy.  With the shallow draft, we could go flounder fishing in Shinnicock Bay, or just putting around in Peconick Bay.  It was great as long as we weren’t in a hurry.  As teens, my brother and I would take it out at night in the summer, and beach it at the end of a dead-end road on Peconick Bay.  Our friends would all come down for a night-long bonfire and short trips out in the boat.
The most enjoyable thing about the Romany was it’s versatility.  With the steadying sail and utility mast on the stern, we could putt across Long
Island Sound to the Newport Folk Festival and sleep aboard. The cement-filled bilge gave her great stability, even beam-on to waves.  The cabin was damp, but our small alcohol stove would dry it out quickly.  The stern steering was fun.  We would sit up on the fantail and steer with our leg against the tiller.  And besides, she just looked great.  My father named her(him?)  Beowulf.

Comment from Admimn: I don't remember the boat (it would have had to have been the RBI) with a steadying sail, or concrete in the bilge. Could your father have added these features???

Kevin C said...

The boat was the bilge hull version of the 21 footer. The poured cement ballast kept her low and slow, but rock steady in heavy seas. With the bilge keels on the sides just below the waterline, and the rounded hull without the planing strakes on the bow, she would slide sideways down the face of a beam sea. The weight of the ballast kept her very slow (5-6 knots), and when we wanted speed, we would switch over to our 14' jonboat. The ballast was standard on our boat. It came that way.

The steadying sail was also standard, and was one of the most distinctive part. A gaf-rigged oiled canvas sail, dark rust color, was hoisted from the center of the top gaf on a varnished teak or mahogany mast set on the fantail. The mast was secured with four wire stays leading to padeyes on the stern sides. The boat was the display model at the New York Boat Show that year, and was shown on the floor of the show, not out in the water. The sail was rigged at the show, as I recall.

Somewhere around here I have a picture of my father sitting on the fantail, feet up on the back bench, steering with his knee on the tiller, arm around the mast. I'll try to scare it up for you all.

She was sold in the 70's to someone from Connecticut, I think.

Anonymous said...

Here's the 26:

Just to make it clear, this is for information only - I'm not the seller, it's not my boat, I'm not advertising it - just something I came across by chance. Interesting because, although I've owned a 21 RBI for the last 6 years or so, I've never seen a 26 before either in the flesh or in an advert.

Chris LB said...

Good day all ,

I have a Romany 30' named " Furzey 31 " built in 1975 originally supplied to owner of Furzey Island in Poole, she was a used as a supply/taxi vessel to the island she was kept on the pier on the island until BP Petroleum bought the island and the boat, with no further use to BP my father bought here in circ 1983 in a rather sorry state.

My father totally refurbished her and 27 years on he constantly maintains her every year to a high standard. Furzey 31 has been kept & used as a family boat and Poole Harbour since 83. She is still in very good condition with original twin Perkins T6354 145hp turbo diesels capable of 25+ knts on a good day. The hull is quite unusual as it has a semi-displacement type bow with a med/deep vee stern - hence the 25+ knts ! a great sea boat but a can be a bit wet at speed, Furzey 31 has also been used for highline boat transfers with the coastguard helicopter in the past due to her cockpit size and stability at sea.

Previous to Furzey 31 my father had a 21 fast fisherman named "Odin" with a mercuiser 130hp outdrive unit, again a very good sea boat and capable of 28knts, he always regrets selling her as she was an excellent boat and very easy to handle.

I have all the original brochures for the 21' and the 30' and will attach some photos of both boats in the future if it is possible , if anyone would like a copy of them please email me on

tuck said...

have a 21 ft romany in boston great sturdy boat to slow for my kids looking to

Joe said...

Hi my name Joe from Inverary Scotland. I run a boat hire centre and have 2 romany boats which i have had the boats for about 4 years and think these boats are fantastic. If you like you can contact me at Quebec Marine Services Argyll Caravan Park Inverary Scotland 07967410463 or

paul said...

hi i own that advertised romany 30 the lite blue one can any one tell me more about my boat i got it last year. vary vary vary good boat ps can any one tell me how to treat the rop that go's round it vary dry please email me on

Anonymous said...

Hi. I have a Romany 21.Which I Bought in 1966after see one at the 1965 Boat Show.It has been up dated twice since 66, the first one involved removing the cement ballast which had started to wrot the fibre glass and replaced with lead ingots. Replacement of the Lister Diesel for a Vetus 34hp watercooled unit which has proved ideal for her. She has done over 600 hours since the first re fit.
In 2010 osmosis appeared, which was treated by removal of the gel coat, shot blasting, re glassed and finished with a new layer of eglass, gell sheald and copper coat. The top sides were resprayed with six coats of blue and white allgrip. I have a bouble row of mahogany belting on the outside of the hull with intermediate divisions similar to a Nelson, all the timber was stripped back and coated with a German manufactured varnish. My boat has no manufacturers name plate as I beleive that she is number 13. I have taken her from her base in Hampshire to Dartmouth over a two week period. The Romany Factory is still there and the last time I passed about two years ago the moulds were still behind the works. I have sorted out the problem with leaking the coir rope fixings by a good layer of Sicaflex mastic. She is fitter with an automatic pilot connected to a chart plotter which makes singled handed sailing very enjoyable. March 28, 2012

Anonymous said...

Hi there. Keith Hardy reporting back as promised. It's been a long (and expensive) road, but my Romany 31 has been fully externally restored and is back in the water. Because of ill health I have not been able to use her, but I am joping to muster some strength for a few important events in the Solent this year, including the Queens Jubilee sail past and J Class yacht racing in July. If someone could please supply an email, I'll send some photos.

kimmer6 said...

I love my Romany 21. Here is a boat that will be mine for the rest of my days. I have given it more power, an outdrive, and some fine personalized touches. The Perkins took up a lot of space. Now the center section of the boat is very open and roomy. he Popeye is gaining a reputation in the local area. It has rescued several boats and towed them to safety. Here is a short video taken in June 2012.

Anonymous said...

Just bought a Romany here in south Alabama needs lots of work and I know nothin about them but its a 4cyl

Charles said...

Hello All, I have owned a 21` round bilge Romany for over three years now in South Devon, UK. She had no name when I bought her and is now called "the Duchess". She has been refurbed and now has a very sexy red hull. She has a false cabin floor which can be raised to fill the gap between the seats to give a large sleeping area. I have re-engined her from a 2ltr volvo petrol engine to a Perkins 4108 Diesel.
I`ve had loads of fun with her and looking forward to more next year.
It`s good to see there are other owners out there having just as much fun.
Regards to all.

chip said...

I have a 21 foot romnay that I am getting ready to sell . It needs work ! Has a new trailer under it with less than 150 miles. Its powered by 1967 Buick 300 and 1to 1 velvet drive trans . It was restored in the late 90s and hasn't been run since 2009 . Just don't have time for it. I can be reached at The boat is located in Delaware if interested.

Robert Broughton said...

I am now the proud owner of a C. 1969 Romany 27 - as quoted from the build plate. She is a 27 foot cruiser completely enclosed with centre wooden helm (Not original)and fore and aft cabins. There is no hull number on the build plate but an engine plaque shows she was launched as the M.Y. Blue Romany.

The original engine was a 4-108 (now 4-107) and she has the rounded displacement hull with long box keel.

Anonymous said...

Hi all
I just acquired a fisherman 21 round bilge with a perkins 4-108. I am located on vancouver island and will be doing a lot of work to bring this boat back to its former glory. The boat is called "Pride & Joy" the hull is red. We are looking forward to many hours spent on the boat cruising the gulf islands and fishing.

Anybody that can share wisdom on restoring one of the boats would be greatly appreciated. I am not sure of the best way to get in touch but post here and we can figure it out

Thank you

Fred Fegley said...

I had a Romany 21 in San Francisco, Perkins 4-236, named "Giotto". I'd love to know what became of

Anonymous said...


I have just purchased a Romany 21, with the original petter 2 cylinder hand start engine. Ours was built in 1967 and I have the original invoice from petter to Gordon Payne at the time. It still had a Seagull Aux engine from 1957 on board! its a one owner from new boat. We live in Poole in England and pass the Romany centre, where the boats were built every time we visit our boat in wareham, I do remember years ago, the moulds still there, but cant see them now. We picked it up from 15 miles down the coast and motored round in around 4 hours, in choppy seas at a steady 8 MPH, boat handled the rough weather alot better than I did. Will be refitting it over the winter, as it hasn't really had any major work done on it since it was built.

Michael Smith said...

Hi im modifying my boat trailer to take my round bilge 21 but I'm not sure of its weight does anyone know the weight of this please

Michael Smith said...

Hi just bought a Romany 21 round bilge but want to convert my boat trailer to take her any info on type of designs for taking this type hull also what's her weight

Admin said...

The DVI weighed 1 Ton, according to the certificate. The round bottom should be similar, perhaps a bit more. It may be more heavily laid up, plus the bilge keels and oak keel. 2500# is probably more than adequate, but that's only a guess.

Anonymous said...

Just an update. My Romany 21 is now repainted and ready for another season. Going past the Romany works in Wareham, the moulds are all still there out the back of the buildings. They look like they have been ther many years, but really interesting to see!

darren bagnall said...

hello...ive just rebuilt a romany 21 from a sunken state....she goes back in the water this month in Swansea...cant wait for many years of fishing...powered by a ford xld 1.8...not looking for speed....just need to get out there and fish lol..

Steve said...

Hi to all romany owners. we bought a 21 last year from Teignmouth Devon now moored in Exmouth Devon she is called Bluebird but not sure of any history prior. She's got a perkins 4107 engine now running fine after some work, The bilge was full of cement/concrete which I've removed 750kg in total to gain access to the keel bolt nuts, doses anyone know if the concrete was put in from new or added by owners afterwards, I've just put her in the water for testing with no ballast and although she seems a little high in the water compared to the old water line she feels quite stable, has anyone any advice from their experiences you can offer, I have about 250kgs of old railway track cut into foot lengths I'm thinking putting in. Great site Steve e-mail

Anonymous said...

Hello all romany owners, I bought a 21 last year can anyone help me as to if they came with concrete in the bilge them from new or not many thanks Steve

Toby Faulkner said...

Hi, does anyone know if there's a Romany 21 mould for sale anywhere?

I've just bought an old Romany 21 and have begun a total refit, taking it right back to the shell and starting again. All bearers/stringers were soaking and rotting away so I've cut them all out. Ballast too, all waterlogged so out it came. It's a lot of work!

Admin said...

Toby, an anonymous poster above said the moulds were still at the old Romany Works site, behind the buildings. Good luck.

Toby Faulkner said...

I just saw your post about the Romany moulds at Wareham. Do you think theyre available to purchase somehow?

Toby Faulkner said...

Hi, do you have any idea where I could get hold of the Romany 21 mould?

Leonard Jensen said...

I have a Romany 21 and am fitting out a trailer to move her around . My boat has the large bilge keels and I was wondering if anyone has a dry-docking plan or some sort of detailed drawing regarding the underwater shape so I know what I need for chocks ?
Leonard Jensen
p.s. I love my Romany

Ron H said...

Hi there, I am now the proud owner of the 30 foot Romany shown on your site. I purchased the boat 2 years ago, and use it for fishing in the Thames estuary. I have photos of the boat both in and out of the water if you are interested.
Ron Hounslow.

Michael Cluer said...

Hi I am about to sell my Romany 21 , its the planing hull with Volvo Penta 130 HP 4cyl turbo diesel and contra rotating props. Fair to good . Does anyone have a handle on its value.

Michael Cluer said...

Hi I am about to sell my Romany 21. It's the planing hull with Volvo Penta 130hp 4cyl turbo diesel and contra rotating prop. Does anyone have a handle on its value.

Anonymous said...


After had contact with the director of the former Romany boat company i was told about this blogspot and saw that there were queries about the existing of the Romany 26.
Since july 2015 my father ownes one, she usually owned in England as Christine Louise and after then she's owned by a few traders, one in Belgium from i know and one in The Netherlands, and that's where my father bought here.
Now she has her homeport on the isle of Texel in The Netherlands.

Regards, Michiel

David said...

Was amazed to see pictures of Tempest on this site.
I bought Tempest last summer. In the middle of preparing her for going back in the water in April.
Got engine started today after a service. Paint the hull next weekend.
We Live in Ilfracombe, North Devon. Tempest has been in the harbour for several years.
The gentleman I bought her from owned her for 3 or 4 years I think.
Prior to that she was owned by the coxswain of the Ilfracombe off shore lifeboat. So I think she was looked after mechanically very well then.
My son and I found the engine plate today which allowed us to identify the Lister engine as a 1966 19.5 horse power engine. So the boat is likely 66 too.
We really enjoyed going out and fishing on her last season and look forward to the summer. I would post pictures but not sure I can on this blog. Previously had a small 17 foot sea ray. Tempest is in a different class entirely and much more sea worthy. Love her!
Thanks to past owners for looking after her!
David and Caroline

shane999p999 said...

Hi Can any one help me going to have a look at a Romany 21 at the weekend it’s a centre mounted shaft driven engine it’s a 2.5 litre ford transit engine can any one tell me an estimated speed as I will be buying off the trailer thanks

Admin said...

5 - 6 knots would be my guess. You didn’t say if it’s the round bottom or modified vee, but in my experience you’ll only go faster with a big engine and outdrive.

Anonymous said...

Shane ,mine was semi V planing hull ,about 25 knots on the plane. A displacement hull Limited by hull speed so I'm guessing around 8 knots.

Admin said...

Mine was the modified Vee. With the stock Perkins 4-107 it couldn't plane. I knew a guy who put a 65 horse Perkins in one and his didn't plane either.

shane999p999 said...

Thanks for your reply’s I have just been and bought it it’s a semi displasment hull a little bit of work then should have it in the water in a few weeks will be interesting to see

Anonymous said...

Hi Shane,
The Romany 21 ft boats were either, Round Bilge or Modified Deep Vee planing hulls.
The Round Bilge maximum speed is about 7 knots with a 25hp inboard engine.
The Modified Deep Bee planing Hull is capable of very considerable speeds, provided it has a big enough petrol engine ( not diesel - which is too heavy and does not have enough revs anyway.
The best combination if the Modified Deep Vee hull fitted with a 150hp Volvo Penta outdrive metro; engine. With this she will keep up a very steady 30 - 35 knots and gives a very solid steady ride.

The fastest ever version was set up for a Labour Day race in Chesapeake Bay - and was fitted with a 300hp Chrysler petrol engine for the Race. She came in second only to a full-on Magnum Powerboat at 48knots with a 6ft sea running!!

The Boatman

David said...

I posted a couple of years ago. We own "Tempest" 21 footer in Ilfracombe. I wanted to ask if other round bilge owners have a metal box covering the main keel the length of the boat?

Not sure if it was fitted later in her life and wonder if it for protection from the mooring chains when the harbour dries out or for ballast/stability?

I need to inspect the main keel but it is difficult as it is covered. I thought the keel bolts inside the boat had been covered in fibreglass but from other comments here it looks like it may be concrete.

Any knowledge or expetrience would be welcome. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Details of a Romany 27 - now sold
Hope it is of interest.