Hunting and Camping Boats  


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Pintail--A 15-Ft. Hunting and Fishing Boat (Pub. No. 5321)

One hundred and ten pounds of ideal boat for the sportsman

This boat rides very low on the water, catching little wind, and is designed for rough and open water shooting and fishing where a staunch and seaworthy craft is wanted. The wide flat bottom also makes it ideal for marsh hunting and exploring, offering little resistance when going quietly through rice or bog. The strongly built turtle deck is a safety feature, as when resting on the water with a couple of fellows aboard the body of the boat is close to the surface--small waves wash harmlessly off the deck and the coaming keeps spray out of the cockpit. Small gear can be stowed fore and aft through the openings in the end frames. The pipes through the deck and bottom can be fitted, if desired—they'll be found handy for quickly and noiselessly anchoring the boat—-merely shove slender poles completely through into the bottom and the boat will not shift or swing about.

7 pages, 3 plate(s)

Build this White-Water Riverboat (Pub. No. 5480)

by Clinton R. Hull

It’s a rugged, beefy craft designed to take the wildest rapids in stride, but tame ehough to slip quietly into any shallow fishing inlet under oars

It's a real thoroughbred, this high-riding river sled. Evolved over a lifetime of white-water experience by famed riverman Glen Wooldridge, it features a fast-rising bow which lifts easily over the largest riffles. This, combined with steeply flaring sides and a long flat after section, gives the boat tremendous lift, excellent maneuverability and unbelievably shallow draft. Glen’s typical power rig is a mid-range outboard equipped with one of those husky jet-drive lower units. Such a setup gives the boat maximum shallow-water capability. I’ve been aboard when he’s skimmed over 4in.-deep riffles without touching bottom. Best of all, it’s very easily built and performs well with any outboard motor.

5 pages, 2 plate(s)

Sea Sled--A Hunting Boat in Masonite, The (Pub. No. 5516)

by C.L. Meehan

Seldom is a boat planned for the ordinary fellow not too handy with tools who is convinced that he could not shape wood into the complicated curves and angles that many designers delight in recommending.  For such men here is a boat that is simple in design. It is plainly not in a class with the usual flat-bottomed tubs so familiar on any body of water. No! This is a real sea sled. Modern! Attractive! And most efficient!  The sea sled or hydroplanetype is the only known water vehicle that, when engine driven, lifts itself clear of the water and rides on a cushion of air. The United States and British Navies have successfully used it for years.  The framework of this boat is covered with tough pressed wood (tempered Masonite, 1/8 inch thick). This remarkable material is proof against weather, acid, insects, termites, mold, decay, etc. It is pliable yet tough and can be bent into curves that are not extremely acute. It comes in 6, 8 and 10 foot lengths, 4 foot in width. Prospective builders may use plywood, instead.

8 pages, 1 plate(s)

All-Purpose Portable Boat in Frame and Canvas, An (Pub. No. 5517)

by William D. Jackson, N.A.

Speeds of from five to thirty-five miles an hour, trolling speeds that delight the fisherman to speeds rivaling racing craft, are possible with the water ways companion described here. For these speeds It requires only from one to ten horsepower, and it may be carried atop an auto for sport in any location. It offers a general purpose boat that fulfills every small-craft need. Weighing 125 pounds, the hull is not only easily loaded and transported atop the auto, but, due to its efficient design and seaworthy proportions, it travels farther and faster on less gas and rows with a minimum of effort. The canvas covered hull is permanently leak proof, so that the boat is always ready for instant use. It is especially well adapted to home workshop construction.

12 pages, 2 plate(s)

Featherweight--An 8' Duckboat (Pub. No. 5665)

Light enough to carry on a car or even on your shoulders, this boat will enable you to reach hideaways that are inaccessible with heavier craft. It is sturdy enough to push through dense weed growths and light enough to navigate the shallowest waters. Although only 8 ft. 4 in. long, "Featherweight" has a capacity of well over 300 pounds. Its construction of  ¼-in. Waterproof plywood over light pine framing gives it the well-proportioned lines shown in the illustration.

8 pages, 3 plate(s)

Widgeon--A Plywood Sneakbox (Pub. No. 5758)

by H.P. Megargee

LOA 11' 9", BEAM 46 1/2"

The greatest little boat ever designed for hunting and fishing inland waterways.

In 1875 Nathaniel Bishop, a seafaring man from Medford, Massachusetts, where he was born in 1837, planned a cruise down the Ohio and Mississippi rivers and along the Gulf Coast to the mouth of the Suwannee River in Florida. Bishop, who had had worldwide experience with small craft, selected a Barnegat sneakbox for the trip. He described his voyage in the book Four Months in a Sneak Box, published in 1879. Starting from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on December 2, 1875, he lived for four months in this tiny floating home, 12’ long and 4’ wide, while he sailed and rowed 2,600 miles to his destination. Except for the two weeks when the Ohio River was frozen over, he slept aboard and wrote his book by the light of a 3” candle—a longer one would have burned the hatch above him. Nat Bishop’s book, written 80 years ago, contains sketches and diagrams of his boat that would serve to describe sneakboxes built today. She was built by Captain George Bogart of Manahawkin, New Jersey, and followed closely the lines originated about 40 years earlier by Captain Hazleton Seaman of West Creek, New Jersey. The baymen who built these boats 100 years ago were for the most part Coast Guardsmen, wise in the hazards of the sea and clever in the design of craft that ride the waves. In the intervening years their successors have not been able to improve substantially on the earliest models. Certainly Nat Bishop had nothing but the highest praise for the comfort, seaworthiness and maneuverability of his craft. Joining in Bishop’s enthusiasm, I would go a step further and say that for its manifold purposes of hunting and fishing in inland waterways it is the greatest little boat ever designed. Strictly a one-man boat, it will carry you safely and comfortably in weather that would trouble boats twice its size. Covered with thatch or seaweed and drawn into a notch on shore or in still water, afloat against the bank, it serves as a blind for the reclining hunter. I have hunted ducks from sunken blinds, concrete pits, stick-up blinds, Chesapeake Bay booby blinds and other hides in the United States and Europe, but never have I found anything as comfortable or that lends itself as well to duck shooting. In it with plenty of dry hay, a man with reasonably good circulation can stay out in cold that would freeze a black duck to death. The Widgeon is not a true sneakbox, for old baymen will tell you that these boats should have “clean-swept chines,” meaning that the bottom and crowned deck timbers as well as the curve of the chine are all arcs of circles. Our boat is a modified sneakbox with dead rise sides and V bottom. It is designed for simplicity of construction with plywood which cannot be bent into the compound curves inherent in a true sneakbox.

15 pages, 2 plate(s)

Duckling--An 8-Ft. Duckboat (Pub. No. 5767)

by Harry Megargee

LOA 8', BEAM 28"

This little pond boat can be carried on top of your car, get you into the most unlikely potholes, and best of all, it's no sweat to put her together.

My first boatbuilding effort was at age 15 when I made one of the small duck hunting craft generally known along the Jersey shore as a pond box. These boats took a variety of forms but had the common features of shallow draft, light weight and low silhouette. A must requirement was that they be light enough to be carried or dragged to inaccessible ponds or waterways. At that time, half a century ago, we did not have the modern wonder boatbuilding material, plyIwood. My box was planked with ½” cedar siding. She was little and light but relatively heavy when compared with the Duckling. As these plans show, Duckling is an extremely small boat. She is 8’ long 28” wide, 10” deep. At the crown of the deck amidship she is 13” deep. For added seaworthiness the design calls for 4” detachable washboards surrounding the cockpit. Even with washboards this is not in any sense a big-water craft. She should never be used for transportation over large bodies of water where sizable seas may be encountered; however, along the shores of such waters she may serve as a blind in conjunction with a larger boat. The hunter should never stand up in Duckling when afloat and should move in her as carefully as he would in a canoe. When used as a blind the boat is drawn out at the water’s edge with her bow pointed outward. Her deck is then covered with thatch, and grasses are inserted in the open gunwales and stacked against her sides. The hunter reclines, with his legs under the deck and his shoulders resting on an inclined board at the stern. When ducks are over the decoys he rises to a sitting position to shoot. If you have never hunted ducks from a reclining position, you will be surprised at how comfortable it is even in bitter-cold weather. Throw in a couple armsful of hay, and you might as well be in a feather bed. Eliminating big waters, Duckling still has terrific possibilities. In some 48 states alone there are 53,000 miles of shoreline to the head of tide water, a large part consisting of shallow bays, coves, thoroughfares and little rivers. Beside tidewater there are 47,000 square miles of inland waterways, including ponds of more than 40 acres. Add to all this the uncounted thousands of little ponds, sloughs and flooded marshes that would be accessible to the Duckling, and her operating area is boundless. This little boat is truly a do-it-yourselfer’s dream. Scow-type with straight sides and flat bottom, the boat’s construction is simple enough for any tyro. Small as she is, she has adequate buoyancy to support a big man; 200 pounds submerges only 3” of her 10” freeboard. Many a man will recognize Duckling as just what the doctor ordered for that backwoods pond or swamp where some sort of boat is a must but which is next to impossible for the ordinary heavy craft. Weighing only about 50 pounds, she can be carried or pulled on her runners with little effort. Hunting companions can transport two of the boats inside a station wagon or on a car-top rig so that each will have his individual blind. As auxiliaries to a powerboat two or more Ducklings may be towed to a gunning point and placed side by side with a hunter in each boat. Lashed together in tide water, they will form a floating blind when the marshes are flooded.

10 pages, 3 plate(s)

Scaup--A Wildfowler's Dream Come True (Pub. No. 5774)

by Roger P. Smith

LOA 15'31/2" BEAM 65"

No tomfoolery about this duckboat. The design has one purpose—taking duck hunters to deep water and bringing them back safely and comfortably in 15’ of sound, honest boat

Take the high, flaring bows and handsome, sweeping sheer of the Maine-coast lobsterman; add the F broad, beamy lines of the well-known VanDyke skiff and the slightly wedged, easy-running bottom of the Amesbury dory; shake well and assemble in the best tradition of modern plywood construction—and you have a boat to warm the cockles of any duck shooter’s heart. Such a boat is Scaup. From the first of five half models to the last carefully drawn line in her plans, her designers have had nothing but late-fall and early-winter duck shooting in mind, and everything in her makeup has been finely tuned to this most rugged of sports. Let’s examine some of these conditions. It’s a time-honored conviction among wildfowlers that the best shooting invariably occurs when the weather’s not fit for man or beast. A good deepwater duckboat, therefore, must be first and foremost a good heavy-weather performer. Where better to find this kind of ability than in the true Down East lobstermen—boats that traditionally ply the choppy, reef-strewn waters of northern New England summer and winter alike? Scaup has the high bows to turn away choppy seas, a fine forefoot for easy entry and generous flair for good lift. Should conditions sharpen to such a degree that reduced speed is indicated, Scaup should not wallow or bobble helplessly, for her lines show great stability and sea-kindllness. Furthermore, with locker space for everything “and everything in its place,” as the saying goes, her trim can be well established with little chance for the load to shift at the least opportune moment. Speaking of load, Scaup was designed to be a workhorse. She will carry up to 100 of the special folding decoys we regularly use; ship all of our guns, gear and box lunches and stow her own canvas cover, tools, oars, anchors, lines and so on and still leave every inch of cockpit and seat space free and clear. Stowage space under the deck completely protects all of your shooting gear, extra clothing and so forth from spray and provides for two Cruise-A-Day gas tanks. Gas lines are carried aft through the amidship bulkheads and can be locked in the after seat lockers to prevent unauthorized use of the boat.

14 pages, 6 plate(s)

Whistler--A 10 ft. Duckboat (Pub. No. 5803)

by Henry P. Megargee

A kissin’ cousin of the Barnegat sneakbox and a whole lot easier for the amateur to build, this plywood, flat-bottom craft is the most likely companion for the lone hunter or fisherman

If you are familiar with that wonderful little duck hunting boat, the Barnegat sneakbox look at the plan view of "Whistler". You would think it the same boat with her nose sawed off. Actually, the boats are close kin and have several common features. Both have: a high crown deck giving leg room but at the same time a low silhouette; a full deck with a small cockpit just wide enough for the reclining hunter to lie concealed; adequate deck space astern with a rack to carry a large flock of decoys; a hatch that locks on to convert the boat into a locker for gear; and finally, a high-peaked, collapsible breakwater or spray shield that keeps the hunter dry as a bone when going to windward in a blow. One big difference between "Whistler" and a true Barnegat sneakbox is the matter of ease of construction. The latter has the advantage of a feather edge and spoon-shaped bottom, but is a difficult boat to build with planks and next to impossible for the amateur builder with plywood, the principal material used in "Whistler". "Whistler’s" bottom is flat. She has sheer sides that flare outward with plenty o sheer fore and aft, both features designed to give her lift in a seaway. Her deck is bent in a simple arc with a constant radius so that there is no compound curvature to worry about. When you have examined the plans and read the descriptive text, you will see that anyone with a rudimentary knowlege of woodworking and ordinary hand tools can build her.

10 pages, 3 plate(s)

Wimpy--A paddle Wheel Duck Boat (Pub. No. 7813)

Shoal draft and silent.

This light and stable duck boat is designed for the greatest convenience to the hunter, who propells the craft with the hands and steers with his feet while his gun is instantly at hand in a rack on the gunwhale. As the propelling mechanism is all inboard, it is possible to make a blind of shrubbery around the gunwhale, an achievement not possible with a rowboat or canoe which depend upon oars for movement. With all the bearings carefully fitted to eliminate any play, and the paddle wheel completely housed, the boat will move as silently as a light canoe. Constructed of this material, staunchly braced, it is conveniently hauled on a trailer and very easily launched.

3 page(s)

No Trailer Needed for This Light Garvey (Pub. No. 7848)

by Hi Sibley

Built in halves, this Barnegat Bay sneaker-type craft is easily hoisted up on the car-top rack, and by virtue of its rectangular design will accommodate more load than the conventional skiff. Construction is much easier too. General over-all dimensions are given, with nose construction and a sectional view showing the beveled rails on the forward half that fit over the stern half and prevent it from slipping sideways.

2 page(s)

How to Build a Duckboat (Pub. No. 7849)

by Edson I. Schock

Sharp all over, including both ends, is this he-man’s rugged duckboat. She is designed for building by the man who is interested more in hunting than in boatbuilding and hence is simplicity itself, using standard woods

Assuming that the owner of this craft will be more interested in duck shooting than in boatbuilding, she has been designed to be as simple as possible to build, yet to produce a boat that will have good stability and will row reasonably well.

4 page(s)

Guenther Garvey, The (Pub. No. 7878)

by J.R. Nowling

Old-timers along New Jersey's south shore are likely to tell you the little outboard garveys that prowl their shallow waters in all seasons of the year were named for a Frenchman called Gervais--but the younger genereration insists that Bob Guenther, a young masonry contractor at Beach Haven, rates most of the credit for the garveys popularity. Actually, the garveyis styled somewhat along the lines of the Barnegat sneakbox, favored by clammers and duck hunters for generations. Probably the most significant difference is underwater: the sneakbox has a rounded bottom, the garvey is flat side to side while curving very gently front to back.

2 page(s)

Duck Boat You can Build, A (Pub. No. 7881)

by Jack Seville

In the dark, you paddle quietly. A hint of the sun’s rising shows on the horizon and water laps the side of your boat. Before you sits your Labrador, his ears alert. Between you and him lies a pile of decoys. You are on your way to one of life’s real pleasures . . . a morning of duck shooting. You set out the decoys and hide the boat amongst some reeds, camouflaging it. Then you arrange your shooting gear and hunker down below the gunwale with the Lab to wait for the arrival of the ducks. Every part of this experience is exhilarating. But perhaps most filled with anticipation of all the day’s events is the trip out in the duck boat. The truth is, however, that few duck hunters have a duck boat. Most think one too expensive to own or too heavy to carry or too complicated to build or . . . too something. Too many duck hunters settle for the best they can do from the near shore and never try to get out where the water is and the hunting’s at its best. Which is where this boat comes in. It's a design that solves the problems a duck hunter sometimes has with his duck boat. Copied from craft used by veteran hunters on Virginia’s Eastern Shore, the boat has several things that recommend it. First, AquaDuck it can be built inexpensively. Secondly, the boat isn’t awkward. Designed to hold one man plus one dog plus gear, she can be moved about by one man and carried on the top of a car. And thirdly, the boat makes an easy project to put together. Essentially an oblong box with a rocker bottom, construction materials are mostly two sheets of 1/4-in. plywood and a quantity of 1-in, lumber. The hull is compartmentalized into three watertight chambers, and there’s not a difficult curve in the craft. As a boat, she demonstrates a nice design. She can be rowed or poled with an oar, or powered by a 2- or 3-hp outboard, or towed to her station by another boat. The wide stance and flat bottom give her good stability—you can stand up on one of the side decks or the forward deck and not tip over. Yet she ranks high in maneuverability. And as a duck blind, the boat offers some thoughtful features. One of these is the grass rail that surrounds the cockpit and provides a place to stuff grass and reeds to make good camouflage. Ahd another is the cockpit itself, which is shallow but with a coaming all around. In use, you lie in the cockpit with feet at the transom and gun pointed aft. The coaming slants down toward the stern to give an unobstructed view.

2 page(s)

Build the Quacker (Pub. No. 7895)

by Hal Kelly

A Nimble Lightweight Skimmer for Duck Hunters

Duck hunters have long sought a duckboat of a particular kind—one that can be used in shallow, shallow water. The problem is severe in tidal flats. Man and partner (400 lbs.), man’s best friend (80 lbs.) and gear (25 lbs.) go out to a blind at high tide when there’s 4 ft. of water. Then they want to come home, but the tide’s low and there’s only 4 in. of water. Solution: The Quacker, the shallowest-draft duckboat ever. And it’s pushed by an air motor. With a 67-in, beam, 12-ft. 4-in. length, 16-in, transom height and 3-in. draft, the craft won’t easily tip. It has a storage box (lined if you want) for guns and ammunition, and another for decoys and downed birds. The electric start, 12-hp. Susquehanna air motor pushes the craft to 12 mph, and if you fasten 1-in, angle irons to the outer bottom battens, The Quacker becomes a great ice or snow boat. On ice it should hit 30 mph, so attach a levertype ice brake so you can stop it.

2 page(s)

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