20ft trailable powercat Skoota

Discussion in 'Multihulls' started by Richard Woods, Sep 29, 2010.

  1. Richard Woods
    Joined: Jun 2006
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    Richard Woods Woods Designs

    In the summer time we live on a small island off Vancouver Island in Canada which is 12 miles by ferry to the nearest town. So I wanted a water taxi style commuter boat that would get us to the shops in about an hour (the ferry takes three hours with stops).

    Over the last few years I have been building on and off (mainly off) a 20 ft trailable plywood powercat. It uses a central 25hp Yamaha outboard and features a small central cabin (with double berth and galley) so could also be used as a basic cruising boat.

    So I am pleased to announce that at long last my Skoota has been launched (although still unfinished cosmetically)

    You can see some videos here





    With one person on board it will do 15 knots, or 14 knots with three on board. The Skoota hull is a semi-displacement hull, so unsuitable for higher speeds. I actually designed it to run at 12 knots, so 15 was a very pleasant surprise.

    The overall beam of Skoota is 14ft, but it folds, like my similar length sailing catamaran Wizard, to 8ft on the trailer. Which is one reason for using a central engine as two would make the steering and throttles harder to organise.

    However before motoring far I will be fitting a small (4hp) get-me-home outboard on a transom bracket. To be honest I am very nervous about the Skoota as I have never before owned a boat that I couldn't sail home. But I know that for many, if not the majority, of boaters a single outboard is all they have.

    Plans will be available shortly

    Richard Woods of Woods Designs

  2. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    power cat

    Thats just flat terrific, Richard! I really like the look of the boat and it sure seems to go well. Congratulations.
  3. marshmat
    Joined: Apr 2005
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    marshmat Senior Member

    Very interesting, Richard. I like the concept (and I'm not afraid of single outboards, if they're well maintained and fed clean fuel). I will have to take a closer look when I get home (youtube is blocked at the office).
  4. Petros
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    Petros Senior Member

    Nice design! How does it get down to 8 ft wide? do the hulls fold under the center deck/cabin section? It this done on the trailer before launch, or can it be done in the water?
  5. dstgean
    Joined: Aug 2006
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    dstgean Senior Member

    If it's like his other folders, it unfolds upon contact with the water and folds again upon retreival--the trailer has a lifting t shaped section for the flat underbody and the hulls rest on their outside surfaces on a flatbed. Richard can elaborate and his web site has several good pics showing the process.

  6. Richard Woods
    Joined: Jun 2006
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    Richard Woods Woods Designs

    The folding system is one I have used for nearly 20 years on my sailing catamarans. Obviously a powerboat is much easier to launch as there is no mast to raise or rudders and boards to refit.

    Essentially as the trailer is backed into the water the buoyancy of the hulls lifts them into position. As the boat is retrieved, gravity lowers them. So no physical effort is required, nature does all the work.

    Sure it takes a bit longer to launch than an 8ft wide catamaran, but not much. And the benefits of having a 14ft wide boat are enormous. More deck space, a smoother ride, less wave interference etc

    A 24ft version is on the drawing board. same basic concept but more of a cruising boat with a small aft cabin and forward cuddy

    Richard Woods of Woods Designs

  7. garydierking
    Joined: Sep 2004
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    garydierking Senior Member

    Very impressive Richard. Do you have any kind of fairing in front of the outboard leg?

  8. Richard Woods
    Joined: Jun 2006
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    Richard Woods Woods Designs

    yes there is, about 600mm fore/aft, 250mm deep and max 100mm wide.

    As an experiment I took it off. The boat only got up to about 6 knots before the wake was washing over the engine. Not a good idea!

    So a fairing is an essential part of the design.

    Richard Woods of Woods Designs


  9. Wavewacker
    Joined: Aug 2010
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    Wavewacker Senior Member

    Hey, very nice! Like that, can you make it a motorsailor?
    I'll read more on this one! Thanks...
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