- G'day all,
Sorry I haven't replied earlier, but I only get chance to get online
every few weeks.
Thanks for the gracious comments on my Vireo.
Max, it was built with Pacific Maple BS1088 marine. You call it Lauan
in the US. It is 6mm with 5 plies and v good quality. The timber is
oregon, and I used epoxy for all chines with bi-axial glass along the
centerline and tape for the chines. I did not epoxy coat the hull,
but used undercoat and latex paint and a little varnish. (Nice as
varnish is, it is the stupidest finish on a boat in the Aussie sun).
Todd, the weight came out just as JM says. I weighed it at the
weekend at 27.5 kg = 60.5 lbs. This is painted, with the metal
rowlocks and bow ring. It is a very light boat - to my mind essential
for rowing, coz you have to pull it all through the water.
Steve, JM shared some of his feedback with me. Frank Kahr, who did
his epic 26 mile row in 6 hours in his Vireo, got JM to design Robote
after his big row.
Both Frank and I noticed that you can feel the water being pushed
aside at the bow of the boat. Frank and JM felt that a constant
deadrise from stem to stern would be faster, because there might be
less drag, than with Vireo's twisted panels.
Robote has no twist in the panels, thus constant deadrise from stem
to stern. It is also very light - comes out of the same pile of wood
as Vireo, and is about the same weight.
I've thought about this and have an empirical opinion (based on feel
with no science). Because Vireo is so light and slippery, you can
feel everything. That's why you feel the water being pushed aside at
the bow. After all, a vessel has to push some water aside when it
makes progress. What I failed to tell JM, is that it feels like the
water flows back in to the stern, and pushes the boat along like
squeezing an orange pip. Annette also said this to me after her first
So, it feels like the energy is expended displacing the water at the
bow, creating a small bow wave, but the shape of the hull lets it get
pushed along as the displaced water flows back. Only a small amount
of energy is needed to split the water at the bow, thus resulting in
an effortless row. At least that is how it feels.
Also with Vireo, JM designed it so that the chines would be clear of
the water, removing all of the chine turbulence and drag. It is a
very efficient hull, and has a very small wake at 5 mph
Maybe Robote could be faster / more efficient still - who knows. Just
from looking at the pics and design in JM's plan description, I feel
there might be more wetted area in Robote - but again an empirical
I think Vireo is a better looking craft than Robote - a better
looking bow, and nicer overall.
Vamp would also be a great craft for rowing, having the constant
deadrise from stem to stern, in a handy sized boat 12', same as Vireo.
Would be fascinating to see which would be faster, and I nearly
ordered plans just to do this.
But I still think Vireo looks better.
Herb McLeod did a terrific job on his RB42, and says it rows well one
up. I suspect like a rowing scull with all that length to keep draft
shallow for plenty of speed. But 18' is a lot of boat to weild around
out of the water.
Todd, I have never cartopped Vireo, but it is a good size and weight.
I have a 8'x5' box trailer. I can put Herb McLeod's OSS in the
trailer and Vireo or the 2 Piraguas on top of the trailer, so a few
of us can have a row/paddle. Tease - I can be in the water in
National Park in less than 10 mins from home :) (I've rowed well over
100 km's in OSS since I built it - handy little boat for calm water).
While I'm on a roll - I buy timber from the building recyclers. I
like to get long 8x4 or 10x4 slabs of oregon that have been holding
up floorboards for 80 years, and slice them up to size on my table
saw. This is usually beautiful timber, nicer than what is available
new, and is very cheap. My first 2 slabs paid for my tablesaw. You
just have to be careful to get all the nails out first.
Piragua pics next week I promise.
- A question on Vireo - does it carry more than one person?
The reason for the question is that I have been looking at JM's
rowboats, and it seems as if just about all of them were meant
for one person only. For example, there are what look like
stiffeners across the boat where a passenger would normally sit.
I, on the other hand, would like to take (at least) my wife along.
In fact, rowing a one-person boat would feel very strange.
- I'm not sure about Vireo but the longer Roar2 can accomodate a
passenger. The rear thwart is positioned such that when the
passenger's back is against the thwart the boat is in trim, more or
less. RB42 (which I presume is decoded as Row Boat for 2) is a two
person boat that can also be rowed by both occupants.
- My Sportdory handles a passenger very niclely. They lean up against
the rear thwart while I row from the forward position. Don't know
about Verio, though. It may be a little too small to take the load.
--- In Michalak@y..., Sakari Aaltonen <sakari@a...> wrote:
> A question on Vireo - does it carry more than one person?
> The reason for the question is that I have been looking at JM's
> rowboats, and it seems as if just about all of them were meant
> for one person only. For example, there are what look like
> stiffeners across the boat where a passenger would normally sit.
> I, on the other hand, would like to take (at least) my wife along.
> In fact, rowing a one-person boat would feel very strange.
> Sakari Aaltonen
- --- In Michalak@y..., Sakari Aaltonen <sakari@a...> wrote:
> A question on Vireo - does it carry more than one person?Hi Sakari,
Yes you can take a passenger in Vireo, but you need another set of
rowlocks more forward than the solo position.
The plans show a second seat, and I made both seats. They are not
fixtures in my boat, and so can be placed wherever balance requires.
I use a high density foam chock under each seat to hold it in place
and spread the load. I have'nt set up a second set of rowlocks
though, and the few times I have taken a passenger I have rowed from
the solo position and put up with a bit of stern drag. It still went
quite well. The passenger leans back on the aft crossbeam with a
towel over it for cushioning.
It is quite OK for occasional passengers, but if it were to be a
regular thing, I'd set up the second rowing position.
JM says to glue 2 or 3 6mm ply pieces together for the seats. I used
4mm ply separated by 1" meranti framing and a central 1" for strength
an flex resistance. Vey light, solid and bouyant.
- --- In Michalak@y..., "ozboater" <ozboater@y...> wrote:
> G'day all,online
> Sorry I haven't replied earlier, but I only get chance to get
> every few weeks.Hi Ashley, one more question while you are on a roll!
> Thanks for the gracious comments on my Vireo.
I have just received my Vireo plans, but something I have since
wondered about - how is she if you step aboard from a keelboat or
pontoon? I wonder if she is reasonably stable if you place your
weight on the sloping bottom (maybe if you can't always reach the
Do you have any experience of this?
> I have just received my Vireo plans, but something I have sinceHi Don,
> wondered about - how is she if you step aboard from a keelboat or
> pontoon? I wonder if she is reasonably stable if you place your
> weight on the sloping bottom (maybe if you can't always reach the
> Do you have any experience of this?
We first used Vireo behind a 52 ft houseboat - our last family
holiday before our eldest left home. Vireo is very stable even if you
are not stepping into the centre, and it was easy to get in and out
Just a thought for Sakari, if you read this. If you will mostly be
taking a passenger, probably best to consider a 14 ft boat, or even
RB42 for 2-up and occasional one-up. (Herb McLeod has rowed his solo
and reports good performance). It would have a greater load capacity,
and a bit more leg room. I've had no problems two-up in Vireo, though.
Our boat is mostly used solo, where the light weight and low drag
make it so delightful and effortless to row. Two up, for us, is for
an occasional bit of fun out with the family. Vireo copes well
especialy if the passenger is a child. My two youngest girls row two
up with the stern clear. Great for kids.
PS Bruce Given has given me permission to post some AF4B photos he
sent me. He did a magnificent job. I'll scan tonight and post the