Rethinking the smallest boat circumnavigation

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by stonedpirate, Feb 17, 2012.

  1. viking north
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    viking north VINLAND

    That was the beauty of this great event- One is so taken by the players themselves. It's almost like it was done on a whim and that, could never be repeated, if tried, it would have to be planned, then, it's no longer a whim. An amazing piece of sailing history.
     
  2. Nick.K
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    Nick.K Senior Member

    Exactly.
     
  3. sharpii2
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    sharpii2 Senior Member

    If Moitessier had continued the race, he would probably overtaken RNJ, after Tetly's boat broke up, as his boat was faster.

    I guess putting to sea to break any kind of record now seems a bit silly. As one rock group once proclaimed, "All the good ones have been taken."

    It seems that just as soon as technology is barely up to the job, a record is broken, taking its toll in hardship. I think RNJ averaged 4 kts on his voyage. I believe a single handed boat in the Vendee race averaged 14 kts. It had the latest technology. Pr-preg, epoxy-carbon fiber hull, the latest sat nav and weather faxes, and, of course, a very expensive (and IMHO dangerous) canting ballast keel. It was at least half again as long (if it was an Open 50, almost twice as long , if it was an Open 60) as RNJ's boat and probably had close to the the same displacement.

    I suppose someone may try for the shortest boat to sail non stop around the world. So far, to my knowledge, RNJ holds that record with his 32 ft ketch.

    I thought of scaling my FOOTBALL design concept up to maybe 20 ft (about 4.75 tons) to go for that record, then thought why bother.

    No one cares.

    I suppose the records of our time our held by the people who become billionaires at the youngest age. I believe the founder of 'Face Book' now holds that record. Or is it held by the founders of 'Google'?

    I suppose there is a bit of Donald Crowhurst in all of us. Certainly in me.
     
  4. stonedpirate
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    stonedpirate Senior Member

    Alessandro Di Benedetto hold the smallest non stop record at 21 feet, 6.5 meters 2009-2010 no engine, unassisted.
     
  5. sharpii2
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    sharpii2 Senior Member

    So much for glory hunting.
     
  6. Yobarnacle
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    Yobarnacle Senior Member holding true course

    I spent a lifetime at sea, but my longest voyage without touching land was 90 days. New Orleans to New Orleans via the Gulf of Benin off Nigeria. This was on a 140 ft deep sea tug, airconditioned, walk in freezer and cooler. Water maker. Generators. All the electronics and luxuries. 90 days was enough!
     
  7. viking north
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    viking north VINLAND

    Modern Captains are being spoiled-whatever happened to peeing over the side-using the catheads- sleeping with a single shot firing piece under your pillow- having to issue the use of and put up with a scowling crew of the cat and nine tails --Oh and one more endurance, having your leg shot off below the knee and hopping around a heaving slippery cold wet deck on a stick replacement. :) :D :p
     
  8. bntii
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    bntii Senior Member

    Another one bites the dust:

    boatcut.jpg

    It's more expensive to cut and haul, than to give them away.
    Get a boat and start sailing.
     
  9. sharpii2
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    sharpii2 Senior Member

    Excellent advice!

    Just helps further indicates the irrelevance of my chosen field of study.

    I suppose retro design may be the new field in NA.

    Re purposing old boats with a lot of life still in them is a whole lot better than just cutting them up and throwing them away.

    I just wish sailboat design had not been so influenced by racing.

    If it had not been, we might have seen center boards mounted off center, where the wouldn't always be in the way, more ketches, yawls and cutters which are easier to balance under sail than masthead sloops, lower ballast/ displacement ratios, and certainly shallower keels.

    Also, we might have seen fewer cored decks, where adding a simple cleat becomes an engineering project.

    All this stuff simply added cost and complexity to owning and keeping a boat.

    Add to that the yuppification of the waterfront, where rich peoples condominiums, cottages, and palaces have displaced even working water men, and I can't help but feel depressed about the future boating in general and sailing in particular. (And people wonder why I want to slam the really rich with confiscatory taxes).

    Well, it is what it is. And those of us, who don't have wallets so full that they can fall through the floor, must adapt.

    Smaller, simpler boats may well be the answer.

    Though I would never recommend my FOOTBALL concept as a good all around sailboat (it needs a slip) I think I can defend it within its limitations (one crew only, deep keel, and slow). It could be hauled to the waterfront on a small trailer pulled, by something less than a SUV, and hoisted into the water. There, it can make its 'voyage' (maybe a week or two on the Great Lakes, perhaps), then be hoisted out of the water, put back on the trailer then taken home, by its owner. Even if each hoisting cost $100, it would still be a bargain compared to renting a slip for a season.

    10 ft may not be the best length for such a boat. I would say that would be the dead minimum (well, maybe 10 ft minus) for a decked over boat, where the dimensions of the boat aren't at constant war with the dimensions of the human body. 12 to 16 ft (the length range of P. C. Bolger's OLD SHOE and MICRO) would be better.
     
  10. JosephT
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    JosephT Senior Member

    I concur. I don't care what anybody says building a wooden boat is where it's at. Granted after all is smoothed out you can still reinforce with fiberglass to make her last longer, but overall you're working with wood and the experience of building a wooden boat is 2nd to none.

    • Get your plans ready.
    • Find the wood...look hard & find a good deal.
    • Get the workshop ready.
    • Enjoy.
    Joshua Slocum thoroughly enjoyed building Spray. Simply put that's just the way things were done back then and there's nothing wrong with continuing on and making slight improvements when needed.

    I would argue owners of wooden boats tend to take care of them better. Fiberglass & gelcoat lack character.

    3 cheers to wooden boats.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. BATAAN
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    BATAAN Senior Member

    Bernard Moitessier was living in Sausalito aboard his boat with family in 1977 I think and a regular visitor to the Gate 3 Boat Co-Op yard about the time this pic of BERTIE being planked was taken, and his many kind words about his long trip, boat-building, sailing in Vietnam where he spent much of his early life, and his philosophy in general led to the rig shown in the second photo.
    I never read his book but the impression I got from him through many rambling afternoon conversations 35 years ago.... was that the competition aspects just got unimportant and the sailing became all, it was the reason he was there, not to compete with people anymore.
    I guess he changed purpose in mid-race and started competing with the Southern Ocean, one of the mightiest forces on our tiny planet, instead.
    Going for a record is competing with humans, using some chosen boat size/ocean crossing standard and the ocean as the method of competition.
    Saying "Top this!".
    Since it's a gauntlet thrown down to people using the ocean as a a standard and if you want to do it for Guinness Book you should get a lot of experience in others' successes and, especially, failures in your chosen endeavor first.
    I am sure one can go to a local mortuary and purchase a well-built coffin and go to sea in it with the same results as some of the things I see proposed on these threads.
    One of the smaller practical boats for surviving 'doing stupid things on the water' is the 11' 11" SCAMP design from John Welsford available as a very well planned kit or plans if you wish.
    Adding fat foam sponsons and a good dodger would make it almost ocean-going, sometimes, in some oceans.
    But small boats come with unavoidable compromises.
    I once encountered a 25' Folkboat in the Sea of Cortez with a Canadian family of three cruising on it.
    There was maybe 8"-10" freeboard amidships.
    With so little room, and with the need to concentrate weight amidships in rough water, one day aboard for lunch with them I noticed that the gasoline stove was in use on a piece of plywood tied to the top of 4 full plastic Jerrycans of gasoline in the middle of the cabin.
    You need room to live.
    Pics with apologies to WB mag and see the latest issue for more of Mr. Welsford's excellent design work.
    He does bespoke custom designs, so call him up and tell him your ideas and needs in a boat to break a 'record' and he won't belittle you.
     

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  12. Milehog
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    Milehog Clever Quip

    SCAMP caught my attention the first time I saw an article it and it keeps looking better. It appears to be a compact version of John Welsford's Tread Lightly.
    IIRC SCAMP is available in the USA as a precut kit.
     
  13. Yobarnacle
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    Yobarnacle Senior Member holding true course

    Ok. You found me out. I'm captain A/C! (airconditioned)
    :D
     
  14. Nick.K
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    Nick.K Senior Member

    Not much dust to be bitten there! What an amazingly clean demolition...and still standing on the keel. I'm impressed.
     

  15. BATAAN
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    BATAAN Senior Member

    Sawzall and a dumpster. The end of too many good boats.
     
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