Nice old English Nobby – BATAAN. New member. New Boat.

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by JackeBlack, Nov 3, 2011.

  1. JackeBlack
    Joined: Nov 2011
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    Location: Berlin

    JackeBlack Yes, No, Maybe.

    "Nice old English Nobby for sale in NW WA state. Built as a racer and has always had outside ballast, never had an engine, well rebuilt by skilled people. Shown here with very poor sails. Really fast and fun cutter."- BAATAN

    Hello Boat Design Forums,

    I have been researching designs for yachts, and looking at boats for sale for some time now. I am particularly grateful to Boat Design Forum, where I have learnt so much from the generous knowledge shared here. I have also realised - from how little I have also understood - how much there is to learn. Perhaps this is what makes this site and boat design so fascinating. I am not a sailor. Or a boat designer. But I would like a boat. To go fishing (which I have done since childhood - in boats, on shore, lakes etc.) and to travel, and perhaps, if needed, to live in. And I would like to ask for your help in deciding which boat to buy or build.

    I thought that I had a nice plan for a boat which would suit my needs*. It was originally based upon a Canadian cruiser from the 1930's which I thought of buying and modifying. This idea developed and evolved into a new build, designed as a kind-of workman's Dreamboat. With sails. I was very happy with this idea, and was working on a plan to realise it, over the coming years, until I stumbled upon a yacht called the Morecambe Bay Prawner, or Nobby**. I had also been reading, and greatly admiring, a lot of posts from BAATAN, and read recently (and I am para-phrasing) that "the perfect boat is the boat that suits your needs today". Today. This was missing from my plan. So my question is this: what can I do today to realise my ambitions to have a boat for fishing, traveling and living?

    It's a short list, with a limitless answer. So I will make this list a bit longer, and then, hopefully, the answer will become limited. And clear. This is my boat design brief:

    These are the facts.

    (1) The boat will be moored in the Netherlands. Most likely Haarlem, which is just north of Amsterdam.
    (2) The boat will be made from wood.
    (3) The boat will be a sail boat, or a motor/sail, or a motor/sail assist.***
    (4) The boat will be able to accommodate a modest and frugal, but tall (6'2"), person permanently. Me. With a small dog.
    (5) The boat must be able to be crewed by one person. And simply.
    (6) The boat must be able to accommodate 2 people in relative comfort for long periods of time (up to 6 months). And accommodate a max 4 people, relatively uncomfortably.
    (7) The boat must feel like a fishing boat. Or be fishing friendly. Which for me is being as close to the surface of the water as possible. And a bit about fishing. For me it is relaxation, pleasure and food. Not for sport or profit.
    (8) The boat must be economical to run and maintain.
    (9) I have 60-70,000€. But I only want to spend 10,000€. Right now. But, the more belief that I have in the project and the boat, the more of my total budget I'd be prepared to spend. And spend happily.****
    (10) The boat must be suitable for cruising in the Baltic, to the UK, and in the Mediterranean.
    (11) The boat must be capable of navigating the waterways of the EU. Rivers and canals. Not all.
    (12) The boat must look and feel beautiful.*****
    (13) The boat must be able to be maintained and repaired by me. For the most part. Using simple equipment, in a simple manner.

    This is me.

    (1) I am an artist.
    (2) I am also an industrial designer by training.
    (3) I am not a naturally talented builder, but a capable, accurate - and slow - builder, who is sensitive to form and material. And a builder who could, if needed, become a better builder.******
    (4) I have no sailing experience. None. (Unless you consider the time as a 12 year old, holidaying in Fiji with my family, when I hired a small sailing dinghy without a word of instruction. I floated away and was rescued in due course).*******

    I am sure that I have overlooked important facts and information in this brief, which hopefully we can expand and clarify further. And quite naturally, I hope that you are willing to help and encourage me with this very complex and daunting idea.




    * See plans attached.

    ** The Nobby. It looks beautiful. It may suit my needs. I may be able to afford it. Today. Here are some places where I have found some Nobby's for sale:

    *** My only firm opinion is that the boat must have some sail capacity. This is mostly philosophical and intuitive. Economics is not the only criteria with which I form this opinion. My feelings for sail are measured by instinct. And they feel good. In fact the more sail, the better the feeling.

    **** I had calculated, as a budget, that my 'work-mans Dreamboat' would cost 70-100,000€. I based this on having a shipwright construct the hull for 20,000€. I would do most of the remaining work, part-time, over a period of 5+ years. My thought with the Nobby is that I could buy one now for 10,000-20,000€ and spend 5-10,000€ on renovations quickly, with help. I could then live, enjoy, and experience sailing now and judge the lifestyle before committing to another boat, or another life.

    ***** Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, of course. That eye being me. And my eye looks at form as a function of use. And this use is aiming for economy, simplicity, endurability, safety and practicality.

    ****** I have made sculptures, in different materials, with complex compound curves. I have also made product prototypes, as an Industrial designer, which required exacting tolerance's of +- 0.05mm. I have also re-built an apartment and worked on a house. But I have no mechanical or electrical aptitude.

    ****** I spent my teenage years living by the sea. I love the sea and the water. My family did had a couple of runabouts, used mostly for fishing, crabbing, camping, swimming, diving etc. which I enjoyed immensely. But I learnt no fundamental boat-lore.

    Attached Files:

  2. eyschulman
    Joined: Jul 2011
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    Location: seattle Wa USA

    eyschulman Senior Member

    The motor boat is similar to a boat I am haveing built. My boat will be fast senidisplacement hull. I would lose the sail I do not think it will be very effective with the hull. If you do flopper stoppers move them aft of midline an enginier can tell you how far.
  3. Milehog
    Joined: Aug 2006
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    Location: NW

    Milehog Clever Quip

    JackeBlack, I like the Ella Rose, a lot.
    One complaint, too many windows and mullions at the front of the house, one of the mullions is almost directly in front of the skipper. By reshaping the house you could possibly move the mast aft a bit as well as improving visibility.
    Were the boat mine I'd move the galley down and put cabinets (possibly with with a work top, which dosen't have to look industrial) in the salon. There would be a navigator's seat across from the skipper's, both of which could have sliding doors. The mast would not be used for propulsion and therefore much smaller which may eliminate the need for the compression post.
    I hope Tad comments as he has drawn some beautiful and practical boats of this type.
    I'm not trying to hijack your boat. It's just that she is calling, a Siren's Song I suppose, to me.
  4. Manie B
    Joined: Sep 2006
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    Location: Cape Town South Africa

    Manie B Senior Member

    Dont build
    go and buy

    on your side of the planet your choices are endless
    and very very cheap

    if you were stuck in the assss end of the world like me
    it takes waaay longer than you think
    and is expensive

    you are in the right place at the right time

    remember dont build
  5. Carteret
    Joined: Jan 2004
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    Location: Eastern NC

    Carteret Senior Member

    I agree with Manie. It has never been a better time to buy . Buyer's market out there.
  6. JackeBlack
    Joined: Nov 2011
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    Location: Berlin

    JackeBlack Yes, No, Maybe.

    Thank you eyschulman and Milehog for your comments and recommendations for the Ella Rose. I like her and I am very pleased that you do to. Imagining a future for her is exciting, but realising her requires facing difficult challenges and uncertainties, but most importantly of all, putting of a dream far into the distance. This is a considerable flaw, and quite possibly a personal fallacy. Why do I want to have a boat? To travel, fish and live in. But, today. This is why I am inclined to agree with Manie B and Carteret. I have read other advice on this forum on planning a large adventure and trip, and the wisest and, unfortunately, saddest post I read was that of the dreamer who spent so long planning his dream that when ready to go, he was no longer fit enough. I believe this is what Manie B and Carteretare telling me. As for your good suggestions for the Ella Rose, I have taken note, and will continue to improve her. In particular the windows in the front of the deck house, the galley and the workbench. I'd say that my instinct was to design smaller, and stronger windows for the front for safety, but I can see that visibility now becomes an important issue. I did plan a small workroom (we must have very similar wants) but below deck in the "LC'R" room. I like to cook and spend a lot of time in the kitchen, which for me is the most important room in a house, so I naturally put the galley in the best place on the Ella Rose: the Pilot House. As for the sail, my instinct tells me that I have to have one, so perhaps a suggestion for a different designed hull, or sail plan would help. Thank you all. And if anybody has any recommendations, suggestions, and advice for the Nobby, and my needs I'd be very eager to hear them.
  7. JackeBlack
    Joined: Nov 2011
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    JackeBlack Yes, No, Maybe.


    Milehog and eyschulman made some comments about the sail plan for the Ella Rose, and its limited use, which I would like to learn more about. I have attached some other sail plans which I have been considering, but from what I gather the sail may not be the problem, but rather the type of boat, and more specifically the shape and design of the hull which is limiting the effectiveness of a sail. Perhaps somebody might explain my mistake and what changes I would need to make to realise a sail design. Milehog, I've also tried, mostly in vain, to discover what a compression mast is. Is it a mast which is mounted, not on the deck, but through the deck to the floor of the cabin? Your idea for a navigators seat and sliding doors are great. I'm guessing that only having the aft exit makes for an untimely, perhaps even dangerous, delay in your ability to respond quickly to hazards on the sides of the boat. Such as navigating between obstacles. Is this an absolute necessity, in your experience?


    Attached Files:

  8. Frosty

    Frosty Previous Member

    Sorry Mannie what did you say --I didnt hear you!!!
  9. Milehog
    Joined: Aug 2006
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    Location: NW

    Milehog Clever Quip

    JackeBlack, my comment about the possibility of moving the mast aft a bit was based on eyeschulman's comment about the flopper stoppers being too far foreward, something I have no expertise in. The compression post is the structure in the cabin that transferes the mast load to the keel. The side doors are merely a preference. They are useful when docking and can make the cabin feel more open to the elements.
    Don't let my meddling with your design mess up your beautiful boat.
  10. masalai
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: cruising, Australia

    masalai masalai

    Manie said, - - BUY, do NOT build... The sail area illustrated will have less usefulness than **** on a bull even in a howling gale, when they should be down and secured... 2 smaller engines, (if you want a pair so there is a spare, and slightly better manouverability), such that "hull speed", which is really the hull-speed-limit caused by wave generation, is almost achieved at economical engine cruise rpm spinning big propellers slowly...
  11. Frosty

    Frosty Previous Member

    They are not builders they are talkers. Any one discussing where the seat should be is not building.

    Thats why they dont want Mannies advise.
  12. michael pierzga
    Joined: Dec 2008
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    Location: spain

    michael pierzga Senior Member

    You wont get far on your budget.

    As was pointed out earlier the used boat market is cheap now.

    Plenty of Good boats for 75 thousand...spend another 25 to get it right ..... then burn thru the rest of your cash wedge sailing and having fun.
  13. JackeBlack
    Joined: Nov 2011
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    Location: Berlin

    JackeBlack Yes, No, Maybe.

    Don't Build –Buy

    Hi Frosty, masalai and michael pierzga,

    Thank you all for joining in the discussion. I'm happy to hear more opinions about my plans, and all of your candid support for the don't build, buy suggestion advocated so clearly and firmly by Manie B. It's very good advice. And advice –which I think you all should have read in my reply posts– that I have already heeded and clearly agreed with. The further discussions about the design of the Ella Rose, which are now largely academic, still interest me, regardless that I have decided that to buy is the best option to pursue, because I am patently a boating novice who will benefit from any suggestion and comment that adds to my further understanding of yacht design: even the best position for a seat, trivial though it my seem. I am also happy to hear the overwhelming criticism of my next-to-useless sail, but a little explanation, divorcing me of my ignorance and ineptitude would also be welcome.

    I have attached what I believe is a typical profile of a Nobby, scaled to 39 ft LOA. I am working on this to begin analysing the size of boat which best suits my needs –I gather that interior volume is one limitation with the Nobby. I hope that some discussion about the Nobby, and the size of boat which I should consider buying might come of this.

    Kind regards.

    Attached Files:

  14. peter radclyffe
    Joined: Mar 2009
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    peter radclyffe Senior Member

  15. BATAAN
    Joined: Apr 2010
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    BATAAN Senior Member

    I have to agree about buying and not building. When I designed and built BERTIE I had access to cheap land and materials, a co-op shop with a shipsaw, and low living expenses, which made it all possible. Times are different today than they were in 1976 when my project was started, and I was a working shipwright who knew (ha!) what I was getting into. There are so very many nice yachts for sale in Europe I would never build a new one if I lived there. Get a copy of "Classic Boat", a UK magazine, and see the gobs and gobs of interesting vessels for sale. Also go on-line to Yacht For Sale sites and prepare to be drowned in offers. The economy being down, many owners cannot afford their vessels and are selling them at big losses, so just buy a boat and go sailing, and don't get trapped in years of construction.
    Do you dream of building or sailing? Sailing is a lot more fun.
    The nice Nobby yacht is still for sale here in NW Washington State. ZISKA was built around 1910 I think as a racer and has had outside ballast since new. She has been much rebuilt and is in excellent shape, about 40' LOA I believe, very fast and seaworthy, steel rudder.
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