A classic Blanchard built 40' 1948 Seaboarn designed racing sloop

The Swiftsure, the day she was launched in 1948 on Lake Union, as Nautilus III


Inside the Cabin

General Information

The Swiftsure is a beautiful and historic vessel built over 50 years ago by the Blanchard yard in Seattle. Local Seattle naval architect Ben Seaborn who is notable for designing the Thunderbird class racer designed her. She had her hull, and systems restored less than five years ago by the previous owner who is a shipwright. Beth and Todd Young are the current owners. They have worked hard over the past 3 years to restore her to her original beauty. She has all new cabinetry in the interior, new teak and holly floor, all woodwork has been sanded and varnished, the hull painted, new canvass covers, new hatches, updated instruments and electronics, and new upholstery. The owners regularly cruise the San Juan Islands and Puget Sound. She is a regular at Puget Sound wooden boat festivals and races in (and often wins) wooden boat regattas. You might have seen her at the Victoria BC Classic Boat Festival, the Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival, the Norm Blanchard Wooden Boat Regatta or you can see her this year at the Lake Union Wooden Boat Festival at the Center For Wooden Boats.
She was recently featured in a calendar for classic boats


The Swiftsure was originally built for Harbine Monroe in 1948. She was built in Seattle by the Norm Blanchard boat yard on Lake Union. She was originally named "Nautilus III" and was part of the Swiftsure class of boats that were designed by Ben Seaborn to win the Swiftsure International Yacht Race which has been raced for over 70 years. The Swiftsure race originates in Victoria, BC and boats sail west up the Straights of Juan De Fuca into the Pacific, around the Swiftsure Light Ship which marks the Swiftsure bank and then continue back to Victoria BC. The boat took second place in the race in 1951 with Harbine Monroe as the Skipper.

Nautilus III won the Vashon Island race soon after she was commissioned. She has a very narrow beam (8 ft.)and for a 40-foot sloop, she was very fast compared to the beamier boats of the time.

Her name was changed to Lenore when a new owner purchased her. She ran aground and needed serious repairs which were completed in the 1980's. Her previous owner was a shipwright and did major plank and frame replacement. Beth and Todd Young have enjoyed restoring her to her original glory by completing the interior restoration and refinishing her exterior appearance.

She is featured in articles in several publications including a book about the Blanchard boat company called "Knee Deep in Shavings, Memories of Early Boatbuilding" and Wooden Boat Magazine number 148.
You can view a history of Ben Seaborn and his designs, including mention of Nautilus III in this article at the Thunderbird class web site.


Hull length: 40ft. overall.
Waterline length: 30ft.
Beam: 8.5ft.
Mast height: 40ft. above the deck.
Bridge clearance: 50ft.
Engine: Perkins 4-107, 47HP
Cruising speed: 6.5 knots.
Theoretical hull speed: 7.7 knots.
Draft: 6ft.
Weight 17,000 lbs.

Deck and Rigging

Masthead Marconi sloop rig (original rig was franctional)
Double forestay for racing sail changes
All standing rigging replaced 2003.
New main, genoa and spinnaker 2002. Roller reefing main sail
Classic tiller steering
Large T-shaped cockpit easily accommodates a large crew and keeps sheet trimmer aft of helmsman.
New canvass sail cover, winch covers and tiller cover
New stainless pulpit, stanchions and lifelines.
All bronze hardware polished and lacquered, including two sets of bronze cockpit winches
News self tailing bronze LVJ primaries and spinnaker winches added 2003
Rope/Wire halyards with unique simple tension system
Hull, deck and bottom repainted every year
All woodwork, including spars, stripped and varnished on a rigorous maintenance schedule.


Sleeps 5 in two double berths (one pull out) and one settee.
Enclosed head with holding tank.
2-burner propane stove
Wood burning bulkhead-mounted heater
Foot pump fresh water system with 50 gallon stainless tank
Built in CD player with cockpit speakers
Built in Icom VHF
Drop leaf table removes for cockpit dining.
Antique ships clock and barometer


Speed, depth and wind instruments
Bulkhead compass
Hand held GPS
Perkins 4-107 diesel 47hp engine, rebuilt 2001
Link battery monitor system
Swimming ladder
Entirely new electrical system
All new plumbing