Mardi Gras--A midget Class Ocean Racer


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  • Pub No.: 5720
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by Charles Bell

L.O.A. 26’, Displacement, 5,695 pounds, L.W.L. 19’2” A. H.17 degrees, Beam 7’9” PC .53 Draft 36” S. A. 266 sq. ft. Headroom in main cabin 5’4”—sleeps four to six

Mardi Gras is a midget ocean racer of shallow draft, with or without a centerboard, as the builder prefers. She will rate well, I think, considering the daffiness of the racing rules, but most of all she is the most comfortable, stable and sane arrangement I can make for a midget boat which crams aboard as many people as possible. However, she becomes a very roomy cruising yacht for a family of two to four and will give maximum fun with minimum work in upkeep. The cheapest boat to build is one which will cost the most to keep going. Therefore, I have specified what I consider to be the cheapest materials to use—the best. Salt water, erosion, corrosion, sun, rain, worms and fungi need to be met head on with the best materials available if one is to keep the maintenance bill down. And the investment in a boat does not go down the drain if she is built of fine materials so that she retains a good resale value. So, the finest job you can do in building her will make her a fine yacht worthy of anyone’s approval and attention. Mardi Gras will sail well without the centerboard, even though without it she gives up a fraction of her windward ability. But centerboard arrangements below the waterline which must be kept watertight are at best an added maintenance job if you want dry bilges. The one I have designed is as good as any such arrangement, but there are dozens which might work as well—you can take your pick. My personal thought is that most centerboard-keel yachts use the centerboard as a way of beating the zany racing rules and it does not really add much to the usefulness or pleasure of a yacht.

13 pages, 4 plate(s)


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