Longer is better on this planet, Buddy!
-- Apologies to Tony Rice, who said 'Louder is better...'
Extending WAYWARD: Presurgical Notes
"Why don't we just lengthen WAYWARD?", my two sailing partners ask, "and add an aft cabin?"
That is to say, just add an extra 6 to 8ft cabin at the end of the hull.
I harrumph and blow. Hem and haw.
Well, the aft bottom curve would have to move aft, where it would really be too short on the new length. The labor-intensive, flush-deck cockpit would have to be removed for an aft cabin, and a new one built for the new mid-cockpit. Balances would be all wrong. The sail plan would have to be redesigned from the ground up.
I sputter and bluster.
In short, it seems durn hard to radically alter a fully integrated design. All the things that once worked together are thrown out of synergistic balance. The structural challenges are daunting.
Could we save the aft deck by cutting away below the upper line of the doubling plates, which then act as horizontal buttstraps for filler construction? If the aft cabin followed the old transom line, we could even keep the seats and corner posts, which would now butt up against the aft cabin face.
New construction - presumably a weaker attachment - would only be cantilevered 8ft vs 16ft... mechanical fasteners to back up glue. Rubrails and doubling plates span the join, and can augment structural tie-in and support.
I suppose that, if the aft curve had to be rebuilt anyway, a longer, easier (faster) curve can be built along the extra length. Of course, a fuller belly would help float the cabin and any extra gear we're likely to be accumulating with a third partner... more doodles to come.
And hey... if we duplicate the main at the mizzen location, a balanced cat-schooner or -ketch emerges, possibly abetted by a yawl driver dead aft. It looks not only balanced, but rather powerful.
Rudder and scull... well... the rudder gains leverage with greater distance from the CLR (Center of Lateral Resistance), so we could keep the lower blade. A taller upper would have to be made, but that's a simple piece. Probably steer a cabin-top tiller by wheel or whipstaff? The scull actually benefits from a lower fulcrum and correspondingly steeper angle.
The OCBs (Off-Center Boards) are already 'traveling'... we can merely set them a bit further aft to balance.
The final sails have yet to be built, anyway. All the investment in WAYWARD, inside and out, from the companionway bulkhead forward, would remain, with the cockpit deck, seat and hatches thrown in for 'free'.
And the clincher? We could pull this off with a fraction of the time, effort and $$ necessary for building a whole new boat.
|It... Could... WORK!!!|
(Gene Wilder in Young Frankenstein)
Extra Credit for Boat Geeks
- The aft bottom curve would be cut away and aft doublers removed (doublers add hull thickness below the long, low horizontal line) to vertical line under Pilot House.
- A horizontal cut is made below the top of the doubler line until it runs off the curve.
- A fill piece is added, below that cut-line and carried aft to 8ft fwd of the new transom.
- A triangular fill piece makes up above the lower filler (Payson butt above doubler?).
- The aft cabin walls and transom are framed and built (Payson butts and mechanical to old transom?).
- The new bottom curve is built.
- Doublers are added, buttstrapping the pieces they cover.
- Decks and details are added.
- Rudder and other gear mounted.
- Finish and go.
Not shown are rubrails and any other longitudinal stiffeners we may toss in for good measure. Will see how the glue and mechanical bonding 'feels' as we go. May augment with some tape n glue. Copper would be removed first and reinstalled last.