View Full Version : WB # 235 Features Tom Jackson's boat FAR and AWAY on the cover and...

J. Dillon
10-17-2013, 07:19 PM
...a great article entitled "Wood in the rigging." I think I'll be putting more toggles on "Carrianne" over the winter months.

10-17-2013, 07:22 PM
Agreed. Need to do some arm-twisting for a ride...

10-19-2013, 10:22 AM
I have been saving some good looking locust offcuts for doing some blocks.

Hal Lavers
10-19-2013, 06:23 PM
What a sweet double ender, (Tom Jackson's Far and Away) anybody know who the designer is? did Tom Jackson design her?
Would love to see drawings and pictures of her build.

Binnacle Bat
10-19-2013, 10:09 PM
Far and Away is a No Man's Land Boat, I believe based on Chapelle's drawings in American Small Sailing Craft.

I have sailed in company, and know Tom, but haven't looked closely at construction.

Tom built her himself.

I'm guessing traditional construction.


Ben Fuller
10-19-2013, 11:12 PM
Far and Away is totally traditionally built with good looks at existing No Man's land boats. Traditionally they had modest sprit rigs; Tom designed his lug rig, well suited to Maine summers.

10-19-2013, 11:46 PM
Far and Away really looks nice on the cover. And I thoroughly enjoyed the article on Wood in the Rigging.

Paul Pless
10-20-2013, 06:49 AM
Traditionally they had modest sprit rigs; Tom designed his lug rigclearly mcmullen and yeadon have gotten to him ;)

It is a beautiful boat.

Ben Fuller
10-20-2013, 07:14 AM
clearly mcmullen and yeadon have gotten to him ;)

It is a beautiful boat.

You'll be notin' that the lug is either dipping or standing, and the mizzen is sprit, and indeed she is a ketch, all heresy.

Tom Jackson
10-21-2013, 07:53 AM
Thanks for the comments, all.

FAR & AWAY's hull is faithful to the No Mans Land boat Chapelle documented from a Beetle builder's model. It's from Plate 63 in American Small Sailing Craft. it is a lines-only drawing, but it shows the location of the centerboard trunk, the rudder profile, the maststep locations, and the mast rake. I retained all of those, but changed the profile of the centerboard and trunk a little, to get the aft end of the trunk higher. The original boat was probably intended for light basket construction, using 3/8" lapstrake planking. I used 1/2".

I worked with a Danish builder in Oregon when I lived there, and I took his comments about boat construction as a challenge. For example, he said that in Denmark the builders never built a lapstrake boat without having each frame support the full width of the plank (excepting limber holes). So I built it right-side up over molds, then installed sawn, joggled frames, Scandinavian style, which was a bit like fitting 56 breasthooks. The coaming arrangement, together with the half-deck layout and the mast partners and mastgate, were incorporated wholesale, at least in concept, from the Bristol Bay sailing gillnetters. The athwartships floorboards were inspired by Swedish practice. The dipping lug mainsail was inspired by French practices, and I used the excellent Chasse-Maree sailmaking book for many of the sailmaking techniques.

The construction is entirely traditional, with two exceptions: first, I epoxy-glued the plank scarfs; second, I used an UHMW bushing in the otherwise traditional centerboard trunk. (The bushing is 1" thick, 1-1/2" in diameter. The centerboard bolt runs through it and cinches down tight against the trunk logs; the board has a 1-1/2+" hole that allows the board to rotate on the bushing, and this has worked very well.) Apart from fastenings, I made everything on the boat except for the two padeyes on the afterdeck.

The rig is an unusual one, mainly because of the dipping lugsail. The photo on the cover was taken six years ago, during one of the first sails I took after I finished making my mainsail. It was blowing quite a lot that day. (At the helm is Tajs Kongerskov, one of my shipmates from the HAVHINGSTEN voyage who happened to be here at the time.) I've learned an awful lot about the boat since then.

In practice, I sail with the mainsail as a standing lug most often, especially when short-tacking or when sailing solo. On long boards, I'll dip the sail and take the tack to the stemhead, which is a great gain in power. If my wife is at the helm (she knows what she's doing), then the "ready to tack" sequence involves bringing the tack from the stemhead back to line to the one of the belaying pins at the mastgate, making it a standing lug. After the tack, if I want to dip the sail, I do it as quickly as possible, but with some way on and without the risk of missing stays.

Yes, the heresy of the ketch rig: well, I actually like having both sails in my field of vision. I like having the mizzen sheet right in front of me, especially because this rig involves a lot of sheeting. I've taken some steps to make the mizzen comparatively easy to reef, given the fact that it's a boomed spritsail with a brailing rig. The mizzen isn't what makes this rig difficult in any way. I can brail it very quickly (with that toggle release), and because the brailing line leads through thimbles lashed o the throat masthoop, it can brail even when reefed. On the mooring, I release the mizzen clew and roll the sail up on the sprit (another Scandinavian practice), right up against the mast, then brail up the boom to hold it all together while I get lashings on.

The boat has proved quite fast — surprisingly fast. But it takes some getting used to. My wife has become quite a good helmsperson, and she has come to trust the boat quite a lot, although she does not like heavy weather. We sail fairly conservatively. She handles the helm, and I handle the rig. I also really enjoy sailing solo, and I have a little bit different sheeting setup in that case, with the sheet coming across the cockpit to a kevel cleat on the windward side. So, the tiller, mainsheet, and mizzen sheet are all very close at hand. In a double ender, mizzen sheeting is problematic. I like a good, solid tiller, and the mizzen has the advantage of not needing a boomkin, or an offset, or a big swoopy tiller or push-pull. I entirely like the way the setup works. Downside: my crew has been in open mutiny about the mainsheets whipping around. You get used to that, mostly it's about knowing where to put yourself and when.

This winter, I'm going to make new masts. The originals were harvested spruce, and I always considered them experimental. I'll make hollow mast, I think. I also hope to build a triangular, boomed stormsail. Also, a proper boat tent, now that I have a sewing machine.

It was a lot of fun (and quite a surprise) to have the boat on the cover!

J. Dillon
10-21-2013, 08:28 AM
Thanks for the heads up on your boat. It's always interesting to see what changes and adaptations a experienced sailor does to his boat and things he anticipates doing after sailing her for a while.

This I find surprising
It was a lot of fun (and quite a surprise) to have the boat on the cover!

10-22-2013, 05:13 PM
Great issue for us Mainers. The articles on Rob Eddy's model making and the Berry's 'Beth Alison' market boat were also nice ways to end the summer.

Binnacle Bat
10-22-2013, 07:39 PM

I'm not sure why you would need a boom on a triangular storm sail.

As an experiment a few years back I took a spare jib, and replaced the bronze hanks with luff slides to go in the mainmast track. I use the spinnaker sheets & their turning blocks to bring things amidships, and cleat to the jib cam cleats. Worked a treat, except I needed to get the tack just a little lower than deck level to avoid too much twist. I thought that off the wind might be a problem, but not so (well maybe if I'd had to go dead to leeward, and sometimes by the lee). If its really honking you can still sheet it pretty far in and still get the power you need.

I would think that a triangular storm sail set flying, or with two or three toggled loops around the mainmast, and sheeting as you do your main would be fine, and save carrying an extra spar. The only disadvantage to my setup is that the mainsail and boom have to be dumped in the cockpit, and are royally in the way on one tack or another.

Sail balance is a little tricky. Under the stormsail the Bat has a neutral helm, even pressed in a gust when there ought to be some weather helm. I'm guessing that Far and Away would need a much lower and wider stormsail than my old jib to balance with no mizzen. Maybe you need a stormsail for each mast, with a bulletproof mizzen to keep the bow up no matter what.

Curious to see what you com up with.


Bob Cleek
10-22-2013, 10:50 PM
Just walked in with my copy fresh from the mailbox... beautiful boat, Tom! And it looks like a great issue.

10-23-2013, 12:00 AM
Now I can't wait for my copy to show up!

Tom Jackson
10-23-2013, 06:54 AM
A jib-style storm sail might work, Allan, but I think the sheeting angle would defeat it. What I have in mind is a bermudan-style main, on the small side, boomed so that it can be single-sheeted. It would roll up on the spar and stow under the thwarts, and it would hoist on the same main halyard. I haven't finalized any of this yet —*time to get to the drawing board soon.

Paul Pless
10-23-2013, 07:00 AM
Tom, more pics of your boat here would be great.

J. Dillon
10-23-2013, 09:41 AM
Tom, more pics of your boat here would be great.

Yes please Tom more details on the boat from bow to stern.
Inquiring minds want to know.


10-23-2013, 01:32 PM
Wow that is a great picture. Tom, you go. All Man.

Tom Jackson
10-23-2013, 04:06 PM
I still seem to have a hard time publishing photos here. This link is to a new Flickr site:http://www.flickr.com/photos/106418745@N07/

Binnacle Bat
10-23-2013, 06:45 PM
Far and Away leaving Muscongus Bay, and a few lobster buoys (SRR 2013).

http://i160.photobucket.com/albums/t187/dinghysailer/Boats/SRR%202013/100_2583_zpsf7ed6161.jpg (http://s160.photobucket.com/user/dinghysailer/media/Boats/SRR%202013/100_2583_zpsf7ed6161.jpg.html)

Hal Lavers
10-23-2013, 10:06 PM
Looks just like the obstacle course we have during crab openings on Boundary Bay (Salish Sea). Lovely boat.

J. Dillon
10-23-2013, 10:44 PM
I like that all brass mast gate. One can open it by removing one belaying pin, or both.


Tom Jackson
10-24-2013, 06:49 AM
The mast gate is cast bronze, as are the belaying pins. I made the patterns and cast the pieces (as well as pintles and gudgeons, bow chocks, and stern chocks) in a course taught by my friend Sam Johnson. The gate is based on the type used by Bristol Bay gillnetters, although those were galvanized. The gate was my best effort in casting.

J. Dillon
10-24-2013, 08:37 AM
Tom, your casting efforts look first class from here.

A couple of questions, how is your mizzen sail attached to the mast? On the cover shot it looks like a lacing line. When on the mooring or dock what protection for the sails do you provide ?



Tom Jackson
10-24-2013, 08:54 AM
The mizzen is laced to the mast, but it has a single mast hoop at the throat. I tried toggled robands first, the idea being that it would be easy to get around the snotter, but it didn't work well. I right away switched to lacings, which I like better. But that didn't work with the brailing line when the sail was reefed. So I switched to the masthoop at the throat, with thimbles seized each side to take the brailing line, which allows me to brail even when the sail is reefed. The brailing line takes the boom, sprit, and sail up together.

On the mooring, I roll the mizzen in the sprit until it's tight up against the mast, then brail up the boom, which holds it. I tie the bundle pretty securely. The mailsail rolls up on the lug yard, and the bundle fits within the boat, lashed to the thwarts. I don't use sail covers.

I should mention that the cover photo was taken during one of the first sails, shortly after I finished sewing up the main. So, for example, if you look closely you'll see that the mainsheet is single-part. I changed that very soon after this photo. A few other things changed, too. I've learned a lot about sailing the boat over the past six seasons.

Paul Pless
10-24-2013, 10:11 AM
your album is awesome, thanks for providing the link


10-25-2013, 06:49 PM
Far and Away is a great example of a deceptively slippery boat. I agree with RbGarr great issue, though I focused on the revenue cutter article, but I am still digesting the rest (then Sailing World, then Sail...hey it's business related)

10-26-2013, 07:43 PM
Awesome! My wife got to the mail before me, handed me the issue and said, "I know...I know...you don't have to say anything...please."

I couldn't find my copy of Chapelle, but am wondering if this is the Nomans boat named after Nomans Land off Martha's Vineyard. Maynard Bray's Watercraft has a write up of the Nomans Vineyard boat, and I have an old copy (1959) of Small Craft at Mystic Seaport that also writes about the Vineyard boat. I have lines somewhere else - I think they're in another Mystic Seaport publication that I should dig up.

If it's not the same, sorry for muddying the waters. Here are some pics of the Nomans that I know. Any clarification would be great.


Ahhh - I just found Chapelle. It is the Vineyard boat. very cool. Well, anyway, enjoy the ancillary information I scanned.

Tom Jackson
10-28-2013, 08:29 AM
I wrote about the Nomans Land Boats in WoodenBoat's Small Boats, 2012 issue, page 30. There were variations, but to my eye, the Beetle hull is the finest, and that's the one I built.

Bill Perkins
10-29-2013, 09:49 AM
Thanks for the photos Tom ,and the article .That's just the kind of boating I'm interested in . Your mast gate is the best ;will file that away .