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View Full Version : John Alden Design "O-boat" -- Thousand Islands One Design?



duliano
01-21-2001, 05:22 PM
Folks,
I was looking through WB's "Fifty Wooden Boats", and on page 46 there is a design (Plan 6) called the "18'3" Sloop, O-Boat". In the text, there is a reference to a modified version of this boat that was called the Thousand Islands One Design. It describes this boat as "simply 15' O-boats. does anyone have any knowledge about the Thousand Islands One Design? Are there still any racing activities going on with this class? Are there any clubs that might be using this boat? Any information would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

Regards,
Dominic
Clayton, NY

John Gearing
01-22-2001, 07:52 PM
I gave a quick look at "The Mother of All Maritime Websites": http://www.boat-links.com/linklists/boatlink-25.html#racing

for racing class associations but didn't see anything for Thousand Island One Designs. That doesn't mean there isn't an organization, however. As I recall, isn't Clayton, NY in the vicinity of the Thousand Islands? If so, your best bet may be to hunt up some of the yacht clubs thereabouts and ask the members what they know of this class. There's bound to be someone who knows.

Cheers,
John

duliano
01-24-2001, 07:29 PM
John, thanks for the reply and the website. Yes you are correct that Clayton is in the Thousand Islands and yes I do live there but when the white stuff hits the ground here most of the boating and sailing clubs go south (or somewhere), which means that I will have to wait until the spring for when I can find any info out from them.'


Thanks again

Regards,
Dominic
Clayton, NY

Ruddigore
01-26-2001, 05:58 PM
I have a 15' John Alden daysailer, built in 1931. Comparing the plans to an Alden "O" boat it is an exact "shrunken" 15' copy. According to the Alden office my boat is design #346. I am curious if I too have a Thousand Island One Design boat or not.

ishmael
01-26-2001, 06:22 PM
I doubt there is an active class for either of these boats. Great boats, but any class needs a certain critical mass to keep it active, and these are somewhat obscure. Could be wrong.

My ex-brother in law owned an O boat that had been on the hard for a number of years. Reminded me, in its shape and rig, of certain British dinghies that are renkowned for their ability: relatively beamy and slack bilged, somewhat short rigged for gusty weather, but with enough spread of canvas to move in milder conditions, and a smallish coamed cockpit to keep the water out. In a phrase, a great daysailor for say: the coast of Maine or some other place with regular strong winds.

Best of luck, Jack

rbgarr
01-26-2001, 06:55 PM
Ishmael/Jack,

Regular strong winds on the coast of Maine http://media5.hypernet.com/~dick/ubb/confused.gif

Not in my experience....

ishmael
01-26-2001, 07:31 PM
It's all relative. Compared to Marblehead? Perhaps I mispoke http://media5.hypernet.com/~dick/ubb/smile.gif Usual SW winds that regularly freshen, in the warmer months? I don't know!! I don't live there anymore, but they seemed fairly strong sometimes. Er, how would you characterize them?

Okay, question, where was the O boat designed for? And what were the parameters?

rbgarr
01-26-2001, 08:36 PM
According to p.283 of 'John G. Alden and His Yacht Designs', the 18'3" version of the "O" boat was designed for junior training in Marblehead.

ishmael
01-26-2001, 08:53 PM
rgbarr,

Synchronicity is a wonderful thing. Thanks for looking it up.

I owned an Indian, and sailed it on Casco Bay some years back, and the fine old gal was over canvassed much of the time. The O boat I mentioned seemed better suited to the prevailing conditions, but I never lived or sailed the coast from there south to Marblehead enough to make truly intelligent comment on relative conditions between the two. Enough to mouth prevailing wisdom mind ya, but not to have any authority.

Makes me laugh, you coming up with that reference.

I think I'd rather have the O boat out of Cundy's harbor, the Indian out of Marblehead. What's your experience/scuttlebutt?

Best, Jack

duliano
01-26-2001, 09:04 PM
Thanks guys for the replys. Ferriferous, it sounds like you may have the version of the boat that is being referenced. In your note you mentioned the "Alden office" would you happen to have a phone number or web address that I could go to, to pursue this further? I would really appreciate that.

Regards,
Dominic
Clayton, NY

rbgarr
01-26-2001, 11:44 PM
Address for Alden office:

John G. Alden, Inc.
89 Commercial Wharf
Boston, Massachusetts 02110

Ish- I've never sailed an O-boat, although I seem to remember that the Landing School in Kennebunk (?) built some of that model for sale a while ago. I wonder if someone from there could comment on the boat's sailing qualities? The book about Alden's designs notes that there were several of their one-designs that were known locally as 'Indians'. A few years ago I saw a derelict Nantucket One-Design (which some call an Indian) behind a barn in Harpswell, Maine. Nice lines and fittings! A friend was in Nantucket last summer and sailed in an Indian Class race in what he called 'survival conditions'. Seems that a number of boats swamped, but they were sailing where the water was only about three feet deep, so were able to recover pretty easily.I sail a Shields in Boothbay Harbor, where it is usually calm in the mornings and 5-12 knots in the afternoons. Not even whitecap weather, but that suits me fine because I like to singlehand and the boat carries her way easily through the passing wakes and patches of no wind. http://media5.hypernet.com/~dick/ubb/cool.gif

But back to the O-boat.... The last paragraph of the segment about them in the Alden design book reads as follows:

"Although O-boats were sailed mostly in New England waters, they have been used (sometimes in a modified form) in other regions from Nova Scotia to Hawaii. It has been estimated that nearly 600 of these handy little sloops were built."

duliano
01-27-2001, 04:08 PM
Thanks for the address. I am confused though because I checked for that address on the web and I came up with John G. Alden Insurance Agency, Inc.
89 Commercial Wharf
Boston, MA 02110
Phone: 617-227-7670
Fax: 617-227-7933
Toll Free (800) J G Alden
E-Mail: info@johngalden.com
This is an insurance agency -- Although the name matches I am not sure if this is the correct address for the research into the O Boat.

Regards,
Dominic
Clayton, NY

Ruddigore
01-28-2001, 12:04 AM
Check out the Alden website www.aldendesigns.com. (http://www.aldendesigns.com.) It has lots of info. I have called the office in the past and found them to be most helpful. 617-227-9480 They have helped me with the history of my boat along with plans / construction drawings that they have scanned onto cad from the original Alden drawings.

duliano
02-03-2001, 07:36 AM
I just wanted to give an update to my research request. I contacted Alden Designs and inquired about the TI One Design. I found out two things: First, this design is a seperate design from the O-Boat -- not just a shrunken down version and the the TI One Design is Design #230. Second, there are two sail plans, the original one and another from 1935. Unfortunately they were not able to provide me any other background information. But I can and probably will purchase the study plans. I also plan to do some research at the Antique Boat Museum here in Clayton when it opens in the Spring.

Thanks for all the help, information, and leads. It is very much appreciated.

Regards,
Dominic
Clayton, NY