In the eyes of our traditionally minded peers on Maryland’s Eastern Shore my wife Jenny and I tread dangerously close to the gates of hell by sailing a fiberglass boat. Our redemption comes by way of the plywood lapstrake tender we built for it. I had installed a robust length of line along the outwale to provide a nice cushion to protect the mothership, but we needed something more to protect our tender from the dinghy dock and the loitering tenders-of-others.
Some years back I was rowing in a race with my good friend Bill Gribbel in his tandem wherry, DONOGHUE. She was a copy of a circa-1870 pulling boat found, restored, and documented by the late Westport, Massachusetts, boatbuilder and designer Bob Baker. The wind was up and for 4 miles we pulled into it. . .