This website describes the 32ft (9.75m) sailing yacht, Ayli. She is a Limbo 9.9 built by Zygal Boat in Whitstable. The Limbo 9.9 is an easily handled fast cruising yacht. Her particular features are:
Her lifting keel makes her especially suited to areas, such as the East Coast, where there are creeks and secluded anchorages. Drawing just 2ft 5ins she doesn't need a deep anchorage and can creep into some of the less visited places. For examples she has been overnight at Iken Cliff and travelled up the Lee Valley Navigation (canal). Another advantage is that in the winter she is low down and so easier to maintain and less vulnerable to bad weather. The keel lowers to give 5ft 6ins draught while sailing.
Because she is of GRP balsa core construction, she is not only strong but also light and easily driven. Consequently her sail area is less than similar sized heavier yachts. With the smaller sail area she is thereby easier to handle particularly with a small crew such as a couple.
The side decks are wider than most modern yachts and this contributes to the ease of handling and safety (as well as sunbathing space!). If you need to go forward at sea there is plenty of space on the side decks for you to keep a good footing, and the shrouds are at the inner edge of the sidedecks so you don't have to squeeze past them. Safety at sea is also enhanced by jackstays that run uninterupted all the way from right aft to close to the bow well, so that you can clip onto them in the cockpit and walk all the way to the forestay without unclipping. Furthermore the companionway does not have a bridge deck so stepping between cockpit and cabin is on one level so your head remains below boom height (unless you are very tall!) and you are not exposed to sudden movements throwing you off balance or being struck by a wave. There are also strong points for harnesses just outside the companionway so you can clip on before leaving the cabin. On the foredeck the Bow Well means that your centre of gravity is lower and generally below the pullpit height making it a safe working space (and fun for the kids too!)
So many modern yachts sleep 6 but only have space for 2 or 3 to be in the cockpit comfortably - not so Ayli. She has a large cockpit with a separate space for the helmsman. In harbour she has a zip on cockpit enclosure which covers all but the helm area. With the wide side decks this means that there is easy access into and out of the enclosure. Also in harbour or at anchor the dinette table can be relocated to the cockpit giving al fresco dining.
Inside Ayli is finished in teak, a soft white paint and headlining. There are 6 berths, allthough we have only occassionally had 6 people on board overnight. The two pilot berths are secure at sea and have lee clothes which can be fitted for passage making. The settee berth also has a lee cloth that can be fitted during passages. The quarter berth is also very secure and comfortable, but is generally used by the navigator at sea. The forepeak can be configured as two singles in a V shape, the anchor locker bulkhead means that the foot end of the singles is wide so you don't have to play footsie. This end is so wide that, when converted to a double the head of the bed is forward. All berths are at least 6ft 3ins long.
The navigation table to starboard is half chart size (which is full size for a yacht), and has the instruments to hand. Depth, speed and GPS outputs are repeated in the cockpit. Unfortunately the current GPS and repeater are not 100% compatible which means that the GPS display on the repeater shows for short bursts rather than continuously, but it is useable.
The galley to port has a 2 burner hob with grill and oven, double sinks and a fridge under the worktop. The manufacturer claims that the fridge can make ice cubes, but it takes a long time.
Two versions of the Limbo 9.9 were built, Ayli is the long coachroof version which has more space in the cabin. The difference in the cockpit is that the short coachroof version has a bridgedeck. There is also a Limbo 6.6 which is a much smaller boat so be careful not to confuse the two when looking at prices.
Ayli is equipped with a diesel powered heating system which provides hot water and warmth in the saloon. At both ends of the season this can be very welcome.
Ayli was bought by me in October 1982 as a "sailaway", with all the structural bulkheads bonded in place, hull and deck bonded, and the motor and rigging in place. I have fitted out the interior, mostly in teak. Boatshed commented "This Limbo 9.9 is exceptionally nice, the fit out has been carried out to a very good standard" as you will see.