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Building a Jersey Speed Skiff (Pub. No. 5880)

by David D. Beach

LOA 16 ft., beam about 6 ft.

What single design is right for Dad to use for fishing, Sis to use for her wafer skiing. big Brother for racing? It is the popular 16-footer Speed Skiff

The Speed Skiff shown here is the answer to the questions of what single design is suitable for Dad to use for fishing, for Sis to use for her water skiing and for the boy in the family to race at the local regattas. When the problem is complicated by wanting a good familystyle runabout, too, the Speed Skiff is certainly the boat that meets all requirements. Before discussing the construction of the craft, it seems appropriate to give some information about the development of the type and to explain the reasons for its popularity. The Speed Skiff evolved, over many years, along the Jersey coast where sea-keeping abilities and speed have always been prized characteristics in any craft. Here, under the eyes of critical boatbuilders and fishermen, the present form has developed. They were family boats first and raceboats second, but the builders never lost sight of the fishing craft origin of the type. Freeboard, length and beam were specified, as was the fact that decks should support two people. These skiffs were not to degenerate, the officials decided, into cut-down racing craft, and they have not. The Outboard Profile shows a plain lap-strake boat with a raked bow and transom. A middle deck separates the forward cockpit from the aft cockpit; the boat is steered from the aft cockpit. The Arrangement shows a spacious forward cockpit, extending to the stem and a wide seat across the boat in each cockpit. The aft cockpit is dominated by the vertical steering column which is peculiar to this type of boat. As the Construction Plan shows, this column contains a rack and pinion steerer control in its base, to provide positive steering with no backlash or cable problems. The space behind the rear seat is occupied by a large cylindrical fuel tank, above which is a high-sided shelf, just right for lunch or tackle boxes, or for coiling the ski-tow lines. As, can be readily seen, the boat is without frills, and its simplified arrangement lends itself with no trouble to all the diverse uses to which such & craft may be put.

7 pages, 4 plate(s)

Andalusia (Pub. No. 5885)

by Weston Farmer

LOA 34 ft., Beam 9 ft. 4 in., Draught 34 in. Weight 11, 318 lbs.

Andalusia is small as yachts go. You'll find her great for northern waters

This story of Andalusia is not a how-to-build story in the usual sense. I am not going to tell you how to bruise your nearest thumb with the nearest hammer. Rather, this is a story for those who believe in the importance of noodling a new thing just for the excitement of it. It is always refreshing to conjure something new in boats, especially if the ship is a departure from the ordinary and is based on sound practice. She is novel in that she is designed for a real need. We’ve had designs of V-bottomed pointed house trailers which are fine for southern service. They’ll float on a morning dew, go to leeward like a paper bag in any kind of breeze, will slam in any sea, and will roll your neck until your teeth ache because they have excessive beam—-said beam following every uplift and heave, jerkily, because the boat is so wide it has to do this. But we have had few boats for the northern scene—-the waters of Maine, of Georgian Bay, of the Great Lakes and Puget Sound. Here it is often rainy, always windy, frequently cold. Sharpened house trailers with accent on chrome and mahogany are sucker bait in waters like these. So I have made Andalusia in reduced image of the little Caróo motorships a person sees sagging past the green coasts, alabaster, houses and red-tiled roofs of Andalusia, hence her name. I suppose you’d call her a tug-type yacht. She will have some of the wonderful, weighty fore-reaching ability of the tug hull, and she does have a tug-type fantail stern. On second thought, I wouldn’t call her—-just go on betting on her and you can count on her to take care of you and your family on any dark night, no matter what the welter of weather outside the cabin. You may not like the layout. Okay—sketch in your own. This hull will handle about any arrangement you want. She can carry several imore tons than I show, and will never feel it. My main idea in designing her was to get away from trying to pack a 5-room apartment into an 18-foot cheese carton. For instance, you may want more aft deck, and may not like the aft cabin. All right—just run the cabin bulkhead down to the level of the main clamp, deck her cockpit over and use the aft quarters under the cockpit sole for storage. It is my reasoned prediction that Andalusia will appeal in direct proportion to the amount of real cruising experience you’ve had. The man buying his first “cruiser” is often looking for the Fountain of Youth: He must cover 500 miles the first afternoon, he must sleep 60 people in his 15-footer, and reckon not the cost of speed, little realizing that his pocketbook must be sublimated in some way to an oil refinery where fuel grows on bushes. Your seasoned man knows his craft must be big enough not to wallow if she’s going to have comfort, and that the fewer you sleep, the better. Two or three will be plenty. And speed? Keep it low! Any 9- or 10-mile craft can comfortably do 100 miles a day if you know when to start out and when to pull into harbor. Let’s look at the layout, and describe it: basically it is the layout of the usual cruising boat just turned around. Instead of narrow bunks forward, followed by a cramped galley, opening into a saloon, or deckhouse, followed by a cockpit, I have reversed the usual. In so doing we gain much. Forward in Andalusia is the head, or toilet. This narrow, cussed, and infrequently used chunk of equipment demands only that portion of floor space due it. Privacy is gained by the companion doors which close off the main deckhouse. By disposing of the head quickly we get the rest of the ship to use for layout. Have you ever noticed on real ships there is an engine room? A roomy place where machinery can be maintained? Most cruising men come by their love of the game through a secondary love of good engines, and like to keep their machine brass bright and squeegeed down with clean rags. Andalusia’s engine is down forward in a space amply large to allow access all around. Machinery in such a place lasts longer, runs sweeter, is more reliable for the attention it thus gains. Motor weight in this ship is only about 5 per cent of total displacement, therefore the positioning of the mill weight—wise is not critical. Andalusia, like many craft her size, ought to be ballasted to final trim anyway.

12 pages, 4 plate(s)

Sea Biscuit (Pub. No. 5886)

by Weston Farmer

LOA 8 ft., Beam 4 ft.

Want a real speed box? You will get it here. She’ll build for about $30 in materials* screws and paint—and even an amateur will build her in 40 hours. Power her with 5 hp— and she’ll give speed aplenty!

It seems like yesterday, but it was nearly thirty years ago when Lockwood-Ash came out with a 4 hp Opposed outboard that was hot enough to plane a flattish light boat. Soon Johnson countered with 6 hp, and the next few seasons saw a new kind of small boat appearing in locust numbers on all waterways. I can remember what a great day it was for boating when Lockwood-Ash first planed a boat with a kicker! Each new planing design gave the game a shot in the arm. The biggest shot of all was a little craft doped out by Bruno Beckhard of Long Island, an outboard dealer with a knack for experimenting. Bruno designed a little speed box 8 ft. long by 4 ft. beam which could be built in a couple of afternoons. Shortly, Bruno’s boat was cleaning up right and left. Various versions of the idea were built and the plans were published under such names is Cute Craft, Nize Baby, Sez You and others Thousands of them wets bullt. Even in those days this writer was designing hydroplanes and racing them. In the many years applied to naval architecture since, much has been learned of planing hydrodynamics. New materials like plywood and plastics are now available, motors have been lightened, power zipped up. Pounds-per-horsepower, the criterion of speed over water, has been halved. All of which is why it seemed a logical development to me to recook Bruno’s ancient basic idea—make a simple 8 ft. by 4 ft. box, use plywood for low hull weight, and put a completely new bottom between the chines that would embody latest hydrodynamic thinking. The result: hard to design, easy to build Sea Biscuit. This little speed box is 8 ft. long inside her raked bow baffle, and 4 ft. beam at the bow, her greatest width. She’ll build for about $30, in materials, screws and paint. A man can lay her out in about 3 hours; the transoms and frames can be built and erected in a day. Planking will take longer. An organized boat shop can build a Sea Biscuit in 2 working days, but an amateur would take closer to 40 hours. Thus $30 and 40 hours after starting you can be trying out a Sea Biscuit ofyour own. Bruno Bekhard’s sensation was built with arcuate frames, inverted from bow to mid-length. From that point aft the bottom was absolutely “flat’ athwartship. This made Bruno’s craft unbankable’ and hence hard to turn. I drove many such hulls, and occasionally would forget the nature of the beast and throw her into too tight a turn. Immediately I would find myself with considerable loss of dignity and total absence of boat flapping through the air to another part of the lake. Our boat here has a different bottom. Dead rise has been apportioned throughout that part of her length which bears on water, and in a fore and aft direction longitudinal concavity has been provided to make her run flat. Sea Biscuit will handle better, run flatter than the old cute crates. An ordinary 5 hp kicker will make her whiz. Power her with 71/2 hp and she’ll go faster than you care to drive this tiny boat.

8 pages, 4 plate(s)

Cruisemite (Pub. No. 5887)

by Douglas Bacon

LOA 20 ft., Beam about 12 ft.

Here is simplicity and ecorlomy for the backyard boatbuilder! This little cruiser is stout, chunky and fine for family use.

Cruisemite, like all boats, is a compromise design. Instead of speed, high power and lightness, I’ve tried to think ahead for the life you’ll really live with the boat (as against fireside dreams) and I’ve turned out a roomy little cruiser that can change with your needs. She is not built of plywood. Just ordinary seam and batten construction is used. Nearly everyone who has a smattering of boating knows this type of construction and can build it. A boat like Cruisemite, nearly 20 ft. long, is really too large an order for the amateur when constructed of plywood. One-sheet planking is good for production in a well-heeled shop where there are a lot of hands. The amateur, building on his own, is better off with smaller pieces that he can handle and fit. After providing easier construction, attention was given to lines. After all, almost all current outboard cruiser designs are for the big motor fellows. No one has yet done a good, safe, slogging sort of boat for contemporary 10 to 15 hp motors, of which there are many more running than the 25 hp kind. So Cruisemite’s lines are for speeds from 8 to 12 mph—a pace that gets nobody into trouble. It is a speed which experienced boatmen know is better for relaxed running and safe night cruising. (Hit a pulp log at 20 mph on a dark night and see what happens to the sheetplanked jobs. Even the pistons in your motor will change holes!) You want something safe for your family. Kids are pretty precious. Cruisemite is a family boat from the outset. Th mnan who starts boating with an outboard will likely go eventually to inboard power. No need to get rid of Cruisemite, then. She’ll convert. So there'll be no problem of what to do with the hull you’ve grown to like. Thus I show also an inboard construction profile with an inboard motor. Nothing elaborate. The 5 hp DuBrie with a 12x15 three-blade wheel at 960 rpm will kick this craft along at 7 to 8 mph burning 3 gallons of gas in 10 hours, so the makers state. Other engines of low power are shown. About top limit would be the Universal four-cylinder 25 hp Utility, not shown.

7 pages, 5 plate(s)

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