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Moy Green
08-27-2013, 11:24 PM
Hi Everyone,

New to the forum here. I'm looking through hull offsets for my first build project (wood composite) and found the javelin class to be of interest. Wondered if anyone has any experience with these (either building or sailing them). My plan is to take this modern design and give it a classic aesthetic. I thought of working with a slightly modified version of the McNeill/Lee offsets available at http://www.javelins.org/Technical/buildyourown/mcneillee_offsets.pdf Any comments from the forum at this early stage in the process would be much appreciated.

David G
08-28-2013, 12:16 AM
No experience with the boat. In fact, I'd never heard of it... but I don't come from a dinghy racing background...

Looking at the drawings, though, it looks - at first glance - to be ok. But nothing that would jump out of a crowd at me. What drew you to it? What are you looking for in a boat?

Moy Green
08-28-2013, 03:41 AM
No experience with the boat. In fact, I'd never heard of it... but I don't come from a dinghy racing background...

Looking at the drawings, though, it looks - at first glance - to be ok. But nothing that would jump out of a crowd at me. What drew you to it? What are you looking for in a boat?

I'd like something with a bit of pep, that's different from the lasers and other classes of boats that are raced around the yacht club here (I work for a local university with a club) and a large sail area for the size of boat. I think that's what drew me to the Javelin. But I'm open to other suggestions too. It'd also be preferable to have a fairly straightforward shape as a first-time project.

SMARTINSEN
08-28-2013, 06:29 AM
I will leave for others to comment on the aesthetic and performance characteristics of this boat.

It sounds like you are an experienced sailor, are you an equally experienced wood worker? The offsets in the PDF do not provide anything but very basic information as to the shape of the hull. I am assuming plywood and stitch and glue, which is perfectly suitable for a first time build, particularly if you can work neatly, this method can be messy and gooey. If there is no more additional information than you have provided, then do you have the capability to turn this into a boat? Do you know if the surface is even devlopable in plywood? As a first timer it might be worth your while to find a similar boat that meets your requirements by a recognized designer that provides a detailed set of instructions.

Welcome to the WBF, and keep us updated with your decision and then ultimately with your build, we want lots of pictures.

Zane Lewis
08-28-2013, 07:45 AM
my 2 cents worth. don't do it. a truly competitive hull for a performance development type class like a javelin takes a builder who has a few builds under his belt and is something of an amature designer as well. you could invest a lot of money and time into a finished sailing hull that is of little value.
a few mm of more or less radius across the faces of the frames can make the difference between a winning and losing hull.
my suggestion would be to look at classes that are locally raced and would have a resale market along with a well defined hull shape that reduces the risk in an amature build.
Zane

Zane Lewis
08-28-2013, 07:47 AM
ps possibly give us some idea of what you want to achieve. is it the building you want to do or do you want to win yacht races?
what's you location so we can suggest boats that are local to your area.Zane

Carl Cramer
08-28-2013, 08:00 AM
I wrote about the class once in My Wooden Boat of the Week, here:

http://boats.woodenboat.com/?p=2005

Nice boats.

David G
08-28-2013, 10:03 AM
Carl - thanks for the reminder. A bit of pep, indeed!

Moy - I own a Goat Island Skiff, also an Antipodean design (Michael Storer), which I can unabashedly recommend for your design brief. It is about as easy to build as a person could want, and lots of overcanvassed fun - if you're so inclined. She's also a quite versatile boat, which can be reefed down for more casual daysailing... or rowed for fun... or used to fish out of... or with an outboard for further exploration.

http://www.storerboatplans.com/GIS/GISplan.html

http://www.storerboatplans.com/GIS/Goat%20Island%20skiff%20planing%20-%20designer%20wearing%20a%20silly%20hat.jpg

Moy Green
08-28-2013, 01:19 PM
It sounds like you are an experienced sailor, are you an equally experienced wood worker?

Actually, I'm neither an experienced sailor or builder, but enthusiastic (my wife would say obsessive) about learning new skillsets. I have experience sailing small catamarans and also larger (38') sloop, all recreational.

I should also clarify, my goal isn't to do any competitive sailing, just to have a vessel that is more performance-oriented -- I'm looking to have a bit of fun pushing my skills (that are at this point mostly non-existent).

I plan to sail at Mascoma Lake, NH - I'm currently working as a postdoc at Dartmouth College.

Thanks to everyone for the enthusiastic replies. I'll look through all the helpful info over the next couple days.

John Meachen
08-28-2013, 03:17 PM
For a first time builder there is nothing like enough information presented in the linked pdf.Simply having the hull shape won't tell you very much about the construction details.It might help if there were a finished boat to the design within easy travelling distance that you might take a look at.I wonder whether some of the NZ contingent might know whether the classic plans from John Spencer might make the project a bit more attainable.

Moy Green
08-28-2013, 06:26 PM
For a first time builder there is nothing like enough information presented in the linked pdf.Simply having the hull shape won't tell you very much about the construction details.It might help if there were a finished boat to the design within easy travelling distance that you might take a look at.I wonder whether some of the NZ contingent might know whether the classic plans from John Spencer might make the project a bit more attainable.

Great, some more detailed plans would be great. Right now, I'm working under the assumption that I can use some of the techniques applied to other boats, especially that detailed in threads on this site that show boats from inception to completion. It seems (naively, I'm sure) that the techniques are transferable across boat types. I have taken out a book entitled "Building classic small craft" by Gardener from the campus library. But hey, some more detailed plans would also be great.

John Boone
08-28-2013, 06:32 PM
May be some helpful info here http://www.javelins.org/

Found on the linked to page.

http://www.javelins.org/Technical/virtualJavelin/virtual_index.htm

Looks like a fun boat.

Good luck with your build.

John

John Meachen
08-29-2013, 03:22 PM
Great, some more detailed plans would be great. Right now, I'm working under the assumption that I can use some of the techniques applied to other boats, especially that detailed in threads on this site that show boats from inception to completion. It seems (naively, I'm sure) that the techniques are transferable across boat types. I have taken out a book entitled "Building classic small craft" by Gardener from the campus library. But hey, some more detailed plans would also be great.

I greatly admire the work John Gardner did to document small boats and the manner in which they were built.I have read his books and while they are a tremendous resource for building the boats in question there is very little that directly relates to fast dinghies.I have yet to find a better book on the subject than Richard Creagh-Osborne's "Dinghy Building" and would suggest the original poster could usefully study it to advantage.It might also be worth investigating the websites for classic Cherubs or NS 14's.

Moy Green
08-29-2013, 06:16 PM
I greatly admire the work John Gardner did to document small boats and the manner in which they were built.I have read his books and while they are a tremendous resource for building the boats in question there is very little that directly relates to fast dinghies.I have yet to find a better book on the subject than Richard Creagh-Osborne's "Dinghy Building" and would suggest the original poster could usefully study it to advantage.It might also be worth investigating the websites for classic Cherubs or NS 14's.

Thanks for the suggestion John, I've ordered a copy from Amazon and hopefully can start reading it in a few days!

Any good blogs out there where people have done a wooden dinghy? Step-by-step photos are particularly helpful.

Thorne
08-29-2013, 10:44 PM
You could also start out by restoring something classic like a Thistle. They can be lovely, are certainly over-canvassed, and have a fairly enthusiastic racing community.
http://www.thistleclass.com/class-info/about-the-thistle/photo-galleries

http://www.woodenboat.org/content/boat2c/image/ThistleBoatShopJune2011.JPG

https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-_ssbLp4mTTQ/Tj7n-s_VfUI/AAAAAAAAHWs/t3SSJovB4u0/w1124-h749-no/IMG_0071.jpg

Moy Green
08-30-2013, 08:16 AM
Wow, what a beautiful class! I love the straight bow stem and actually it looks (from the photo) that the chine is a bit softer than the javelin, which really makes the hull look sweet with that strip-planking look. Is it actually strip-planking + glass that they built these in? I hadn't considered a restoration project but I did help restore a Hughes 38 with my dad a few years ago (I was in high school then, and it was sort of my first brush with sailing so I didn't absorb as much as I could have). A lot of it was fairing the hull and applying bottom paint, etc.

The thing is, I love this natural wood look! How feasible would it be to buy an old one of these boats, remove the paint and glass, and reglass with a clear coat to bring the wood through?

Thorne
08-30-2013, 08:34 AM
Don't know for sure, but I believe they are cold-molded. Newer ones are solid fiberglass, but the wood ones would be reasonably easy to remove paint from the exterior and refinish. Most wouldn't need re-glassing. The class is fairly active, so you'll get a lot of encouragement and possibly help from the local groups -- they may even know of a woodie or two needing restoration.

David G
08-30-2013, 08:51 AM
The Thistles - esp. the older wooden ones - are, indeed, quite lovely. And they have an active and loyal following of restorers and very serious racers. If you decide to go that route... send me a PM. I'll put you in touch with a fellow who did just such a restoration. Keep in mind, though, that they are definitely a handful. And they're meant to be sailed with a crew. You can sail them solo... but you can't sail them 'up to potential'. And they are quite tender. In fact, now that I think about it, I wouldn't recommend the boat for your situation. If you are, nonetheless, still interested... I can put you in touch with another fellow who ended up selling his because it was such a handful. He's building a Welsford Navigator to replace it.

davebrown
08-30-2013, 08:52 AM
Two boats comes to mind based on the above: a wooden lightning (or a comet) or a Herreshoff Biscayne. http://www.artisanboatworks.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/image0-crop1-600x423.jpg (http://forum.woodenboat.com/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=herreshoff+biscayne&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&docid=4Q_5HYJ_BI6f4M&tbnid=YkDuD6K_K_YEBM:&ved=0CAUQjRw&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.artisanboatworks.com%2Fclassi c-designs%2Fsailboats%2F145-biscayne-bay-sailing-skiff&ei=-aIgUpCEGaXrigLanYCgDQ&bvm=bv.51495398,d.cGE&psig=AFQjCNGRKk6anvVRUX1FrcsK9ELb2vXH7w&ust=1377956954627469) The HErreshoff seems to be a bit under built--perhaps because it has a lead sole (keel would be an exaggeration). It looks like an easy hull to build, but the sailing bits would be time consuming. I personally do not favor restoration over building from scratch. The Goat Island Skiff as above would be an easy build, relatively. So would a Culler Good Little SKiff.

davebrown
08-30-2013, 08:58 AM
Two boats comes to mind based on the above: a wooden lightning (or a comet) or a Herreshoff Biscayne. http://www.artisanboatworks.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/image0-crop1-600x423.jpg (http://forum.woodenboat.com/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=herreshoff+biscayne&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&docid=4Q_5HYJ_BI6f4M&tbnid=YkDuD6K_K_YEBM:&ved=0CAUQjRw&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.artisanboatworks.com%2Fclassi c-designs%2Fsailboats%2F145-biscayne-bay-sailing-skiff&ei=-aIgUpCEGaXrigLanYCgDQ&bvm=bv.51495398,d.cGE&psig=AFQjCNGRKk6anvVRUX1FrcsK9ELb2vXH7w&ust=1377956954627469) The HErreshoff seems to be a bit under built--perhaps because it has a lead sole (keel would be an exaggeration). It looks like an easy hull to build, but the sailing bits would be time consuming. I personally do not favor restoration over building from scratch. The Goat Island Skiff as above would be an easy build, relatively. So would a Culler Good Little SKiff.

davebrown
08-30-2013, 08:59 AM
Kathy BRay's version:http://www.brayprints.com/wp-content/uploads/biscaynebay14_enlarge.gif

kiwiboatbuilder
08-30-2013, 09:53 AM
Hello Moy, Javelins are awesome dinghys, I used to sail with them as a teenager in NZ (I raced an International Moth back then). They are very fast, but in strong winds if you are not on top of them, you would find yourself using the little wooden sail on the bottom |;) a lot more than the mylar sail! I would agree with David G. The Goat Island Skiff (GIS)by Michael Storer might be better for what you want, straightforward build and good performance. If you only want to sail yourself, the Beth Sailing Canoe (also by Michael Storer) would also be a fun choice. I built one and sail it on local lakes here in Georgia and it is fun. I've taken it down to the coast by Savannah and it was fun there too. I posted on it in the WB forum a while ago. Not much room for a passenger although I carry my 5-yr old daughter occassionally. The GIS and Beth both use a lug rig, which is quick to rig, and has performance that would surprise you. I can be on the water well within 10 mins of arriving at the ramp which makes it a real, useable boat. I'm considering a GIS as a possible next boat for a bit more capacity. Good luck.
Cheers Rich.

Boatmik
08-30-2013, 03:35 PM
Howdy,

The Javelin is quite a high performance boat. I would probably only recommend it if you don't mind thrills and spills and significant capsizes while you get used to the boat.

Even with that, it is better as a boat to move to after a few years of sailing something more tame. It could be very frustrating getting used to such a high performance boat as a beginner.

The original concept was responsible for kicking off the late 1950s lightweight boat revolution in the Antipodes. Which is basically responsible for modern skiff type boats like the 49er used in the Olympics.

From the time of the first Cherubs and Javelins from designer John Spencer, dinghies in the antipodes would seldom exceed 8 to 10 pounds per foot with some much lighter. It has been pretty hard to find modern local sailing dinghies in those regions that are heavier than this.

So it is a 14ft boat that has 140lbs hullweight and 150 square feet of sail with a single trapeze. In a way it was a response to the International 14 class which was centred in the UK and North America as the premier racing dinghy at the time. At the time the International 14 had a hullweight somewhere 300 to 500lbs.

Since then they have had a 25 square foot sail area increase to 175.

In light winds they can be nice to sail - and strong winds too - but you really do need experience to sail them in medium to strong winds.

I think you need to have a careful look at the images on the Javelin website.

http://www.sail-world.com/photos/med_Javelin.jpg

http://www.javelins.org/Images/GalleryIndex.html

This video gives some of the feeling of sailing fast exciting light boats with substantial sail area.

http://youtu.be/wobu3p1gvnA

The javelin is about three times as hard to sail as the Laser in moderate conditions. I'm not talking about reaching for performance, more pointing in the right direction and keeping upright. Try sailing comparatively small and simple laser as a new sailor in 15 knots of wind and you will see what I mean - a new sailor will spend a fair bit of time capsizing - which is great experience. Start gathering experience.

The type of rig on the boat is what would be considered average for the type, but you will be up for about $3000 for the sails, over 1000 for the mast, rigging and fittings about 3000. Add to that the rigging time for such a rig each time you go sailing and the experience needed to set it up so it works well to make the boat stable and controllable through the wind range means you can't economise without getting hard to handle sow of boat. Stick a wooden mast or a cheaper mast on it and it will really become a pig.

Add woodworking flourishes and you add to the weight and increase the number of bits you can hurt yourself on. This is why the hull in the video is so minimal (in everything number of fittings required to make it work)

I don't mean to imply in any way that this is a bad boat. It is a brilliant, exciting and cleverly designed boat for high performance.

I would really recommend that you get some sailing experience under your belt.

The Thistle is a very classic design with a fine reputation but the hull weight of 500 lbs makes it big and heavy to handle for you and your wife. It is normally raced with a three person crew with optimum weight also around 500 lbs. The hull has to be cold moulded or strip planked which is more laborious than the plywood of the Javelin. The rig weight is an issue for two inexperienced people who have to rig and unrig and complexity will have a similar expense to the Jav.

I can see your response is to the woodiness of it. But you don't know that the cold moulding is a huge job for a beginner. You could look at some of Iain Oughtred's transom sterned dinghies which have excellent performance and a clinker/lapstrake construction to give a round hull with many fewer pieces and good plans that guide you as well as give you information that defines the shape of each plank from the jig. I doubt there is that level of detail available from the Thistle Association.

In Australia there is a class of boat called the NS14 which was originally the Javelin hull with 100 square feet of sail in main and jib only. No spinnaker. There are plans for a wooden one which probably doesn't quite fit the class rules (it has a raked stem) and would be very outclassed in a fleet of NSes - but I don't think that is your purpose - but it would be a surmountable challenge on the sailing side.
http://ect.bell-labs.com/who/pfps/canoe/deltav/

Older style NS14s like this are really super sweet boats to sail and very effective despite the low sail area. They plane downwind and will point higher than almost anything on the water (if a knowledgeable sailor sets the boat up correctly with the right shape of sails - performance is a technical issue :)

A similar North American boat to the light antipodean ones is the Windmill. Significant performance from a simpler boat like the NS14 (though it is much heavier than the 8 to 10 lbs a foot of the Antipodean boats)

There is a bit risk for a non sailing person to think of modifying boats. There's even a risk for many sailors to do this :) It takes experience to make decisions to modify as every decision will weigh down on the sailing side. Its like trying to get somewhere without a map - because you don't know where you are going yet. That's your current problem.

You were considering the Javelin without realising that most of the builders have to work out much for themselves - spars, staying, relative sail areas of the sails (theres infinite choices with the Jav), centreboard location, the careful job of controlling weight, rig dynamics and they either have built lots of boats before or some others in the group are helping them. The combined bow pole outhaul and halyard for the spinnaker (as one example) All things that are hard to get right without experience or advice. Also you probably didn't realise that the hull would cost you around 1500 but all the rest of the gear would be about 6 or 9000. And like I said ... you can't dumb it down and seek simplifications without turning it into something unpleasant ... slow and tricky instead of fast and responsive (but still requiring a lot of skill to turn the raw power into speed rather than capsizing moment).

My suggestion ... look at some of the other boats being suggested and on the net, or the Delta sortof NS14 I gave the link to. For something more traditional but with quite a lot of speed look at Iain Oughtred's boat plans (and antipodean developing traditional looking boats that are really quite modern - but if you like performance ... keep the weight down in every way while building (whatever you choose).

Find one where the plans are detailed and will hold your hand through the build. It is good if there are a bunch of other people building the boats too that you can keep in touch with on the internet. Plans need to include rigging and setting up details.

Keep to the plans is all details. the selection of wood is all yours, so you can make a riot of the colours and varieties if you want (providing you keep to appropriate weight/densities).

Start with a plan that has the traditional feel you want rather than look at making modifications to something that won't do what you want in the first place. Also a good reason to look for something moderate rather than the extreme end.

And get sailing! That's how you build the experience to make the decisions that you want.

Building a boat is a truly great thing to do. Sailing what you have built is truly great too. Keep asking questions until a plan formulates.

Moy Green
08-30-2013, 08:04 PM
Hi Folks,

Thanks for all the enthusiastic replies, really appreciated. I am indeed looking for something I can solo, and so something smaller would be preferable. Some good ideas for alternative dinghies have been proffered; I'll definitely have a good look at these. I am hoping this will be a long-term project (3-5 years) and in the meantime will get some experience sailing other small craft around here. I'm a bit surprised about the price of some of the rigging, sails and mast -- I was hoping about 8,000 for the whole project. Maybe there are some creative ways to keep the price down in the short term, and then spring for the more expensive equipment later. Anyway, I'm not so much concerned about the difficulty in sailing the boat, as I'm interested in something I can grow into. I'm a researcher at an engineering school, so in true fashion, I like a challenge in design and construction, and something that has a good upgrade path. I'll keep browsing the thread for more great ideas, it is really appreciated!

Boatmik
08-31-2013, 12:05 AM
Something like a Javelin will be expensive.

Something like a Oughtred Dinghy or GIS will be about 2.5 to 3 out of premium materials. Some of the Oughtred boats carrying a jib you would have to add another 500 or so for the extra sail cost and fittings (jibs generally require a stayed mast to get real performance.

The Delta might be 4 and a bit to 5. All these three designs are very nice boats, partially dependent on premium materials to keep the weight down and to give the performance expected.

Despite the classical looks of the Oughtred boats they are pretty quick. Oughtred was a top level sailor in one of the Australian high performance classes in his youth. So in a sense his boats (like some others ;) ) are a meld of traditional looks and modern performance.

And some much much cheaper varieties of building materials for less "keepsake" boats.

Best wishes
MIK

Sakari
09-01-2013, 02:00 PM
In Australia there is a class of boat called the NS14 which was originally the Javelin hull with 100 square feet of sail in main and jib only. No spinnaker. There are plans for a wooden one which probably doesn't quite fit the class rules (it has a raked stem) and would be very outclassed in a fleet of NSes - but I don't think that is your purpose - but it would be a surmountable challenge on the sailing side.
http://ect.bell-labs.com/who/pfps/canoe/deltav/


Plans for the Delta V were sold by a company called Northwest Marine Design. Unfortunately, the company seems to have vanished. It doesn't look like the plans are available any more.

kiwiboatbuilder
09-01-2013, 07:11 PM
Given your budget and desire for solo sailing, that's an even better reason to build a "Beth". It is a real easy boat to sail. I have a few videos on youtube if you google "Beth sailing canoe video"
Check out my old thread here:
http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthread.php?163694-Beth-sailing-canoe-finished
I doubt I have $2500 in it. Well worth it!
Cheers Rich

Moy Green
09-02-2013, 08:16 AM
@kiwi: looks like a great boat. Really nice. I actually do a lot of canoeing already, and while I imagine that a sailing canoe is quite a unique experience, I'm probably looking for something much more different. Something like the Delta V would be very nice indeed. There is a lot of info on that blog but plans would be great for something like this.