Originally Posted by ImaginaryNumber
Angelique, you're the Queen of Internet research. Thanks for your helpful posts.
Why is Skoit not an all oceans all weather boat? Maybe it can't recover from a knockdown or capsize?
The narrow keel of the Skoit causes the boat to tip slightly when grounded. I prefer the wider keel shoe that Sea Bright has, which is able to keep the boat upright. Of course, the flat-bottomed sharpie is even more stable when dried out.
I am attracted to the much more square interior shape of a sharpie, compared to curved bilges and pronounced deadrise of many traditional designs. Seems much easier to fit out the accommodations in a sharpie.
In the Woodenboat discussion you referenced some were advocating tandem centerboards/daggerboards as a way to avoid having the case in the middle of the accommodations. They also said that by differentially raising or lowering the two centerboards you could get the boat to sail balanced on any course. Maybe Matt Layden was thinking about this when he designed LITTLE CRUISER to have a bow centerboard and a large rudder. Does anyone have experience with tandem centerboards? Is the hassle of having to maintain two centerboards worth the sailing and accommodation benefits?
It's helpful to see where different designers felt they could they could transition from wood designs to steel designs. I want to learn more about the construction details of Shannon's TOM THUMB. It may offer good ideas transferable to a small steel sharpie. What problems can be expected when joining metal to wood? Is their difference in thermal expansion a problem? Thanks again for posting this information.
One of my ideas is to use a thick (1"-2") flat steel plate, the width of the hull, as the base and 'strongback' for a sharpie. The plate might be stiff enough to need little framing, would be gauged to provide the needed ballast, and would provide huge protection if a reef happened to pop up in a location not previously noted by the chartmakers.
I have some experience with tandem 'Dagger Boards' and Thor Hyerdal also used them successfully on the balsa raft to control direction in the trades quite well. Yes, indeed you can control direction using the dagger boards deferentially. Any way you can spread the rig, or lateral resistance, along the boat helps both directional stability and the ability to control direction. It's why I now favor double mast rigs for cruising, having had my fill of racing (though I still race every second weekend all year) on single stick rigs.
I also used a thick steel plate as a bottom/ballast in the distant past. I wrote about it in this forum I think. Attaching ply to steel, you need many small fastenings, I use 1/4" or 3/8" at 4" centers, though I always try to have a thin steel flange for the actual interface to the plywood. I used liberal amounts of tar in my joint, messy and cheap then, probably illegal now. I 'galvanized' the steel using hot caustic soda (I think), and a hot Zink compound.
Many people on this forum are horrified at using steel in this way, as corrosion is always an issue.
Remember, you bolt a lead keel to a wooden boat, but you attach (bolt), a wooden boat to a steel keel. The steel really does form the strength member, especially at 1"+ thick. No stiffners needed.