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Bob Cleek
12-17-2012, 12:57 PM
I see where your cover and the writer of an article on his cold molding a Giles Vertue in the latest issue of WB refer to a "Vertue cutter." I've owned a Laurent Giles Vertue sloop for forty years. There is no such thing as a Vertue cutter. The Vertue has a somewhat unusual headsail arrangement which some have called a "slutter," but the rig is definitely not a cutter. Giles never described it as that and, until now, neither has anyone else.

Additionally, your text describes the Vertue as a scaled down Bristol Channel Pilot Cutter. This is completely incorrect. Andrillot, the prototype "Vertue" (the design name coming later), was inspired by the Itchen Ferry Smack sometimes called a Solent Smack. Although their lines are in many respects similar, albeit much larger, Bristol Channel Pilot Cutters had nothing to do with it.

These aren't arcane facts. There has been a ton written on the Vertues. Your editors deserve ten lashes with the cat. Sloppy, sloppy, sloppy!

J. Dillon
12-17-2012, 01:49 PM
How about a few complimentary remarks Bob about other articles to soften your scathing whip Bob??
;)
JD

Paul Pless
12-17-2012, 02:50 PM
O&O indeed!

MiddleAgesMan
12-17-2012, 05:31 PM
Knowing very little about sloops and slutters all I can say is the most egregious statement is regarding the derivation of the Vertue--from a Bristol Channel cutter?!

I think NOT!

Ian McColgin
12-17-2012, 06:39 PM
Based on what I know, I'm with Mr. Cleek. But I am open to a spirited defence from the author, rather in the style of the Letters section of some early WB magazines.

RFNK
12-17-2012, 09:35 PM
http://www.indrans.com/home/vertue-myths-facts.aspx
http://www.cheoyleeassociation.com/vertueArticle2.htm
http://www.laurentgilesarchive.com/the-yachts

Others have a different view it seems. They're lovely little boats - whatever they're called!

Rick

rbgarr
12-17-2012, 10:30 PM
The first time I ever saw a sailboat with 'beaching legs' it was a Vertue named Charis.

gilberj
12-18-2012, 12:47 AM
Thevarious definitions describing different types of boats/ships weredifferent one or two hundred years ago. These things do evolve,sometimes not so much the the comfort and approval of the older folk.I recognize this........ but still choke when someone makes a sillymistake like confusing a sloop and a cutter. It is even moreegregious when considering aVirtue and a Bristol Channel Cutter, ( normally these days representedby the Hess cutters). Whats more the original Bristol Channel Cutters were a product of a very small local area, (great boats). There are other great boats from lots of other areas. The south coast of Britain is more of an inspiration for the Virtue and her sisters than Bristol.

purri
12-18-2012, 01:25 AM
Rah, rah...

Ian McColgin
12-18-2012, 06:04 AM
The Association calls Virtue 1 a cutter. But that's just the association. What says The Committee?

Paul Pless
12-18-2012, 06:58 AM
The first time I ever saw a sailboat with 'beaching legs' it was a Vertue named Charis.but when you saw it, did you think 'cutter' or 'sloop'?:D

WI-Tom
12-18-2012, 08:22 AM
Enlighten me: I thought two headsails and a main on a single mast made for a cutter. No?

Tom

Thad
12-18-2012, 08:30 AM
Just looked at the Rick's Giles link, first 2 pages, Vertue #1 described as "aux gaff cutter", all the others on those pages as "aux sloop". Is Andrillot's mast position different from the Bermudan's or was it the gaff or the times?

Ian McColgin
12-18-2012, 08:42 AM
" . . .two headsails and a main on a single mast made for a cutter. No?" [#12]

No. Not in and of itself.

In general a cutter has the mast further aft than a sloop would, perhaps even amidships. Given that far aft, many (but not all) cutters and some (but hardly all) definitions of a cutter have a cutter with a double headsail rig with the jib to the stem - no bowsprit.

Boats with no bowsprit and one foresail and the mast less than 1/4 or 1/3 of the LOD abaft the stem are clearly sloops. Boats with the fairly forward mast and a bow sprit sporting either one or two headsails, the forestaysail being to the stem, are sloops.

Many of Bob Perry's designs can be called either, especially as many customers have taken off the forestaysail stay alltogether.

"Sloop" and "cutter" are among the many nautical words where those who think there are hard and fast definitions covering all without ambiguity have simply proven their provincialsim.

Thad
12-18-2012, 08:56 AM
The design #s differ on different Vertues. I wonder what it says on the different drawings and I wonder what it says on the drawings used for the articles build. Surely the construction is not that shown on Design #15 and Giles is very strict on construction, I believe.

gilberj
12-18-2012, 10:57 AM
My take......
A single masted boat with two headsails but no bowsprit is a two headsail sloop.
A single masted boat with one headsail on a bowsprit is a sloop.
To be a cutter a single masted boat must have two headsails and a bow sprit.
Andrillot was a gaff cutter with a bow sprit and two headsails. Most Virtues had no bowsprit and were not cutters. Cutters generally have the mast further aft than sloops, but some sloops have the mast well aft as well.

A jib is set from a bowsprit, and a staysail is set from the boat...stem head or aft.

The truth is I am not overly uptight about the strict definitions. If someone wants to call his boat a cutter that is his/her thing. I would not sweat it.

There are boats and rigs which blur the lines. My Meadowlark is normally called a ketch, but in truth the "Mizzen" is larger than the "Main" or is it a foresail. On the other hand the forward mast is clearly (but not by much) taller than the after mast. I sometimes joke that she has a mizzen and foresail, but no mainsail.

The difference between cat yawls and cat ketches is blurry as well.

TR
12-18-2012, 12:50 PM
A sailing yacht is not cutter rigged unless she has a bowsprit? I'm afraid that throws out almost all of Laurent Giles cutters. Etain, Channel Class, Maid of Malham, Brittany Class, Myth Of Malham, Gulvain, Sopranino, Wanderer III, Donella, and Treasure, to name a few. The Giles design list shows all Vertues (from #2-195) as Bermudan Sloop rigged with the exception of V1, Andrillot.

I prefer to keep things simple. Fore & Aft rigged, single masted, single fixed headstay is a sloop. Fore & aft rigged, single masted, two or more fixed headstays is a cutter. One version of the Vertue sailplan shows a single headstay in a 3/4 Bermudan rig, that's a sloop. I'm pretty sure I've seen Giles drawing of an alternative rig with two headstays, the so called "slutter", which (IMO) is some marketing guys term.......:D

Paul Pless
12-18-2012, 12:57 PM
I look forward to Cleek and TR going off on hermaphrodite brigs some long cold winter day. . .

Bob Cleek
12-18-2012, 01:18 PM
How about a few complimentary remarks Bob about other articles to soften your scathing whip Bob??
;)
JD

Arrrrgh! Ye snivelin' bugger! I only ordered ten lashes. Some people just don't appreciate mercy!

Bob Cleek
12-18-2012, 01:31 PM
The first time I ever saw a sailboat with 'beaching legs' it was a Vertue named Charis.

Yes, Charis is Vertue #4, an early cabin arrangement witihout the doghouse. A Californian named Peter Pike singlehanded her across the Atlantic in the early seventies. I sailed with him once on my boat. I learned a lot that day! Great fellow. Dunno what ever happened to him.

Charis:

http://www.vertueowners.org.uk/used%20Pages%20%20Picture/monie_sailplan.jpg

http://www.vertueowners.org.uk/used%20Pages%20%20Picture/monie_sail.jpg

Bob Cleek
12-18-2012, 01:49 PM
http://www.indrans.com/home/vertue-myths-facts.aspx
http://www.cheoyleeassociation.com/vertueArticle2.htm
http://www.laurentgilesarchive.com/the-yachts

Others have a different view it seems. They're lovely little boats - whatever they're called!

Rick

Yes, the first two articles well illustrate how one individual can publish a mistaken fact and, because it finds its way into print, that error keeps getting repeated and repeated and repeated as subsequent articles plagarize to original containing the error.

This is an Itchen Ferry smack" tricked out as a yacht, decked with a coachroof.

http://www.eastcoastoldgaffers.co.uk/boatregister/images/slideshow/reverie.jpg

This is a Vertue with the "short doghouse" configuration.

http://www.theyachtmarket.com/boatimages/2012/10/24/24714722.jpg

http://www.betty-ck145.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=5481&g2_serialNumber=2

On the other hand, this is Giles' famous "Dyarchy" design, which was, in fact, a Bristol Channel Pilot Cutter yacht, and from whence came the erroneous assertion that the Vertue was a "scaled down pilot cutter."

http://www.betty-ck145.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=4444&g2_serialNumber=2

http://www.betty-ck145.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=4439&g2_serialNumber=2

http://www.betty-ck145.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=5688&g2_serialNumber=2

And note that the Giles Archive, operated by former Giles partner, Barry Van Geffen, lists the Vertue as an "auxiliary sloop," not a cutter, as does all the other Giles documentation.

Bob Cleek
12-18-2012, 02:00 PM
Enlighten me: I thought two headsails and a main on a single mast made for a cutter. No?

Tom

As said, definitely not, and more so the case with the Vertue marconi rig. It generally doesn't have "double headsails" and the stays are not parallel, both being tacked at the stemhead. While it has a headstay running from the stem to the masthead and an inner stay running from the stem to the upper spreaders (where the running backstays are also attached), the inner stay is detachable via a lever and is generallly thrown off, as are the running backstays, when sail is carried on the headstay. This turns the rig into a masthead sloop and avoids having to pass the headsail between the stays when tacking. In heavier wind, the inner stay is attached and the running backstays employed, and the rig becomes something like a 3/4 sloop rig. Some owners have tried moving the inner stay back some to create a double headsail rig, or have flown a high-footed "Yankee" jib together with the jib set on the inner stay with mixed results. The advantage of a double headsail rig being, of course, that it is easier to shorten sail in heavy weather.

The photos of "Charis" (SN4) in post 20 above clearly show the customary configuration with the jib flown and the headstay clear.

Vertue sailplan showing the headstay arrangement, although the jib and headsail would not be flown together, as shown here, when sailing the boat because, obviously, the headstays, being not parallel and much too close together, are not suitable for a double headsail rig:

http://sailboatdata.com/imagehelper.asp?file_id=8688

Ian McColgin
12-18-2012, 02:06 PM
A number of definers here are totally missing the important and traditional aspect that a cutter has her mast further aft, even dead amidships, than a sloop. A cutter also has a forestaysail and jib. And some old cutters have a flying jib. A sloop might have more than one jib or have but one, but the mast is distinctly forward.

Bob Cleek
12-18-2012, 02:14 PM
The Association calls Virtue 1 a cutter. But that's just the association. What says The Committee?

Sharp man, Ian! Yes, "Vertue 1" (something of a misnomer, as she was designed as a one-off), "Andrillot," was, and I believe is, after a restoration, now again a gaff cutter.

http://vertue.files.wordpress.com/2006/06/ANDRILLOT.JPG?w=269&h=200

As can be seen, she is a gaffer and carries a bowsprit, with the mast stepped cutter fashion. Giles designated this, his design #15, as a gaff cutter. As the design evolved, while the underwater lines were never changed, the rig certainly was. Most all Vertues after Andrillot, save two or three, carry the later-designed double spreader running backstay marconi "slutter" rig as pictured in the previous post.

rbgarr
12-18-2012, 02:18 PM
Thanks for the nice photos. I've misplaced the ones I took back then. I wonder if it's the same Charis Vertue mentioned by Tom MacNaughton here. http://www.macnaughtongroup.com/tom.htm


Yes, Charis is Vertue #4, an early cabin arrangement witihout the doghouse. A Californian named Peter Pike singlehanded her across the Atlantic in the early seventies. I sailed with him once on my boat. I learned a lot that day! Great fellow. Dunno what ever happened to him.

Charis:

http://www.vertueowners.org.uk/used%20Pages%20%20Picture/monie_sailplan.jpg

http://www.vertueowners.org.uk/used%20Pages%20%20Picture/monie_sail.jpg

rbgarr
12-18-2012, 02:21 PM
TR-

Why might a customer want a cutter versus a sloop?

Bob Cleek
12-18-2012, 02:24 PM
The design #s differ on different Vertues. I wonder what it says on the different drawings and I wonder what it says on the drawings used for the articles build. Surely the construction is not that shown on Design #15 and Giles is very strict on construction, I believe.

The design numbers differ because they were different designs. Andrillot, so-called "Vertue sail number 1" later, was a one-off design, as were the first few. People would come in and say, "I want a boat like Andrillot, but with..." Andrillot's underwater lines remained unchanged, but in the evolution of the design, first a strake was added at the sheer to provide a bit more headroom below, then an entirely new jib headed marconi rig was designed, being what is now the classic "Vertue" rig and sail plan, then a short doghouse was added to the coachroof, then a longer doghouse. Interior details similarly evolved. The later Vertues, the majority of which were built by Cheoy Lee, were constructed in teak on ipol to Lloyd's 100A1+ scantlings. The English built Vertues, such as by Moody's and Elkins' yards, primarily of mahogany on oak, were, I believe, built to the same scantlings, although I am uncertain whether they were Lloyds certified as were the Cheoy Lee vessels. All Vertues built were "bespoke," each being given a single license to build and number when the license issued, although Cheoy Lee may have built some on speculation for resale by US yacht brokerages in the early sixties.

If the Vertue in the article was built with a license to build (and I certainly hope it was or he can expect to be served with a lawsuit by Giles' successors in short order!), I expect that he used modified plans drawn up for cold molding construction. Over the years, Giles and Partners drew up construction plans for the Vertue in steel, cold molding and strip planked construction and when purchasing plans, you can pick your poison, or build in the traditional carvel method.

gilberj
12-18-2012, 02:34 PM
I am not overly fussed......
If someone wants to call a single masted vessel a sloop or a cutter which is at odds with my interpretation who cares? certainly not I.
Very often the appellation is made by a marketing person, who may or may not really know much about boats.
Similarly I'll not fuss over the difference between a ketch or a yawl.
I have seen, here on the WBF, confusion between a ketch and a schooner....that is getting a little questionable.
To the average person on the street a sailboat might be a one, two or three master.

Definitions are a way we differentiate and organize stuff. There are times in our language that precise definitions are necessary, but I am not sure recreational boating even comes close to being critical. We, the nautically obsessed could argue about the minute if we care to.
200 odd years ago a cutter was used for coastal patrol, job specific, not rig specific. Cutters at that time could be cutter rigged, or schooners, or other rigs. They tended to be less burdensome and faster and handier than a coasting cargo vessel. A cutter was also one of the larger ships boats carried by a larger man’o’war, and were not cutter rigged generally. Today Coast Guard vessels are still referred to as cutters

Bob Cleek
12-18-2012, 02:38 PM
Thanks for the nice photos. I've misplaced the ones I took back then. I wonder if it's the same Charis Vertue mentioned by Tom MacNaughton here. http://www.macnaughtongroup.com/tom.htm

I believe so. IIRC, it was he who purchased it from Peter Pike shortly after Peter singlehanded her over from England. She ended up on the East Coast, while Peter lived in Ross, Marin County, CA. Peter put her up for sale rather than ship her across the US to SF Bay.

gilberj
12-18-2012, 02:43 PM
Years ago I had an English gaff cutter similar to the Virtue. Mine was designed by N.Warrington-Smithe and called a Falmouth 26. She was designed as a gaff sloop. The simple addition of a bow sprit made her a cutter. FWIW she had enough weather helm the extended sailplan forward was mainly welcome.

Bob Cleek
12-18-2012, 02:55 PM
I am not overly fussed......
If someone wants to call a single masted vessel a sloop or a cutter which is at odds with my interpretation who cares? certainly not I.
Very often the appellation is made by a marketing person, who may or may not really know much about boats.
Similarly I'll not fuss over the difference between a ketch or a yawl.
I have seen, here on the WBF, confusion between a ketch and a schooner....that is getting a little questionable.
To the average person on the street a sailboat might be a one, two or three master.

Definitions are a way we differentiate and organize stuff. There are times in our language that precise definitions are necessary, but I am not sure recreational boating even comes close to being critical. We, the nautically obsessed could argue about the minute if we care to.
200 odd years ago a cutter was used for coastal patrol, job specific, not rig specific. Cutters at that time could be cutter rigged, or schooners, or other rigs. They tended to be less burdensome and faster and handier than a coasting cargo vessel. A cutter was also one of the larger ships boats carried by a larger man’o’war, and were not cutter rigged generally. Today Coast Guard vessels are still referred to as cutters

Quite so, Gilbert, but the Vertue is an extremely famous design and, with the exception of Andrillot, the hull form prototype, which carried an entirely different rig than the rest of the Vertues, the Vertue design has been known as a "Vertue sloop" (and please, not as a "Vertue 25!") for the last seventy-five years or so. There are only maybe three "Vertue cutters," Andrillot and a couple of Vertues carrying Andrillot's gaff rig. The rest are "Vertue sloops." WB, being the authoritative publication it is, and having published in the past excellent features on the Vertue design, committed an incredible faux pas calling the design a "Vertue cutter," and on the cover, no less. As for the builder/author of the article, well, he certainly should have known better, but then, I suppose we can't hold him to too high a standard of care, being as he was just another one of those "laminators." He does get some credit for admitting with 20-20 hindsight that cold molding turned out to be a lot more work than would carvel planking... and that his "laminated everything" construction approach resulted in his boat floating an inch below her lines. I found that surprising, given that he'd obviously not had to contend with the weight of the full framing structure as in the original carvel design. (The teak Vertues built to Lloyds' heavier scantlings are also somewhat over their designed displacement.) I expect that will have a negative impact on her sailing abilities, given the design's underwater lines. It will also create "backwash" in the self-bailing cockpit scuppers when heeled as they are unusually close to the designed waterline to begin with, the self-bailing cockpit being a later design addition. I found the performance difference remarkable when I gained about an inch aft when I repowered and got rid of a much too heavy Gray Marine 4-112, as have others after heavily loading their Vertues for long ocean voyages.

michigangeorge
12-18-2012, 03:22 PM
Thanks for the nice photos. I've misplaced the ones I took back then. I wonder if it's the same Charis Vertue mentioned by Tom MacNaughton here. http://www.macnaughtongroup.com/tom.htm

That's just the the best looking Vertue I've seen. So what would you call her with a jib-top set on that masthead stay?

RFNK
12-18-2012, 03:26 PM
A sailing yacht is not cutter rigged unless she has a bowsprit? I'm afraid that throws out almost all of Laurent Giles cutters. Etain, Channel Class, Maid of Malham, Brittany Class, Myth Of Malham, Gulvain, Sopranino, Wanderer III, Donella, and Treasure, to name a few. The Giles design list shows all Vertues (from #2-195) as Bermudan Sloop rigged with the exception of V1, Andrillot.

I prefer to keep things simple. Fore & Aft rigged, single masted, single fixed headstay is a sloop. Fore & aft rigged, single masted, two or more fixed headstays is a cutter. One version of the Vertue sailplan shows a single headstay in a 3/4 Bermudan rig, that's a sloop. I'm pretty sure I've seen Giles drawing of an alternative rig with two headstays, the so called "slutter", which (IMO) is some marketing guys term.......:D

Actually, no. There is at least one other listed with a cutter rig. I agree re the term 'slutter' - yuk!!
Rick

RFNK
12-18-2012, 03:31 PM
The design numbers differ because they were different designs. Andrillot, so-called "Vertue sail number 1" later, was a one-off design, as were the first few. People would come in and say, "I want a boat like Andrillot, but with..." Andrillot's underwater lines remained unchanged, but in the evolution of the design, first a strake was added at the sheer to provide a bit more headroom below, then an entirely new jib headed marconi rig was designed, being what is now the classic "Vertue" rig and sail plan, then a short doghouse was added to the coachroof, then a longer doghouse. Interior details similarly evolved. The later Vertues, the majority of which were built by Cheoy Lee, were constructed in teak on ipol to Lloyd's 100A1+ scantlings. The English built Vertues, such as by Moody's and Elkins' yards, primarily of mahogany on oak, were, I believe, built to the same scantlings, although I am uncertain whether they were Lloyds certified as were the Cheoy Lee vessels. All Vertues built were "bespoke," each being given a single license to build and number when the license issued, although Cheoy Lee may have built some on speculation for resale by US yacht brokerages in the early sixties.

If the Vertue in the article was built with a license to build (and I certainly hope it was or he can expect to be served with a lawsuit by Giles' successors in short order!), I expect that he used modified plans drawn up for cold molding construction. Over the years, Giles and Partners drew up construction plans for the Vertue in steel, cold molding and strip planked construction and when purchasing plans, you can pick your poison, or build in the traditional carvel method.

No need to call the lawyers, Firefly is listed on the Giles site.
Rick

WI-Tom
12-18-2012, 03:36 PM
As said, definitely not, and more so the case with the Vertue marconi rig. It generally doesn't have "double headsails" and the stays are not parallel, both being tacked at the stemhead. While it has a headstay running from the stem to the masthead and an inner stay running from the stem to the upper spreaders (where the running backstays are also attached), the inner stay is detachable via a lever and is generallly thrown off, as are the running backstays, when sail is carried on the headstay. This turns the rig into a masthead sloop and avoids having to pass the headsail between the stays when tacking. In heavier wind, the inner stay is attached and the running backstays employed, and the rig becomes something like a 3/4 sloop rig. Some owners have tried moving the inner stay back some to create a double headsail rig, or have flown a high-footed "Yankee" jib together with the jib set on the inner stay with mixed results. The advantage of a double headsail rig being, of course, that it is easier to shorten sail in heavy weather.

Thanks for the info. I'm generally too lazy to deal with headsails, so it's nice to hear from people who know.

Tom

Bob Cleek
12-18-2012, 05:05 PM
That's just the the best looking Vertue I've seen. So what would you call her with a jib-top set on that masthead stay?

A Vertue sloop flying her jib-top.... :D

Actually, the jib topsail was never part of Giles' Vertue rig and if you see one, it's something adopted by the owner of the vessel. Giles' sail inventory was a main, storm trisail, 120 genoa, 100 headsail, jib (on the inner stay), storm (or "spitfire") jib and spinnaker. The plans indicate that the cockpit lockers are "sail lockers," this being what has to be one of the funniest jokes in all of naval architecture! Normally, the forepeak of a Vertue will be stuffed solid with sails, which have to be stowed on deck if you want to sleep up there. Most owners prefer the saloon berths, which are more comfortable and easier to get in and out of than the vee berths forward, anyway.

Bob Cleek
12-18-2012, 05:23 PM
That's just the the best looking Vertue I've seen. So what would you call her with a jib-top set on that masthead stay?

http://www.vertueowners.org.uk/used%20Pages%20%20Picture/monie_sail.jpg

Yes indeed. She does lack full standing headroom below and her coachroof does not extend beyond the mast. The doghouses, long or short versions, with the coachroof extending well forward of the mast, permit full standing headroom in the main saloon and "head down" headroom through into the forward cabin, a later, but early, modification. I believe that Charis, with her mast stepped through the deck, is one of the early Vertues with a keel stepped mast. One of the unique engineering features of what became the standard Vertue design was that the mast was stepped on the coachroof top. "Vertue XXXV" was famously the first boat without a keel stepped mast to cross the Atlantic. This feature permits a straight passage unimpeded by the mast in the middle of the cabin.

The coachroof stepped mast is accomplished by an stout boxed steel ring or hoop running from the keel up the sides and beneath the coachroof which transfers the mast step load to the keel as shown (barely) in the cutaway drawing in the post above.

I found it odd that the author of the WB Vertue construction article failed to mention this feature, which certainly would have had to have been a memorable part of his construction process. If he left it out without the designers having made allowances in the cold molded construction plans, perhaps owing to some erroneous belief in the "strength" of his formed expoxy/plywood construction approach, I doubt the vessel will stand up to rough conditions as well as the Vertue is famous for doing. They are, however, over-engineered like all get-out, so perhaps it will be fine.

Tom Lathrop
12-18-2012, 05:41 PM
Ah definitions, definitions, they all seem to wind down into private judgement or worse, just opinion.

One thing is certain on the subject of the Vertue though and that is, the class recently lost a member of longstanding. My good friend Ed Boden, who made a circumnavigation in KITTYWAKE, died two weeks ago. He is listed in WoodenBoat's last issue but, as is their habit, they misspelled his name as Bowden. Ed was 85 and took quite a few years to complete his circumnavigation to suit his style. He was an aeronautical engineer at JPL on the space program before dropping out to sail. He was also a member of the Explorer's Club where he was recently invited to deliver a talk in Los Angeles. My local cadre of singlehanded circumnavigator friends was depleted by two this year, Jim Brown having died in July. Jim made his voyage in a San Juan 30. Not an ideal sea boat to some eyes but Jim was a self sufficient guy and able to make things work. Our local boating argumentations will miss both of these one of a kind guys and their unending stories.

Yeadon
12-18-2012, 05:46 PM
I'm just glad we're no longer arguing the whole open boat "ketch v. yawl" discussion, (as that has been soundly settled), and that we've moved on to this worthy topic.

Bob Cleek
12-18-2012, 06:25 PM
Ah definitions, definitions, they all seem to wind down into private judgement or worse, just opinion.

One thing is certain on the subject of the Vertue though and that is, the class recently lost a member of longstanding. My good friend Ed Boden, who made a circumnavigation in KITTYWAKE, died two weeks ago. He is listed in WoodenBoat's last issue but, as is their habit, they misspelled his name as Bowden. Ed was 85 and took quite a few years to complete his circumnavigation to suit his style. He was an aeronautical engineer at JPL on the space program before dropping out to sail. He was also a member of the Explorer's Club where he was recently invited to deliver a talk in Los Angeles. My local cadre of singlehanded circumnavigator friends was depleted by two this year, Jim Brown having died in July. Jim made his voyage in a San Juan 30. Not an ideal sea boat to some eyes but Jim was a self sufficient guy and able to make things work. Our local boating argumentations will miss both of these one of a kind guys and their unending stories.

Sad to hear that. Boden and his Kittywake contributed much to the Vertue legend. I had no idea he was 85, but then, I first saw his picture aboard Kittiwake forty years ago, wearing a top hat, so... He was supposedly quite the character and a real fun guy. I wish I'd met him.

TR
12-18-2012, 07:06 PM
A number of definers here are totally missing the important and traditional aspect that a cutter has her mast further aft, even dead amidships, than a sloop. A cutter also has a forestaysail and jib. And some old cutters have a flying jib. A sloop might have more than one jib or have but one, but the mast is distinctly forward.

So with masts stepped aft of midships these are cutters? It's all good fun.....|;)

http://www.nps.gov/safr/historyculture/images/ac45_two_556px.jpg

dredbob
12-18-2012, 07:43 PM
To be a true cutter, the bowsprit must reef or house inboard. The fore stay goes to the stemhead, the topmast (outer) stay to the bowsprit and is able to be brought inboard to be handled. Though the housing bowsprit is not so common anymore, to me, the forestay must land on the stemhead, and there must be a bowsprit, if we are to call the vessel a cutter. Anything else is just a multi-headsail sloop of some form.

And Slutters, Cutter-Ketches, etc, are just the ignorant babble of marketing bozos with no knowledge of nor respect for nautical tradition.

Bob

Canoeyawl
12-18-2012, 11:23 PM
There are all sorts of "Cutters"

http://www.navytimes.com/xml/news/2008/02/coastguard_bear_birthday_080204w/080204_bear2_800.JPG

Graeme Forrest
12-19-2012, 12:28 AM
The discussion involving mast position and bowsprit presence is a peculiarly American feature. Since about 1900 on the other side of the Atlantic and in the south west Pacific the accepted sloop/cutter definitions have been well defined. One mast, one headsail = sloop. One mast, two or more headsails = cutter. Mast position and bowsprit irrelavent. A "Friendship Sloop" seems peculiar as it is clearly a cutter :d. Also a "two headsail sloop" is idiotic nonsense:D.

gilberj
12-19-2012, 02:00 AM
there appears to be regional differences as well.......oh and you are??

Ian McColgin
12-19-2012, 05:14 AM
TR has some legitimate fun at my expence. That's what I get for leaving out another key balancing factor - in cutters J is significantly larger than in sloops, often equal to or greater than the mainsail sail area. The big cats pictured are sloop rigged with a smaller portioned J.

It is no one factor. Especially, it's not the one factor of a bowsprit, houseable or not. No one, for example, would call a Thames barge a cutter even though they have retractable sprits.

Paul Pless
12-19-2012, 07:14 AM
So with masts stepped aft of midships these are cutters? It's all good fun.....|;)

http://www.nps.gov/safr/historyculture/images/ac45_two_556px.jpgNow you're just being silly. Those aren't reefing bowsprits! :d

wizbang 13
12-19-2012, 08:02 AM
If a vessel falls off to STBD when backing the main to STBD,she is a cutter,if she backs to port,she be a sloop.A mile long bowsprit with a hundred jobs will not make a sloop a cutter.

Bob Cleek
12-19-2012, 12:17 PM
Call a rig whatever you want, but when a vessel's designer calls it a "sloop," it's really foolish to call it a cutter.

WI-Tom
12-19-2012, 12:29 PM
Call a rig whatever you want, but when a vessel's designer calls it a "sloop," it's really foolish to call it a cutter.

Unless, of course, it is a cutter.

Whatever that means...

Tom

WI-Tom
12-19-2012, 12:29 PM
The discussion involving mast position and bowsprit presence is a peculiarly American feature. Since about 1900 on the other side of the Atlantic and in the south west Pacific the accepted sloop/cutter definitions have been well defined. One mast, one headsail = sloop. One mast, two or more headsails = cutter. Mast position and bowsprit irrelavent. A "Friendship Sloop" seems peculiar as it is clearly a cutter :d. Also a "two headsail sloop" is idiotic nonsense:D.

Woo-hoo! I'm right again!

Tom

Ian McColgin
12-19-2012, 01:24 PM
No you're not. Those in the southwest Pacific are simply confused, especially if they fancy the Friendship a cutter. Two headsail equals cutter is an amazingly ahistorical misunderstanding of the history of sail boat design and sail plan evolution, probably brought on by too many fiberglass Perry designs and their tupperware imitations.

gilberj
12-19-2012, 02:19 PM
The Friendship sloop is one of those odd ones that are hard to peg. The mast is well forward, but there is multiple headsails some of which are set from the bowsprit. I'd call it a sloop anyway, partly because that is what the conventional name states, but also because the mast location is clearly well forward. I still think some sloops have a mast further aft without necessarily becoming a cutter.

TR
12-19-2012, 02:36 PM
According to The Oxford Companion to Ships and the Sea......Cutter....A term which embraces a variety of small vessels. (1) small, decked ship with one mast and bowsprit, with a gaff mainsail on a boom, a square yard and topsail, and two jibs or a jib and staysail. The rig was introduced about 1740. These vessels were relatively fast on the wind and were employed mainly as auxiliaries to the war fleets and in the preventive service against smugglers. They were armed with up to 10 four-pounder guns. Later they were widely used in the Trinity House pilot service, and Trinity House still class their steam/diesel light tenders and pilot vessels as cutters. (2) A clinker built ship's boat, length 24-32 feet, pulling eight to fourteen oars and rigged originally with two masts with a dipping lug foresail and a standing lug mainsail, giving way in the 20th century to a single mast with a de Horsey rig of a loose-footed gaff mainsail and fore staysail. (3) A sailing yacht with, in much of the world, a mainsail and two foresails: but in the USA such vessels are called sloops, and the term cutter refers only to the old-fashioned rig where such vessels had a very long bowsprit. (4) A steam vessel of about 2000 tons in the US Navy.....

Nothing there about mast location?......;)

WI-Tom
12-19-2012, 03:27 PM
According to The Oxford Companion to Ships and the Sea......Cutter....(3) A sailing yacht with, in much of the world, a mainsail and two foresails: but in the USA such vessels are called sloops, and the term cutter refers only to the old-fashioned rig where such vessels had a very long bowsprit.

And now I'm right again! This is fun.

Tom

Ian McColgin
12-19-2012, 04:31 PM
Definitions do shift with time and place. Even today, slavish adherance to one way of looking at it leads to such ahistorical anomolies as thinking the Friendship or the Noank are ‘cutters.’ A not bad discussion can be found in Wikipedia:

The cutter is one of several types of sailboats. Traditionally the sloop rig was a rig with a single mast located forward of 70% of the length of the sailplan. In this traditional definition a sloop could have multiple jibs on a fixed bowsprit.[citation needed]
Cutters had a rig with a single mast more centrally located, which could vary from 50% to 70% of the length of the sailplan, with multiple headsails and a running bowsprit.[citation needed] A mast located aft of 50% would be considered a mast aft rig.
Somewhere in the 1950s or 1960s there was a shift in these definitions such that a sloop only flew one headsail and a cutter had multiple headsails and mast position became irrelevant. In this modern idiom, a cutter is a sailing vessel with more than one head sail and one mast. Cutters carry a staysail directly in front of the mast, set from the forestay. A traditional vessel would also normally have a bowsprit to carry one or more jibs from its end via jibstay(s) on travelers (to preserve the ability to reef the bowsprit). In modern vessels the jib may be set from a permanent stay fixed to the end of a fixed (non-reeving) bowsprit, or directly to the stem fitting of the bow itself. In these cases, that may be referred to as the forestay, and the inner one, which will be less permanent in terms of keeping the mast up, may be called the stays'l stay. A sloop carries only one head sail, called either the foresail or jib.[citation needed].
The cutter rig, especially a gaff rig version where the sails aft of the mast were divided between a mainsail below the gaff and a topsail above, was useful for sailing with small crews as the total sail area was divided into smaller individual sails. These could be managed without the need for large crews, winches, or complex tackles, making the cutter especially suitable for pilot, customs and coast guard duties. For example, a pilot cutter may only have two people on board for its outward trip—the pilot to be delivered to a ship and an assistant who had to sail the cutter back to port single-handed. The cutter sailing rig became so ubiquitous for these tasks that the modern-day motorised vessels now engaged in these duties are known as 'cutters'.
[edit]

Breakaway
12-19-2012, 04:42 PM
Perhaps etymology holds the answer, or at least a clue. Do any of you erudite sailors know the origins of the words " sloop" and "cutter?"

Enjoying this thread.

Kevin

gilberj
12-19-2012, 05:04 PM
From Wikipedia
A sloop (from Dutch (http://forum.woodenboat.com/wiki/Dutch_language) sloep, in turn from French (http://forum.woodenboat.com/wiki/French_language) chaloupe (http://forum.woodenboat.com/wiki/Chaloupe))

Canoeyawl
12-19-2012, 07:51 PM
Revenue Cutter replica

http://azbw.com/photos/Tall_Ship_Californian.jpg

Canoeyawl
12-19-2012, 07:56 PM
A ships cutter
(http://www.nelsonsnavy.co.uk/broadside4.html)
http://www.nelsonsnavy.co.uk/jolly.jpg

Canoeyawl
12-19-2012, 07:57 PM
Really big cutter

http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3025/2697105703_8811c0f51a_z.jpg

Canoeyawl
12-19-2012, 08:05 PM
steam cutter
(http://navalwarfare.blogspot.com/2007/12/uss-marietta-pg-15.html)
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_lEtkuz8ScYM/R16USTbjo2I/AAAAAAAAAo4/Dsk8HW5lP7k/s320/USS+Marietta+4.jpg

Oldad
12-20-2012, 07:50 AM
And still even more cutters
https://www.scissorsonline.com/

Paul Pless
12-20-2012, 07:52 AM
Perhaps etymology holds the answer, or at least a clue. Do any of you erudite sailors know the origins of the words " sloop" and "cutter?" slight drift, but have ever you looked into the etymology of schooner and catboat?

Ian McColgin
12-20-2012, 08:07 AM
Yep. Both terms shrouded in myth, mystery and misrepresentation. All the usual folk tales ("See how she scoons!" "Nimble as a cat") share but one trait - shere fiction. There is no reliable verified etymology for either term.

michigangeorge
12-20-2012, 08:39 AM
My catboat scoons right along CUTTING a nice wake - makes her a cutter!

Breakaway
12-20-2012, 09:26 AM
http://forum.woodenboat.com/image.php?u=29628&dateline=1323819637 (http://forum.woodenboat.com/member.php?29628-gilberj) gilberj (http://forum.woodenboat.com/member.php?29628-gilberj)
http://forum.woodenboat.com/images/statusicon/user-offline.png Senior Member


Join DateAug 2010LocationBC CoastPosts786

http://forum.woodenboat.com/images/icons/icon1.png Re: Shame on you, WoodenBoat!
From Wikipedia
A sloop (from Dutch (http://forum.woodenboat.com/wiki/Dutch_language) sloep, in turn from French (http://forum.woodenboat.com/wiki/French_language) chaloupe (http://forum.woodenboat.com/wiki/Chaloupe))






Yes..so what do those words mean? What are their roots? We are an international forum. Anyone?

Kevin

Canoeyawl
12-20-2012, 10:08 AM
A skiff could be used as a yawl boat for a cutting out expedition.

Hwyl
12-20-2012, 10:29 AM
I read the article last night, seems like a great boat. It would have been nice to have more build details. They packed a lot of miles into a short time. I'd hae left the boat in Portugal, and flown back when funds permitted for more European cruising.

Bob Cleek
12-20-2012, 12:49 PM
Well, things being what they are, perhaps we should start calling the Vertue a "minature Bristol Channel Pilot Cutter." Fools being what they are, it would probably increase the value of them! It worked for Lyle Hess, so why not for Laurent Giles? It seems now you can call anything a "Bristol Channel Pilot Cutter" and the wooden boat market wets its pants. (Not that they aren't a great historical workboat design that translates well into a yacht, I mean, really...)

Hwyl
12-20-2012, 12:55 PM
. (Not that they aren't a great historical workboat design that translates well into a yacht, I mean, really...)

Not to mention Welsh.

RFNK
12-20-2012, 01:40 PM
Ah! Don't mention the Welsh!
Rick

johnno
12-20-2012, 05:52 PM
It's fairly obvious that non-scientific terms to describe such things as fish, boats, or trees as used by the thousands of communities across the world over thousands of years will inevitably be grossly inconsistent. Anyone who chooses to get on their high horse about the usages of such terms is on a very sticky wicket. On the other hand, those who are interested in exploring the variations in such terminology make for great entertainment. :d

RFNK
12-21-2012, 04:17 AM
Since we're talking about extra sails up forward, may I pose this question - is clutter a virtue?

Rick

gilberj
12-21-2012, 11:24 AM
Haven't a clew....

Ian McColgin
12-21-2012, 11:32 AM
Perhaps you're thinking along the wrong tack.

Paul G.
12-21-2012, 12:13 PM
For us down south, a yacht with a single mast and one headsail is a sloop. A yacht with two permanently fixed headstays which can fly 2 headsails at the same time is a cutter(usually the foresail is a high cut yankee). Generally such a boat has the mast set further back for sail balance, but not always. Easy peasy japaneasy.

As a sidenote we have a had a few vertues turn up on our local auction site ranging from 15 to 25K, not so popular here as we have about a zillion wheelbarrows of the sea in the form of well built glass H-28's in the same pricebracket, often very well cared for and fitted out.

David W Pratt
12-21-2012, 12:14 PM
Didn't Maynard Bray get his gig through pedantic criticism?

Bob Cleek
12-21-2012, 12:54 PM
Didn't Maynard Bray get his gig through pedantic criticism?

Ha! Maynard Bray can't hold a candle to L.Francis Herreshoff's contributions to the old Rudder Magazine in that department!

Is it any wonder both Bray's and Herreshoff's have such an enduring audience?

Let's not let thread drift get the best of us. When classifying rigs, as in similar nomenclature, there will always be a spectrum full of shades of gray. There will always be those who will argue one way or the other, usually because they feel the need rather than because any need exists. Nevertheless, when a design has, in this instance for some seventy years, been designated, as it was by its designer, as a sloop. a sloop it is, for whatever reason. Recognize that were there some error or controversy about the accuracy of the designer's use of the term "sloop," convention would have overcome even the designer's erroneous designation over the years. The standard Vertue rig is a sloop. (And no, while it may be possible to fly two headsails, it was never designed to do so.) For an authoritative source like WB to call it a "Vertue cutter," when the term "Vertue sloop" is ubiquitous throughout the knowledgeable sailing community, is an eggregious error that betrays sloppy editorial supervision and jeopaprdizes the publication's well-earned reputation for accuracy. We can grit our teeth and endure when the popular media refers to the "prow of the ship" when describing the bow, or blathers on about "tall ships" and the like, it's quite another thing to see this in a specialty publication addressing the finer points of the subject matter. Although in the auto world there is confusion over the term "coupe" similar to that of "cutter," (two doors or four?) would you ever see Hot Rod magazine call a "deuce coupe" a "deuce roadster?"

I've been a big fan of WoodenBoat over the years and remain so, but I do think that it benefits such a publication when its readers yank its chain whenever it drifts too far afield. In this case, what could have been a very informative article, particularly for the non-traditional construction crowd, and indeed an opportunity to explore the transitional aspects of applying alternative construction methods to established classic designs, ended up a poorly edited and superficially written, though beautifully illustrated, fluff piece. (Sort of like Playboy's "Girls of Wherever" pictorials, as compared to their prose articles, each worthy of a look, but the latter being of far more enduring interest than the former.) So, now that the chain has been yanked, it is proper to release the tension and continue walking the dog.

http://static.ddmcdn.com/gif/little-deuce-coupe-hot-rod-2.jpg

Ian McColgin
12-21-2012, 01:57 PM
I see that Mr. Cleek, like myself, has reached the age where we get Playboy for the articles and WoodenBoat for the pictures. Really.

Paul Pless
12-21-2012, 02:17 PM
Sad. . .

gilberj
12-21-2012, 03:56 PM
I can see that some of us are in Bob’s clique. Others, vocally represented by a cadre of antipodean savages who think cutting out generations of technical evolution of definitions is somehow acceptable. I normally expect the American cousins to make egregious simplifications for no good reason such as color instead of colour, or harbor instead of harbour. In this I stand with the American cousins, and reject the arguments of the unwashed, who would simplify and sterilize this mystical art into an unrecognizable mass.
Oh I would at least check out the pictures in Playboy….

BrianM
12-21-2012, 06:42 PM
My take......
A single masted boat with two headsails but no bowsprit is a two headsail sloop.
A single masted boat with one headsail on a bowsprit is a sloop.
To be a cutter a single masted boat must have two headsails and a bow sprit.
Andrillot was a gaff cutter with a bow sprit and two headsails. Most Virtues had no bowsprit and were not cutters. Cutters generally have the mast further aft than sloops, but some sloops have the mast well aft as well.

A

To further complicate this... I understand that boats with 2 headsails and bowsprits (but fixed bowsprits), were defined as "Sloops" in colonial America, but vessels with reefing bowsprits were defined as "Cutters".

Canoeyawl
12-22-2012, 01:17 PM
I do think that it benefits such a publication when its readers yank its chain whenever it drifts too far afield.

Actually I think it is just the opposite - controversy attracts attention and that in itself sells magazines (or television programing, witness fox news).

Do you really think that was an accident or a mistake? We are working on 4 pages now on this thread alone, magazines thrive on controversy.

wizbang 13
12-22-2012, 04:09 PM
Hear about the new "playboy"for married men?every month,same chick.

Oldad
12-22-2012, 05:49 PM
Hah

flyingfishjack
12-26-2012, 03:25 PM
Vertue response from S/V Flying Fish
I am writing this as a somewhat delayed response to Mr. Cleek’s criticism of my article. Preoccupation with work, travel and most recently a power outage, have kept me from responding sooner.
First I see no good reason beyond the theatrical to slam a fine publication such as WoodenBoat magazine for anything said by me in my article. I accept all responsibility for all statements made. I do not claim to be a nautical historian I sought to provide some background information on the Vertue class. The first mention encountered was in the study plans sent to me by Laurent Giles Naval Architects, Ltd stating clearly in English on page 1 that Andrillot, the forerunner of the Vertue class, “…was conceived as a miniature Bristol Channel Pilot boat.”Additional research turned up the same information. I saw no reason to discount this or pursue the issue further.
As far as describing the rig as a cutter, I have largely considered this design as somewhat ambiguous and have often referred my boat as either a sloop or a cutter. I generally view it as being somewhere in between. Running off with stays’l poled out to windward and jib set to leeward can seem unlike a sloop. Even Giles must have seen this design as somewhat ambiguous as he allowed the term “slutter” to be attached to this rig, a clear conjunction of the words sloop and cutter. For simplicity in this article, I chose the latter term. I generally have shied away from use of the term “slutter”as I feel it an inappropriate term to describe a refined lady. At any rate I am not terribly hung up on the description one way or the other. You may call my boat a sloop or a “slutter” and I will not be offended.
I do, however, take offense to your suggestion that I do not know my craft. I have spent 32 years, more than half my life, engaged in wooden boat carpentry as an occupation, contributing to some of the finest wooden yachts built in this country in the last few decades.
I seem to detect a certain note of snobbery from Mr. Cleek in regards to cold-molded construction as being in some way an inferior method of building. I have now built and sailed wooden boats constructed in both traditional and cold-molded methods and I hold each in high regard. Laurent Giles has been described as being a pioneer of cold-molded construction, designing ocean racing yachts such as Myth of Malham, Stormvogel, and Blue Leopard. Boats built to Giles’designs by John Guzzwell deserve particular attention as well as his book Modern Wooden Yacht Construction.
My boat,Flying Fish, proudly carries the hull number 230. Rights and permission to build were bought and paid for. The WEST System construction plan from Laurent Giles design was followed for hull construction with many additional details added of my own convention. Other Giles drawings dating back to the 1950’s were consulted in the rig and deck construction.
Mr. Cleek’s assertion that I built my boat with a strategy of simply laminating everything for strength and that I must have missed something in providing support of the coach roof stepped mast is far off the mark. He cited a steel box work framing to support the load of the mast. From my experience the use of steel anywhere in construction of a wooden hull is a tragic mistake. This was a lesson instilled in me the hard way. My former boat, a traditionally built carvel planked sailboat, employed steel floor and knees. After many years of hard service the metal members and fastenings became deteriorated, destroying the adjacent wood along with it. In brief, any place the designer had decided it should be strong it was found to be week. I ultimately replaced 30% of the frames and planking in the hull; no small task.
Instead I favored a wooden framework as follows: 2 amply sized cabin top beams were constructed and placed against the fore and aft faces of a bulkhead located directly beneath the mast. To the outboard ends of these beams hanging knees were fit to the bulkhead, cabin sides and let into the deck and carlin. Behind this a pair of lodging knees were fit to both sides of the bulkhead then to the carlin and sheer clamp, distributing any lateral load to the deck and the hull. Frames were fastened to the aft side of the bulkhead and a 3-inch iroko floor timer was attached to the forward side of the bulkhead. Stout mahogany compression posts were fit to the bulkhead on either side of a passageway through it and attached to the beam overhead and the floor timber below. The compression posts were further reinforced by hanging locker framing forward and bunk sides aft. The whole arrangement serves to convey the load of the mast more or less evenly through cabin top and sides, deck, hull, floor timber and keel. Sailing hard through at times adverse offshore conditions, I haven’t had so much as a squeak coming from this area. Similar attention has been given to construction throughout this vessel. After two Atlantic crossings and 12,000 miles of sailing, apart from a rather annoying stuffing box leak, she has not leaked a drop through hull, deck or cabin. I do not share the offered opinion that this boat will be short lived.
I am somewhat mystified by a fellow Vertue owners attitude. On our Atlantic trip we were fortunate to have met several British former or present Vertue owners who displayed an immediate camaraderie and an active interest in our vessel. We felt welcomed into a fleet of these remarkable little boats. No one seemed interested in quibbling over the finer points of rig description.

RFNK
12-26-2012, 04:26 PM
Welcome to the forum - and to the club of owners of boats declared unworthy by this fellow who appears to have never actually lifted any tools in anger (so to speak) and yet consistently advises all who care to attend, on the way it should all be done, and from what materials it must be built.

Rick

Ian McColgin
12-26-2012, 05:23 PM
Good r eply in the spirited tradition of not only this Forum but, if you read issues from the glorious preinternet day, the WoodenBoat community. We are a people of strong opinions and pungent personalities united by a love of all things WoodenBoat and we argue as only family can. And really, just because Andrilott was a cutter, given her mast placement, does not make the main run of Virtues any such. They are sloops.

And while there are sluts ashore, there are no slutters afloat. The term is just a way of getting the unwashed to quiet down.

RFNK
12-26-2012, 05:32 PM
It's Vertue. V E R T U E. FCOL

Rick

Hwyl
12-26-2012, 06:47 PM
Welcome aboard FlyingFish J. You built a nice boat.

johnno
12-26-2012, 10:31 PM
Flyingfishjack, firstly, thanks for going to the great trouble to pen the WB article in the first place, and secondly now to add your response here.

Whilst I am still awaiting my digital copy of WB, let alone a hard copy, to arrive in Australia, I can assure you that when one or the other arrives, I shall now enjoy your article twicefold on account of finding out a little more of your background and experience. In particular, I was delighted to hear of your experience of the camaraderie amongst Vertue owners. I agree with you that it is somewhat mystifying that such camaraderie is not universal.

Carry on :)

RFNK
12-27-2012, 01:40 AM
John, I downloaded the new edition last week - are you sure you still can't get it?

Rick

rbgarr
12-27-2012, 05:00 PM
Yes, Charis is Vertue #4, an early cabin arrangement witihout the doghouse. A Californian named Peter Pike singlehanded her across the Atlantic in the early seventies. I sailed with him once on my boat. I learned a lot that day! Great fellow. Dunno what ever happened to him.

Charis:

http://www.vertueowners.org.uk/used%20Pages%20%20Picture/monie_sailplan.jpg

http://www.vertueowners.org.uk/used%20Pages%20%20Picture/monie_sail.jpg

I found the photo of the Charis I saw way back when. Perhaps a different boat, unless the cabin was changed at some point:
http://i49.tinypic.com/1gox1x.jpg

Boater14
12-27-2012, 08:47 PM
So....this is what it takes to bring Cleek,out of retirement?

Bob Cleek
12-28-2012, 04:23 PM
Vertue response from S/V Flying Fish
I am writing this as a somewhat delayed response to Mr. Cleek’s criticism of my article. Preoccupation with work, travel and most recently a power outage, have kept me from responding sooner.
First I see no good reason beyond the theatrical to slam a fine publication such as WoodenBoat magazine for anything said by me in my article. I accept all responsibility for all statements made. I do not claim to be a nautical historian I sought to provide some background information on the Vertue class. The first mention encountered was in the study plans sent to me by Laurent Giles Naval Architects, Ltd stating clearly in English on page 1 that Andrillot, the forerunner of the Vertue class, “…was conceived as a miniature Bristol Channel Pilot boat.”Additional research turned up the same information. I saw no reason to discount this or pursue the issue further.


Well, Jack, let me first tell you that I often employ hyperbole as a rhetorical device. Unfortuntely, the written word doesn't always convey humorous sarcasm as well as the spoken one. (I guess that's why they invented smilies. :D :D :D ) And I did enjoy your article notwithstanding. I have been one of WB's stauchest supporters since its first issue. As there is no such thing as "bad press," your article benefited the Vertue even if they did call it a cutter. Let me assure you that if you ever make it to the Left Coast, I'd be the first to provide you and Flying Fish with a warm welcome, a snug berth, and a cold beer.

Your description of the deck-stepped mast engineering is most fascinating. I wish your approach to solving that engineering problem had been in the article, since the deck stepped mast is one of the most famous of Giles' innovations on the Vertue. Humphrey Barton in Vertue XXXV made quite a stir being the first to cross the Atlantic with one. (Andrillot was a cutter with a keel stepped stick.) As you noted, iron is a royal pain anywere on a wooden boat. I've never seen any problem with the steel mast-step "rings," but the superflous iron floors apparently required by Lloyd's certification scantling rules are a problem for all of us whose boats have them, turning the bilge into a rusty soup bowl that must continually be cleaned and painted from time to time. Every boat is a collection of compromises, as they say.

As for plastic resin and wood composite construction of any type, it too, as with traditional mechanically fastened wooden construction, is a collection of compromises. As I recall, you yourself observed that traditional carvel planking would have entailed much less labor in construction and, as I expect you realize, cold molding may also require more labor should repairs ever be required, but such are the choices that must be made. We all have our opinions on plastic resin and wood composite construction. It's been discussed extensively here in what seems to have become the "Epoxy Boat Forum." (I haven't done a count, but my impression is that currently questions posted about epoxy construction techniques are running at least five to one over traditional construction techniques.) While I am a vocal proponent of traditional wooden construction techniques, I am sure that if it were not for epoxy and plywood, WB magazine wouldn't exist today, for there certainly does not seem to be enough interest in traditional wooden construction to to economically support such a publication. (A thought which also occurred to me when I first read issue number one. I hope to continue to be wrong!) Thanks for contributing to the continued existence of a publication we all greatly enjoy!

As for the "Bristol Channel Pilot Cutter" issue... I'm standing pat. I am aware that one of the Giles' study plans sales booklets, written maybe fifty years after the fact, perhaps by some ad man, does indeed state that Andrillot "“…was conceived as a miniature Bristol Channel Pilot boat.” However, I place much more reliance on the statements of Richard Kinnersley, the fellow who commissioned Andrillot, published during his lifetime. He was indeed quite familiar with the BCPC, having sailed with Roger Pinkney on Pinkney's first Dyarchy's, a BCPC. (Pinckney's second Dyarchy was designed as a yacht by Giles.) It is quite possible that his "eye" for the BCPC may have drawn him to the Lymington One Designs, which were in size and conformation quite similar to the Itchen Ferry fishing smacks, but with lines which were not unlike the much larger BCPCs. Kinnersley liked the looks of a Lymington One Design Giles had drawn. Kinnersley himself says that he asked Giles to draw him a Lymington One Design "with the lines drawn out a little" and the result was Andrillot. Thus, to put a finer point on it, the Vertue is a slightly stretched out Lymington One Design, which, as perhaps Giles' ad man recognized, doesn't sound half as sexy as a "minature Bristol Channel Pilot Cutter."

You will find what is close to the definitive history of the Vertue design at http://www.indrans.com/home/vertue-myths-facts.aspx. As they say, "myths and facts," because on the face of the web page they repeat the "myth" that "the Vertue was conceived as a minature Bristol Channel Pilot Cutter." They conveniently provide us with a citation to the sourch of this tid bit, the Giles study plans booklet. However, if one reads the entire series on the Vertue published by Classic Boat (URLs on the web page referenced above), they will hear the story of the Vertue's creation, "from the horse's mouth," as it were. This well illustrates the reason I took exception to what I considered sloppy editing in the latest issue of WB. Once errors make their way into print (let alone, God forbid, the internet!), they have a way becoming perpetuated, often without citation to their source. This is particularly frustrating to those who must look to published material for historical research. Here we have a classic example of an inaccurate statement made up of whole cloth, that the Vertue design was simply a scaled down BCPC, which has been published and republished, with citation as in the web site, and without, as in the latest issue of WB. The more the error is repeated, the more it is believed and repeated, particularly by those who see "no reason to discount this or pursue the issue further." While the inspiration for the Vertue's lines is of relatively little historical importance, we need not look far to encounter any number of historical factual errors of consequence. Those who study extinct workboat types, for instance, must forever worry whether or not Howard Chapelle was embellishing the story or "filling in the blanks" when drawing the lines of an extinct type based on little else than half a rotting hulk uncovered by the WPA's Historic American Merchant Marine Survey. Historical research is often stymied by contemporary newspaper accounts of a named vessel being described as having different rigs. One is left to wonder if the historical record is referencing different vessels or merely the same vessel with different rigs, or simply an ignorant writer's error. It is not unusual for the same name to be carried by several vessels and more frequently, the same vessel often did have different rigs at different times. (The Charles W. Morgan is a good example, being launched ship rigged and later being rerigged as a bark.) Call it picky, but those of us with an interest in such trivia are too often frustrated by such inaccuracies.

Please don't take my "review" as personally as it seems you may have. It wasn't personal at all. I did call it a "fluff piece" and "boat porn," but, to continue the metaphor, few of us have female counterparts who could withstand the scrutiny given a centerfold, but we love them all the same.

Fair winds!

keyhavenpotterer
12-29-2012, 07:50 AM
These are the Lymington L class that predated the Vertue if anyone's interested. 24ft,

http://www.yachtsnet.co.uk/archives/lymington-l-class/lymington-l-class.htm


These are Andrillot's lines:-

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_1dwwFeF5s4M/TSsnsfawGfI/AAAAAAAAAD4/Ky_vVwPwzdc/s1600/AndrillotP1.jpg

The pre war Vertues had a prettier profile but less space and freeboard.

http://www.viking-boats.com/Pdf/Vertue.pdf

Vertues are still made, in grp, at Bossoms Boatyard, with less tumblehome and slightly greater freeboard still.

http://www.bossoms.com/launches-dinghies-yachts/vertue-ii.html

Elkins yard is (just) still there: they just sold off alot of land for waterside development. The cut out into Christchurch river is tiny, incredible the boats that passed out through the cut there. Proper old school place last time I was in there.

Vertue's are arguably a completely different ship to Itchen Ferries, but I don't wish to go there. Interestingly Hess often talked about the Falmouth Pilot boats, but his boats are descendents of Itchen Ferries in plan and line.

Ed

Bob Cleek
12-29-2012, 01:58 PM
While I have read in several instances where the Vertue owed its inspiration to the Itchen Ferries, to which the Lymington One Designs do appear to resemble if waterline photos are any indication, I would give Dick Kinnersley's account of his requesting Giles to build him a slightly larger Lymington One Design suitable for cruising indisputable credibility on the point. While I have no hands-on experience of the Itchen Ferries, I did once (very briefly) co-own Hess's "Renegade," the "Serrafyn" prototype (a friend and I saved her from the knackers and found her a home). If she was in plan and line a descendant of the Itchen Ferries, then I can confirm there is no chance of any similarity between the Vertue and an Itchen Ferry smack, as Hess's "Renegade/Serrafyn" design is entirely different from the Vertue!

Graeme Forrest
12-29-2012, 04:29 PM
It may be of interest that when Eric Hiscock approached Laurent Giles re the design of a new "Wanderer" he was shown the "Andrillot" design. He had them slightly reduce the beam and increase the draft to compensate. The reason being that at the time builder's quotes were based on Thames Measurement tonnage, a formula which heavily penalised beam, and a few inches less beam made a significant difference to the quoted cost. Note "Wanderer 11" successor "Wanderer 111" was also rather narrow for the same reason and when Giles produced a stock plan "Wanderer" class the boat had about 6" more beam than "Wanderer 111".

gilberj
12-29-2012, 07:55 PM
I do not have the history, but the Itchen Ferry smacks were beamier, and flatter on the floor and not as deep. I do not see much similarity to the Vertue/Wanderer clan. I think the inspiration most likely is South Coast of England boats of Devon and Cornwall which were deeper. There were a number of generally similar boats being designed around the same time.
I owned one of these many years ago. The Falmouth 26 was designed by Nigel Warrington-Smyth after the war. She was the same length as the Vertue, with about a foot more beam, designed as a gaff sloop. I never got to sail with a Vertue, but I suspect the Vertue would be substantially better going to windward, more from the finer bow than the rig. I know I liked the room in Kotick better (I visited aboard several Vertues over the years), and suspect she was a better all round seaboat.
There was of course Harrison-Butler, the Deben boats and others.

flyingfishjack
12-30-2012, 10:47 AM
Well, Bob, too bad Laurent Giles isn't still around to settle this controversy as to his inspiration once and for all. I surely would have liked to have met the man.
Thanks for your offer of a snug berth and a cold beer. Who knows, I may be able to take you up on it someday as the Pacific is a horizon I hope to chase some day soon. However it may not be anytime in the near future as the bank account, that pesky obstacle that seems to get in the way of sailors and other dreamers, needs a little pumping up.
Cheers, ~Jack

Bob Cleek
12-30-2012, 02:23 PM
Well, if you come through the Golden Gate, let me know!

I've read that Jack Giles was a very short fellow, and "the quintessential Yorkshireman." That has some local meaning to the British, but I never fully got the joke. Apparently there is something of a rivalry between Yorkshire and Lancaster. This from the Urban Dictionary defines a Yorkshireman as: "A male person from the county of Yorkshire who is generally, scruffy in appearance and appears to be mentally challenged!"

And goes on to elaborate:

"Yorkshire (english county) provides many a salutory tale in how not to behave when away from home. men of that large county tend to be extremely boastful on account of their lack of size in other areas. borish, arrogant, self-opinionated, unforgiving. have a pathological dislike of lancastrians on account of having had their arses thrashed several hundred years ago by said county. Treated sympathetically when in lancashire to seek cultural enlightenment. Cannot pronounce the word 'cricket'. Women of that county provide regular, if 'sameish' entertainment, to Lancastrian men living close to the border."

Seriously, though, he seems to have been an entirely respectable, likeable fellow.

I share your pain about the economy. Just remember, a good boat will get you through times of no money better than money will get you through times of no boat!

rbgarr
12-30-2012, 08:23 PM
At least he wasn't a Geordie! ;>
http://www.geordie.org.uk/

RodB
12-31-2012, 05:12 PM
A related question here...

That Dyarchy is a really beautiful classic design and I wonder the following...

The consensus from the book, "Desirable and Undesirable Characteristics of Offshore yachts" was that the "Cutter" was the rig that allowed the most versatility in dealing with a wider array of wind conditions simply because there were multiple sail sets to deal with more and more severe winds in addition to the sails were broken down to smaller sails when you had to handle them. Obviously this book was written for modern boats.

For example, as you reached more extreme conditions, you ended up with a storm trysail and a storm staysail...

How would this approach work with a traditional gaff top'sl cutter with a bowsprit ... just wondering... as my experience with gaffs is minimal.

... drop the gaff main, set the storm trysail, set the storm staysail, etc is that all and how would this work
on Dyarchy for example or a smaller yach like in the 30 foot range?

This may be a dumb question... :p I have experience on windsurfers in 35+ knots of wind, but none on any classic boats.

Just wondering...

RodB

Ian McColgin
12-31-2012, 10:35 PM
A traditional gaff cutter gets pretty small when you reef down as far as she'll go and are flying just the staysail - Gale or Strong Gale (Force 8 - 9, winds upper 40's anyway). This is very serious weather and many ocean sailors have never had to deal with it. When you get into Storm or more severe conditions, a trisail and storm jib are warrented. Many cutters can lay-to with just the storm jib. Either way, you're holding ground, not going anywhere. You might also lie ahull if your boat is small. Over 10 tons or so, the beating of lying ahull is often not so good an idea. And of course, if you have the sea room, running off under storm jib or bare poles, even at the sacrifice of many miles in the total voyage, is almost always safest.

gilberj
01-01-2013, 12:50 AM
shortening sail on a gaff cutter...
1- hand the topsail.... on some larger cutters they reefed the main first if going to windward keeping the topsail aloft.
2- first reef in the main...
3- second reef in the main...
4- take in the stay-sail
5- third reef in the main
6- take in jib and set stay-sail (reefed if possible)
7- take in main heave to under stay-sail or run off if you have sea-room....

there may be other options. I had a full set of storm canvas (main 4th reef, staysail and jib), which I never used in anger

Different boats will behave differently, but this was my experience. I went through the whole sequence twice in both directions within 48 hours once with maximum winds 45 knots gusting 55. I used the storm stay-sail the first time, but I seemed to be doing alright under reefed stay-sail hove to later when the winds were strongest and sailed 3 reefed main and reefed stay-sail with the winds less than about 40 knots.

Ian McColgin
01-01-2013, 06:39 AM
Another winkle for an ocean-going boat that will be heading into hard seas is to have a suit of "winter sails" a step-heavier than the normal sails and somewhat smaller. The main, for example might be as big as the original main at second reef. And hollow roach with no battens. This gets you through the gap between fully reefed regular sails and storm sails that are usually so small and, in the case of the storm trisail, so poorly setting that they are more about survival than motion. This was more common in nordic sail powered fishing fleets than it is today and, with the incredibly stronger fabrics available, somewhat less necessary. Also takes up a lot of space below.

Bob Cleek
01-01-2013, 01:12 PM
Dyarchy is said to represent the highest level of development of the gaff rig. Notably, her topsail is particularly large, being run up a slot in the mast (which, note, is not a fidded topmast, as one might expect.) Reportedly, Giles designed the sail plan to accommodate Roger Pinkney's request that all sails be capable of being handled by one man. I'd think it would still take a hell of a man to hand that main in any sort of blow.

http://www.venturieri.it/cultura/images/articoli/Dyarchy.gif

http://www.betty-ck145.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=5688&g2_serialNumber=2

http://www.beken.co.uk/galleries/Yachting/tn_Dyarchy%201946%2026039_jpg.jpg

Ian McColgin
01-02-2013, 06:31 AM
Dyarchy's main, just shy of 625 square feet, is indeed at the top end of what one person can handle. Marmalade's 620 foot sail is a bit less safely managed in a severe blow given the cat boat rig and long overhang to the boom. Still, at that length it's not really that hard if you think it all through and if you're properly rigged. For me that means proper lazy lifts and perhaps a nice stout gallows. Given the ease of heaving-to and the nice secure midships mast, I'd expect her to be easily reefed or struck as the case may be.

rbgarr
01-17-2013, 11:05 AM
A Facebook album of Ballentine's Boat Shop restoration of a Vertue: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151627123244196.600175.401198024195&type=1

CapnJ2ds
01-18-2013, 07:58 AM
I also disagree with the "Itchen Ferry" theory. The Itchen Ferry boats were fairly shoal and beamy craft. There are enough illustrations of them around to show that they are quite different from the Vertue/Dyarchy/Wanderer type.

Perhaps the confusion over the pilot cutter thing could be due to the Giles Dyarchy being designed and built to replace the converted pilot cutter of the same name?

To my eye Wanderer II and the Vertues seem more to spring from the Falmouth Quay Punt type. (Does anyone know how they came to be called "punts"? Anything less punt-like it's hard to imagine!)

The cutter/sloop thing has been a bone of contention for a long time, eh? Friendship Sloops are to most eyes cutter-rigged, but they have been known since day one as Friendship Sloops, so sloops they are. The definition by mast position is a strictly local one, being used only in the US. In the rest of the English-speaking world and Australia the one headsail/two headsails definition has been the norm for almost a century.

The photo (somewhere) above captioned "A naval cutter" is actually of a naval whaler. The open pulling boats the navy calls (called?) cutters are square sterned.

In Humphrey Barton's book Vertue XXXV there are shown plans for a modified Vertue for long distance cruising. This variation had increased freeboard - about one strake IIRC - and an all-inboard cutter rig. Also IIRC, Ice Bird that Cunningham sailed to Iceland was to this plan. Back in the late 60s I saw a gaff cutter rigged Vertue in the Oriental Bay boat harbour in Wellington; for some reason the name never registered on the lump of chewed paper that keeps my ears apart, but I assume she must have been Kotimu.

No, "slutter" isn't a pretty word, but the rig is a good one for smaller craft. My first keeler Corsair, a boat of similar size and type to Wanderer III, had this rig and I found it weatherly and easy to handle. The genoa set on the masthead forestay - if it breezed up a bit you hoisted the working jib inside it on the 3/4 forestay, which partially blanketed the genoa and made it docile and easy to get down. As a 3/4 fractional sloop, she'd go to windward like that!

Regardless, it's nice to see another Vertue in the world. Thank you Jack for building her and sharing her with us Y>.

donald branscom
07-25-2014, 11:58 PM
" . . .two headsails and a main on a single mast made for a cutter. No?" [#12]

No. Not in and of itself.

In general a cutter has the mast further aft than a sloop would, perhaps even amidships. Given that far aft, many (but not all) cutters and some (but hardly all) definitions of a cutter have a cutter with a double headsail rig with the jib to the stem - no bowsprit.

Boats with no bowsprit and one foresail and the mast less than 1/4 or 1/3 of the LOD abaft the stem are clearly sloops. Boats with the fairly forward mast and a bow sprit sporting either one or two headsails, the forestaysail being to the stem, are sloops.

Many of Bob Perry's designs can be called either, especially as many customers have taken off the forestaysail stay alltogether.

"Sloop" and "cutter" are among the many nautical words where those who think there are hard and fast definitions covering all without ambiguity have simply proven their provincialsim.

The cutter usually has the mast 10% further aft.
Could be a sloop with staysail?

Peerie Maa
07-26-2014, 01:55 PM
The cutter usually has the mast 10% further aft.
Could be a sloop with staysail?

Depends on what side of the Pond you sail. In the UK having a forestaysail and one or more jibs makes a single masted boat a cutter, in the US it is the position of the mast. Just shows how our common language has diverged.

Peter Belenky
07-28-2014, 11:40 AM
The definitions of “sloop” and “cutter” have always been descriptive, rather than prescriptive, and they must be considered in an historical context. The best source for their origins is “Fore and aft: the story of the fore & aft rig from the earliest times to the present day,” by Edward Keble Chatterton (1912)

http://books.google.com/books?id=os2EAAAAIAAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false

Formal distinctions evolved only with the dispute between the “cutter cranks”--American advocates of the narrow, heavily ballasted English cutters of the 1880s—and defenders of the shoal, beamy American sloop type.

http://books.google.com/books?id=lS2cAQAAQBAJ&pg=PA114&dq=%22cutter+cranks%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=lWzWU9jwHoaZyATcuYCABA&ved=0CEwQ6AEwBw#v=onepage&q=%22cutter%20cranks%22&f=false

It happened that the cutter had a mast stepped farther aft and a divided head rig, with a staysail set on the forestay and a jib set flying to a running bowsprit, while the sloop had a single jib, set on a forestay to the end of a fixed bowsprit. Hence, these characteristics became temporary components of the distinction. With the conclusion of this dispute in a synthesis of the types, many American sloops adopted divided rigs and external ballast, while many English cutters incorporated greater beam and fixed bowsprits. Although the two different type names continued to predominate on opposite shores (not exclusively, however), the meaning was lost, except for cases in which it was desired to call attention to resemblance to an earlier type. Therefore, a Lyle Hess or Edward Burnett design could be termed a cutter because of its double-head rig, short ends, bowsprit, and deep keel, while a Friendship sloop remains a sloop, though double-headed and deep-keeled. A conventionally modern design could have either name in Great Britain, but be called a cutter in the U.S. only if it had a double-head rig.

Canoeyawl
07-28-2014, 01:36 PM
"Cutter", in this day and age, does not mean a thing.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/15/USCG_Sentinel_class_cutter_poster.pdf/page1-1280px-USCG_Sentinel_class_cutter_poster.pdf.jpg