Ben Crawshaw’s photos continue to make me very proud, and I’m delighted to know that he is so happy with the 14ft Light Trow rowing and sailing boat he built from my design.
The only problem I have is that with each post from him I find the urge to build one myself becomes stronger. I keep having to ask whether I really need eight boats (I think it would make eight – I try not to think about it), but at some point the answer will surely come back that I do, if it looks and performs as well as Onawind Blue.
Ben sails off a beach outside his family’s apartment in Tarragona, and his latest posts at his weblog The Invisible Workshop include a discussion (with videos) of his efforts to learn to handle his boat in surf, and a photoshoot. As he says, the long and lean boat copes pretty well even though the plans I made up included a warning that the boat is really meant for sheltered conditions.
I think it’s forgivable for a designer to be a little conservative in these matters, for I’d be mortified if anyone was injured or worse in a boat I designed. But on the other side of the argument, I always knew that part of the secret of this boat would be its fairly narrow form and in particular its narrow flat bottom – what it trades away is maximum carrying capacity, but what it gains is good handling under oars and in moderate waves, and of course an elegant, slippery hull. I think many of us would like a boat that fitted that description…
For the free plans and for more on the Light Trow:
The Sea Babe motor launch – a William D Jackson period classic motor launch at the Svenson free plans website
I just love the period features of this home-buildable little Jackson motor launch design- check out the broken sheerline, the dramatic tumblehome at the stern, and the laid deck, doubtless under a heavy layer of gleaming varnish.
Duckworks Magazine’s monthly bulletin linked to an intheboatshed.net reference to Joe Dobler yesterday, and I’d like to repay the compliment.
For years now, Duckworks Magazine editor Chuck Leinweber has maintained a steady stream of fascinating posts about boats and boating, mainly concerning small boats and in particular home-built boats and occasionally restored older craft.
What makes it stand out is that it’s a real miscellany, and that it’s made up of so many obviously genuine stories about real people. Some of the material is inspirational stuff about building and cruising small boats, but you can also find tutorials on how to perform particular tasks and dire warnings about how to avoid repeating someone’s mistake.
If you’re inspired to get into building small boats, I think it’s essential reading – as is Duckworksmagazine’s sister site Duckworks Boat Builders Supply. A good place to start might be the Duckworks BBS plans page.
Duckworks Boat Builder’s Supply http://www.duckworksbbs.com/