Timely reports of interesting goings on from around the boat building world.  If you have pictures of anything of interest please send them in for posting.  Don't be shy.  Send to:

January, 2001
February, 2001
March, 2001
April, 2000


May, 2001

From Craig O'Donnell

Hi Chuck,

here's a new and previously unpublished article on Junk Rig by a fellow who sailed such a boat across the Pacific ca 1959. Excellent drawings, lucid text, and decent photos.

Go to & scroll down a bit for the link.

Or just use: 


May, 2001

From Gavin Atkin in Kent England

The story behind this little boat goes back two years or more, when Craig O'Donnell sent me some scans he had taken from a late 19th Century copy of Forest and Stream because he thought I would 'like it'.

Like it? I loved it, and immediately set out to model it using Gregg Carlson's Hull Modeller. Thinking that some people might like to build it from plywood either by stitch and glue, or using internal chines, I made the original gifs and my CADified, plywoodified version available via my web pages at: . In fact I liked it so much that a little later I also used one of the scans to decorate the top of my pages. A pal of mine said he felt that the boat was so salty that it made his eyes hurt.

Cute this boat may be on paper, but no-one seemed to take much notice of the F & S skiff until earlier this year when Allen Frazier of San Francisco, California wrote to say he was building one and wanted to know how many others I knew about? I had to tell him he was the first I knew about.

Allen launched recently, as you can see from the pictures, and this is what he said about the project: 

'The pics aren't all they should be, but they'll give you a good idea of what she looks like in the water and in my shop.

'She really turns heads.  I get more compliments on this little boat than you can imagine.  On launch day, by coincidence, the  

"Alma" was in our harbor (the Alma is a sailing cargo scow from 1890 (about 80 feet) that has been fully restored - she's owned by the State of California who operate it for the public just like a park might be operated).  In any even, the crew are salty and knowledgeable. My son reported that many of the crew were at the rail ready to chat and complement her as he passed by. He has been using it more than I, and he is actually getting a little tired of being interrupted to take compliments and chat about her lines, etc.
'She's heavily laden in these pictures. The guy in the white hat is me and I weigh in at about 220 lbs.  My son is the other guy and he's about 6 feet 2 ins., and is close to that weight.  Sorry, you'll have to convert to metrics (aren't I about 20 stone??).
'As to performance... She glides very smoothly and is quick. More like a boat of much longer length.  The wake at the bow is almost non-existent--she is sweet. As for the design issues I previously mentioned, they need some further thought. The bottom of the stem is just a water level (maybe an inch below or so), and I feel that this adds to her gentle glide. I'll look at it some more and give you my thoughts.

'No pictures of her under tow yet, but I believe towing will be one of her strengths.

When both me and my son are in her, she's very deep in the stern, owing mostly to my girth.  I tell everyone that the aft seat is only for beautiful woman with large floppy hats who dote adoringly at her love at the oars.

'Coming back to reality - the seat forward is for little grandkids.

'Thanks for the great plans.' 

Allen Frazier

The download for the Forest & Stream skiff is at

This also from Gavin:

'Here's something shocking. I've just received a complaint from an Australian chap who is building my Little Breton design. It seems that he's had trouble with standard plywood sheet sizes in his country - they're exactly 2400 by 1200 mm, which adds up to about 1.5 inches short lengthways, and half of that widthways.

'It's enough to make a difference that could fox quite a few people when plotting strakes onto the ply. Many of us (including my Australian friend) would manage by simply moving the rogue co-ordinate back a few centimetres and making sure the change was reflected elsewhere - and by calling that boatbuilder's licence, but others won't be able to do that so easily.

'In a world where things like this can happen, what's the advice? I suppose it's to make sure the sheet you are buying is the size it's meant to be by measuring it - using one of the store's own tape measures if necessary. You can always put it back on the shelf afterwards!



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