50202RE: RE: RE: Designs for small boats / big seas
- Nov 20, 2013
She's pretty minimalist, though I find the aft cabin quite comfortable for sleeping whether at anchor (generally) or leveled on a beach. There's definitely not much space for moving around; the cockpit is only 20 inches wide. It's quite comfortable to sit in the cockpit, leaning back against the front of the cabin with stove on the cockpit floor between my legs and food, etc. laid out on the side-decks - a normal approach at anchor.
The individual panels are rather narrow, and 1/8 inch is fine (though I'd use higher quality 4mm which is slightly more than 1/8 if doing it again). It doesn't flex too much, except that cabin sides are pretty big panels, and with so much of the cabin top open for the hatches, there's a fair amount of flex in the cabin above the rails. I haven't found that to be a problem, and it's more ridged if I clamp the hatches down tight. The cockpit floor and side decks are 1/4 inch. I put 6 oz fiberglass on the entire exterior, but only taped the seams inside. If building her again I'd use fiberglass cloth throughout the inside as well and recommend that in the construction manual.
My first cruise on the Marsh Duck, late summer of 2012, I had a friend along for the first 4 weeks. We both slept aboard almost every night. We're still friends! She's pretty small (5'). We tried sleeping together in the cabin once, and she did fine, but I had a back problem at the time and couldn't get comfortable. On the cruise I slept in the cabin and she slept out in the cockpit in a bivi-sack and sleeping bag on a pad. We were both quite comfortable. I was a little jealous as she could wake up and see all around while I could only see a rectangle of stars through the hatch unless I sat up. Passing fore/aft in the cockpit was a challenge - we usually did that over/under. Side-side in such a narrow boat is difficult. I designed her as a solo cruising boat, and wouldn't recommend for anything more.
If I were going to cruise much with a partner I'd design and build a wider boat, at least 4 feet, and perhaps 5 1/2 feet so that the oarlocks for sliding-seat rowing could be mounted directly on the edges of the side-decks . . . possibly with very wide flare to the sides so that the hull would still be narrow enough to row more easily . . .
I've been very happy with her sailing performance and with the single tall mast and large, racing-dinghy style sail. With the aft cabin it would be very difficult to find a place for a second mast. In my mind the biggest advantage to a split rig would be the potential for self steering, but that would still be problematic in such a light boat as waves push her around so easily. I use bungees to hold the steering rods tight enough that I can set the rudder position and leave it for short periods of time to do other things. Depending on conditions that works quite well, though with strong winds and rough seas she's a very active boat and needs pretty constant attention.
---In email@example.com, <nutty_boats@...> wrote:
Talk about a minimalist boat. It looks as if it is barely enough for camping.
I have wondered about the use of 1/8" for a boat this size. How does it handle flexing? I think it would be strong enough, but look forward to your response.My experience says that a 3.5' beam is about the minimum for easy moving about in the boat, and for camping with two people 4' is better. Have you tried it with two people, or solo only?Would the boat handle better if it had two shorter masts instead of one tall one?I watched the videos on your site, looks good. Thanks.T. Lee.
---In firstname.lastname@example.org, <scotdomergue@...> wrote:
I've been noticing this thread. Perhaps it's time to mention my Marsh Duck, which I designed to be adequate for "big seas" - in a very minimalist way, certainly NOT for power - rather sail and oars (sliding seat, sculling). I haven't yet had her out on the open ocean, but did spend three months cruising the Salish Sea, including out in the middle of the Strait of Georgia in 20 to 25 knot winds and white caps 4 feet high; also Johnston Straight in winds ranging from 20 to 35 knots (many hours running before the wind, sail reefed to under 25 sqft; a little beating into the same level of wind, but that's a real chore, not as fun).
You can see lots about her at www.scotdomergueblog.wordpress.com. Plans/construction manual are available from Duckworks Magazine on-line. She's essentially a big, fully decked, sailing canoe with aft cabin, 18 feet long (not counting the rudder, hull beam is 42 inches, though as I built and use her there are "wings" (deck extensions) to 54 inches wide in the cockpit area for hiking out. Stitch and glue construction, 6 sheets of thin plywood (if you're very careful) with 6 oz fiberglass and epoxy both exterior and interior. She weighs under 200 lbs including all sailing and rowing gear and a small solar power system for electronics, 20W panel.
Again, she's essentially a sailing canoe, narrow; a bit more stable than Howard Rice's Sylph or Hugh Horton's Bufflehead, I think, but still easy to capsize. If the hatches are adequately sealed, she goes over and comes back up easily, ready to sail, with little water in the boat. Definitely NOT for most, but she is capable of handling big seas in the right hands.
Probably not the boat this thread is about, but she is a very small boat that is designed for island and coastal cruising and can handle big seas.
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