Sunday, March 29, 2015

More Aluminum Sailing Dinghies

In response to my post about the aluminum Gouget Moth, several readers sent in some aluminum sailing dinghies they have come across.

Australian "R.L". sent two photos of a welded aluminum version of the Australian 11' Aquanaut Dinghy, masterfully crafted.

Mike Scott owned a prototype De Havilland 12' aluminum dinghy during his time in Australia. His story:
"I'm not sure who designed that alum dinghy I had, could well have been built as a prototype for the Vagabond, and therefore designed by Alan Payne. They maybe figured that alum was not the best way to go and so built the 3 class boats in glass. The 16ft Corsair is still going strong all over Oz, but the 12ft Vagabond and 10ft Gipsy seem to have faded. When I worked at Miller and Whitworth (Bob Miller and Craig Whitworth, sailmakers, Flying Dutchmen champs, and of course the legendary Bob Miller (aka Ben Lexcen). They became the agents for the 3 classes, and we would place an advertisement in the local paper for 'Free Sailboat rides', and we would take out prospective customers and then try to sell them a boat....was a fun job, but didn't get to see my kids much....that was 1966. Check out De Havilland Marine. I also worked there - that was where this boat came from. I bought it for 'scrap value', one of the perks of the job, I guess. In those days I was an accountant - ha...!

In the U.S, Grumman remains the most famous firm for their line of aluminum small boats and canoes but their most enduring aluminum sailboat is their dink, much sought after by the cruising crowd.

Tom Price pointed out that Grumman, in the late 1960's, built a 15' racing dinghy, called the "Flyer." Tom came across it at a Baltimore Boat Show. It doesn't appear many were made as this is the only image I could dig up about this dinghy on the InterWebs.

And finally, the aluminum sailboat I came across at Bobby Muller's yard? After digging around it appears it was the Pelican class, a 12 footer design by Philip Rhodes, of which over a thousand were built by the Aluminum Company of Canada - Alcan. More info about the Pelican can be found at this blog post here.

A nice roomy 12 footer.

A video walk-around of a Pelican.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Music Whenever: Americana; a Foursome

For that very small, loose-knit group of Earwigoagin readers who are interested in my occasional music selections; an Americana folk foursome.

First up, as pointed out to me by my good friend Ed Salva, a blues tune set to the beat of an ancient steam engine.

My favorite bluegrass duo, Mandolin Orange, with a Bob Dylan cover, Boots of Spanish Leather.

A folk tune I never tire of, The Stable Song by Gregory Alan Isakov.

Finally, Love Ain't Enough by the Barr Brothers.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Australian 2015 Classic Wooden Dinghy Regatta

Andrew Chapman sends along some photos of the 2015 Australian Classic Wooden Dinghy Regatta, hosted by South Gippsland Y.C, out of Inverloch, Victoria, birthplace of the Australian scow Moth. Regatta was in late January.

A Classic 16-foot skiff.

One of the starts. Left to right is the pram-bowed Mirror, Heron, two Sabre's, an Oughtred Classic Shearwater dinghy, and a scow Moth.

A varnished Heron being rigged on the beach.

The Uffa Fox Jollyboat has a small fleet in Melbourne Australia. Popular in the 1960's, the 19 foot Jollyboat was eclipsed by the similar sized Flying Dutchman, with it's Olympic Status.

The two Jack Holt small doublehander designs; the Mirror Dinghy, at 10' 10" was the first stitch and glue kit dinghy and the earlier design, the 11' 3" Heron, was also designed for home boatbuilding in plywood. Both originally had gunter rigs as seen here.

This scow Moth Maggie was just recently built by Ray Eades and is a modified Imperium design.

Beautiful decks on this new scow. Rather than aluminum wings this scow was built with wooden winglets.

South Gippsland Y.C. is on Anderson Inlet, where a small protected bay meets the Bass Strait. As Maggie sails toward the sandbar break, one can see the nastiness at the entrance to the Inlet when the breeze is on.

The Ian Oughtred Shearwater Classic Dinghy.

Fitted around the on-the-water racing shedule, the dinghies are exhibited at a seaside park for the locals to come and peruse (and vote on their favorite).

On the left is  the Rainbow Scow, a popular class in southern Australia up to about 1970.

This scow Moth is of the 1970's 1980's vintage, with aluminum wings.

The VeeJay has a bigger brother, the double plank 14' Skate dinghy. This one looks as if it is being pieced together on the beach, after a long layoff.

Here is a single plank VeeJay racing against the Heron. (The Heron being a good weight carrier,  as we see here with three sailors stuffed into this rather small dinghy - plus one more! - I was informed there was also a small child tucked out of sight.)

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Classic Moth Tweezer D Before the Start

In the course of a discussion of sails among the local Classic Moth fleet, I went back and pulled out a photo of the blogmeister just chillin' before a start at the 2006 E-City Nationals. This is my all varnished Tweezer D design. My outfit here is kinda conservative. As some readers may remember, I have always had an affinity for natty looking sailing gear.

I can't remember who took the photo. This may be one of Elisabeth or Ingrid Albaugh's photos.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Dinghy Cruising Around the "Eye of Quebec"

This is a good video if you can block out the time - 40 minutes. A duo spend two weeks going around a natural circular body of water in central Quebec, formed by the impact of an asteroid.

From the blurb accompanying the video:

"The Eye of Quebec (Lac Manicouagan) is visible from space as a perfectly ring-shaped lake. Its center island is far larger than the water that surrounds it. 100km in diameter, it is the fourth largest meteor impact site on earth. We sailed around it and think that was the first ever circumnavigation of the reservoir under sail and oar. (We can find record of two other sailboats that have attempted the trip. While we're not sure of their success, both appeared to carry auxiliary engines. If it wasn't the wind pulling us it was our backs.)

Three years ago, when John and I drove the Trans-Labrador highway, we camped one night on the shores of the great Manicouaga and it captured our imaginations. Finally, this year, aboard the expedition re-fitted Wayfarer 4610, we made the voyage. We were on the water for about twelve days after a two day drive north. It is an astronomically great lake.

We camped ashore every night, and packed nearly 100 Ibs of dried food for the journey. We wore drysuits most of the time, cause the weather was typically cold and wet!

Circumanic Higher Res from Scott McDougall on Vimeo.

More information on the "Eye of Quebec" from Wikipedia.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Another Frankenboat: Mothmaran in Everglades Challenge

The 2015 Everglades Challenge starts tomorrow, a 300 mile sprint down the West coast of Florida in all manner of small craft. Last year, Classic Moth champion Jeff Linton won the monohull division in his extensively modified Flying Scot.

This year we have a Classic Moth entered - well sort of. Joe Frohock picked up a Mistral Classic Moth that was languishing at the Gulfport Y.C. and made this tippy Moth into a trimaran - a Mothmaran. He unveiled the new Holland Tunnel over a year ago and in the interim he has already done a 100 miles jaunt in the contraption. Tomorrow will be the real deal.

Len Parker can't believe his eyes. The Mothmaran uses stock kit Chesapeake Light Craft amas. The fixed prodder flys a gennaker on a roller furler.

The familiar deep-Vee hull of the Mistral Classic Moth married to something different.

With everything unfurled there is plenty of sail for this 11-footer.

The crossbeams were stock lumber pieces screwed into the deck (the screws being replaced by through bolts when they started pulling out).

Joe Frohock, master cobbler together of disparate pieces into a very credible sailing machine.

The 2015 version, entered in the 300 mile Everglades Challenge. Additions are some fairings for the crossbeam attachments and a massive foredeck coaming to keep water out of the cockpit. The word from Earwigoagin's reporter from Gulfport was once he loaded all the required Everglades gear he had water coming over the daggerboard trunk - time for a quick redesign! As with the sailing canoes entered there is no room for onboard sleeping! Good luck Joe!

Read George A.'s blog post on the Mothmaran over here.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Vintage Iceboats

The East Coast and this time, the Mid-Atlantic got dumped on by another snowstorm today. Oh, well, let's go with the flow.

A CSNBC production on the Hudson stern-steerer ice-boats. This was filmed last year where the Midwest and East Coast had even more ice - if you can believe it.

"Sailing on Ice" from CSNBC on Vimeo.

And other ice-boat posts on Earwigoagin can be found by clicking here.