November 2022 Archives - Small Boats Magazine

Phil Thiel’s L’Ark, a standing-headroom version of his Escargot canal boat, and Selway Fisher’s Drake 13, a small but versatile sharpie, go through sea trials for our Boat Profiles. A couple from England row France’s Two Seas Canal while a serial boatbuilder on the other side of the pond, smitten by outrigger canoes, builds one for his family. A weatherproof case for writing materials and a cordless planer are the subjects of our product reviews and French whipping is our do-it-yourself project. Our editor explores the limestone cliffs and caves of Menorca by kayak.


A coast of caves

The south coast of Menorca, one of Spain’s Mediterranean islands, is a 25-mile-long stretch of limestone cliffs and caves, a landscape that can only be explored and appreciated by kayak.

Drake 13

A Selway Fisher sharpie

The Drake 13 from Selway Fisher is a small sharpie designed to be propelled by oars, a lugsail, or an outboard and to serve as a tender, a daysailer, a beach cruiser, or a fishing skiff.


A cozy canal cruiser

Phil Thiel’s Escargot canal boat plans come with an option for a roomier hull and a cabin with standing headroom. The modifications for L’Ark provide comfortable accommodations for four.

Two Tramps and a Lady

A 280-mile row across France along the Two Seas Canal from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean

For over 150 years, the Atlantic and Mediterranean coasts of France have been connected by a series of canals and locks that were nearly two centuries in the making. In 2022, a couple from England were the lone rowers on the canal in the company of motorboats.

French Whipping

A quickly whipped grip

While ropework can be made very complex to be especially decorative, it can be kept simple and still be attractive and functional. A French whipping’s spiral of hitches looks good and provides a non-slip grip.

DeWalt’s Cordless Power Planer

A brushless motor and 30,000 cuts per minute

Cordless and weighing under 8 lbs, DeWalt’s 20-volt planer goes where the work is and is easy on the user. The brushless motor makes quick work of removing wood.


A weatherproof writing organizer

Cruising is a fine way to get away from the office, but it’s good to have a way to manage a little paperwork aboard a boat for navigating, journaling, and letter writing.


A skin-on-frame outrigger canoe

Tim Shaw grew up by the water in Manchester, Massachusetts, and has never drifted too far from boats. After building a few small boats, he was intrigued by the outrigger canoes he saw in Hawaii and years later designed and built one for his family.

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