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Anke and I are building our next boat, and writing about it at Access to the net comes and goes, so I'll be writing in fits and spurts.

Please feel free to browse the archives, leave comments where you will and write, and I'll respond as I can.

Fair winds!

Dave and Anke
triloboats swirl gmail daughter com

Friday, April 17, 2015

Musings on the Economics of DIY
The Floating Neutrinos' SON OF TOWN HALL
Crossed the Atlantic...
Viewer discretion advised.

If you don't build your dreams, someone will hire you to build theirs.
-- Tony Gaskin

In fact, most home projects are impossible, which is why you should do them yourself. There is no point in paying other people to screw things up when you can easily screw them up yourself for far less money.
-- From The Taming of the Screw by Dave Barry

Musings on the Economics of DIY

I've been trying to wrap my head around some of the big picture economics of DIY. It's fuzzy. My head hurts. Here's what I got:

Okay. We face the question of where we lie along a spectrum between Do It Yourself (DIY) at one extreme, and Throw Money Around (TMA) at the other.

Pure DIY would be a neo-plastic (vs neo-lithic) venture... bootstrap ourselves up and into a vessel using only found materials. Living, as we do, in the Age of Waste, found materials cover a lot of ground not available to our ancestors. With large enough doses of time, ingenuity and skill, one can clearly bring a vessel into being from our wilderness of natural and unnatural abundance without dropping a single penny.

Pure TMA is entirely a market transaction. We sell our time, ingenuity and skill out to the highest bidder, or for the highest return in Money. We then hand said Money over for a turnkey vessel. 'Course, there's the little matter of overheads along the way.

Most of us lie somewhere in between. We scavenge and improvise, stay flexible and open to windfall, lavish our very own labor on DIY. Yet we TMA for tools, for uniform or exotic materials (e.g., plywood and epoxy), for hardware (forged and galvanized anchors), for rent and utilities.

Insofar as we TMA, theory goes that our time is worth more traded for Money than in direct application to the job at hand. We go on to trade Money for materials worked by specialists (or specialist processes). Theory goes, we get a better return on our time if we TMA than if we DIY.

But that's a shaky assertion. Those overheads - and the little perks we use to carrot our way through the misery of the marketplace - have a way of eating up a paycheck. If you add in all the prep time, energy and $$$ (gone to apprenticeships or education) required to command a decent wage... well... Money doesn't seem so efficient. Matter of fact, relatively few find their way past making it to living their dream.

One of the things I love about looking at boats built with early technologies is that all those boats were viable, DIY vessels! Not a stick on them was manufactured, bought and paid for, at least in the modern sense. Hulls were usually built by their owners in wood stopped with home-brewed pitch. Anchors were hand-made and they worked. Ditto capstans and winches. Ditto line and blocks. Sails were woven by hand and loom before machines could do it for us.

Not an inch of those vessels was out of reach of any one of us, today. What's more, we can now cross-pollinate ideas from cultures that never met. What's more, we have modern understandings of physics which inform our solutions. What's more, we have the material advantages of abundant, cast off plastics, composites, metals, line and fabrics. All overflowing dumpsters, junkyards and landfills. Smothering the once pristine beaches of the world. There are folks who will pay you to haul their unwanted materials away.

DIY is an education; a crash course in all the skills and knowledge that comprise your vessel. Design and lash up, weld or forge your own anchor, and I guarantee you'll know more than the sailor who paid for theirs. Knowledge which may well come in mighty handy in some far and lonely place. TMA can't by ya love, Baby.

So the impovisational path is a Low Road I much admire.

For various reasons, Anke and I have talked ourselves out of this approach. We've always wanted to go sailing (not spend forever building). And we've done okay. But looking back, I'm not so sure we made the best bargains.

We build quickly with the help of Money. But, if you count what goes into earning that.Money - hours on the clock, overheads, perks- it could well be well into net loss. Worse, the Money Economy is slowly shutting down the world through which we would sail. Our participation grinds a little bit more away.

I look back and count up the years gone for Money gone to 'speed' the process of getting on the water. Five year plans for six month boats. Hmmph.

Mighta shoulda just gone dunnit.

PS. On one of our first boat jobs, I was sanding away with a random orbital. Being a skinflint by nature, I was running each round of sandpaper into the ground. To save Money, of course.

Our employer observed this for a bit, then said, "You need to change that paper every three to five minutes."

"But won't that burn through sandpaper like toilet paper?", I sputtered, incredulous.

"Dave, materials are cheap. Labor is expensive."

And it's true.

That's the economic good of DIY... we don't have to pay for our own labor, beyond righteously sore muscles, here and there (work safe, though, or all bets are off!).

Monday, April 13, 2015

The THINGS We Do for Art

Three semi-circles join straight edged framing
Larger to smaller arcs from inboard out

In a minimal interior, what you don't do is as important as what you do.
Nate Berkus

The THINGS We Do for Art

Moderation in all things, I suppose. In this case, I'm thinking of the balance between Quick 'n Dirty Git 'Er Done, and trim-works.

Trick is, not to get carried away.

Trim - in the broad sense of framing, cutouts and rounds - definitely purtifies a space. It delineates areas of paint and may eliminate taping. It helps with cleanup, and keeps spores from their corner crack strongholds.

We know of several builders of simple boats who whizzed through construction of hulls, decks, rig and gear, only to bog down in a jewel box interior. Drown in umpteen layers of varnish. Be brought low by dark, exotic woods, intricately molded and joined. These were their boats, and I applaud their results.

But me? Seems to me that complex interiors befit complex hulls; simple interiors for simple hulls. It seems a mere matter of proportional investment.

We select a few circular containers to trace, with radii that work well together (judgement call). There are only a few ways things come together in a square boat, and we'll use a given size for each, typical situation. If several arcs are present across a bulkhead, we'll use larger ones inboard, diminishing radius as we work outboard. A 3in radius or thereabouts - whether traced or cut with a hole saw - is convenient for the smallest.

There's nothing particularly practical about these standards. Larger radii provide bigger 'knees' between framing and therefore more structural support; something to keep in mind. But we have a pretty free hand.

Trick is, not to get carried away.

Rounding tool with 1/4in and 3/8in cutting ends

Finish rounding can be simple as well. We round corners with a 45deg sawcut, tangent to the desired arc,  and rasp smooth. Edges get rounded to a 1/4in radius with our handy dandy rounding tool (or rasp over endgrain). Sand smooth, and done.

Note: A router with a round-over bit is very fast, once set up, but we find that, given router set up time, we are often faster by hand. And lacking a router table, our handwork is often superior.

In a few cases, we may use a bit of molding to cover a raw join. Shim any carpentry voids and caulk (trim in a tube), with a small, finger fillet for ease of cleaning.

All this froo-froo lies along a very slippery slope. One can always go a bit further. Trade time for a higher level of perfection. Complexify. We raise the bar, here, and go back to rework there. Before you know it, things have gotten out of hand.

Trick is, not to get carried away.

Simple Effects
Ends are merely bedded and butted...
Ply backing provides knee strength

Straight cuts followed by rounding.
Note the caulk running along the sole lines.

In this case, trim serves as landings for platform panels (eg, fold down dinette)...
Longer, tapered ends and rounded corners save hang-ups and shin bark
Simple, lapped joints.

The good news is that these simple techniques can be relatively quickly combined to dress up the spare, box lines. Some of it is faux (unnecessary); added merely for looks. One could very easily do with even less and use paint to 'frame' the interior. But we like it.

Bad news is that even at this low level, vanity exacts a price. I figure we've spent nearly a quarter of our build time on aesthetics, compared to even simpler, trimless approaches. Yeesh! But we hope to cash in on years of pleasure in the contrast of oiled cedar and paint.

Whatever path you take, you'll likely find that a style of your own quickly evolves. Your boat will have a look that reflects your sensibilities in ways that 'classic' styles seldom do. If you build more than one, you may find that each have the feel of home.

Trick is, not to get carried away.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Introduction to THE FREEDOM STORY by Garry 'Gary' Hoyt

Tortola Sloop

On the sea, Mon, you got to be free!

Introduction to The Freedom Story by Garry 'Gary' Hoyt

Among the inspirational, formative writings that shaped much of my sailing philosophy, an essay penned by Garry Hoyt - sailor, cruiser, racer and inventor - stands out.

In it, he presents the thinking behind his ground-breaking series of Freedom Yachts (read his full essay, here).

But what really caught me was the story he tells to introduce the concept.

His words were enshrined in a promotional pamphlet spied among my local library's reject treasures. I snagged it, and carried it with us for many years, before losing it (and nearly our boat) to mischance. I searched the internet high and low without success until today, when I found a scan at (thank you, Folotp!).

So, here I cast Garry's pearl of wisdom; a parable for our Dark Age of Consumerism:
[Note: I have broken up long paragraphs for easier, on-line reading. Otherwise, all is as I found it.]

Introduction to The Freedom Story
by Garry Hoyt - Originator, Freedom Concept

Somewhere between the stately clippers of the late 18th century and the spin-out specials of the SORC, sensible sailing design seems to have lost its way.

Perhaps the problems started when sailing ceased to be the main method of locomotion for international trade and became more of a rich man's sport instead. But whatever the reason, there has been a dreary lack of progress and even some discernible regressions in the field of cruising design. The slightly better speeds shown by modern sailing boats when compared with their forebears of a century ago are more to be accounted for by the improvements in building materials - aluminum, dacron and fibreglass - than by any actual advances in design.

Just how seriously we have gone astray was vividly illustrated to me some years ago in the Caribbean.

We were taking a new cruising/racing machine out on her trial run. No expense had been spared in giving this superboat every possible technological refinement. When we had finished admiring the Barients, the Loran, the Sonar, and single side band and the gleaming array of dials, we scanned the horizons for a victim on which to test our speed.

The only target in sight was a large and cumbersome Tortola sloop, crammed with cement bags. vegetables, children and several goats, and powered by a tatty old battenless sail. Well, even though this didn't present much of a challenge, we set out to make short work of her. Winches whirred, lines hummed, and lips were whetted for the kill!

Except, somehow, maddeningly, that wretched old sloop just wouldn't come back to us. True, we were gaining on her - but agonisingly slowly. We were finding out just how good - despite appearances - that design of a Tortola sloop was, especially in 25 knots of breeze, on a reach.

After all, it was the product of 300 years of constant testing. And when a boat went well, they went back and built another just like her, only changing when they were sure they had one that went even better. That's how progress used to be separated from change.

Anyway, after sustained hiking by all members of the crew, and determined efforts to keep our new wonderboat drawing, we finally came abreast and passed the old sloop. The new owner, who had paid richly for the ability to leave the competition in his wake, looked particularly relieved.

The conversation onboard changed at this point from how well our boat sailed to "how well she rated". We happened to have a lady novice aboard who had the temerity to ask, "But doesn't rating well mean sailing well?" Embarassed by such ignorance, we explained (with the patience that experts reserve for the very young and the very inexperienced) that ratings were something quite apart from performance. "I see," she said, but I don't think she did. Poor girl - what naivety to confuse a good rating with good performance.

So on we went to our harbour destination, beating that old-fashioned sloop by a full 3 1/2 minutes. Naturally we used the engine a little at the end, to manoevre in to the beach, so that did give us a small advantage.

Fortunately we also had our modern depth finder switched on, giving us an admirably clear picture of what was below us. And if only that coral head which we glancingly struck had been below us, we would certainly have spotted it. As it was, we just bounced off, which we all agreed was a great tribute to the strength of our modern fibreglass construction and indeed our 6 1/2 feet of draft was a small price to pay for our high performance fin keel.

We were just getting our 160% genoa down (after sending someone aloft to clear the halyard which had jammed in our high performance airfoil forestay), when that old sloop came swooping by, turned cleanly into the wind and neatly dropped her anchor in about four feet of water, right off the best bit of beach. Quite frankly, we all thought it was a bit cheeky of him to show off and anchor there when we were left about 90 yards offshore.

However, the prospect of a piping hot meal out of our super electric stove soon gave us something else to think about. We sat around, watching the refrigerator, the oven, the lights and the hi-fi all humming away together. It was wonderful to see how modern science had triumphed over all the inconveniences of nature.

That was just about the moment we discovered that some sort of electrical malaise had drained our batteries to desperately low levels, causing the slow demise not only of our oven but also our entire electrical life support system. I mean, what do you do with half-cooked beef stroganoff? And no water because the pumps won't work?

After some argument, we decided to requisition help from the only source in sight - the native sloop.

After ten minutes of wrestling with the inflatable dinghy (specially packed for quick assembly in an emergency), and ten more minutes of trying to row this impossibly ungainly design into 15 knots of trade wind, I came alongside the sloop.

Light was streaming from their battered old oil lamp, and on the ancient paraffin stove, they were cooking a delicious-looking kingfish which they had caught on the way. I ignored the admittedly enticing aroma of this primitive fare and explained our plight.

At least the native skipper was polite enough to appear puzzled rather than amused. There wasn't much he could do to help us, other than give us some water, which he quickly tapped off a simple barrel on deck.

But he did pass along some advice as I was leaving.

"Mon," he said gently, "those conveniences got you all tied up. On the sea you got to be free."

He was so right he even rhymed.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Glass House of Waffles: Looking Along a Path Not Taken


This is a modified repost from, where I chronicle our building of a T32x8 LUNA variant. This post goes over why we chose that type over the FANCY STANDARD version. By a whisker. Here's a look into some of our decision process.

Glass House of Waffles: Looking Along a Path Not Taken

When the tarps came up from Andy Stoner's MARY ELISABETH (T32x12), Anke and I nearly swooned from the view!

360deg View
ME is what I call a STANDARD TriloBoat design, meaning half her length being standing head-room cabin, with end curves limited to the end quarters of hull length. One long sheet wide. Sides a cross sheet and a half tall plus crown (6ft at the sheer, up to about 7ft down the centerline).

Very efficient of time and materials. Good living space to length ratio. Sedan-like aesthetics. And the windows... did I mention the windows? 


That upper, half sheet can be plexiglass. In a 32ft hull, the cabin is 16ft. Windows along each side are 2ft x 16ft huge! That doesn't count the smaller, end and bunk windows!

270deg View
Inspired, we designed SLACKTIDE around (almost) 2ft x 8ft windows with a 'kayak' view... sitting on the floor with generous headroom. 

And it has been wonderful!


So we were sorely tempted by a variant of T32x8 STANDARD.

The huge windows and 360deg view are attractive, as is full, standing headroom throughout the cabin. The galley and sitting room are luxuriously large (in our layout), with enough to carve out a bit - if we so desired, for other purposes. 

Quick and inexpensive construction get us going quicker, with more left in the kitty, compared to virtually any other design.

Problem to address: 

Standard 4ft side height is very efficient in terms of materials. A sheet of ply topped by a half sheet of plexiglass.

Bit it means the lower edges of windows are above eye level when seated in furnishings built on the inside of the hull (no bilge) to normal dimensions. Without some juggling, one can't enjoy most of the view from a seated position.

Andy chose to raise his dinette 10in, gaining a great, all-round view while seated at the table. 

His settee, opposite, stayed low in the hole. This worked as Andy was looking to sleep eight people on-board. The back of the low settee folded up and locked to make an upper bunk over the one at seat height.

Being greedy, Anke and I want a view from all seats.

We could raise the whole sole 10in, but that would sacrifice full standing headroom in the sitting room, and force a step up/down from the galley and to the forepeak bunk. 

But we like the bunk area to be part of the sitting room social space. Being under the foredeck, it's low already, and a 10in drop increases the isolation.

Raise dinette and settee? That leaves a full-headroom gangway between settee and dinette, with views from both. Hmm. Feet are left to dangle from the settee. A fold-up footrest could work, but on 8ft, would cramp the gangway. Boo.

Well... if we lower the bottom edge of the windows 6in it solves the eye-level problem. And it grows the windows (now 2ft6in)! 

Only draw-back (a considerable one) is that we can no longer use efficient half sheets of plexiglass. Some of the 1ft6in offcuts are usable, but it's gonna cost us. But hey, it's only money.

But OH! To sit at the table with the mornin' cup o' mud, looking round with 360deg view through those giant windows!! I'll call this variant (with lowered windows) a FANCY STANDARD.

Another consequence; the leeboardy, off-center-boards we favor are already squeezed by a standard standard (assuming blocking the view is not an option). Lowering them reduces leverage above their fulcrum, requiring tricky engineering, both of board and hull. And, when stowed, low boards can't clear the water, so clunk in any slop. 

In SLACKTIDE, we addressed the problem with traveling boards, which roll all the way aft for stowage, clear of water and windows. But they have to pull clear of the slot and they're heavy suckers! I haven't figured out a way to get sufficient but simple, traveling mechanical advantage to help (a boom works but is only so-so simple). 

As is, they're beyond Anke's strength to lift clear and stow, and it won't be long before they're beyond mine. The only options are accept boom hassle, build them lighter, and put up with blocked windows or noise at anchor.

Skegs would be our choice, but they double our draft. Only to two feet, but that's the difference between boots and hip-waders. And that extra foot would exclude us from many's the skinny and interesting perch along the high tide marks. Every now and then, it would mean the difference between skinning into shelter and not. Boo.

On the other hand, we don't have to handle them, 'specially as we age. They raise the bottom, when grounding, a foot proud of nasty rocks. Copper bottom plating can be much lighter, saving thousands of dollars. 

Hmm... there's a coupla yays to balance that boo.

One perk of the design is that, since it has flush sides (and a wet-locker arrangement that can act as a mud-room... see Getting aHead), we could build a watertight door into it. Handy for loading, and it may come to pass, as we get older, that we might want to haul ashore. Diminished agility to climb in and out of the boat would likely be a big part of that decision... a sole-level entry would come in handy.

Hmm. Hmm. Nice foredeck... 8ft square!

But the bunk has to go under it and headroom is low. There's plenty for sleeping, and enough to sit and read. But kneeling would be bad for the back (you 'vigorous couples' - as Wharram would say - will know what I mean). Could always limit the repetoire or take it elsewhere, but it breaks up the moment. Boo.

We prefer to sleep longitudinally, rocking side-to-side on (rare) rolly nights. Oriented so, the bottom curve competes with the foot of a full-length bunk. To get more length, the bunk has to stay high (can't lower it for more headroom).

We could live with a shorter bunk (but, alas! I'm 6ft). Or we could make the bow curve slightly more abrupt to clear the foot. Or lower (bigger bow transom), meaning more plunging and introducing pounding. Or we can add structure for more bunk head-room, such as a pop-up hatch, but that's kludgey, blocks the view and imposes on the foredeck.
And no storage (aside from the anchor well) forward of the bunk. Boo.

On the plus side, the big foredeck compliments the split junk ketch rig we're favoring (not shown). It's high balance (sail area forward of the mast) makes the most of that big, open space.

Turns out, after months of fiddling, we could address each of these problems to the point that they were no longer boos. But not quite yays, either.

We could sleep thwartships (easy bow curve, forepeak storage vs narrower bunk, reduced bunk lockers and book-space, and some discomfort in rolly conditions). We could extend the cabin 4ft forward (excellent bunk headroom and improved mast position vs fugly appearance and increased windows (already ample, now just expensive). The skegs... erm... not first choice but call it even.

But those windows... what would we sacrifice for those??? The windows held us in dithering limbo.


What we finally decided, after months of waffling back and forth, is that - for the way we live - the fancy standard would be great in harbor vs good-but-not-great underway (draft, mostly). Great for old age vs good-but-not-great while still up-and-at-'em. Great windows vs a handful of compromises.

So, reluctantly, we decided to abandon those wonderful windows.

Boo hoo.

I could'a been a Contendah!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Form Follows Function: Comparing Bottom Profiles

Comparing two possible Triloboat hulls on the same footprint, plan and layout
Both deadflats end on bulkheads

I'm not bad, I'm just drawn that way.
- Jessica Rabbit

Form Follows Function: Comparing Bottom Profiles

Anke and I are building our new boat to the lines of the upper model shown.

It's the shape I typically draw for Triloboats - 1/4 aft + 1/2 deadflat + 1/4 bow - each given as a fraction of Length Over All (LOA).

This distribution maximizes interior volume and overall displacement, as well as rectangular storage areas. The long deadflat produces fully right angle carpentry throughout most or all of the interior, simplifying carpentry. It carries extra initial and reserve buoyancy at the ends, which dampens pitching, and makes the ends less sensitive to weight loading.

Of especial note, in this layout, the weight of the trunk cabin and contents of the large, under-the-cockpit hold (some may even have an engine in there) has more floatation in its vicinity. This allows heavier stuff to be stowed where the stowin' is good.

But it's not the slipperiest shape availbable to a box barge/scow.

The lower model shows a roll-up bow. This won't plow water when plunged into it, so doesn't slow the boat as much as the transom. If driving forward through water, the angle drawn (one among many) will develop kinetic lift. Cost is less reserve buoyancy (which helps lift the bow in short, steep seas, regardless of forward motion), and cuts some useful volume away (from, say, an anchor well).

The lower hull has had some of its underbody pared away, resulting in a hull that is easier to drive through water. Of the two, this should be the faster hull.

Its deadflat has been reduced to about 1/3 LOA (adjusted to land on bulkheads; not shown). This affects both bottom end curves, lengthening and 'easing' them. They are somewhat easier to construct, possibly avoiding the need to kerf. More importantly, they offer less resistance to the water, as it flows along the hull.

Lost volume is likely negligible, but lost displacement may cost you your collection of vintage bowling balls.

These changes drop roughly 2000lbs of displacement. Assuming all else is equal in terms of rig, gear, crew and outfit, that's 2Klbs of payload that comes out of your elective stores.

Depending on how you cruise, this might be a good trade; stuff for speed. After all, the barge/scow hullform - compared to many others - has carrying capacity to burn. It may well be that you can spare it.

Anke and I sail with a lot of food, tools, spares and books that see us through long spells between resupply. But most folks don't ask that of their boats. Instead of years, they're out for months, weeks, days or even hours. That 2Klbs is superfluous to the way their needs.

Of course, one could go to fully rockered bottom (no deadflat), and ease on down their road.

Both of these models are fairly well balanced, meaning that they should float fairly level, all things being equal. But other arrangements may not. For example, we use the upper forward and lower after end. The bow would then be buoyant, relative to the stern.

Not a problem, up to a point. In lading the vessel, we'd want to pay attention to weight distribution for trim. Heavy stuff amidships, and tending further forward than aft. Low and secured, as always, of course.

Point is, our needs lie along a spectrum. What shape we choose for our hull reflects how we see ourselves faring. And to shift the simple options of the box barge/scow isn't rocket science, but simply redrawing curves. Look at it from every angle you can think of... but you were going to do that anyway!

So, if you purchase one of our StudyPLANs - typically drawn with the higher capacity lines - please consider it but a starting point.

Remember the words of the late, great Dynamite Payson...

"If it looks like a boat, it'll pretty much act like a boat."

...and take up your pencil and play!

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Roll Yer Own: Roll-Up Bows for Boxy Boats

Traditional Junk and the Latest Thing
(SKROWL 900 by Yann Quenet)

I like the way you roll!

Roll Yer Own: Roll-Up Bows for Boxy Boats

Box barges (scows) very often have a rectangular bow transom. They're easy to build, and help provide a little extra room and buoyancy at the extreme forward end. Mostly, they ride clear of the water.


'Course, when they don't, they're a little like a bulldozer blade. Even if we don't feel the resistance when it hits green water (and can't say I ever have), we know it's there.

By rolling the bottom up to meet the foredeck (or top of gunnel), we can eliminate the bow transom, and smooth interactions with the water.

Triloboats can be built with all flat bottom planes, their end rise joining the deadflat at a 'knuckle'. Or they can be curved. Generally, a long deadflat shortens the end-curves, making them more abrupt than a fully rockered bottom. Thicker sheets of plywood (more efficient for building up the bottom quickly) may not be able to follow the bend unaided.

One solution is kerfing; transverse cuts through several laminates of each layer, leaving a few intact. Kerfs in each are offset from others to avoid their lining up. Once the layers are laminated together, a smooth, strong, curved structure results. See more details here and here.

Once you've given up simple bending, and started kerfing, there's no construction reason not to continue with a roll-up bow. The curve is a little more extreme, so your kerfs must be closer together and possibly deeper. But that's it!

In other words, a roll-up bow costs very little extra effort, if any, over a transom bow.

A few possibilities for roll-up bow profiles...
Note that curves drawn outside the original lines
ADD volume, those inside REDUCE volume.

Design-wise, there are any number of ways to arrange a roll-up bow.

Some considerations:
  • Weight distribution within the hull - Does forward weight encourage forward buoyancy?
  • Storage - Do you wish to prioritize forward volume vs other considerations?
  • Typical sailing - Do everyday considerations outweigh rarer ones?
  • Extreme conditions - Do you wish to prioritize for rare occasions vs other considerations?
  • Speed - Do you want to minimize resistance (easier entries) vs other considerations?
  • Lift - Buoyant (more volume) or kinetic (angled entry)?
  • Pounding - My theory is that pounding occurs when bow angle matches wave angle... the higher the angle, the less often it will pound, all else being equal.

Virtually any boxy, flat bottomed boat can be redesigned for a full or partially roll-up bow. Most of these considerations can be juggled to produce a bow that fits your situation.

Wanna roll one up?

PS. Anke and I chose to stay with a bow transom on our new boat... it has a short foredeck, and we wanted to maximize the anchor locker volume for a given curve, and maximize our corner post bury. But we waffled... could'a gone either way.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Square Boats, Asian Style

Painting by Valentin A. Sokoloff
This one bears a strong resemblance to Phil Bolger's Advanced Sharpies!

Square Boats, Asian Style

Here's some eye candy that demonstrates that there's very little new, under the sun. Enjoy!

Cho-sun Sailing Barge (Scow)
Note the catwalk along the outboard sheer... 
This approach can extend side decks along trunk cabins.
Also, the bottom is rolled up to meet the sheer, replacing the Bow Transom.
This can be applied to any Triloboat, as well.


Fishing Barge (Scow)
Another variation... we're seeing approximately the same shape,
but with varying Beam:Length ratios,
and relative transom widths.
Not sure what provides the Lateral Resistance for this one.


Fishing Barge (Scow)?
I'm not positive, but this one may be a (side) dragger...
If so, the foresails will be sheeted flat against a beam wind,
while fishing gear set over the windward side drags the bottom.
Note the Bow Transom, raked well forward.
Note that aft, overhanging platform.


Cormorant Fisher
That is to say, they use the cormorants to catch fish.
Their necks are ringed so they can't swallow...
Once they've returned to the boat, they get a 'crew share' of the fish.


ASYLUM by George Davis
Not Chinese, but Sampan hull with Asian flair.


Sampan Run-About
Now, doesn't this put a Tupperware Tub to shame?
Looks like another bottom, rolled to meet the sheer.
Think that guy lost his paddle?


Chinese Junk by Lydia Marano

Well, not exactly square
But who's gonna quibble?

(Astute reader, Robert Goad, identified Ms. Marano's subject as one of Tom Colvin's flat-bottomed junk designs:

From the board of Tom Colvin