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Thread: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

  1. #1

    Default What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Hi
    Hi want to build a fast rowing boat to get some exercise with my son on mixed water, some rivers, some lakes, maybe calm coastal waters. Double Scull Shells are fast, but we are novices, and sculls don't seem to like open water. Best option to date seems to be John Harris CLC Boats Tandem Wherry, 19'10" with 38" beam.....any thoughts guys?

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    I haven't built one or even sculled one but I have to say the Tandem Wherry is on my to-do list. I doubt you could go wrong with this one. Seems incredibly versatile. Calm water, rough, one rower, two rower, one rower and passenger. Also quite the eye candy and looks to be an excellent introduction to sliding seat rowing. As an added bonus, CLC is selling plans as well as kits, which potentially knocks the price-to-finish way down.

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Excellent choice from what I can see, as anything shorter will tend to pitch when rowed hard in doubles.

    If you feel like experimenting, you could see about stretching some other designs. Ruth might be a kick with two rowers -


    If you want more boat, I've see photos here (sadly now offline) of a Cosine Wherry stretched to 20', reportedly rowed quite well. I have the 14' version and it is both fast and can carry a lot of gear or extra passengers.
    "The enemies of reason have a certain blind look."
    Doctor Jacquin to Lieutenant D'Hubert, in Ridley Scott's first major film _The Duellists_.

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    That Annapolis Wherry Tandem looks like a nifty and fast little beast. Versatile, too - with fairly easy conversion between single & tandem. You don't say... but it seems from your interest in the CLC boat that you want sliding seats?

    If you're also considering fixed seat, you might look at the Welsford 'Mollyhawk'. Simpler build, better rough water capability. http://www.jwboatdesigns.co.nz/plans...index.htm#mlhk

    Or... maybe the Atlantic 17?
    http://www.atlantic17dory.blogspot.com/

    The Merry Wherry II?
    http://www.woodenboat.com/boat-plans...rry-wherry-two
    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    http://www.harborwoodworking.com/boat.html

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Take a look at Ken Bassett's Firefly. It's a four panel hard chine plywood boat, approx. 18' x 3'. At those dimensions, it's a single. Someone stretched one to about 22' and used it as a double.

    PLans are sold by our hosts, but maybe Ken would have some guidance re the double version.

    Also look at the Selway fisher Thames skiff.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Joel White apparently drew a larger two man version of the Bangor Packet called a Gerry Wherry.

    The BP is a fast and beautiful sliding seater.

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Several years back I worked with Selway-Fisher on their Thames Rowing Wherry in the 17 foot length for a double sculling setup on open water. It was quick but not terribly fast when compared to racing shells. Jumped to speed in a flash, and was very pleasing to row at moderate paces. Handled a chop well, and only shipped water in steep boat wakes.





    Nice part was it still rowed well with 20 lbs up in the bow and a single rower in the stern seat.

    E

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Hi, I am not sure if you can modify it to row with 2 but I have the mold for Joel White's Bangor Packet that needs a new home. It is set up for cold molding. If anyone is interested in a project, let me know. If you can pick it up, you can have it. I am happy to send pictures, just message me the request.

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Just a sideways thought. . .do you always want to row two-up? I generally prefer to be in my own boat, rowing in company, rather than in tandem. A couple of singles might be more pleasant and certainly will be more versatile for some personalities.

    I know, I know, this advice may seem odd considering I row a four-oared gig every week too. . . .but I really do the team crew part more for political and social reasons. I prefer rowing solo when it comes to pure rowing enjoyment.

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    I kinda agree with James - and with Pete Culler when he said that you can row double, but it is nearly as effective to just take turns rowing single in a smaller boat. But of course it would cost a lot more to build two boats....
    "The enemies of reason have a certain blind look."
    Doctor Jacquin to Lieutenant D'Hubert, in Ridley Scott's first major film _The Duellists_.

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?


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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    There were many SLRS designs-- those in the 18-21 foot range could comfortably be rowed either single or two up. Another design worth a look would be Clint Chase's "Drake".

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    The original poster needs to specify sliding seat or fixed seat rowing? That is the first step.
    Clinton B. Chase
    Portland, Maine

    http://tinyurl.com/myboats

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Welsford Mollyhawk creaming along.

    https://www.facebook.com/peter.meneg...9831039802479/

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    John Gardiner (with an i ) 2 man guide boat. Quite impressive and a simple build.

    http://guideboat.ca/index.php/21-foot-guideboat/

    I've cut the plywood for his 16 footer but haven't started stitching yet. His plans for that boat were very good.

    Eta. Plans cost $45 and are sent online, no waiting for the postman. Look in your spam folder, that's where mine went.
    Last edited by openboater; 06-21-2016 at 09:02 AM.

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Old post, eh. I always like to remind folks that there are a number of other designers of kits out there that are NOT CLC...worth spreading the search out beyond what immediately pops up.

    Not sure how to elaborate without knowing if this post is dead. Rowboats are my passion!
    Clinton B. Chase
    Portland, Maine

    http://tinyurl.com/myboats

  17. #17
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Just finished a Bolger Gypsy - a fast boat for one set of oars PLUS a lot of pleasure to sail.

    https://drive.google.com/folderview?...U0&usp=sharing


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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Quote Originally Posted by JimConlin View Post
    Take a look at Ken Bassett's Firefly. It's a four panel hard chine plywood boat, approx. 18' x 3'. At those dimensions, it's a single. Someone stretched one to about 22' and used it as a double.


    PLans are sold by our hosts, but maybe Ken would have some guidance re the double version.

    Also look at the Selway fisher Thames skiff.
    ************
    It was a surprise this morning to come across this old photo of a friend and I towing FINESSE across a Sausalito parking lot many moons ago. Ken Bassett designed this 22' version of Firefly as a double and it even made the cover of an issue of Nautical Quarterly. She rowed well for Vicky and I, easily letting us learn the rhythms and cadences necessary to get a double moving well. Fairly simple to build, though I would not bother with the welded s/s pipe outriggers were I to do it again. The entire center portion, which incorporates the seats, runners and foot rests can be easily removed which helps for transport, maintenance and construction. Our current wherry (a single) is a cold-molded version of Ken's LIZ design, modified by Keith Battersby of Sidney, BC.
    ****************

  19. #19
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    I have started to make a rowing boat myself - see this thread:
    http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...ng-boat-design

    At the moment we are too much involved in sailing to do any boat building but the rowing boat has reached the point where the whole hull is 'dry' assembled - the wiggly scarfs between panels are joined with epoxy but everything else is just held together with copper wire ties and a few temporary wood screws. It weighs about 23kg at the moment, so I am hoping that once it is finished with all the fittings, paint, carbon fibre oars etc. the weight will be not too far from the expected 40kg. A skin on frame construction could be a bit lighter, that is an interesting option. I can say that everything fits together very precisely, I think I can honestly claim sub-millimetre precision for the fit between all the plywood parts. Mind you, that's not down to any woodworking skill on my part, just the result of computer design together with cutting the plywood with a computer controlled water jet machine.

    I will continue building the row boat once our summer sailing is over, then if it turns out satisfactorily I will probably dump the drawings and dxf files somewhere on the internet so that anyone who fancies making a copy of the boat can get the files as a free download. Then they could either get a firm with cnc cutting equipment to cut the parts out or use free dxf viewer software to make drawings for manual cutting, although I have to say that I would now much prefer the former method. However, I won't make the files available until the boat has been afloat and proved to be satisfactory.

    Not sure if my design is quite what you are looking for since it is for either one rower and a passenger, or one person rowing alone, but not two rowing. My thinking on that was that for a long trip having two people rowing would tire out two people together without adding all that much to speed, so better to have one rowing at a time and the other resting. The design allows for use with a sliding rigger, although without a passenger, that is an experiment that will probably wait till we have tried it with fixed seat and sliding seat.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    I think a lot of recreational rowers are too concerned with speed. If you are serious about racing fine make it your priority. I like to row for exercise,enjoyment and therapy. A boat that is easy to row for an hour or two is more apt to be enjoyed than one built for just speed that is to tippy to feel safe in.

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Quote Originally Posted by Clinton B Chase View Post
    Old post, eh. I always like to remind folks that there are a number of other designers of kits out there that are NOT CLC...worth spreading the search out beyond what immediately pops up.

    Not sure how to elaborate without knowing if this post is dead. Rowboats are my passion!
    Such as the Drake 19? A good looking design to be sure. Just large enough for two rowers?
    Or:
    http://guideboat.ca/index.php/21-foot-guideboat/
    http://sassdesign.net/Design%20of%20...%20rowboat.pdf
    Threads are sometimes resurrected http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...-Pulling-Boats
    Management is the art of counting beans. Leadership is the art of making every being count. --Joe Finch

  22. #22
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Yes MN Dave like the Drake Rowboats, Drake 17, Drake 19, and a raceboat that I am working on.

    Also google St Lawrence River Skiffs. Rowing in traditional boats doesn't get much better or more beautiful.
    Clinton B. Chase
    Portland, Maine

    http://tinyurl.com/myboats

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    you've got to have a photo or 2 of Work Horse around... Does WH have a sail?

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Sorry for the late reply. I do have a couple photos of Workhorse...the first Drake 19. Here is a link to the Google album
    https://goo.gl/photos/oTSTaGxJXSeZGMSd9

    The D19 will sail like a banshee downwind with the squgsail.
    Clinton B. Chase
    Portland, Maine

    http://tinyurl.com/myboats

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hunky Dory View Post
    I think a lot of recreational rowers are too concerned with speed. If you are serious about racing fine make it your priority. I like to row for exercise,enjoyment and therapy. A boat that is easy to row for an hour or two is more apt to be enjoyed than one built for just speed that is to tippy to feel safe in.
    with tandem sculling how much slower would a CLC Northeaster Dory might be vs. a CLC Annnapolis Wherry Tandem? Could a tandem sculled 17 dory reach cruising hull speed?

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Just an estimate...The NE Dory is 17' long, but the waterlne is what matters, and that's maybe 15.5' or so. And it's 56" wide, albeit much less at the waterline. The Wherry Tandem is 19' 10" but the waterline looks around 18' or a bit less. It's waterline beam is notably less than the Dory. With two people (assumed reasonably fit) sculling (I also assume you mean sliding seats, normal carbon sculls), the Dory will max out in hull speed fast (which also means you can relax and just cruise); if you row harder, it'll likely dig a hole and create a huge draggy stern wave. The Wherry will have a higher hull speed, but that's still a relatively short boat, especially for two people, and it'll max out hull speed pretty fast too. This is for open flattish water; waves and swells give the Dory an advantage (as the Tandem will swamp in frisky water) but as far as I know hull speed won't significantly change.

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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tallman View Post
    Just an estimate...The NE Dory is 17' long, but the waterlne is what matters, and that's maybe 15.5' or so. And it's 56" wide, albeit much less at the waterline. The Wherry Tandem is 19' 10" but the waterline looks around 18' or a bit less. It's waterline beam is notably less than the Dory. With two people (assumed reasonably fit) sculling (I also assume you mean sliding seats, normal carbon sculls), the Dory will max out in hull speed fast (which also means you can relax and just cruise); if you row harder, it'll likely dig a hole and create a huge draggy stern wave. The Wherry will have a higher hull speed, but that's still a relatively short boat, especially for two people, and it'll max out hull speed pretty fast too. This is for open flattish water; waves and swells give the Dory an advantage (as the Tandem will swamp in frisky water) but as far as I know hull speed won't significantly change.
    ..so then there are real world advantages to a NE Dory that would fare better in rougher waters, be a more stable boat for fishing or napping; and can row a brief Bay tour for four adults for couple of hours with only slight “cost” in tandem sliding seats cruising speed.

    Later, a sail kit option can be considered and perhaps a customized reinforced transom to mount s Torqee’ 1000C electrical outboard.

    a 22’ wherry would likely exceed the weight limit on being able to slide up to a pickup truck shell Thule roof rack.

  28. #28
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    I finished an Annapolis Tandem wherry earlier this summer. It is set up with the Piantedosi sliding seat units and C2 sculling oars. The boat is lovely to look at, is very stable in the water, and capable in moderate chop. Is it "fast"? No, not relative to a carbon fiber sculling double. It is however a very comfortable boat and it is easy to maintain 4-5 knots over long distances. As an earlier poster pointed out, these relatively short boats (compared to racing shells) are easy to get up to cruising speed, and they don't repay heroic exertions with much additional velocity. I row with a local master's club, everything from 8+ to singles, and the wherry was built so that I could go out with my wife for lake adventures--a stable easygoing boat that a newbie can easily learn on without anxiety about a capsize (rowing shells will roll right over if you release the oar handles).

    However, I have one critique and question wrapped together. The boat is a lot shorter than double rowing shells (a double designed for the combined crew weight of my wife and myself has a waterline length of around 30-31 ft. and a 14.5 inch waterline beam), and has a lot more rocker over a much shorter length (wl around 18 feet probably). It will turn on a dime, but that is the part that is a bit annoying. It requires a lot of care to keep a steady point, with good rowing form and even application of power with each oar for both crew. That is a bit difficult with someone in the boat who is not very skilled. It also seems to want to head up into the wind when moving into a headwind not centered precisely on the bow.

    Has anyone designed a rowing wherry that splits the difference between racing shells and these more traditional forms? Perhaps a boat with a bit more length, less rocker and a slightly narrower waterline beam? Nick Shade's single NOANK seems to have a lot less rocker, but still short and kind of fat for the moment arm of 9'6" sculling oars.

    That said, I really like the CLC Tandem wherry. I will be using it for a long time. The ATW is a great boat to grow old with, that's the conclusion I have come to. It is not a hot-rod, but it is a safe, comfortable craft with lovely lines, and the potential for some cruising adventures.

  29. #29
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Quote Originally Posted by jackmaggs View Post
    I finished an Annapolis Tandem wherry earlier this summer. It is set up with the Piantedosi sliding seat units and C2 sculling oars. The boat is lovely to look at, is very stable in the water, and capable in moderate chop. Is it "fast"? No, not relative to a carbon fiber sculling double. It is however a very comfortable boat and it is easy to maintain 4-5 knots over long distances. As an earlier poster pointed out, these relatively short boats (compared to racing shells) are easy to get up to cruising speed, and they don't repay heroic exertions with much additional velocity. I row with a local master's club, everything from 8+ to singles, and the wherry was built so that I could go out with my wife for lake adventures--a stable easygoing boat that a newbie can easily learn on without anxiety about a capsize (rowing shells will roll right over if you release the oar handles).

    However, I have one critique and question wrapped together. The boat is a lot shorter than double rowing shells (a double designed for the combined crew weight of my wife and myself has a waterline length of around 30-31 ft. and a 14.5 inch waterline beam), and has a lot more rocker over a much shorter length (wl around 18 feet probably). It will turn on a dime, but that is the part that is a bit annoying. It requires a lot of care to keep a steady point, with good rowing form and even application of power with each oar for both crew. That is a bit difficult with someone in the boat who is not very skilled. It also seems to want to head up into the wind when moving into a headwind not centered precisely on the bow.

    Has anyone designed a rowing wherry that splits the difference between racing shells and these more traditional forms? Perhaps a boat with a bit more length, less rocker and a slightly narrower waterline beam? Nick Shade's single NOANK seems to have a lot less rocker, but still short and kind of fat for the moment arm of 9'6" sculling oars.

    That said, I really like the CLC Tandem wherry. I will be using it for a long time. The ATW is a great boat to grow old with, that's the conclusion I have come to. It is not a hot-rod, but it is a safe, comfortable craft with lovely lines, and the potential for some cruising adventures.
    Thanks for the interesting assessment of the CLC Annapolis Wherry Tandem. Since i’m aspiring to row on Bays and near shore coasts, through surf conditions, I am attracted to more freeboard that could be partially decked later, such as a Merry Wherry Two 19’ or a a more stable CLC Northeastern Dory 17’.

  30. #30
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Most of the recreational sliding seat boats can't take advantage of the power possible in a slide. You can pull an alden ocean shell just as fast without the slide as you can using the slide, you just can't do it as long. When we were racing in a narrow 18' fast fixed seat boat we felt we could use another foot or so of waterline. My 16'6 dory has a lwl of about 14'; it runs nicely at about 3.5. My 15' ducker with about the same LWL is faster, maybe about 4 but has considerably less wetted surface and 100lbs less weight. Good example of resistance being both wetted surface and length. Sliding seats in recreational boats let you run them fast longer but not necessarily faster.
    Ben Fuller
    Ran Tan, Liten Kuhling, Tipsy, Tippy, Josef W., Merry Mouth, Imp, Macavity, Look Far, Flash and a quiver of other 'yaks.
    "Bound fast is boatless man."

  31. #31
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Agree with Ben's comment about a sliding seat enables you to keep rowing reasonably fast for longer. The rowing boat described in the thread linked below was built over the winter of 2016/17 and has been extensively used over the past summer. We find it a very nice boat. This boat has a sliding seat but the seat can be locked so that it doesn't slide, then it is a fixed seat boat, presumably it is not the only boat to have been built this way. So, we have the option of fixed seat or sliding seat and I can say that we very soon found out that we preferred the sliding seat so we now almost never row the boat with the seat fixed. We do use the locks on the slide to stop the seat crashing against the end of the slides when hauling the boat out of the water or tilting it to get in onto the car roof.

    So the only reason I can think of to make a pure rowing boat without a sliding seat is if you want to reproduce a historic design or perhaps if you want to make your boat hard to row so as to build up your arm muscels! Of course, a sailing boat that has oars as auxiliary propulsion is a different matter, for that kind of boat you probably wont wnat to compromise the layout to include a sliding seat since you will be sailing most of the time.

    http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...t=#post5254036

    John

  32. #32
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    John,
    I think I have sorted out a way to make a simple removable slide that can be adapted to any fixed seat. When I finish the test one I'll stick a photo of it somewhere, maybe do a write up for small boat monthly or something. The bit isn't any wider than the seat that is being used, and is significantly shorter than the conventional rails, so that it is removable and stowable. On my test run using a rig I had kicking around, I did notice that you want a real stretcher, a full fooboard as I was driving off the ball of my foot. Rig I am doing does not need any other kit, no new oars no outriggers. Rowing snobs will frown, but I don't want to stick all that stuff in my dory or row sail boat.
    Ben Fuller
    Ran Tan, Liten Kuhling, Tipsy, Tippy, Josef W., Merry Mouth, Imp, Macavity, Look Far, Flash and a quiver of other 'yaks.
    "Bound fast is boatless man."

  33. #33
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    I can't wait to see this. I fashioned a foot board that helps a bunch on my Sid Skiffbut I cannot imagine a slider working with my thwarts that won't lift my thighs and make it difficult to get my ours out of the water in less than calm waters. I thought of front and back "wings" for the thwart and slide on ??? Grease?

  34. #34
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Quote Originally Posted by Classtime View Post
    I can't wait to see this. I fashioned a foot board that helps a bunch on my Sid Skiffbut I cannot imagine a slider working with my thwarts that won't lift my thighs and make it difficult to get my ours out of the water in less than calm waters. I thought of front and back "wings" for the thwart and slide on ??? Grease?
    Whether or not this will work with any given set up will depend on the vertical distance between the locks and the top of the seat, the size of the rower and the rower's technique. If you can sit on a boat cushion and still row you will have plenty of clearance. It might not work if it is so rough that you have to windmill to get your oar blades to clear wave tops. I had clearance enough to carry my blades above horizontal when I was running my dory test with a rig that raised me an inch or so above what I am now working on.
    Ben Fuller
    Ran Tan, Liten Kuhling, Tipsy, Tippy, Josef W., Merry Mouth, Imp, Macavity, Look Far, Flash and a quiver of other 'yaks.
    "Bound fast is boatless man."

  35. #35
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    Default Re: What Fast Rowing Boat to Build?

    Quote Originally Posted by jackmaggs View Post
    Has anyone designed a rowing wherry that splits the difference between racing shells and these more traditional forms? Perhaps a boat with a bit more length, less rocker and a slightly narrower waterline beam? Nick Shade's single NOANK seems to have a lot less rocker, but still short and kind of fat for the moment arm of 9'6" sculling oars.
    How about the Joel White Bangor Packet?
    <https://www.woodenboatstore.com/product/plan_20_Bangor_Packet>
    <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8jGebAwFM2s>

    Someone on WBF said there was a tandem version called the "Gerry Wherry", or something like that. Since Wooden Boat says it is going to put out "all" of Joel White's designs, perhaps if you asked nicely they would bump that one to the head of the line.

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