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Thread: Færing plan design chocie

  1. #1
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    Default Færing plan design chocie

    I am new to the Forum and I've been a fan of Wooden Boat for several years. I grew up in New York and New England and my dad's family is deeply rooted in the Norwegian maritime tradition. My older sister taught me how to draw viking ships when I was 4 or 5 and I have always been drawn to their elegance.

    I have wanted to build a boat for quite a while and have gone back and forth between the Swampscott Dory and the Norwegian Færing. I always keep coming back to the færing. I've trolled the internet on many occasion looking at the different options for building one. I keep coming back to the plans offered by Iain Oughtred: the Elf and Elfyn. I live in Oakland, CA and would be sailing primarily on San Francisco Bay. My question is really two in one. Which of these would be the better design for bay sailing and is the difference between these two plan choices mostly their carrying capacity?

    Thanks, in advance.

    Thomassen

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    All I can tell you is that I love my Elfyn - but she's not rigged to sail, just row.

    If you mostly want to sail, Iain has other choices in his catalog of designs that may be better for you. Quality of his plans is first rate.

    Bill

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    I gotta be able to sail!

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    Will you be sailing alone - Elf
    Or two up - Elfyn
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  5. #5
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    If you've been reading this forum for a couple years, you'll know that a certain keen Oughtred sailor up in the Northwest has a few things to say on the sail/oar subject. Is that the Dublin train I hear, or an incoming aria full of passion and bombast? Wait for it...
    A small sailing craft is not only beautiful, it is seductive and full of strange promise and the hint of trouble. -- E.B. White

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    I am building the Elfyn which is actually moving toward the completion phase or will be soon, anyway. It is certainly a beautiful example of the faering type which is what also attracted me to the design. It is designed as a boat intended for rowing but which also can be sailed as opposed to a boat intended to be sailed but which also can be rowed.

    To my eye, the Elfyn seems a tad more elegant that the Elf though both are beautiful boats. The Elfyn at 16' 6" in length is also just about at the shorter end range of the traditional faering types. Its beam is 4' 9-1/2" (a foot and a half longer than Elf and 4-1/2" wider at the beam than Elf).

    Although purpose driven craft with many local variations, Faerings, as a class, are very capable boat types and for more than a millenium have been both rowed and sailed. I wish I had some actual sail performance experience to share with Elfyn but that will have to wait until my project is finished. I have completed the mast, spars rudder, daggerboard and case though and had the sail made by Nathaniel Wilson Sailmaker. Oddly enough, I haven't started on the oars.

    Good luck with whatever boat you decide to build Elf, Eflyn or other.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    Thanks for all the comments. At this point I am thinking 'Elfyn'. WCM, what are you building yours out of? Are you building with the buoyancy compartments? And if you don't mind my asking, what do you think your total cost will be? Would love to see pics if you have any.

    Best Regards,

    Thomassen
    Last edited by Thomassen; 04-18-2012 at 12:58 AM.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    Hull, daggerboard, and case and rudder are of 9mm Shelman Okoume marine ply (rudder and daggerboard consist two 9mm pieces laminated together). Yes, my Elfyn has fore and aft buoyancy compartments per an alternative shown on the plans. These partial decks and bulkheads are 6mm Shelman marine ply. Gunwales, mast step and other trim pieces are walnut. Mast is sitka spruce. Spars, oars and thwarts are atlantic cedar, floorboards are Alaskan cedar. I ordered the plans and rudder hardware from Classic Marine in the UK. Sail was made by Nathaniel Wilson. I have used System Three epoxy.

    Since, I am a first time boatbuilder whose woodworking skills have been entirely acquired during this project, my extra material costs (and scrap pile) and attendant costs likely significantly exceed those of most on this forum who would undertake the same project. Iain Oughtred includes a comprehensive material list (including a variety of acceptable woods)
    with the plans. You can price your costs based on the wood choices you make and your level of woodworking skills and whether you make the sail with a kit or order a custom one. Because of Elyn's longer length you will need to order at least one more ply sheet than with the Elf.

    I finally purchased a camera capable of loading pictures into the computer. I have not yet studied how to do it though and need no such distractions if I am ever to complete my project. Once my boat is completed I will learn how to post photos and do so.

    Good luck.
    Last edited by WCM; 04-18-2012 at 09:47 PM.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    Alas, neither is really the best choice if sailing is more of a primary consideration than rowing. I would choose a Tirrik over either for sailing purposes if you want a similarly sized boat of related heritage. But if it's the faering that really tugs at your heartstrings, the bigger boat is probably going to be better and safer in that big ol' Bay.

    I helped a friend finish and fit out this Elf faering. It's a sweet rowboat!



    I will withhold my extra passion and bombast since you already made the correct choice in abandoning the Swampscott dory. I own a Swampscott myself which never, ever gets used unless my other boat is in for maintenance and I have no other alternatives. I'd swap it for a faering in a heartbeat.
    If this post did not meet all of your needs, please consult this thread for more options.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    Thank you, MCM and Flames for the info. I've looked at the Tirrik. I do like the length of the Tirrik, more in keeping with a traditional færing. too. My problem is that I get stuck with wanting a Norwegian boat. I have fallen in love with the Oselver and Hardanger færings. I do know the Shetland boats have Norse roots. Now, if I win the lottery I'll have one made for me in Bergen and have it shipped, but that isn't happening anytime soon.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    If you want a longer faering, you might want to ask Ian Oughtred very very nicely...

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    Have you looked at Atkin's Valgerda? There is a thread about the build on this forum. http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...kin-s-Valgerda

    There are two kinds of boaters: those who have run aground, and those who lie about it.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    Quote Originally Posted by keyhavenpotterer View Post
    If you want a longer faering, you might want to ask Ian Oughtred very very nicely...
    Ask Tapsnap nicely . . . .
    http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...-Faering-Build
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  14. #14
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    Paul Fisher has an 18' x 5'4" faering, drawn with a shallow full keel http://www.selway-fisher.com/DoubleEs.htm#KAR


  15. #15
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    I have to cast a vote for Atkin's Valgerda. I love mine. She is a great size. Very capable, but easy to single hand and get on and off a trailer. True confession: she only has a 6 1/2-inch keel, about 6 inches less than Atkin drew. I think she points about as high as her standing lug rig will allow anyway, so the addition draft seemed more hindrance than benefit. Elf and Elvin always looked too small to me. I've never heard of a Norwegian faering shorter than 18 feet.

    Brandon
    http://valgerda.blogspot.com

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    Thanks for your comments, Brandon. The size of Elf and Elfyn does concern me. As you state, Norwegian færings are more likely to be 18'. The Oughtred plans are designed to use marine plywood and that is to my liking. What is your Valgerda made of?

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    1/4-inch Okoume marine plywood, the good BS 1088 stuff, for the planking, 3/8-inch for the bulkheads, purple heart for the keel, stems and a few other parts, mahogany for the thwarts and floorboards, old growth dug fir for deck beams, and a bunch of other woods for misc. parts. I tried to use the best wood for the purpose.
    I also sheathed the bottom with 6-ounce fiberglass cloth. I'm happy with the result. It's stiff and tough and looks good. All the details are on my blog.

    Brandon
    http://valgerda.blogspot.com

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    Quote Originally Posted by Thomassen View Post
    Thanks for your comments, Brandon. The size of Elf and Elfyn does concern me. As you state, Norwegian færings are more likely to be 18'. The Oughtred plans are designed to use marine plywood and that is to my liking. What is your Valgerda made of?
    By all means, build the boat that you want. While faerings can and do often run 18 feet and longer, they can and do run less as well. see:http://home.online.no/~joeolavl/viki...se_faering.htm
    Faerings were purpose driven craft and their length was a function of their intended use and where they would be sailed, say, the North Sea vs. the Baltic sea, skerries, fjords, lakes or rivers. Their common denominator was their number of oars, "faering" meaning four-oared.

    Good luck with whichever build you decide on.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie

    Four oars for sure. One fun thing about the Valgerda is you can also have four oarsmen: one oar each, two butts to a thwart. Of course she also rows well with one, two or three oarsmen. When fishing for herring, the Norwegians needed to have options so they could row and handle the fishing gear at the same time.

    Last Saturday in Port Townsend I was at the oars my wife was at the tiller and I could easily maintain 2.8 knots against about a 5 knot headwind with the mast up. I picked up the pace and was able to get 3.2 for about 10 minutes, then I went back to my usual pace of 2.8. Ravn is an amazing rowing boat. With a beam of 68 inches, the oars are 10 feet long and can really develop some thrust.

    Then, in the afternoon, we sailed back with a very light breeze (it figures, doesn't it) and ghosted past a 21 foot Islander. It doesn't take much to move those faerings. They are pretty slippery.

    I wanted a bigger boat because I'm a big guy, 6'4" and 250 pounds. I also have three kids and five grandkids and it's nice to have room for four or five of them at a time to join me on the boat.

    Brandon

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Færing plan design chocie


    Færing can be quite sweet. Sail well. Oselvers are generally about 19-21'.
    No daggarboard.
    I can give an address to a sail and rig maker if you like. An entire boat might be a bit much to pop into the mail.

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