Skipper Dinghy

Discussion in 'Stability' started by valvebounce, Nov 20, 2015.

  1. valvebounce
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    valvebounce Senior Member

    I have a 14ft Skipper dinghy (UK)
    It's original design was as a sailing dinghy,with a transom to incorporate a small outboard.
    The mast and dagger board have been removed and the apertures glassed over.
    I don't have any sailing experience,but do realise that the dagger board was to give stability when under sail.
    I am unsure of the rolling stability of the boat,I have used it on flat inland water and it performs and feels ok.
    I am unsure whether it would be safe to use it in the sea.
    I would of course consider the weather and sea state,but would hate to have it roll over in swells.It's double skinned and has flotation material between the skins.Which is all well and good,if it has not turned turtle,Haha.
    Anybody got any suggestions or advice?
    I will sell the boat and trailer if it isn't suitable for the sea.I just need it for a bit of close inshore fishing."V"
     
  2. Richard Woods
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    Richard Woods Woods Designs

    No problem (I have sailed one and knew the designer)

    But check the hull/deck/cockpit joints for leaks as I know some Skippers where the seals have cracked allowing water to get through to stay under the cockpit. Foam buoyancy is all very well, but you don't want to motor around with water sloshing around between the mouldings.

    Richard Woods
     
  3. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    The daggerboard don't help stability as much as you think, particularly as a powerboat. I can take a 5 HP outboard with no issues, but don't expect it to handle like a powerboat. I'm not sure what you mean with "in the sea" but this is a dinghy/small utility. If used as a dinghy for a mother ship, she'll do fine in the locations you might need to ferry to shore, but asking her to be more than she is will be more skipper skill than anything else.
     
  4. valvebounce
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    valvebounce Senior Member

    Thanks for your reply Richard,
    Just to clarify,it will be ok to use with an outboard in the sea?
    I have a 6hp Evinrude and a 5hp Yamaha.
    I have been over the boat,it has had a hole drilled in the bow hatch,which I doubt was in the original spec.It doesn't incorporate a cover,so is open to the elements.I have plugged the hole because it allowed water between the skins.
    The stern hatch does have a sealable cover,but the forward face inside had been cut out and replaced with a piece of ply.I replaced the ply and frame,and sealed it.(The back of the crossways stern seat inner shell.)
    It shipped about a pint of water last time out (4hr trip)But the boat is light enough to tip back towards the stern on the trailer and run the water out of the bung.
    Thanks again for your reply "V"
     
  5. valvebounce
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    valvebounce Senior Member

    Thanks for your reply PAR,
    I will be staying within 1/2 a mile of the shore,just enough to get me among the fishes.
    I'll either drift or anchor.I was just concerned about the stability.
    "V"
     
  6. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    If you're within a mile or so of shore, you'll likely be fine, though some days might be rough, depending on conditions. Compared to a powerboat of similar size, it'll roll a bit more than you'd like, if just bobbing around on a hook or current. It's a sailboat, so it's designed to roll over and "set" after a bit, while a powerboat's initial stability will feel considerably stiffer. You'll be fine, assuming you're not a nut job, looking to see man against the sea kind of stuff, as the sea will win.
     
  7. Richard Woods
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    Richard Woods Woods Designs

    Yes no problem on the sea in sensible conditions

    I'd use the smaller or lighter of the engines. You will never plane so 4-5knots is max speed thus anything over 2.5hp is overkill

    RW
     
  8. valvebounce
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    valvebounce Senior Member

    Many thanks Richard,
    I have a better feeling about using the boat now.
    "V"
     
  9. valvebounce
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    valvebounce Senior Member

    Thanks PAR,
    I can see you understand exactly,I feel more confident using the boat now.
    I have the greatest respect for the sea,probaby from listening to my Dad for years,he was a CPO in the Royal Navy during ww 2.He was sunk twice and in an open boat for two days.They washed ashore on the foot of Italy after you guys had blasted through.
    Once again,many thanks
    "V"
     
  10. SukiSolo
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    SukiSolo Senior Member

    AFAIK the Skipper has polystyrene blocks between the skins. Even if there were no original hatches, quite a few people put them in later. Unlike a lot of other hulls I believe there are no internal sub dibvisions meaning a hole in the hull allows water to fill all the internal space, except where the polystyrene is. Fortunately the EPS is pretty long lived and not so prone to taking up wtaer like so called closed cell blown PU.... Exactly how much weight the polystyrene can float with a pierced hull I don't know, but expect it to float very low only just above water level.

    These hulls will be fine offshore but because they are quite thin and flexible mouldings should not be subjected to very harsh sea conditions. I'm not saying it won't get you out of trouble, it probably will, just handle it sensibly. You will have plenty of stability for fishing as long as you don't expect three people to be in one spot at the same time ie all landing a fish. However the hull is a stable platform in terms of waterline width so will give you plenty of warning before any liklihood of tipping over.

    I'm just echoing the wise advice above from Richard and PAR. Also in the camp of the lighter the engine the better and sit a bit forward to keep good trim or ballast the bow down. These hulls are designed to run reasonably level not with their noses in the air, and they will behave better for it. Even a 3.5 hp would be more than enough for the beast!
     
  11. valvebounce
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    valvebounce Senior Member

    Thanks for your reply SS,
    I noticed it ran better if it is more level,I moved my brother forward last time out.I have acquired an extended tiller handle for next time.
    I'll use it on calm days and definitely not get amongst the white horses.
    I saw a weight ratio for EPS the other day.I cubic foot supports 60lbs in sea water,and slightly less in fresh.
    It said in a life jacket,1/2 a cubic foot will support a 200lb person.(probably allowing for the natural flotation of a person)Not a mother in law though,because they are a dead weight anytime,Haha.

    Finding the cubic capacity of the inner cavity would be a nightmare,probably have to fill it with water,then empty it out and measure it,unless you have an intelligent pet hamster that's good with a sliderule,Haha.
    Thanks again for your input.
    "V"
     
  12. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Measure the average hull depth, times the beam, times the length. Next multiply by .7 and this will roughly estimate the cubic volume, between the deck cap and the hull shell.
     

  13. valvebounce
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    valvebounce Senior Member

    Thanks PAR,
    I'll give that a try.There are already foam blocks in it,but if I can manage to weigh the boat,it should give me a rough idea of the flotation capabilities.
    I wasn't looking forward to training a Hampster,Haha.
    "V"
     
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