Sunday, December 21, 2014

Next Boat?

Should there always be a "next boat"?  Creating another boat design is always rewarding: changing a mental vision into something that is real; something you can see and touch.  The work of creating and building is a pleasurable challenge, but how many boats can one person use?  I only have space for one full-size boat.  To completely equip a new boat is far from cheap.  And there is no guarantee that the new boat will be better, only that it will be different.

With that in mind, I started on a new design.  The guiding idea was to create something with more curvature to be more visually interesting but maintain an uncomplicated build sequence.  A forward sloping bow profile with more lateral flare provides a more modern look and will also be easier to plank.  The raised foredeck of my previous build added complication to the build and would not blend well with the flared bow; thus, it was deleted.  The vertical stern on the previous build was helpful in providing internal volume for flotation foam, but it was esthetically bland.  The new hull would have a forward sloping stern.  The topsides avoid any slab-sided sense by continuously transitioning from significant flare forward to significant tumble-home aft.  In fact, tumble-home has been reduced to be more in harmony with the added beam forward.  Added beam means more usable cockpit space.

The result, if built full-size, would be a hull 18 1/2 feet long by 6 feet 3inches wide with a 12 1/2 degree deadrise for about the aft 1/2 length of the hull.  Of course, the hull surface is fully developable which simplifies construction and provides exact dimensions.

If you can't build the full-size boat, a model helps to visualize what has been designed and also really clarifies construction details.  Thus, I built a model at 1/6.25 scale (alternately expressed as 0.16 scale) which gives a model about three feet long.  I had enough scraps from previous projects to provide all the parts.  At this point I regret not spending more time creating a rigid strongback building form.  Some of the frames shifted as parts were bonded together resulting in a slight distortion in the model, but it still is accurate enough to serve its purpose.  And I was able to visualize

a much better strongback design to be used if the hull were ever built full size.  For now, the next boat is a dream.  Owner designed, home-built wooden boats are hard to sell.  I need more time to enjoy the boat I completed last spring, and a new boat would take about two years, spare time.  Anyone looking for a design to build?