Prams and Punts  

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Purposeful Punt (Pub. No. 5759)

by Michael Cramond

LOA 10', BEAM 46"

There’s a lot of boat packed into this pint-sized package, and it can be yours for less than $20 and a few spare evenings. This one is easy enough for you to build—whoever you are.

Most boats are not simple to build, and those that are, are often so simple they are good for nothing. Simplicity and low cost are not always the same. Some 30 years as a fisherman and hunter, stepping into (and sometimes being flipped out of) hulls, forced me to design what I had hoped would flil my particular bill of easy-to— build, strength at low cost, and adaptability to a variety of oonditions. Strangely, for the first try at anything new or unique in hull design, it worked. I built this boat in a couple of weeks of spare evenings down in the basement. The cost was just under $20, and it was simple enough for a schoolboy to build. Because I am a hunter and fisherman by occupation (outdoor editor-columnist of a daily newspaper) my prime purpose was a vessel that could be rowed, punted, outboarded, sailed or slept in, put atop a car, safe enough to fly-fish from, rugged enough to withstand the recoil of a shotgun. The resulting hull was a real surprise. Although the boat is only 10’ long, two men can fly-fish from it while a third rows. I have shot a limit of ducks from it in choppy salt-water marshes, outboarded it with three big men aboard, used it for rowing and trolling for salmon on the open sea. Also, as many as four children have gone sailing in it. The ceiling load—with freeboard to row on calm water—has been five grownups totaling 850 pounds; and because the boat weighs only 70 pounds, one man can auto-top it easily, or carry it some distance to water. With the intermediate frames left solid, permanent air pockets in bow and stern are formed. The boat will float two men when filled with water, and even when the boat is capsized one man can walk upon it completely free of the water. Not all of these things were designed into it, but came about by the unique method of construction. Materials are primarily plywood, but can be interchanged (with the exception of the bottom) with stock lumber or other materials.

14 pages, 3 plate(s)

Sailing Pram, A (Pub. No. 5772)

by Edson I. Schock

LOA 9' 8", BEAM 4' 8", SAIL AREA 66 SQ. FT.

This boat is suitable for construction by boys of high school age, and if all the work is done by the owner the cost will be quite moderate.

8 pages, 4 plate(s)

Optimist Pram, The (Pub. No. 5789)

Though less than 8 feet long, the Optimist-Pram helps boys and girls develop the qualities of competent boatmen.

Boating has had an appeal since the beginning of history. Archaeologists have discovered signs of boats back into the Stone Age. Floating on rafts or simple dugouts along streams and shores was one of the earliest forms of transportation, pre-dating the wheel and axle a couple of thousand years. With water covering 70 percent of the earth’s surface, boating helped the spread of civilization. Recent discoveries in the Pyramids show that finished boats with masts and sails were enjoyed in Egypt over 4.000 years ago, and boating together with fishing and hunting were the chief recreations and sports of those days. With the help of sailing ships the western world was discovered, colonized and made independent. Almost no other sport has such an important history. Every youngster likes boats, first to float ‘em in a handy mudpuddle after a shower, perhaps with simple little paper sails. Then bigger ones in some park lake or along some convenient shore. And later, to save effort, in a rowboat or canoe to sail leisurely downwind with the aid of an umbrella or such. And this was perhaps followed by an improvised sail. How many of you remember your first great thrill in your first small sailboat, of feeling the lift when the breeze filled the sail and the boat responded to your movement of the tiller? And then realized after your first two tacks that you had actually worked to windward of your starting point. You then began to get sailing in your blood.

9 pages, 2 plate(s)

Sea Midge--Snug, Small, Three-way Pram (Pub. No. 5833)

by William D. Jackson


May be rowed or sailed or adapted for use with outboard motors of from 1 o 3 hp.

Designed with a convex bottom for maximum speed whether powered by sail, outboard motor or oars, Sea Midge is modeled on an Old World boat originally developed as a yacht dinghy for use upon the North Sea. It is an excellent all-around workhorse and is light enough to be carried anywhere. Construction of Sea Midge is simplicity itself.

5 pages, 4 plate(s)

How Prams are Built--With Plans for an 8 ft. Pram (Pub. No. 5843)

with Plans for "Jennie" an 8-ft. Pram

by Weston Farmer

LOA 8 FT., BEAM 42 IN.

You see prams everywhere. They are numerous as lily pads. Why? They’re duck soup to build, and they’re light, useful, and fun. Here is the dope on them, with plans for a good one. I’ve named her Jennie because she is plump, and plain-—a little wren in the boat family. The pram may seem a new type, but actually they are old, being English in derivation. Until plywood got itself waterproof and gave everybody a cheap hull covering, the only prams you would see were rather heavy. So they were used chiefly abroad, mainly as mooring tenders to pint-sized British singlehanded sailing achts. The first pram design published in this country was the Wee Pup designed, if I recall correctly, by Edson B. Schock, a friend of mine and naval architect, iather of our Edson I. Schock. Her plans appeared at least 40 years ago. I built one taking 80 hours, because those were peaceful days; and Wee Pup was cross-planked, clinker tppsided—-all the befoodilements of old-time boatbuilding, for which there is now little patience.

12 pages, 3 plate(s)

Quicksilver (Pub. No. 5878)

by Weston Farmer

LOA 11 ft 5 in., beam 50.5 in.

Although she is easy to build, she will do a lot of things most prams won’t do. Designed to give low-cost thrills, she can handle a 10hp kicker.....;f you’ve got the stuff to go right along with her. With a little power, she’ll be 5 to 10 miles an hour, faster than most prams. She’ll build for lust about $50*

This cute little boat will be very easy to build because she is simply a shaped box. The transoms, frames and topsides are all straight work and only the forward bottom, or foreplane will require some sweat and savvy. Though she is simple she has a design basis that is as involved as an airplane, and I’m here to tell the world she’ll do a lot of things most prams won’t. She is designed to give low-cost thrills with an average service type 5 hp mill. She can handle a 71/2 hp job and with it will plane two people. For those who like their thrlils hairbreadth, she can handle a 10 hp kicker, but you’d better be young and agile and have nerve! Quicksilver will build for about $50 to $55, or a shade more, depending upon location. For this sum you’ll get a boat that will stow atop your car, which all small prams will do. With little power, she’ll be 5 to 10 miles an hour faster than most prams. Because of the step, she’ll balance with two people just like a plain fishing boat (most prams won’t do this) and if you want to install oarlocks and use oars, she’ll make a splendid fisherman’s rig. The drag of step under oars will not be noticeable. At anchor, because of high-steeved chine forward and buoyancy in the forward portion of the hull, she’ll ride drier than most prams. Because of their form, step hydroplanes have certain advantages of loading and trim when used in nonplaning or displacement condition. I have drawn the water lines on the outboard profile showing various load conditions. By placing a blank sheet of paper from line to mating line, you’ll see that her trim under various load conditions doesn’t change much.

* Those are 1955 dollars!--DNG

8 pages, 4 plate(s)

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