Small sailboat Design - advice requested

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by ancient kayaker, Feb 20, 2009.

  1. ancient kayaker
    Joined: Aug 2006
    Posts: 3,497
    Likes: 146, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 2291
    Location: Alliston, Ontario, Canada

    ancient kayaker aka Terry Haines

    While temporarily prevented from building I turned my attention to designing. My less-than-athletic wife recently said she would be willing to venture into a sailboat, should I build one (silly girl - I didn’t get it in writing though). So it would be nice to have a sailboat for 2 in the family, to be sailed very conservatively, although when used by me I may get more adventurous if unsupervised.

    Adding her needs to my preferences has led to the following requirements:

    1. Compact and light: easily car-topable by one person and beach-launchable.
    2. Very stable: one person can stand and access rig and rudder.
    3. Space for 2 gracefully aging adults in relative comfort.
    4. Robust enough for its planned environment - small lakes with gentle breezes.
    5. Able to re-board from the water following a flip-over.
    6. Simple, easy-to-sail rig, but able to progress to windward.
    7. Some performance would be nice with a second rig but way down on the list.
    8. Cute; I like chick magnets even at my age.
    9. Easy to build is nice but I have some experience building small boats.

    Looking at all these requirements, I found myself drawn to the PDRacer. It satisfies the first 3 requirements very well with some modifications to meet a couple of concerns. My first concern is, being flat-bottomed, it will likely pound, small lakes can throw up a chop very quickly, so I plan to give it a Vee entry for a smoother ride. Also, I’d like a bit more buoyancy aft and a flatter bottom to let a passenger ride further aft and give the skipper enough space to work midships. That would also allow me to row us home if needed.
    Not sure if we have any Puddle Duck sailers out there, but what do you think of this idea so far?
     

    Attached Files:

  2. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
    Posts: 19,133
    Likes: 472, Points: 93, Legacy Rep: 3967
    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Michael Storer is the one you need to talk to, regarding the PDR. He knows my opinion of the little thing, which I lovingly refer to as a sailing concrete mixing tub.

    http://www.pdracer.info/

    He's done a nice job with several and created an Australian version with racing rules and all.

    I think you'd not like the look of a sail powered mixing tub, but some (usually Bolger box boat lovers) seem to love the thing. It's incredibly stable, as a fair amount of room for an 8' boat, is light and if you put enough sail on it, respectable, but still only a child a mother could love in the chick magnet department, no matter how much bright mahogany trim you install.

    There are a lot of small designs out there that are a whole bunch better looking, but then again most not as simple as a PD.
     
  3. ancient kayaker
    Joined: Aug 2006
    Posts: 3,497
    Likes: 146, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 2291
    Location: Alliston, Ontario, Canada

    ancient kayaker aka Terry Haines

    I've been studying the PDR pages for a while; thanks for the Storer link - didn't have that one. As a hitherto builder of slick, slim canoes I gotta admit it took a bit of adjustment! The room, lightness and stability is what I am after, plus it doesn't take up a lot of storage space, something I am rapidly running out of as the boats begin to pile up.

    Do you think my hull shape changes are sound? I am wondering if changing the pram transom from flat to a curve or Vee shape will improve wave penetration. Also perhaps a pinch of sheer curve to improve its looks, if that is possible.

    Although my robustness requirements conflict with my desire for light weight, Oz rules call for min hull+board+rudder weight of 65 lb, say 60 lb hull only which I can cartop single-handed. Thus I can go with the recommended 6 mm ply bottom, 4 mm ply sides/tanks/deck and 8 or 9 mm ply transoms. I am tempted to have a 4 mm bottom with battens, perhaps doubled in the flat center portion (have lots of 4 mm). The twisted bottom bends are no sharper than the original bottom bends. I am planning for 8" wide side buoyancy tanks, I will put plenty of reinforcements so they can double as seats.

    Re-boarding a small boat can be a challenge for those of us who are past their sell-by-date, athletically speaking, but the side buoyancy tanks will help in this regard and I plan to have a buoyant mast so, if she flips, she remains on her side. One tank alone should support me and the hull, so perhaps I can climb up and lie on top of it and then roll the boat upright again by using my weight from inside. If that’s not as easy as I hope, then it’s climb over the transom as usual. I will experiment in the pool and install whatever re-boarding aids are needed.
     
  4. matoi
    Joined: Nov 2008
    Posts: 19
    Likes: 0, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 10
    Location: Croatia

    matoi Junior Member

  5. bistros

    bistros Previous Member

    I'll second the Wayfarer - just about perfect for your needs. Here in Canada there is a Wayfarer clone called the CL-16 from CL Boats in Ft. Erie, ON. They have a CL-14 version that also is a great fit.

    From my perspective (having a non-sailing wife), a Puddle Duck is just way too small and crowded. I tried sailing with my wife in a 13.5 foot homebuild this summer, and it was too small for her to be comfortable.

    All this being said, building will probably delay things for at least a season. I'd really consider watching Craigslist and Kijiji in K-W, Barrie, Owen Sound and Guelph for a second hand bargain. You won't lose money sailing one for a season and you'll know quickly what to build, and what works for you and your wife.

    Building even a modified Puddle Duck will cost more and be less comfortable and fun than a used boat. I would not even consider anything under 12' seriously.

    You'd have no trouble going over to Sauble, Penetanguishene or Wasaga with a CL-14 or 16 and being able to have a great day on the lake.

    --
    Bill
     
  6. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
    Posts: 19,133
    Likes: 472, Points: 93, Legacy Rep: 3967
    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    How about a conventional design, maybe on the narrow side, with detachable outriggers for those occasions you're with your other half.
     
  7. ancient kayaker
    Joined: Aug 2006
    Posts: 3,497
    Likes: 146, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 2291
    Location: Alliston, Ontario, Canada

    ancient kayaker aka Terry Haines

    M&B: I like the wayfarer a lot, but it is more of a performance boat than a plodding bathtub which is what I am looking for. Also the PDR is quick and dirt cheap to build. I should check to see if it's roomy enough although it seems pretty spacious.

    PAR: I used to have a sailing canoe that I fitted with an outrigger for trips with the Missus, but it got destroyed. I could build a new 2-seater, sailing canoe and outfit it with amas, but the PDR would have a lot more space.
     
  8. sharpii2
    Joined: May 2004
    Posts: 1,883
    Likes: 91, Points: 48, Legacy Rep: 611
    Location: Michigan, USA

    sharpii2 Senior Member

    Hi, Ancient Kayaker.

    I have decide to post a profile and section drawing of my 'Motha Jugs' design, so you could get an idea of what I would think of as a good small lake sailboat.

    It is a pdracer class compliant design meant to sail in small lakes with hidden shoals.

    The boards and rudder can both bounce up from the bottom and be pulled back down with bungee cords with no help from the skipper.

    Here goes.
     

    Attached Files:

    • mj2a.jpg
      mj2a.jpg
      File size:
      342.7 KB
      Views:
      11,960
    • mj1a.jpg
      mj1a.jpg
      File size:
      517.5 KB
      Views:
      7,453
  9. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
    Posts: 19,133
    Likes: 472, Points: 93, Legacy Rep: 3967
    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    No, I was thinking more along the lines of a flattie or sharpie, both of which are fairly high in initial stability, more so with outriggers, but when some performance was desired, the outriggers could be removed.
     
  10. bistros

    bistros Previous Member

    Terry:

    From where I sit, a Wayfarer sure isn't a performance boat. Almost impossible to capsize, they've actually been sailed from the UK to Iceland. Lots of people in the UK use them for weekend camping trips. Compared to the performance skiffs I sail, they do fit the plodding bathtub label pretty well. I looked at a used CL-16 this past summer as a family boat and it was short of a good centerboard from me buying. $800, which was a great price.

    There is a Snipe fleet at Guelph Lake on Highway 24 that has boats come up at good prices every year - a Snipe is a great fit as well. Rock solid stable and very comfortable for two or three people. I've got one I'm rebuilding for a family boat that I picked up for $200 - the wood mast was rotted, the boom done as well, but with a coat of two part poly paint, a rebuilt steel daggerboard a used aluminum mast I bought cheap it'll be on the water this summer for under $500. Class legal and it'll look & be basically new.

    Doesn't really matter what you build/buy as long as the Boss has a good time.

    --
    Bill
     
  11. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
    Posts: 19,133
    Likes: 472, Points: 93, Legacy Rep: 3967
    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    What a sailor may consider rock solid stabile, the other half may feel is a wee bit tender.
     
  12. ancient kayaker
    Joined: Aug 2006
    Posts: 3,497
    Likes: 146, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 2291
    Location: Alliston, Ontario, Canada

    ancient kayaker aka Terry Haines

    I have to quote these words of wisdom from Bistros and Par:

    "Doesn't really matter what you build/buy as long as the Boss has a good time"

    "What a sailor may consider rock solid stabile, the other half may feel is a wee bit tender"

    Serious design drivers, those. I enjoy the design and building process more than fixing up old boats. Par, I am thinking about your suggestion of a flattie, almost as easy to build.
     
  13. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
    Posts: 19,133
    Likes: 472, Points: 93, Legacy Rep: 3967
    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Make it narrow and fast. Log onto Michael Storer's site and down load his detachable outriggers (tell him I sent you). You'll likely have to rescale them, but you can have a very stable, flat sailing, leisurely outing boat for you and the one who must be obeyed. When you need a speed fix, remove the outriggers and see how long it takes until you're rewarded with a death roll.
     
  14. bistros

    bistros Previous Member

    My single hand skiff is stable in one position - upside down. You can't leave it at the dock for ten seconds - it can't stand up on it's own.

    It only becomes stable with a person on board, and more and more stable as speed increases. Planing on a trapeze reach with the asymmetrical kite up it is as stable as the Titanic.

    To me the Snipe is a rock, but I acknowledge to people that have lead poisoning (keel boat folks) and stink boaters it would probably seem "tippy".

    --
    Bill
     

  15. ancient kayaker
    Joined: Aug 2006
    Posts: 3,497
    Likes: 146, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 2291
    Location: Alliston, Ontario, Canada

    ancient kayaker aka Terry Haines

    Actually, I can't really imagine my old Missus in a planing skiff, hanging on for dear life with the skipper grimly hanging onto a trapeze, whitecaps slashing by and waves smacking the bows, and saying "isn't it lovely and stable!" But it's an entertaining thought.

    I recall getting her into a keelboat a few decades back, a lovely old round-the-buoys racer from way back, heeled over maybe 15 deg but there wasn't not much freeboard on that low-built sucker and you could just see the water flashing by inches below the lee gunnel, turning to me with a glazed look in her eyes and asking "are we going to sink?" or somesuch remark.

    She actually does like sailing, on a quiet, gentle day, and like me, isn't much impressed by a powerboat, just another form of motor transportation.
     
Loading...
Forum posts represent the experience, opinion, and view of individual users. Boat Design Net does not necessarily endorse nor share the view of each individual post.
When making potentially dangerous or financial decisions, always employ and consult appropriate professionals. Your circumstances or experience may be different.