12ft rowing dinghy built by Stirling & Son of Tavistock

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Rowing Will Stirling 12ft Dinghy

Rowing Will Stirling 12ft Dinghy boat Bow and Fairlead Rowing Will Stirling 12ft Dinghy  boat Stirling and Son - transom Rowing Will Stirling 12ft Dinghy  boat Thwarts Aft sternsheets and transom

Stern of 12ft Dinghy Rowing Will Stirling 12ft Dinghy  boat

A recent 12ft rowing dinghy by Stirling & Son

These delicious photos come from regular contributor, boat builder, historian and designer Will Stirling of Stirling & Son. The plans for this boat are available to buy, as his letter below explains:

‘Dear Gavin,

‘Attached photos of the most recent dinghy, a 12ft pulling boat. She is built of mahogany and oak with copper and bronze fastenings.

‘The clocks have gone back now so it is time to string up some lights otherwise the working day is too short.

‘I now have plans available in the following format:

  • two sheets of A2 tracing paper
  • two sheets of A1 tracing paper, a scantlings list
  • a list of materials
  • a CD with photographs of various stages and details of dinghy building

‘The A2 sheets contain the lines draught and consrtuctional detail, the A1 sheets have templates of the moulds and transom with the planking marked out and templates of the backbone members (stem, sternpost, stern knee etc).

‘Plans in this format are now available for a 9ft general purposes dinghy and an 11ft pilot’s punt of circa 1900 and a 17ft salmon boat. These plans cost £50 plus postage and packaging of £2.50 in the UK.

‘Plans without templates are available for a 21ft frigate’s longboat of 1757, a 37ft smuggling lugger of 1835 and a 43ft gentleman’s cutter of 1880.

‘I hope you are well. The Intheboatshed website is going from strength to strength; it is very popular with Google.

‘Best wishes,


Many thanks Will! I do hope your plans go as well as they deserve – it’s only a shame that there aren’t more professional and home builders of these kinds of boats in the world.

Stirling & Son is based near Tavistock, Devon. See the company’s website  www.stirlingandson.co.uk
tel 01822 614259.

18th century-style lugger Alert back from Iceland – and for sale

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Alert at Sedisfjordur, Iceland

Alert at Sedisfjordur, Iceland

Father fishing at anchor Alert at Sedisfjordur, Iceland Alert at the Customs pontoon, Sedisfjordur

Will’s father fishing at anchor; Alert sailing in Sedisfjordur, Alert at the Customs pontoon in Sedisfjordur

Seaman Hingley collecting firewood for the Alert Alert in the Shiant Islands, with her dinghy well hauled up against rising tide Alert dried out at Tobermory

Seaman Hingley collecting driftwood to burn; Alert in the Shiant islands; Alert dried out at Tobermory

Will Stirling and his outstanding 18th century-style lugger Alert are back from their trip to Iceland. They’ve brought back some smashing photos, and some good stories. Here’s an excerpt from something he wrote about the trip that he’s been kind enough to share with https://intheboatshed.net readers:

‘Once understood, the Faeroese Tidal Atlas proved invaluable as the Atlantic squeezes through the narrow channels between the sheer sided islands at up to 10 knots.

‘At this time of year in above this latitude it didn’t really get dark. We set off from Torshaven for Iceland in the early evening. Seaman Hingley, remembering it was his birthday after three quarters of the birthday had passed, served an admirable supper just as we got sucked into overfalls whilst exiting a channel into the open sea.

‘As the evening drew on the wind increased and Alert leapt across the North Atlantic waves, making distance between the Faeroes and Iceland. The wind increased on the starboard quarter so the reefed mizzen came down. Once dropped and tied to the yard the weather helm eased. The wind continued to build until it stabilised at Force 6.

‘The reefed jib was bagged and the boat roared along under double reefed fore sail at approximately 7 knots, with the crew nervously hoping the wind wouldn’t increase further. Continue reading “18th century-style lugger Alert back from Iceland – and for sale”