View Full Version : Shellback/Pooduck Question
01-29-2002, 11:47 PM
I am in the process of building a Pooduck and I am thinking about adding decks and bulk heads so that the boat will have some buoyance if it swamps or capsizes. I would appreciate feedback from anyone who has built or sailed one of these boats.
01-31-2002, 07:30 PM
We have had a Joel White-designed Shellback dinghy aboard MAGIC for several years now and find it to be a fine-sailing and rowing tender. We found it partially completed by a first-time builder in Port Townsend, WA and, after some fairing and clean-up work, finished it out. It is a great little surf dinghy, going in or out, and we have never (yet) managed to swamp it. They are *very* bouyant. That said, given its shape, if one were not paying attention, I could imagine it might well be possible to swamp it with too much heel in a stiff breeze and sloppy seas.
As is often the case, it would perhaps depend on how extreme the waters/conditions were where you will use one.
We have not felt the need for bulkheads or decks and in fact try to keep her as light as possible to facilitate swinging her on or off the schooner.
Were I to build another, though, I would not personally choose to build the inwale as a spacer-blocked open rail, since it is a pain to maintain paint/varnish around.
02-04-2002, 02:42 PM
You can always use flotation bags. I struggled with the same question. I finally decided to go with flotation bags lashed under the side benches. I feel they are more versatile, since they can be replaced with watertight gear bags for cruising and you don't lose the cockpit space as with a deck and bulkhead.
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