Chappelle tabloid cruiser from the book Boatbuilding, photographed in Australia

Chappelle's 23ft 8in tabloid cruiser in the book Boatbuilding in Australia Chappelle's 23ft 8in tabloid cruiser in the book Boatbuilding in Australia

This is the 23ft 8in tabloid cruiser described in Howard Irving Chappelle’s classic book Boat Building: A Complete Handbook of Wooden Boat Construction.

If you’ve read Chappelle’s book, you’ll likely know this design and will have been intrigued by it – I’d guess that it has something in common with New England lobster boats and Hampton boats of the past.

The photos here were kindly sent to me by Randal Cooper of Goolwa Masts. Randal reports that the boat, which is made of strip-planked cedar, is about 20 years old and is owned by a young employee of his. Randal also says that the boat is quick under sail compared to trailer yachts the same age and that there’s a plan afoot to enlarge the rig.

I’m in two minds about the idea – on one hand the rig as laid out in the plans is snug, but on the other this centreboard boat is really a big dinghy and if it gets knocked down will be too big to right. You takes your choice…

There are several other interesting sets of plans in Chappelle’s book. Are any others afloat, does anyone know? Do you have photos, please, and how do they perform?

Dixon Kemp’s Galway hooker

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Galway cutter from Dixon Kemp. Click on the thumbnail for a larger image

Intheboatshed readers interested in the video of Galway hookers I posted the other day will be interested in this lines drawing of a 35ft hooker taken from Dixon Kemp’s legendary Manual of Yacht and Boat Sailing.

I can confirm that it’s similar in many ways to the Boston ‘Irish Cutter’ of similar size shown in Howard I Chappelle’s book American Small Sailing Boats, but that boat has slacker bilges and slightly less displacement. It’s also interesting to compare this drawing with the Paull shrimper noted by George Holmes.

It’s difficult to get these lovely old survivals of old boat types out of one’s head, but as if to make it even harder, Daniel Newton wrote a few days ago to share some photos of a sailing model of the Boston boat that he made to sail with his kids.

Dan Newton’s model. He says it wasn’t really made for display purposes, but with those curves, I’d say it had every chance of working well as a sailing model.

Crystal River TSCA chapter builds 14ft Chappelle skiff the traditional way

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Bill Whalen of the Crystal River Boat Builders chapter of the Traditional Small Craft Association in the USA has been in touch to say the group is building the 14ft flattie skiff recorded and published by H I Chappelle that I mentioned here a couple of years ago. At the time I suggested that it might make a worthy and good-looking boatbuilding project for many people, and I still think so as this year’s boat-dreaming season hots up.

Chappelle includes the lines and a description of the boat in his classic American Small Sailing Craft, which is thankfully still available.

From the photos above it’s clear Bill and his pals have built themselves a splendid boat shed, and are using a gratifying amount of white lead and suitably good looking timber in line with their motto ‘Our emphasis is on tradition… ‘ .

See what they’re up to at their website: