January 2023 Archives - Small Boats Magazine

In our January issue we profile the Nexus Power Dory by David Roberts and the Cape Henry 21 gaff cutter by Dudley Dix. The Silent Hitch Pin and the Salus Coast PFD are the subjects of our gear reviews; our Technique features a DIY cart for small boats, kayaks, and canoes. The first installment of three chronicling a winter cruise by sneakbox spans the 980 miles of the Ohio River. Our editor mulls over a kayak that he built decades ago only to have it slip from both use and memory. PERIWINKLE, our Reader Built Boat, is a modified kit-built cruiser for a father faced with sailing solo after his kids grew up.




Languishing under the eaves

Tucked under the eaves, a skin-on-frame Greenland kayak built decades ago has been a constant presence and yet all but forgotten.

Nexus Planing Dory

A planing dory for home construction

Sleek but traditional, and with the versatility to serve a wide range of uses, the Nexus 21’ Planing Dory is an uncomplicated boat to build at home either as an open boat or with a cuddy cabin.

A Sneakbox on the Ohio

980 miles from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to Cairo, Illinois

Inspired by “Four Months in a Sneakbox,” Nathaniel H. Bishop’s account of a 2,500-mile cruise in the winter of 1875, Christopher Cunningham built a sneakbox and followed Bishop’s route from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to Cedar Key, Florida. In this first of three installments he takes on the 980 miles of the Ohio River.

Cape Henry 21

An expedition sailboat for adventurers

A 21’ plywood-lapstrake gaff cutter inspired by traditional sailing craft of the U.K., the Cape Henry 21 can appeal to sailors downsizing from a full-keel cruiser as well as camp-cruisers looking for more comfort while still adventuring in shoal waters.

A DIY Boat Cart

Transporting boats with ease and economy

Influenced by years of carrying kayaks and small boats back and forth between home and harbor, and inspired by an everyday garden cart, this simple design transports boats, gear, kids, and dogs.

The Silent Hitch Pin

A spring-loaded block-and-pin assembly prevents trailer rattle

A rattling drawbar can be annoying and cause wear and tear on a trailer hitch receiver. The Silent Hitch Pin is easy to install, stops the rattling, and has a lock to prevent theft.

The Salus Coastal PFD

A life jacket with built-in harness

A PFD is essential for all boaters, but for solo small-boat sailors, not all life jackets serve their needs well. The Salus Coastal has a built-in safety harness for extra security and can be equipped with a leg harness to keep its buoyancy where it belongs when it’s needed.


A boat built for singlehanded cruising

Downsizing from boats used for family cruises led a serial boatbuilder to add a kit-built sail-and-oar double-ender to his Maine-coast fleet. He made some modifications as he was building, launched PERIWINKLE, and is now all set for solo cruising.

Past Issues

From The Archives

Subscribe Today!

Become a subscriber today and you’ll recieve a new issue every month plus unlimited access to our full archive of backlogged issues.


Already a subscriber?   Sign In