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Thread: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

  1. #1
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    Default Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    I've been looking at some plans for both the Pacific power dory and the Carolina style dory and am curious as to which would be better in rough water. Rough as in 3-4 foot lake swells. I know the Pacific dory is meant to slide up over big surf, but what about the Carolina dory? Would it plow into the wave? Both have a flat bottom so no doubt there would be some pounding if you left the speed up.

    For reference I am looking at the 21' Nexus, Simmons Sea Skiff (which is doryish), as well as the Spira designs around the 17'-19' range. Any help would be appreciated!
    Quick Canoe 155 and Storer drop in sail kit under construction.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    This would be a nice question to ask the designers directly, e.g. George Calkins, who designed the Bartender line of boats with sharp Vee bows (which are famous for running choppy inlets well), and Jeff Spira, with his line of Pacific dories, which have a lot of bow rocker (presumably to ride over swells when launching from a beach).

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    For years dory designs and boats attaching its design shape to the name Dory have evolved and changed and the sole purpose of the original shape and design has long been diluted if you are looking for soley a planing power boat. Along the carolina coast and the prevailing head seas winds created the need for the sharp vee entry that consumed the bottom area which has none of the original properties of a true dory built into the bottom. I would never place a Simmons or even the carolina dory from Spira in the same catagory of a straight planing hull unless you are considering boating in more shallow waters that the boat was originally built for and the intended use that is IMO a far cry from what you have listed in your consideration.

    Now if you carry that to the idea of using a small runabout on the great lakes, none of the boats listed is a favorable choice, IMO. The advantage of both the Simmons and even the Bartender, both designed for heavy swells created from wind and tides and ever changing sea conditions along the coastal areas mixes ideal handling into the basic hull design that lends itself to smart handling at moderate speeds, which is a far cry from just running on plane at a decent speed in four to five foot seas in open water.

    There is a new hull design out thats called Marrissa created by B&B designs that has done a bang up job in a good choice for just what you are talking about. I would take a hard look at that boat plan even though the boat is more of a tape and glue construction methods.
    Last edited by erster; 10-16-2011 at 08:33 AM.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    Flat bottom Carolinas are good for their intended environment, but are not big swell boats. That flat, rockerless bottom is a perfect surfboard and the boat can and will surf (out of control) in larger swells. Without lift to the bow, it will bury and veer off. Too they tend to be lower powered boats, the need for power in certain situations isn't there.

    The true Pacific dory is very full forward (compared to other power dory/skiffs) with a lot of lift to prevent the bow from burying when running down a steep swell. They will surf too but typically they wont bury the bow. Power can be anywhere from 75 horses and up, but then again that was because they could be loaded with fish.

    The Bartender's strengths are several. modified v bottom, coupled with a very light weight, giving both maneuverability and a high power to weight ratio. Good sea keeping with lots of power is a good combination.

    The Pacific dory was a commercial fishing boat that could typically be taken offshore far enough that there was no guarantees what the bars would be like when you got home. Same with the Bartender. Both were designed before satellites, NOAA, weather radio, etc. They were designed to bring you home safely.

    For 3 to 4 foot lake swells you experience, any of Spira's designs would be fine although his v-bottom Carolina's would give you more boat for the buck--smoother ride, better handling, etc--but they do take more power. I'm personally partial to Nexus' boats; Puget Sound (Nexus' home waters) is a inland body of water but can get nasty at times--and quickly (been there, done that). Simmons Sea Skiffs are beautiful boats with a very successful history. You couldn't go wrong there either.
    John
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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    Thanks all. Wharf Rat, great info, for some reason I didn't know Nexus were in the PNW. I have been discussing my options with Jeff Spira and he also noted that the v bottom boats will require more power and are more time consuming to build. The Bartender and SSS are great boats, but for some reason they 'look' more expensive and complicated to build. From searching the forum it appears the SSS is actually pretty easy to build but I don't know, for some reason the combination of the planks and the motor well would seem to add to cost/complexity.

    Keep it coming guys, I love reading this stuff
    Quick Canoe 155 and Storer drop in sail kit under construction.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    How often and where have you been out in 3-4 foot lake waves in an 18 foot boat? Some of those big lakes up in MN, like winnie for example, do have those conditions from time to time, jsut wondering where you are contemplating going boating.

    I have been out in that size waves it a couple times on lakes michigan and erie and I can tell you its no fun. So if you are contemplating building a boat to go out in those conditions on a regular basis I would suggest a larger boat, something 28-30ft. On the other hand if you want to build a boat that can handle those conditions in those times when you (like I did ) get caught in them, then carry on.

    For ease of build the spira v bottom carolina dory is going to be pretty much as good as it gets. A Simmons would be a notch harder but still within reach, the bartender would be next up the list. Somewhere in the neighborhood of a Simmons would be a Tolman skiff which I think would be a nice choice as well.

    Good luck,
    Jerry

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    Jerry,

    The boat would be kept on Rainy Lake and would be 20-24 miles from our cabin. The cabin is inaccessible by roads, so boat or plane are the only ways to get there in the summer. Given Rainy Lake's East-West orientation it tends to be rough. I would say 3'-4' waves can be expected 2-3 days a week, 2' chop 2-3 days a week, and calm the rest of the time. Of course, a couple of times a year a huge storm will rip through and tear up 6 footers. Keep in mind this is lake chop and unless the wind has been up for a couple days the wave duration is quite short.

    The vast majority of the boats on Rainy are 16'-21' aluminum fishing boats. My parents used to have a 19' Silverline cuddy which was very comfortable, but for the last 15 years we have made this trip in either an 18' Lund or, when I was young and stupid, a 13' Boston Whaler...April through November sometimes and yes, it gets very very cold. My wife is now expecting and while she loves going to the cabin she will not subject the baby to another long cold boat ride. She gave me permission to buy a boat, but I'd much rather build and kill two birds with one stone

    The Tolman's are very nice boats, in fact they are essentially a wood version of the Lunds we have used for years. Built with a windshield this would definitely be a great choice. That being said I wouldn't mind something a little different, and more efficient.
    Quick Canoe 155 and Storer drop in sail kit under construction.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    How fast do you want to go and how many horse power are you willing to use? You'll be much better off with a vee bottom. Spira's 17' vee bottom Katchemak will move along at a good clip with a 20 hp outboard without knocking out your fillings in rough water.


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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    Jim,

    I like the V bottomed boats but according to Jeff, and from speaking with others, they require quite a bit more horsepower. I don't have a motor yet, but would like to keep it between 30 and 40hp. Hopefully that's enough to get me 25-30mph...
    Quick Canoe 155 and Storer drop in sail kit under construction.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    Quote Originally Posted by BigIsland View Post
    Jim,

    I like the V bottomed boats but according to Jeff, and from speaking with others, they require quite a bit more horsepower. I don't have a motor yet, but would like to keep it between 30 and 40hp. Hopefully that's enough to get me 25-30mph...
    Jeff says Katchemak will almost fly with 40 hp. And it will be as quick and easy a build as you'll find. So its well within your power requirements and will behave so much better than a flat bottom.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    My understanding here was that the boat would be used in and around the Great Lakes, especially given the types of sea conditions that you describe. One thing is for sure, jus the regular freshwater lake running that I have done myself has been more short wind seas and not a combination of the longer and more rolling combination of swell and wind on tops of the swells. Some of the sounds along the coastal regions of the Carolinas are big and wide but not really that deep but the seas are truely confused when it gets nasty. So I am a bigger fan of a sharper entry and not some warped style bottom as a rule.

    In regards to the Simmons as you spoke about, outside of building the well and transom portion of the boat, built in one unit and hung on the frame, the boat can be built in less than a month without any real finish work included. There are no complicated cuts and little to no material. The only issue that you will probably read about is the hook thats built into the bottom. This will all come to light as you set the boat up and the only so called complicated part of the build.

    For sure its not a sheet plywood cut and fasten build and the prospective builder will need to want that style boat as its not something thats really common in most parts of the country and the world either. But one thing is for sure, handled properly it will bring you home in a following sea with complete confidence and require small hp for the average person not interested in all out go like a bat out of heell. Its a great 20 mph boat and then some, rigged and powered correctly. But you really do need to have an engine in mind when you build the well in some cases.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    I just might have to pick up plans for both the Simmons and a Spira design I'm not complaining. The 18' SSS looks quite small so the 20' might be a better option. Anyone know what the plywood requirement is for the SSS 18 or 20? At $100 a pop, plywood cost is a factor. I was shopping the Bateau designs and their OC17 needs 20 sheets! It's a beautiful little boat, but wow that's a lot of plywood...I was hoping to stay around 10 sheets because I want to go marine grade and as little epoxy as possible.
    Quick Canoe 155 and Storer drop in sail kit under construction.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    Quote Originally Posted by BigIsland View Post
    I just might have to pick up plans for both the Simmons and a Spira design I'm not complaining. The 18' SSS looks quite small so the 20' might be a better option. Anyone know what the plywood requirement is for the SSS 18 or 20? At $100 a pop, plywood cost is a factor. I was shopping the Bateau designs and their OC17 needs 20 sheets! It's a beautiful little boat, but wow that's a lot of plywood...I was hoping to stay around 10 sheets because I want to go marine grade and as little epoxy as possible.
    Twenty sheets of plywood and gallons upon gallons of epoxy resin is not in the cards for me for me to build such a small runabout. The 20 Simmons uses some form of hardwood for the framing if you build it to plans. Some of us have altered the building method and done away with some of the frames and created a hybrid build with a composite deck grid system. Pipefitter did away with all of his side frames and just used just covering boards . You can surely build the 20 highside and leave the top plank off and have a nice boat with additional interior room. The 20 really doesn't require that large of an engine, 40 hp more than enough.

    Depending on how you cut your woods,[proper planning] the 20 hull can be built for around seven sheets of plywood. If you wish to plank the boat with solid timber, we use either of the cedars for the planks.
    Last edited by erster; 10-17-2011 at 09:01 PM.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    Erster,

    Did you epoxy over the Cedar or simply use paint?
    Quick Canoe 155 and Storer drop in sail kit under construction.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    Quote Originally Posted by BigIsland View Post
    Erster,

    Did you epoxy over the Cedar or simply use paint?
    I think that is personal preference. If you use western red cedar, personally I would use nothing but a very good oil base sealer under enamel paint. I am a fanatic for many coats of primers for filling grain and for a smoother surface after blocking for the longivity of the topcoats. The white cedars these days are mostly kiln dried off the shelves and a bit more brittle[probably not noticable to the average guy] than the old fashion air dried flitch cuts that we used to get and then saw planks from for building boats.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    Alright, I think I am going to order plans for the 20' SSS as well as the 17' Tillamook from Spira designs. I'm leaning towards building the Tillamook, with a dual console windshield and cuddy (just a small area to stow stuff, no sleeping). I'm leaning towards the Tillamook because it will no doubt be an easier, cheaper build that will probably look better in a more 'utility' layout. The SSS would be perfect if I were more experienced or had double the budget to make it pretty (I'm trying to stay around $3500-$4K with a used outboard).

    Thank you all for your help and if there is anything else anyone can add, feel free because I appreciate everyone's opinion and advice!
    Quick Canoe 155 and Storer drop in sail kit under construction.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    Quote Originally Posted by BigIsland View Post
    Alright, I think I am going to order plans for the 20' SSS as well as the 17' Tillamook from Spira designs. I'm leaning towards building the Tillamook, with a dual console windshield and cuddy (just a small area to stow stuff, no sleeping). I'm leaning towards the Tillamook because it will no doubt be an easier, cheaper build that will probably look better in a more 'utility' layout. The SSS would be perfect if I were more experienced or had double the budget to make it pretty (I'm trying to stay around $3500-$4K with a used outboard).

    Thank you all for your help and if there is anything else anyone can add, feel free because I appreciate everyone's opinion and advice!
    I am not sure where you have gotten your numbers from in regards to the SSS being an expensive build by comparison. The choices of material will be a big factor especially if you are considering a lot fo fiberglass work or epoxy related components. But if you are looking to spend 4 grand tops for either one of those boats you maybe for a rude awaking unless you get really lucky with the engine. Of course older engines in two strokes are around but normally will need some money spent on the engine as a rule as you slowly get used to most of them. A decent traiiler that is required to carry a 20 foot boat also doesn'r come cheap. Its not uncommon to spend at minimum around 1,500 bucks alone.
    Last edited by erster; 10-20-2011 at 05:52 PM.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    Quote Originally Posted by erster View Post
    But if you are looking to spend 4 grand tops for either one of those boats you maybe for a rude awaking unless you get really lucky with the engine.
    The Spira designs are much more utilitarian in nature and though the SSS could be build in a stripped out fashion I think there would be a lot of pressure to make it look as nice as all the other's out there Also, the building method (with the external hull mold) would me more expensive than the Spira method of simple pine framing.

    Here's how I think I could build the Tillamook for $3K

    7 sheets 9mm Okoume $79= $553
    Miscellanious lumber for framing/strongback=$250 (estimate)
    1-1/2 gallons epoxy & fiberglass tape =$100
    Double basic materials cost to account for hardware/shipping/overruns=$903
    Basic materials cost $1806
    25hp-30hp outboards are listed on CL in this area for $700-$1000 bringing the total to $2800.

    Building with high quality plywood will help because there will be no need to slather the entire boat with epoxy, assuming the paint is maintained. No doubt a trailer will be a huge variable, but depending on where I store the boat I may be able to put in on blocks, making a trailer unnecessary. Maybe still I'm still dreaming, but I think my hull costs are in line.
    Quick Canoe 155 and Storer drop in sail kit under construction.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    I have no issues with your material costs and numbers. What continues to concern me and has been my experience has been the engine. First off most 25 to 30 hp engines are short shaft, tiller handle steering. The older ones rarely have trim, especially at those numbers too. Most people including me that I talk to want a console type boatin that size unless they are looking for a work boat hull design and build. For me personally I have never been afforded the chance to purchase any motor at 700 bucks that did not need more money poured into them. Many of those tiller handle control steering can also be adapted to remote steering. But when doing so the parts especially the control boxes if you can fnid one can run some serious money that increases the costs. Another issue is the way the steering adapts to the engine. I understand that I am probably an eternal pessimist here and some issues are a bit overblown. But none the less this are issues that needs to be taken into consderation. Now you have a bunch of money tied up into a motor thats still worth the same. The same also applies to those 500 dollar trailers too. For me if I go to the effort and expense to build a nice boat, a trailer needs to be appropiate for the boat too, and not some get by type. Running gear for a trailer starts at about 600 bucks for another axle and springs with hardware for starters. Tires for a 20 foot boatand trailer rated for towing costs a couple hundred bucks too. Many folks going into these builds gets all hiped about the cost of the hull and the costs are just a starting point. I have never been able to build a 20 foot to any quality and be confident in the ability to hit the water running without many associated issues when going on the cheap side and put it in the water for anywhere close to 4 grand myself. But maybe this will be the case for you as you have a lot more luck than I do in most cases.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    erster,

    I think you bring some valid points to the budget table. I do agree wit the OP that the basic hull can be done around his budget without too much trouble. Your comments on motors are right on, but I also know that in northern minnesota tillers boats are much more common than in florida. he may very well plan on running this boat as a tiller so no worry there, if he wants a console then you are spot on.

    as for trailers I am of the belief that if you tow a lots of miles you need a good trailer, if you need to get the boat to the ramp a couple times a year then you can get by on much less. Also, he is in fresh water which is MUCH less trouble on trailers than salt water.

    I personally think his basic hull budget is OK, but i think he is being a bit optimistic about the motor and trailer. I for one would not venture 24 miles up Rainy Lake with an $800 CL motor. he also has not looked into the costs for various bits of rigging, which add up surprisingly fast. Battery, battery disconnect, running lights, cleats, anchor, rode . . .

    As a comparison I built my 21' Tolman widebody with console and full floor, reconditioned trailer and a new 90 hp tohatsu for $13k. That is about as cheap as I think I could have done it, though I did splurge on hydraulic steering, and I have not yet bought a new anchor/rode and am using one that i had on hand which is a little undersized.

    cheers
    Jerry

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    Default sRe: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    I appreciate the continued responses...sounds like I might need to be asking for a bigger budget

    What does everyone think of Jeff's Eureka design? It's just under 20' and looks to be a hybrid Carolina/Pacific power dory. It's got the upturned bow of the PPD but the narrow tapering profile of the CD. This might be my best compromise with Jeff's plans. The beam is quoted as 6'3" and 5'10", not sure why there is a discrepancy there...regardless would this be a little on the narrow side? Or, would that just help cut through some the waves?

    Link for everyone. http://www.spirainternational.com/hp_eure.html
    Quick Canoe 155 and Storer drop in sail kit under construction.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    As a general statement, a narrower boat will ride smoother than a beamier boat of the same type and length. Hopefully someone with dorect experience with these type boats will chime in though.

    I agree that the cheapest outboard to buy will ( probably) turn out to be expensive to own.

    Kevin
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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    Quote Originally Posted by BigIsland View Post
    Jim,

    I like the V bottomed boats but according to Jeff, and from speaking with others, they require quite a bit more horsepower. I don't have a motor yet, but would like to keep it between 30 and 40hp. Hopefully that's enough to get me 25-30mph...
    It is not what you don't know that gets you in trouble. It's what you know that ain't so. True that a V bottom is more work and needs more power but the average guy will not much notice either. It is not really a big deal and going with a flat bottom for that reason is borderline silly. In the waves you mention, a sharp bow offered by the warped plane bottom is worth its weight in gold. Erster is spot on in many of his comments and a long shaft motor with power tilt should be high on the list for that size and power.
    Tom L

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    Thanks Tom.

    I have decided to reduce my power requirement to 25-30HP and look for something <15 years old. I had a 35hp Johnson on my Whaler that did not have power trim and used drum and cable steering. That system worked great and I see no reason to spend the money on a hydralic steering arangement with this small a motor.

    I'm also now going to deal with the fact that a flat bottom boat will be a rougher ride than V bottom. Slowing down will be the only option and one nice feature of the flat bottom is the ability to plane at lower speeds. With our current Lund 17-18mph is required to plane. It is worth mentioning that while there is a v far forward the hull is flat as can be at the back. Ultimately, I'm really not interested in going with a v, it may be more comfortable for crashing along at 25 or 30 mph but it will not give me the efficiency which I value more than speed.
    Quick Canoe 155 and Storer drop in sail kit under construction.

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    Default Re: Pacific Power Dory vs Carolina Type Dory

    I am going to chime in because I fish off the northern coast of California. I have owned an 18 ft Klamoth skiff with a 65 hp Suzuki 2 cyl. which has a V Bow and the rest is flat. When the ocean is rough it will pound hard enough to lossen my fillings. I have had the boat on local lakes and clocked 22 mph on my GPS. However, when on the Pacific on an average day the best I can do might be 15 mph and the rougher the slower.

    I have chosen ecconomy over speed. I can fish all day and use little gas. Fisherman have used flat bottom boats of all types for centuries. I have seen comercial skiffs leaving Pacific City Oregon into some really rough conditions and almost all were flat bottom. They are designed for work, easy construction, stable platform and economy all around.

    The real choice for me has always been ecconomy. Speed cost money. If you worry about the cost of building the boat You have to think about the price at the pump.

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