Large Sailing Scow

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by bblair, Sep 29, 2004.

  1. Greenseas2
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    Greenseas2 Senior Member

    Wrong Wooden Boat Magazine scow

    The scow schooner that was previously refered to was in the US Wooden Boat Magazine and has an LOA of about 44 feet with center board. I believe the the Wooden Boat Store sells the building plans. The boat was featured in the magazine some time ago, but I've seen thee plans advertised recently. You might want to check it out.
     
  2. sltak
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    sltak Junior Member

    There is another thread called "New Zealand Scows which has quite a lot on the old working scows of NZ (60' - 120') and also referenced to a cumber of cruising models, typically around 35'
     
  3. Greenseas2
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    Greenseas2 Senior Member

    Sailing scows have also intrigued me over the years as a ship captain. A few years back there was a man here in Florida that built a steel sailing barge with the idea of doing island cargo work in the Bahamas. The one big advantage was that the scow doesn't need a port to load or unload cargo, but can sail close to the beach and let the tide go out, then load/unload directly on carts or whatever conveyance is used in the local area. In order to be able to carry cargo and still have adequate long distance quarters onboard, a sailing scow should probably be in the 65 to 70 foot range. The center board casing is also reinforced and has a secondary purpose of seperating cargo holds which keeps cargo from shifting dangerously during rough weather. You, indeed, have a very interesting project.
     
  4. sltak
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    sltak Junior Member

    The smaller of the New Zealand tradng scows were within the size range you have described. They performed well and, as you say, were able to load and unload directly from beaches. Most of the New Zealand scows carried their cargo on deck (eg firewood, sand, logs, farm machinery, cattle etc. They were loaded literally to the gunnels. They would have had a small accommodation space aft for "two men and a boy". However there also were a few hold scows. An interesting bow form evolved in New Zealand. If you go to the thread New Zealand Scows there are now a lot of photographs and interesting comments. I would refer anyone interest to follow this thread.

    There have also been a few replica scows built as pleasure boats (tyoically about 30 to 35') of which mine is an example. Here is an example of mine, tucked up a tidal estuary. I live on board.

    Best wishes
     

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  5. Stand
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    Stand Junior Member

    I've been researching various sailing scow designs for some time. There isn't as much info available as I would like. I periodically search web for new info, which is how I found this new interest in this thread.

    My goal is to build a scow to live aboard.

    sltak
    sltak I would like to see more pics of your scow and perhaps get a review of your likes and dislikes. Since you are the first person I've come across that is using a scow as a live aboard.

    I would greatly appreciate any assistance.

    P.S. I hope you, family, and friends are doing well in the aftermath of earthquake.
     
  6. Squidly-Diddly
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    Squidly-Diddly Senior Member

    I'm feeling "junk rig" for sailing scow for some reason.

    Maybe gaff rig.
     
  7. BATAAN
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    BATAAN Senior Member

    The SF bay scow schooners were of two types: hay scows and market scows, and were quite different. ALMA is a prime example of a hay scow, rectangular in plan with bow and stern transoms almost the midships beam and quite slow. Others, like the old JACK'S FAVORITE, had narrow transoms, much more shape, and were for carrying vegetables and produce to SF markets. JF used to be sunk in the mud alongside the Gate 5 pier and I looked at her often and salvaged her bilge pump for another vessel.
    GASLIGHT, a steel charter boat, is modeled on market scows and sails very well.
    I was mate on her for a charter season and we often would sail a circle around the ALMA just for fun.
    http://gaslightcharters.com/
     

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  8. sltak
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    sltak Junior Member

    Squidly-Diddly - I think the best rig is probably gaff schooner or ketch for the NZ Scow, especially a small one like mine ketch would probably be best. The heritage value would be gone if you put a junk rig on it, and in that case why bother with the NZ scow hull, surely it would be better to re-design completely something suited to the junk rig? Its an interesting idea though, my boat has quite a lofty rig with steel spars and heavy steel rigging and it carries the weight OK so I suppose it would carry a junk rig. It has high initial stability so an unstayed mast would have to be pretty strong. I wouldn't want to try it.
     
  9. sltak
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    sltak Junior Member

    Bataan - what a lovely picture. I suppose it is the Gaslight.
    We had a scow in NZ called the Alma. In the thread "New Zealand Scow" she has been described by a member (Rayman) as the best looking of them all. I can put a picture of the New Zealand Alma if you want. Do you have any other photographs or drawings?
    The very early New Zealand scows had transome bows. Some of the early New Zealand scows were named after the Great Lakes and it seems they are descendants of the Great Lakes scows. Fairly early in their development here, they transformed into a local type, a sharp (sort of) bow.
     
  10. sltak
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    sltak Junior Member

    Stand - I live in Auckland so not in the way of the Christchurch earthquake. Thanks for asking.

    I wrote six pages in answer to your question. Can’t put all that here so I'll email you. For the sake of further discussion on this thread, here is a summary:
    What I like about my scow:
    (1) Extreme shallow draft – can go into tidal estuaries and sit upright on a sheltered beach.
    (2) Heavy displacement with very low immersion rate so can carry a lot of weight
    (3) Simple shape so relatively easy and cheap to build and fit out the hull
    (4) High initial stability, soft motion, dry in a seaway
    (5) Sails and motors better then most people expect
    (6) I like the look, character and integrity of a NZ scow, and for me it has heritage value

    Words of caution if considering a scow like mine:
    (7) Much accommodation space is lost due to large central centreboard case
    (8) Flat bottom and upright on the ground makes it difficult to get underneath for cleaning and maintenance
    (9) Stability range is not high, would not be self-righting if capsized
    (10) Flat bottom means no proper bilge - difficult to drain for bilge pump or engine spillage
    (11) Potentially cranky if too much water were to get on board (free surface effect), and hard to think of an easy way to get rid of the water if rolling around.
    (12) Simple shapes with flat sections can be flimsy if not engineered properly.
    (13) A bit awkward to handle in a confined space crowded with flash yachts.

    I think you need to be clear if it is a scow you want, and you will live on board – or if it is a good live aboard boat you want – in which case you should consider all your requirements and then see if that leads you to a scow. I just wanted a scow. Now I happily live with its advantages and disadvantages and I really do love living on it. But as a houseboat it would be much better if it had no center board (then it wouldn’t be a NZ scow). As a cruising boat, it is good for passages in sheltered coastal waters, and can go places others can’t. But it is too much of a hassle for a quick afternoon sail, and doesn’t get sailed as much as it should (mind you, that is often the case for any live-aboard boat.)

    In his last years Brian Donovan and some friends were planning a motorized houseboat based on the NZ scow hull. I have a drawing of the concept somewhere, which Brian and Eurico Charraz drew up. I think that would make a good live aboard houseboat, but of course it would not sail. I will see if I can find it.

    I would love to expand on and discuss any of the above points and especially would appreciate the point of view of anyone with direct practical knowledge. The best place for that might be on the other thread, which is "New Zealand Scow."
     
  11. Stand
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    Stand Junior Member

    sltak

    Email sent.

    Good information.
     
  12. BATAAN
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    BATAAN Senior Member

    Yes, the photo is the GASLIGHT. I had the joy of being Mate for a charter season. The link in my post there takes you to her site with many photos. Billy Martinelli the owner/builder would probably share the lines.
     
  13. sltak
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    sltak Junior Member

    It would be nice to see a scan of her lines on this thread. She looks very nice.
     
  14. BATAAN
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    BATAAN Senior Member

    gaslightcharters.com will get you to the source.
     

  15. BATAAN
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    BATAAN Senior Member

    GASLIGHT has a very well thought out, light gaff rig, plenty stout enough to stand against her great stability. Designed by Billy Martinelli with help from Harold Sommer and Capt John Linderman, the detailing is very simple, easy to sail, easy to maintain. Billy cut the masts and squared them up oversize into square baulks, green, in the woods, then let them dry for a year and they came out very twisted after seasoning. He hired me to get them down to straight, round and to plan, which was done in the usual inadequate shed on a rotting pier but they came out all right.
     
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