View Full Version : Wee yawl boat?

09-12-2000, 07:20 PM
Ford knows I don't have a clue--so here I am again. I got asked if I had any ideas for a small--10' max--traditional looking yawl boat for an unpowered schooner just short of 30'. Outboard power acceptable, but the guy won't look at an inflatable. Wants wood, bow puddin' &tc., and prefers but isn't stuck on inboard power. Boys and their toys. I think he's dreaming, but that's what we're here for...

09-13-2000, 12:54 AM
I'm not at all sure what a "traditional looking yawl boat" for a 30' schooner looks like ...

(I found that by doing a search on "micro-tug", which I thought would produce a Phil Bolger design.)

09-13-2000, 02:48 AM
The Chesapeake Bay skipjacks that still dredge under sail all use yawl boats. I would start there.

09-13-2000, 05:19 AM
A 10ft inboard powered boat does not have much choice of shape...but there's a lovely Weston Farmer design for a 10ft inboard launch in the Introduction (yes, the Introduction!) to "Fifty Wooden Boat Plans". It's used to illustrate how to read a lines plan, but it's a real design, for a real 10ft inboard launch.

09-13-2000, 07:50 AM
The Weston Farmer design mentioned by ACB is what came to my mind too. I guess I should just keep my mouth shut about the whys and what fors of the question?

Tom Lathrop
09-13-2000, 08:18 AM
The obvious place to look is the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St Michaels MD.

Since these yawl boats are more a result of legislation than practicality, having one on a 30 footer is all about nostalgia. Therefore, finding an existing design may be moot. The ones I've seen did not make many concessions to aesthetics so a pointy box with an air cooled B&S would probably serve. I think most of them use an automobile engine with a dry stack. Single handing this rig should be interesting and there is always the question of what you will do with the beast when it's not pushing the boat. Towing the heavy, short little monster should help keep your speed in check.

Tom Dugan
09-13-2000, 02:53 PM
That Farmer design is "Irreducible", isn't it? Someone (Landing School?) actually built one and displayed it at St. Michael's a few years ago. I can't recall whether it was one of the Wooden Boat Shows or the Mid-Atlantic Small Craft Festival.

Anyway, it was actually pretty neat. Check it out.


09-13-2000, 05:35 PM
Tom, I think nostalgia is exactly it here. Yes, IRREDUCIBLE--that one had crossed my mind too. I think I'd just go for the outboard well this fella is trying to not do. I suspect the 10' limit is there to keep the tow light. There sure isn't room to hang a ten-footer in davits on this guy's stern. Maybe I should recommend a bigger schooner! Thanks for your thoughts.

Tom Dugan
09-14-2000, 08:26 AM
Yesssss! When all else fails, build a bigger boat!

09-14-2000, 09:05 AM
Pete Culler designed two 10.5' yawlboats -- pp33 & 35 of Burke's "Pete Culler's Boats".

Tom Dugan
09-14-2000, 10:30 AM
Amazon.com tells me that the Burke book is out of print. Since my interest in Culler designs has been slowly ratcheting up, does anyone have an idea where I can pick this book up?


Ed Harrow
09-14-2000, 04:53 PM
For used, or out-of-print books, try: http://www.abebooks.com/

I've had excellent luck, and the books have always matched the seller's description (re condition, etc) to a "T". No surprises (or at least no UNPLEASANT surprises).

09-14-2000, 05:03 PM
I hesitate to give away sources for out of print books, supply and demand and all, but ditto Ed. I got both of Webb Chiles books about his open boat voyage there quite satisfactorily.

John B
09-14-2000, 05:30 PM
Ed, thanks endless for that book site.The new bookcase went up at home last night for boat books and the comment was made..." there's a bit of value there ".... ready made valuation PLUS the new ones to get.

Dale Harvey
09-15-2000, 01:10 AM
Just build a wide pram out of 1/4" ply. Distress the bottom so that it has some thwartships curve as well as good amount of rocker. Chop the engine assembly out of a jetski you find unattended on the beach of your favorite anchorage. Deck the whole thing over so it can't be swamped, rig a remote throttle and killswitch, viola! The jet will not push a load efficently, mut most will likely have enough to move you in the kind of condtions that will allow it's use. Don't even think of useing the ski intact, even with a schooner, you would be shunned.

Paul Schut
09-15-2000, 10:28 AM
I'd agree with Dale's approach, but suggest you drop the diesel or gas engine totally. I recently experienced the pull of a 1 kw or so small outboard electric on a Dragon class, all 2 tons of it! Low speed high pull, just what you need in no wind conditions. And no noise at all. I would remove the motor nacelle (or two)and bolt it under the pram. Some good traction batteries low in the boat for stability and a solar panel to keep the batteries topped up, after all, if there's wind you dont use the boat to pull the schooner. And no more frustrated pulling on starter cords; me and 2 strokes just dont get on!

09-15-2000, 07:34 PM
Since Burke's book is rare, here's a drawing from it of one of Pete Culler's 10.5' yawlboats, which seems to fit the client's desires for real wood, traditional look, and able to take an inboard, and.tho perhaps more demanding to build, should stand the test of time.

09-15-2000, 07:36 PM
Oops--find that I can't easily attach a picture. I'll email one to anyone interested.

09-16-2000, 11:16 PM
Why not just build up a Stitch & glue version of a yawl and power it with a Air cooled lawnmower style engine, say something around 6HP. you could gear it down and hang a large prop on it for pushing power. Keep it simple.

09-17-2000, 10:45 PM
Kermit - as you have indicated yourself, this project is a boy's toy and really not a good idea at all. Outrageously expensive for what he will get and not very practical.

An inflatable with a small outboard is far and away the most suitable "yawlboat" for such a tiny schooner. Won't scratch the paint, easy to use for towing, puching or lashed alongside, easy to stow, light....etc.

That is the only honest practical answer.

I regret proposing Irreducible - a quick glance at the drawing shows that Farmer has had to deepen her chest to get the engine in, and this gives her an excessively round, tippy, section compared to the normal flat floors of such a small dinghy. I doubt if this would be a good boat.

[This message has been edited by ACB (edited 09-17-2000).]