Pedal Powered Question

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by ccharles, Mar 26, 2013.

  1. ccharles
    Joined: Mar 2013
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    ccharles New Member

    OK...so I am well underway with a project I have undertaken, to build a pedal-powered boat (similar to Moksha or WithIn) for use on a circumnavigation of Lake Superior.

    The project is outlined here: pedalsuperior.webs.com

    However, I am thinking that I may have bitten off more than I can chew in the boat building department. I have built one solo canoe in the past few years, but this project seems to be more difficult than I hoped to complete.

    Here is the question for you experts in pedal-power - could I take an already completed small sail boat, such as a West Wight Potter 14 or 15, and build my drive unit to power it? I am not trying to set speed records. I know the design of pedal-powered drive units is for fast, thin hulls - would a WWP be too heavy and not hydrodynamic enough for this type of propulsion?

    Let me know your thoughts.
     
  2. portacruise
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    portacruise Senior Member

    I'm not an expert, but the WWP 14 looks heavy/wide for HP unless around 3 knots would be sufficient? You may have to fight wind, waves and storms and I don't know if a keel is available for self righting, which would also become an issue in shallows..

    Porta
     
  3. Petros
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    Petros Senior Member

    A WWP would be much too heavy and unsuited. You will not be able to drag it up on a beach without a winch either. I suggest getting an old canoe and add some outriggers, much lighter, cheaper and suitable for pedal power. you either can rig trampoline decks between the center hull and the floats to sleep on (with a tent or folding awning), or you camp on shore with lightweight backpacking tent.

    Another alternative might be to buy an old Hobie 16, one with worn out sails and rigging, and adapt your bicycle pedal drive to it. You can usually pick them up with lightweight trailers for only a few hundred dollars.
     
  4. ccharles
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    ccharles New Member

    BUt...as an expedition style boat

    Good points...my thoughts are the ability to both pull up on a beach, with my lightweight tent and sleep on shore, but also to pull up to a dock at some sites and sleep on the boat.

    My present plan involves sleeping on the canoe (which will have a cover/cockpit area, much like the Microship boats). That boat, however, will also become quite heavy with the fiberglass and plywood decking/cabin...so I thought the WWP might be just as light (a small WWP 14?)

    The building of the boat (which as you can see from my website http://pedalsuperior.webs.com/ is exactly what you are describing) is what is causing me to second guess myself - it is taking far too long, and my skill set is limited.

    Could the smallest Potter work? I see there are some reasonable 14 footers for sale....
     
  5. Petros
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    Petros Senior Member

    I went and looked at your website after I posted and see you were indeed on the right track. It looks like you are doing a fine job, why do you think you can not complete it? Or are you just tired of building it? You could buy a hobie 14 and use the hulls and beams for your canoe tri.

    I would forgo the cabin, it adds weight and windage. make a boom tent for the times you want to sleep on the boat. much lighter and cost less, if you can not sew than you can have a any top shop or sewing shop make one for you. Usually the people that make boat tops will know what to do for you to make a boom tent. In your case, if you are removing all of the sail rigging, you use hoops to hold it up.
     
  6. ccharles
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    ccharles New Member

    Nerves

    Not so much that I do not want to keep building, but that I am not sure about the quality/expertise of my workmanship. (Lake Superior is an unforgiving place - everything needs to be in top working order.).

    I will likely continue, though the time I need to put in to get things to work out might stretch this out a few more years. I was hoping to get on the water for the first leg of the expedition, or at least the sea trials, this summer.

    Might be looking for more advice as the process moves along...

    Casey
     
  7. Tom the rower
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    Tom the rower Junior Member


  8. ccharles
    Joined: Mar 2013
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    ccharles New Member

    Project Finally in the water

    Hello again...check out pedalsuperior.webs.com...I did the first trials, and the boat performed well. It took a long time to complete it, but I am ready for the first stage this summer (I still need to develop a tent covering/bimini type cabin top, but that is over the winter/spring).

    pedalsuperior.webs.com
     
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