Topaz/Sitka Explorer vs MicroTrawler, Hawkeye, Sneakezee step chine
- My intent is to end up with a boat no longer than the low 30' range
and a beam of ~6', no more than 7' no less than 5'. An Idaho with
modified superstructure is a quick and easy build of a light,
minimalistic boat that will meet the minimum of what I'm hoping to
have. Minnesota is a touch over the top of where I think I want to
end up but clearly a step up in complexity. What I'm now considering
is adding more compexity to whichever design I build by adding one of
Bolger's newer design features to my boat.
While the intent is to cruise and overnight on rivers and smaller
lakes, the Great Lakes are right here, and even if I am very very
careful not to get over committed on the big water, a future owner
could get in trouble.
At a minimum I will add a "shoe" to the design I build for handline
and beaching. Bolger is in agreement with a shoe on these designs,
but should I stop with that? Why not redesign the bottom, adding the
shoe to the back half and building bow with a stepchine profile using
the shoe on the back half and a built on cutwater on the front?
This impresses me as a lower impact way of getting the job done than
the light and elegant build up of the stepchine Sneakeasy available
on the web. My choice, to build in the fashion of a Topaz, adding
the "forefoot" to the hull would be a bit heavier, but I think it is
more durable, and likely faster to build.
However, will I add a whole bunch of work when for a little bit more
gain a big bunch by going to the even newer hull design, IE a scaled
down Topaz. Clearly Bolger considers the Topaz hull a more seaworthy
design since Tahiti & Sitka, both big water cruisers are also in the
Topaz design family.
Topaz/Sitka Explorer vs MicroTrawler, Hawkeye, Sneakeasy step chine.
Any opinions re the seaworthiness, ride, etc differences between
these designs generally?
Can any compare the handling qualities of a box Sneakeasy to the
- --- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "donschultz8275" <donschultz@i...>
> Topaz/Sitka Explorer vs MicroTrawler, Hawkeye, Sneakeasy stepchine.
> Any opinions re the seaworthiness, ride, etc differences betweenHi Don,
> these designs generally?
Anyone of the designs you listed could be built strong enough
to withstand a ton of abuse and wear you right out in the
process.Seaworthiness is as much a function of good seamanship as
hull design and don't forget,we are talking about sharpies :-)
To the best of my knowledge,the improved bow shapes Bolger now
shows for some of his sharpies serve to render a quieter and smoother
ride for the boaters(a very important consideration for the bigger
live-a-board models!) and only a subtle improvement in hydro-
dynamics.Perhaps this is something best appreciated by engineer types
who love fractional differences:-)
Certainly Bolger does however,make maximum use of these new
shapes to improve the sharpies overall stability by putting to
use,for example, the box-keel cutwaters for enhanced bouyancy up
forward where a typical sharpie is so shallow and narrow that it will
dig down into a wave face before gaining enough bouyancy, as well as
to locate important weights even lower then the straight flat
bottomed sharpie could ever have dreamed of.
Also,as you probably know,I am a stickler for sticking to the
plans,within reason:-) ,and will often advocate getting a design that
either already has the features you are seeking or to commission the
designer to do a new design instead of creatively grafting elements
from other successful designs onto an older proven work.
Don't take the above wrongly Don, I understand too that it is
your dream,your time and your money.Far be it for me to tell you how
to use any of these aspects:-)
But you may wish to consider this; for the size you are
interested in,it is going to represent a goodly output on your part
over a fair stretch of time.The end result will be surely a wonderful
thing to behold and to use. I fear,however, that it will be in
the "to use" department that some regret may creep in to your
otherwise happy thoughts.And I say this only because some of these
designs are big enough for week-ending in style and even for longer
stretches if one doesn't mind adhearing to "camping" mode but become
perhaps too rigorous an exercise beyond that.
Said another way,you may become completely enamoured with low
powered cruising and wish to take on greater endeavours if only the
boat could take it and/or had more creature comforts permitting close
to 4 season cruising use of the boat as we glide gently into ever
older age.It's always easier to "under-use" a given design then
Unfortunately,I can't yet report on the handling and over-all
wellness of the Windermere design but she could certainly serve as a
wonderfully plush week-end cruiser and,with her impressive storage
capacity,insulated accomadations,dedicated"work stations",ultra-shoal
draft and improved bow shape would make a very able long distance
cruiser/live-a-board should the spirit move you :-)
O.K.,perhaps I have been less then helpful toward your
questions and have just made things harder for you.I'm really trying
to be good:-)
Peter"young apprentice to Le Baron"Lenihan,trying very hard to not be
a salesman for a wondeful design and hoping you fall in love with
your final choice Don......................
- Don, the Topaz is in this range, without modification.
Seaworthy, if competently handled, which I geuss is
true of everything, but Topaz is open-water capable if
you pick your days. Sam
--- donschultz8275 <donschultz@...> wrote:
> My intent is to end up with a boat no longer than__________________________________
> the low 30' range
> and a beam of ~6', no more than 7' no less than 5'.
> However, will I add a whole bunch of work when for a
> little bit more
> gain a big bunch by going to the even newer hull
> design, IE a scaled
> down Topaz. Clearly Bolger considers the Topaz hull
> a more seaworthy
> design since Tahiti & Sitka, both big water cruisers
> are also in the
> Topaz design family.
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- My thanks to Peter and Sam for their input.
Sam pretty much confirmed my thoughts that one needs to pay attention
to what they are getting into with any boat. Of course one needs to
be more careful with some boats than others.
Peter points out that one wants to be careful in varying from the
design provided. I agree. I was thinking in terms of what I would
ask PB&F to provide in design change. I'm comfortable taking
responsibility for some sensible superstructure changes. I don't
want to mess with the design below the gunwales.
I also appreciate Peter's concern about investment, (not just in $$s).
My intent is for this boat to be an entry point, used to decide what
I like/don't like about liveaboard as a style. I'm an experienced
tent camper, and will use this first boat to camp with for a few days
at a time. I intend to use it for a while and then sell it. The
only question is what will come after.
Because of the temporary nature of the need, I find myself favoring
simple and light, which means the Idaho.