November 2021 Archives - Small Boats Magazine

For our Boat Profiles we get aboard the plywood Deblois Street Dory Clint Chase designed in 2013 and a fiberglass production Devon Scaffie, designed by John Watkinson in 1978. Another step back in time takes us into the story of a teenager building a Popular Mechanics runabout in 1962. Reuel Parker shares his drop-center sawhorse, an ideal support for working on small boats and our editor shows how to make a better roller support for your table saw. For canoes and kayaks that are too heavy for you to lift solo to a vehicle’s roof racks, a hitch-mounted loader cuts the weight you lift in half. Our Reader Built Boat is a Monk-designed skiff with a unique homemade peal drive with twin props, and our editor recalls a kayak he built for cruising only to put it away after the first sea trial.


Built for long-distance cruising, paddled only a few yards

Forty years ago, our editor put his best work into building a replica of a King Island kayak. The goal was to use it for cruising, but shortly after his first outing in it he put it away and never paddled it again.

Devon Scaffie

A trailerable keelboat for camp cruising

The Scaffie was designed by John Watkinson, founder of the Drascombe line of small boats, and has been in production in the U.K. since 1978. It is 14′9″ long with a beam of 5′9″ and, at 462 lbs fully rigged, ideal for trailering behind even small vehicles.

Deblois Street Dory

Clint Chase designed the Deblois Street Dory in the spirit of New England’s dories. The lapstrake hull, graceful curve of the bow, the tombstone transom, and low sweep of the sheer are all Swampscott dory.

A Tale of Two Boats

Building the PM-38 once as a teen and again 50 years later

A 7-1/2-page article published in a 1962 issue of Popular Mechanics might seem, by any standard, to be an insufficient guide to building a boat, but Terry McIntyre built the magazine’s PM-38 twice, once in 1962 and again in 2019.

Drop-Center Sawhorses

Better support for boats

Reuel Parker’s drop-center sawhorses do what ordinary sawhorses can’t. They’ll hold a flat-bottomed or round hull upright, upside down, and at almost any angle in between.

A DIY Roller

A table-saw accessory for ripping and crosscutting

While roller stands make it easier to rip long boards on a table saw, a do-it-yourself roller made of a 2x4, fender washers, and joist-hanger nails works for ripping and crosscutting, too.

A Hitch Mount Canoe Loader

A "helping hand" from Reese Towpower

Loading a heavy canoe or kayak on a roof rack can be difficult, if not impossible, if you try to lift it all at once. With the help of a trailer-hitch-mounted loader, you only have to lift one end at a time—safer for your boat and your back.


Pondering pedal power

After taking a few liberties to improve upon a classic Edwin Monk design, inveterate tinkerer Clay Wright equipped the 9’ skiff with a pedal drive of his own design with twin props and on-the-fly shifting from forward to reverse—a masterpiece in pulleys, pillow blocks, and copper pipe.

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