Peeler Skiff

The requirements were simple. The boat had to be light enough to tow behind a four-cylinder SUV, small enough to fit in a garage, and capable of getting two and gear the 50 miles from the south end of Lake Chelan to the north end and back again in the afternoon when the lake gets rough. Although there are many affordable aluminum and fiberglass boats that would serve the purpose, the boat had to be something distinctive.

RoG

RoG was designed, in some part, for the 300-mile Everglades Challenge, a Florida thin-water endurance voyage, but for less grueling adventures the RoG is a charming miniature cruiser. It is just 15′ 3-1/2″overall, yet it has a deep, comfortable, private cabin with built-in bookshelves forward, obviously designed for a contemplative sailor. The cabin has sitting headroom and offers a chart-sized nav/dining table that drops down to seat level to form two full-sized berths.

Penobscot 17

Our family of five has been sea kayaking and canoeing for several years around the islands and coastline of Maine’s mid-coast. Paddling took us where we wanted to go, but on some days when a breeze came up and we were fighting headwinds home, I started to think about a larger boat, one that would…

Pelicano 20

Having owned several larger cruising boats, I thought a simple, lightweight, and easily trailerable boat would be great way to downsize. For years, I’ve admired the designs of Sam Devlin, and I even owned one of his cruisers. When I stumbled upon the Pelicano 18 design, the classic look, along with…

The Coot Dinghy

I first saw designer Andrew Wolstenholme’s Coot dinghy at the Beale Park Boat Show around 10 years ago when his own Coot was being sailed on the lake by his daughter Jo. Somehow, that boat caught my eye among all the other traditional gaffers and luggers at the show. I’d been looking for a design to build…

Pygmy’s All-Rounder SUP

The All-Rounder, as its name indicates, is classified as an all-round, general purpose SUP. It is beamy to give it stability, and has a flat bottom with a horizontal bow to ride over the water as opposed to the vertical bow of a touring or racing board designed to cut through it. The sides, rather…

Woods Hole Spritsail Boat

This spritsail boat isn't yet equipped with oarlocks. The original had rowing stations at the center and forward thwarts with oarlocks mounted on blocks fixed to the outside of the coaming

The Woods Hole spritsail boat is a good example of workboats that became pleasure craft, as happened with so many New England fishing vessel designs. When a colony of summer people sprang up in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, they quickly took note of the vessels traditionally used by the…

The Glen-L Utility

The postwar market of the 1950s saw a boom in the market for home-built boats. With such a high demand for construction plans, naval architect Glen L. Witt founded his company, Glen-L Marine Designs, in 1953. That fledgling enterprise offered both plans and frame kits, making it a competitor to the Kit Boat Division of…

Fairhaven Flyer

The Fairhaven Flyer is a sturdily constructed, easily rowed light dory. It is also simple to build since Sam Devlin, a master of stitch-and-glue boat design and building, refined the dory into a sleek, elegant shape created by three scarfed marine-plywood panels and a laminated plywood transom. If necessity is the mother of invention, then…

Saturday Night Special

I had been hearing about New Zealand boat designer John Welford’s idea for the Saturday Night Special for a few years: a fast beach cruiser so simple to build that you could arrive a few days early for a multi-day small-boat cruise or raid with a few crucial pre-prepared components, build the boat, participate in the…

Next Page »