St Pierre Dory - much touted seaworthiness

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by Standpipe, Mar 31, 2017.

  1. goodwilltoall
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    goodwilltoall Senior Member

    You have to get into a modern ocean rowing boat to get any small light displacement able to meet OP's criteria. Like any other boat form once you get into larger sizes they r more stable. The 26' nexus pierre dory (btw far.from.a.rowboat) is partially decked over so that deducts it from being classified as a true ocean boat, its intended purpose is for coastal waters however, the shape can stay as it is and small modifications made to meet OP concerns.

    Yes, it would still b short of a comfortable boat but any other boat with a 2700# displacement would as well. Bump up displacement to 8000#, length to around 40' (i like high l-b ratios) and you have similar sea keeping characteristics as other boat forms of same displacement if you keep it apples to apples, ie... sailboat to sailboat, coastal cruiser to coastal cruiser etc...
     
  2. goodwilltoall
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    goodwilltoall Senior Member

    Bartender highly modified but still a dory same with benfords, you add keel, ballast, sails, high decks to meet ocean sailing requirements just like any other boat form would require as well, that said, it remains a true dory even without pinched stern.
     
  3. viking north
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    viking north VINLAND

    The typical grand banks dory came on the scene as depletion in the fish (cod) stocks around the coasts of NFLD. made it inefficient to fish strickly from the mothership. This made it necessary to send out smaller craft to cover a bigger area of the seabed. Recall in those early days(1500's/1600's) fishermen used mostly a one hook catching tool. English fishermen/boatbuilders (mostly west county boys) came up with the idea thru necessity of deck space savings of stackable smaller boats to fish from. Thus the dory was born.
    The St.Pierre dory while a slightly modified French version of the English Cod Dory (historically correct terms only) is never the less the same craft as are all versions thereafter.( A Labrador Retriever is just a stage name for a St. John's Water Dog). I personally thru the experience of having used both styles prefer the standard Grand Banks over the St Pierre for open water work. The St Pierre has much more rocker and sheer than the Grand Banks resulting in less directional stability. The St. Pierre like their direct counterparts River Running Dories are designed for fast directional changes. This being necessary for the ocean conditions of the inshore fishery around St. Pierre as well as river running. Of all the dory builders in eastern North America,Newfoundland,Nova Scotia,and Maine historically in that order have been and are the finest dory builders worldwide.Of the three only Newfoundland commonly still use the traditional one piece tree root timbers.
     
  4. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Like I said GoodWill, speak what you know, as dories aren't . . . Your observations are what I've found George. I'm not much of a St Pierre fan, with the Grand banks being a much better open water boat, though still with much of the same restraints most dories have.
     
  5. viking north
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    viking north VINLAND

    It would be interesting to compare the sea keeping capabilities of a traditional dory and a lifeboat style double ender of similar displacements and ballast. It would be interesting to see if the deeper immersed hard chine of the dory would be a plus or minus factor as far as TRIPPING is concerned when compared to the more forgiving rounded sections of the double ender. An unwritten rule passed down from the old dory handling guys is "don't get them side on to the "lop"(sea) or they'll fill with water.This being the result of several factors, narrow beam, hard chine and heavy sheer. All factors that make it one of the best for it's size sea boats if you keep her reasonably aligned with the running sea. In reality the design's reputation has as much to do with the operator as the boat. Thus the distinct honour of being known as the best "Doryman aboard or in the cove". Often this important fact is lost in history.
     
  6. aksail37
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    aksail37 New Member

    I've built two dories, a 19' and a 24', and have hunted on umiaks in extreme conditions in the Arctic Ocean.

    The design is very capable and seaworthy; however, like other people have said, the skipper's knowledge and experience will make or break the boat, like any other boat. Why this is always said in conjunction with dories is beyond me, you usually don't see that with other boat designs.

    I would rather sail heavy seas in a dory I built than a Hunter, Beneteau or other typical production plastic, fin keel boat, which I've done, as well. I'm looking at building another dory, but this time, if I do, I'll be adding a cabin and small keel. I saw a home-built 24' St. Pierre in Homer, Alaska (power only) and it was beautiful. I didn't get to talk to the owner, but I did meet several people who know him, and they said that he had survived some bad situations down there.

    Interior ballast (or, exterior, if you have a keel) can be added. You don't have to load it down "with fish"; however, it's certainly true that the more it is loaded down, the better it will perform, within reason.

    Some interesting literature on people who have used dories, and small boats to make some incredible adventures.

    http://www.microcruising.com/famoussmallboats.htm
     
  7. Mr Efficiency
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    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    You mean the high ends would act to prevent a complete rollover, or potentially make the boat self-righting after rolling ? I prefer boats that don't easily get to that stage. :D Lifeboats are much fuller in the ends than these dories, which goes a long way to keeping them upright. The dory style of boat has maximum simplicity, being really a three-panel shell with no compound curvature, it would be wonderful if by chance it was optimally seaworthy, but that would be a rare gift of coincidence. It is a cheap solution that works well enough unless you buy into the notion it has greater seaworthiness than other boats of similar length. I don't believe it for a minute.
     
  8. Mr Efficiency
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    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    An excellent commentary !
     
  9. Easy Rider
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    Easy Rider Senior Member

    viking north wrote;
    "It would be interesting to see if the deeper immersed hard chine of the dory would be a plus or minus factor as far as TRIPPING is concerned when compared to the more forgiving rounded sections of the double ender."

    The curved hull surfaces of double enders and sailboats have much drag moving sideways. The flare along with the hard chines of the dories would likely present a shape that could plane on the bottom or possibly the sides depending on design and conditions. I've been on a light boat that skidded sideways fast enough to escape a breaking sea. In some cases hard chines and sharp lines may be better than more "forgiving rounded shapes" to save the day in rough water. Been there done that.
     

  10. Rurudyne
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    Rurudyne Senior Member

    Hey, I was reading an old article from The Rudder (1904), a How to Build by Charles Mower for a power dory called "Bonito". This can be found and downloaded in PDF form on Google Books for free; however, I'll summarize the info I think may interest you.

    Namely, that the article begins with a history of power dories to that time and mentions sea keeping issues.

    Firstly, early power dories were fishing dories adapted with "small" motors of the day to cut back on effort rowing. Mower describes how early successes led to a series of larger craft. He continues:

    "After seeing the fishermen come and go in all sorts of weather, yachtsmen took up the idea and the New England dory builders found their trade in power boats gradually developing into power dories, with a decided falling off in the demand for sailing or rowing boats. The dories could be built and equipped with a simple two-cycle motor at a price which the builders of regular launch hulls were unable to meet, and the dories had the advantage of not only being eminently seaworthy and safe in rough water, but it was also found that they were almost invariably able to outdistance regular launches of the typical stock model, fitted with motors of the same size."

    So far so good and all sounding rosy.

    Yet details about these early boats he subsequently speaks of addresses the development process for pleasure craft from the fishing types. If I understand him correctly early power dories were like their fishing counterparts in being wide at the base, "about one half the extreme breadth" and these boats he later calls "cranky" being the basis for the type developing a bad reputation "among people not accustomed to the type".

    I mention this because he notes that the Swampscott, or clipper dory, was of a better type for sailing AND the design he presents, being narrow at its base (less than a third of breadth) is probably of this type ... which makes sense of the mention of the Swampscott variant.

    Of this design he says:

    "The boat shown in the accompanying design will be stiff and steady and buoyant in rough water and will be suitable to any use to which a small launch can reasonably be put."

    The Bonito design itself is an 18' clipper type. You can get the file to reference her particulars.

    My own observation is that a modern engine will be significantly lighter than those in 1904 for the same power and it is likely his assessment of the traits of the craft take into account the weight of those old engines (which should agree with statements about ballasting in this thread).

    I hope that helps you.

    It seems to indicate to me that for a pleasure boat the type with a narrower base may well be the better choice ... or at least I would hope so given that the design is presented after noting the crankiness of the boats with wide bases.

    Edit: I looked around a bit more and in the same year there was another dory design, a much larger auxiliary cruiser also of the narrow bottom type by Schock, called Fish Hawk. More to look at for comparison purposes, I guess.
     
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