At The WoodenBoat Show in Mystic, Connecticut, Scott Williams brought ESCA, his impeccably built Christmas Wherry to exhibit among other small boats for “I Built It Myself.” The sail-and-oar boat won Best in Show for owner-built boats in the Concours d’Elegance awards, and this video shows why.
Scott built ESCA’s hull with glued, lapped Okoume plywood on white cedar frames. She’s got a 1-1/2″-thick Okoume keel, a stem of white oak, and the transom and thwarts are of quarter sawn Sapele. The spars are solid, laminated Sitka spruce.
What does Scott appreciate about boatbuilding? Well, as a contractor and builder normally working on land structures with straight lines and 90 degree angles, boats give him the opportunity to “throw away the square” and to do the satisfying work of sculpting and shaping wood “to the perfection of the boat.”
Make plans to attend the Fifth Annual Port Aransas Wooden Boat Festival on April 12-13, 2019. This is a great family friendly event in the beautiful beach town of Port Aransas, Texas. Bring your wooden boats to display. Boats don’t have to be fancy, just made of wood. It can even be displayed unfinished. There is no entry fee for boat or spectators. Attend informative programs on boat building and boating. Build a boat at the Family Boat Building. Kids can build a model boat, too. April in Port Aransas is a great time of year with great weather and plenty of thing for the family to do. Check out www.portaransaswoodenboatfestival.org for more info.
The TWSBA Steering Committee has reached out to say that there are regional meetings coming up in 2018, and they’re looking for a few things. Get involved with this great organization by taking part. They say:
They need your input for planning.
They need you to present and share the work you’re doing.
Chesapeake Light Craft will present its 20th annual small boat rendezvous, OkoumeFest, on Friday and Saturday, May 18-19, 2018.
“Okoume” is the plantation-grown African hardwood used in tens of thousands of CLC’s build-your-own-boat kits. OkoumeFest features an open house with technical seminars on Friday at the CLC plant in Annapolis, and on Saturday an on-the-water rendezvous at Matapeake State Park on Kent Island. This event is RAIN OR SHINE. Please note that if thunderstorms are detected nearby we’ll bring the boats off the water.
The Friday seminars are informative and fun, but the highlight of OkoumeFest always comes on Saturday, when we bring virtually everything in our shop over to the beach at Matapeake for our friends to paddle, row, sail, and generally put through their paces. We also encourage fellow boatbuilders to bring their homebuilt watercraft to show and compete for best-in-show honors and various awards.
OkoumeFest is also a special chance to try some of the boats, such as PocketShip, that they can’t usually take on the road with them. You’ll also be able to try out new designs, such as the Jimmy Skiff II, Tenderly XP, and the Waterlust Sailing Canoe. Attendance is free on both days this year, but please RSVP so that CLC can plan for the hordes.
Friday [schedule] features an open house at the CLC factory with shop tours, boatbuilding seminars with experts, and a cookout. Everything in the CLC store will be discounted, including boat kits.
On Saturday [schedule] the event moves to Matapeake State Park on Kent Island, where nearly 60 CLC boats will line the beach. They welcome you to try out boats all day long, or bring your own to show off.
The Norwegian Coastal Federation, Forbundet KYSTEN, has translated a very popular video of theirs. Watching it gives an inside look at boatbuilder John A. Andersen’s pram-building class, and a portion of what KYSTEN is all about. New main titles in English serve to narrate unspoken portions where captioning helps the viewer understand the action, and of course there are new English subtitles for the various speakers. The photography is beautiful, and we envy the students, who get to spend a year building their own boats in a special shop with a master boatbuilder.
About Forbundet KYSTEN:
“The object of the association is to work to strengthen our identity as a coastal people, to maintain, transfer and develop traditional knowledge and practical learning (crafts, seamanship etc.) and to improve the standards of protection of our coastal culture. The local branches rally people from their communities to restore or build replicas of boats that are representative of the particular areas heritage. The original intent was to fix or build boats. But the focus has evolved. The scope of its activities has widened constantly.”
OPEN HOUSE EVENTS
Meet and speak fellow perspective students, current NWSWB students, alumni, and NWSWB staff and faculty.
Learn about the School’s history and future plans from the Executive Director and Chief Instructor
Take an extensive tour of the campus, shops, and facilities.
Get up close to the current boatbuilding projects.
Learn about the career paths and professional opportunities of NWSWB alumni.
Meet the Admissions Manager and learn about the application process and financial aid.
Enjoy all that Port Townsend has to offer, including the Annual Rhododendron Festival on Saturday and Sunday.
*Optional: Attend lecture and shadow a current student in the shop from 8:00 AM – 11:00 AM. Please choose option when registering.
When we reviewed the Drake Raceboat in our September 2017 issue, designer Clint Chase was studying the prototype, putting the finishing touches on the plans, and preparing to produce kits. The boat is now available both as plans or as a kit.
Those of you who enjoy rowing a go-fast boat might enjoy the Drake Raceboat. Our review pointed out: “The boat is quite easy to accelerate; a half dozen strokes and it was off and running. I did some speed trials in a marina where there was neither current nor wind. With a lazy, relaxed effort I easily maintained 3-3/4 knots; a sustainable exercise pace brought the speed up to 5 knots. Fluctuations in GPS speed readings… in the lightweight Raceboat spanned at least 1-1/2 knots—I’d estimate that the boat’s sprint speed averages out around 6 knots. It’s a fast pulling boat. While the Drake Raceboat is designed ‘for the greater speeds in race conditions,’ you don’t have to compete to appreciate the boat. It will give you an exhilarating workout and reward improvements in your stamina and technique, but it’s not so high strung that you can’t take it out for a relaxing outing.”
With winter coming on, it’s a good time to retreat to the shop for a boatbuilding project. By spring you could have a Drake Raceboat ready to row. You can now order plans or kits from Chase Small Craft.
In Spokane, Washington, Shaw Middle School students launched a Marshallese-style canoe with outrigger and sailing rig after participating in a summer program with a boatbuilding focus. There is a small group of immigrants there from the Marshall Islands, and the program’s aim was to help with communication, reading, and feeling more connected to both their heritage and to their school in the hope of increasing graduation rates.
Registration is open for rowing teams to support Rocking the Boat at their Rocking Manhattan event. The 30-mile circumnavigation, planned for Saturday, September 23, is a fundraiser, and their goal is to ultimately raise $300,000 for their programs.
Rocking the Boat says they, “Empower young people from the South Bronx to develop the self-confidence to set ambitious goals and gain the skills necessary to achieve them. Students work together to build wooden boats, learn to row and sail, and restore local urban waterways, revitalizing their community while creating better lives for themselves. Kids don’t just build boats, boats build kids.” They’ve amassed a fleet of more than 50 student-built boats. Below is one of their latest, the recently launched Whitehall they named KALEIDOSCOPE.