West Country boatbuilder Nick Smith tells me that this carvel-built Clovelly picarooner hull constructed last year is for sale. Here’s the story from Nick:
‘I planked and framed this carvel hull a year ago, for a customer who changed his mind. It’s 3/4 inch Douglas fir on New Forest oak, and all copper fastened of course.
I took the sections and dimensions off an existing Clovelly picarooner, name and builder unknown. But she was a sweet shape and fair too. I had thought I would have to loft the hull fully, but on looking at the body sections I took off the old hull and the fairness of the original I realised it wasn’t necessary - she was built fair and hadn’t gone out of shape either.
That was born out when I turned the hull down side up, and found I did not need to ‘scuff off’ the planking.
I used a traditional belt sander sparingly then went all over with an orbital sander and 80 grit - there was no need to longboard it to fair it, which was very pleasing.
The original picarooners were, as I understand it, lost ship’s boats that arrived here with the Spanish square-rigged ships of the Armada. That fleet was chased around the unhospitable British coastline, anticlockwise, and most foundering on unknown rocks with an onshore blow.
Some got as far as the North Devon coast only to be wrecked and their tenders washed up near Clovelly, the locals of course picked them up, used and found them to be quick under lugs’l and used them to catch the silver darlings (herring), and quick to sail back to port loaded to the risers in fish, ready to be unloaded and quickly sailed back out.
Picarooner, as far as I can ascertain, is a corruption of a Spanish word meaning ‘sea chaser’ or ‘sea robber’.
The inside of the hull had three coats of marine grey primer, and the outside ditto under the waterline, while the topsides are up to two coats of the undercoat stage.
I would give the topsides two coats of enamel for launch, use her for a season then sand and recoat. Needs to settle in.
The hull is perfect for a 10 to 15hp diesel inboard, tiller steering, three athwartship seats and basic fit out. It could even carry a loose-footed tan lugs’l too !
The hull is heavily built, stable and suitable for fishing, picknicking and general messing about.
If you are interested in buying the hull please ring me and ask, and even come and have a look and a yarn, the boat is under a tarp at my workshop, which is near Ringwood Dorset.
If you’re interested in the boat, Nick’s can be reached on 07827644223, or via the email address on his website.