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Thread: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

  1. #1
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    Default Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Hi everyone,
    New to this forum, but been hanging around for years.
    I am wanting my next build to be a Mirror Dinghy, but after heaps of searching it seems you cannot just get plans for this - or not that I can find. Can get kits, can get all the bits and pieces, can even buy second hand here in Australia for very reasonable cost - but that's not the point, I want to build one.
    Anyway, does anyone know if just the plans are available anywhere, and if not, I'm open for suggestions on a boat that is similar: preferably pram, simple rig - lug or similar, preferably car topper but not necessarily - so light weight, not a racer, reasonably dry, good capacity for 2 adults and gear, 11 - 12 foot or thereabouts.
    On my short list at the moment are CLC Passagemaker, Selway-Fisher's Skylark 12, (my no 1 at the moment), and for something different the Selway-Fisher Swampscott 12 with the wide transom.
    I know there are heaps of sailing prams out there, but as close to the Mirror as possible would be good.
    Any other suggestions wold be appreciated.
    Thanks,
    Dave

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Have you looked at Jack Holt's Heron?He designed it for cartopping several years before the Mirror came into existence and there are thousands of them around the world.The Stem rather than a bow transom might be a bit of a contentious item though.https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heron_(dinghy)


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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Hi John,
    Yes I did look at the Heron, not that keen on it though - again Selway-Fisher has a modern take on it (for some reason I keep going back to Selway-Fisher). The bow design - stem rather than pram is not a major issue - I just happen to like prams in smaller boats.
    Also when searching around I came across Whisstock boats - never heard of them before - they have 2 little sailing dinghies - no. s 73 and 37 that look good and might suit me well.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    B&B Yacht Designs has the Amanda 12' dinghy which is really nice, though not a pram:

    http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...-Yacht-Designs

    I sailed one and quite liked it.

    Tom
    You don't have to be prepared as long as you're willing to suffer the consequences.

    Jagular Goes Everywhere: (mis)Adventures in a $300 Sailboat. Book release November 2014.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    The Selways and Passagemaker seem to have an absolute mass of rocker. Okay, that has some advantages, but there's no doubt a reason that Holt designed the Mirror with less rocker, such as superior speed and better handling when hard pressed. Holt was a brilliant designer who had the advantages of being a great sailor (most great designers are) and having learned his lessons in development classes, where you get to see what effects things like changes in rocker line have.

    Holt was also a leader in installing decent buoyancy tanks - something that the Selways seem (IMHO) to lack. It's only when I looked back at the death toll in sailing dinghies before buoyancy was introduced that I realised how many people used to die. Australia has a major lack of small inland waterways and light winds, and buoyancy and high wind performance are vital here IMHO. Would the Selway and CLC be safe in a capsize or comfortable when you're sitting to windward for hours?

    If you want a Mirror pram to build from plans, why not try the Mirror Miracle. It's the Mirror's big (12'6") sister. Plans and building support are available from the UK class association (just as the Heron plans and support are available from the Aus Heron association). It shouldn't be hard to slightly rejig the Miracle to give it an sunken foredeck like the "real" Mirror since the Miracle has a separate cockpit and buoyancy tank. The Miracle has Mirror-style side seating for the crew and normal tank sidedecks for the skipper. It wouldn't be hard to give a Miracle a Mirror-style gunter rig; the Mirror and Heron are there as models.

    The "Australian version" of the Miracle is the 125, but it has bermudan rig (although the rig is very cheap) and a normal stem. It does have Mirror-syle seating if that's what you are after, and at just 50kg it can be car-topped like the Mirror.
    Last edited by Chris249; 03-25-2017 at 07:39 PM.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Couple of threads that might be useful.
    http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...=mirror+dinghy
    and
    http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...=mirror+dinghy

    PM Duncan, he's the resident Mirror expert.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    The plans for the Mirror dinghy have never been made available. A new Mirror can only be built from a kit. However it is possible to rebuild an old Mirror.

    Graeme

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Thanks everyone. I'm thinking the Miracle would be a really good option now I've had a good look at it.
    So here's my next question - just me thinking out loud - there's no doubt that the Mirror is extremely popular and it is highly controlled and to be a Mirror it must fit the one-class design rules, so if someone designed a boat very similar to the Mirror, say a bit longer or shorter, narrower, or whatever, so that it no longer fitted the rules, then presumably it would no longer be a Mirror, as such, and even if it was very similar I am thinking it probably wouldn't be breaking any copyright laws etc as it isn't actually a Mirror, just something similar. There are heaps of boat styles out there that are all similar to a greater or lessor extent. Same with lots of boats - from Duncanson 35's (my last bigger boat) and S & S 34 (OK, Duncanson got in trouble over this), to a Sabot and a D4 (and any number of other 8ft prams) - most of them are very similar really.
    But then again, no one seems to have done it, so it's probably just "not done" by boat designers.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    I have tried to find plans so that I could build a new fresh hull for our existing Mirror. It seems to be impossible to get the plans anywhere.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Thanks, Mirror's are very tightly controlled - no plans as such anywhere.
    So I'm thinking of this: http://www.vivierboats.com/en/product/laita/.
    Sounds like a real nice little boat - with a European (EU) Cat C rating - "Category C (Inshore): designed for trips in coastal waters, large bays, estuaries, lakes and rivers where conditions up to, and including, wind force 6 and significant wave heights up to, and including, 2 m may be experienced" - although not sure I would want to be out in that in a 12 foot pram dinghy! Or a Miracle - the Miracle seems nice.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Quote Originally Posted by dave119 View Post
    Thanks, Mirror's are very tightly controlled - no plans as such anywhere.
    So I'm thinking of this: http://www.vivierboats.com/en/product/laita/.
    Sounds like a real nice little boat - with a European (EU) Cat C rating - "Category C (Inshore): designed for trips in coastal waters, large bays, estuaries, lakes and rivers where conditions up to, and including, wind force 6 and significant wave heights up to, and including, 2 m may be experienced" - although not sure I would want to be out in that in a 12 foot pram dinghy! Or a Miracle - the Miracle seems nice.
    It looks nice. 2 m waves and force six wind sounds a bit too much for comfort ! :O

    You might also find something you like on Selway Fisher website. I built two of his designs. They were good.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Liata looks really nice.a good choice. she meets your spec. vivier is a top designer, the build description sounds simple and straight forward. Lighter and narrower than morbic 12 for your car topping.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror






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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Extremly simple build, with lots of bouyancy. Jims Twixt..

    http://www.duckworksbbs.com/plans/jim/twixt/index.htm


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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    If you build the Laita, it might be a good idea to incorporate some built in buoyancy chambers under the seats. I can't see any buoyancy chambers in the pictures of the Laita. The Mirror dinghy has a huge amount of built in buoyancy.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Dave

    You may not have seen this thread in which Little Idea builds a Mirror dinghy clone.

    http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...dont-know-how/

    Nick

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Puddle Duck Racer? <G>
    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: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Thanks everyone for ideas - I still like the Liata or the Selway Fisher - would need to look at flotation though in both. A funny thing, I have 2 brochures for the Liata, one in French, and one from Turkey but in English from boat builder who build this design - they are the same but the Turkey (English language) one - it lists the "centreboard" at 44 kg - not sure but maybe that's how it gets a Cat C rating, maybe timber one gets a Cat D, but then again the Turkey one lists it as Cat D - I don't know, maybe looses something in translation. Can't find anything about this on the designers website.
    (Hey, Hudson Marine - you are just down the highway from me).

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Also forgot to mention these 2: Joel White's 9'6 Nutshell- an obvious choice actually, and this one Walnut pram at http://www.common-sense-boats.com/walnutpram.html. Does anyone have any info on the Walnut pram?
    Last edited by dave119; 04-06-2017 at 03:01 PM.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    There is an 11 foot pram called Rinky Dink, by Pete Smyth, and the plans are on line here:

    https://books.google.com/books?id=sK...0smyth&f=false

    I suppose you could print out the article and plans and build from that. They were also published in How to Build 20 Boats, the 1966 edition.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    I have no experience sailing a Mirror but I did help to repaint the hull of a club fleet, so I have lots of experience moving it around on a dolly in and out of the boatshed.
    I have recently acquired and started sailing a Miracle and have just returned from a 3 day cruise with two adults and gear (for more, see: http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...m-a-Raid-venue).
    The extra couple of feet in length and extra weight of the Miracle makes it a big boat to rig and handle on shore compared to the Mirror, although I doubt that it offers proportionally more seaworthiness and utility than the Mirror.
    My point is simply this: If it is a Mirror that you want, then stick to the size, weight and other attributes of the Mirror that makes it unique.

    One thing I like about the side decks on the Miracle though is the fact that you don't scoop gallons of water everytime your gunnel touches the water!

    What I don't like about either the Mirror or Miracle is the stayed mast. The extra rigging time required is way our of proportion with any benefits it might have on a boat this size.

    Also have a look at the Spindrift range from B&B Yachts - http://bandbyachtdesigns.com/spindrift/
    I think you will find the 12ft model on par with the Mirror in most regards including space, carrying capacity, stability, buoyancy, sail area (excl spinnaker).

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    I've sailed a Miracle and a Marauder (14'6", jib + spinnaker + trapese). The Marauder had a steel centreboard and was over built...very heavy: I sailed it in 30' rollers F7 with a South African commando as crew. Good times.

    I found the Miracle to be quite skittish, but a great family boat and the side decks are useful for keeping the sea out. Not sure why you'd want to alter the dimensions, but if you want one, why not get a kit?

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Thanks for more replies and ideas.
    First - whiskyfox - now I have heaps of other suggestions and lots for searching, the Mirror and Miracle are off the list and even with a Mirror I was always thinking of changing the rig to something simpler. The BandB Spindrift looks interesting although not a pram - I just have this thing about prams (probably a disease of some sort! )- but again there are lots of small sailing prams out there.
    What I am after is a simple boat with a simple rig that the wife and I can just easily (car top preferable) take to the water and get going with as little hassle as possible, but not too cramped for 2 although the crampiness (is that a word?) is something we'll just have to put up with due to my 10 -11 ft roughly requirement - anyway, now after a few weeks of searching there are many to chose from - one day soon I'll make that choice and get started.
    Lupossonic - the Marauder (and the Miracle) are getting just too big and heavy and complicated (the rig) for I am wanting. "Why not get a kit" - well I don't want to open a can of worms or a huge discussion/argument - but I want to build a boat - not make a model aeroplane (I have built a few small boats, and a couple of canoes and sea kayaks over the years - strip planking, sof, screw and glue and stitch and glue) - it's the lofting, cutting, planning, etc that I enjoy - even just from lines and offsets, and then adding bits and pieces to the blank hull to suit me - personally this is what I think building a boat is all about. As far as the Mirror itself is concerned there are heaps of second hand ones over here for very cheap prices - could easily just buy one and do up, way cheaper that way also - but again that is not the point.
    johnw - had a look at the Rinky Dink (stupid name) and it looks very interesting - love the centreboard (about 22lb/10kg steel), add a kick up rudder (original not for some reason, sort of defeats the purpose of the centreboard), 70 odd sq ft sail - not too much or too little, dumb sheer - I recon it would be as weak as - nothing actually supporting it - make gapped inner and outer just for the looks, change rig to an unstayed lug of some sort (I'm good at coe clr, etc), box in for and aft seats for flotation/stowage, maybe add side seats - easy enough - hmmm - I could work with the basic s&g hull and go from there - not bad, thanks. (and this is another one with polyester instead of epoxy - have to really look into that one day - strength, brittleness, etc - and, yes, I know people already have and Payson supports polyester - see the Cartopper instructions where he says a bit about this. Big boats are mostly made of polyester - way too expensive to use epoxy, but then again why not use vinylester - anyway that's another discussion).
    Thanks all.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Quote Originally Posted by whiskeyfox View Post
    I have no experience sailing a Mirror but I did help to repaint the hull of a club fleet, so I have lots of experience moving it around on a dolly in and out of the boatshed.
    I have recently acquired and started sailing a Miracle and have just returned from a 3 day cruise with two adults and gear (for more, see: http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...m-a-Raid-venue).
    The extra couple of feet in length and extra weight of the Miracle makes it a big boat to rig and handle on shore compared to the Mirror, although I doubt that it offers proportionally more seaworthiness and utility than the Mirror.
    My point is simply this: If it is a Mirror that you want, then stick to the size, weight and other attributes of the Mirror that makes it unique.

    One thing I like about the side decks on the Miracle though is the fact that you don't scoop gallons of water everytime your gunnel touches the water!

    What I don't like about either the Mirror or Miracle is the stayed mast. The extra rigging time required is way our of proportion with any benefits it might have on a boat this size.

    Also have a look at the Spindrift range from B&B Yachts - http://bandbyachtdesigns.com/spindrift/
    I think you will find the 12ft model on par with the Mirror in most regards including space, carrying capacity, stability, buoyancy, sail area (excl spinnaker).
    Can anyone point me to any objective data from independent sources about all these races that the Spindrift has won? It looks like a decent boat but they make a lot of its speed and I cannot find any race results.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris249 View Post
    Can anyone point me to any objective data from independent sources about all these races that the Spindrift has won? It looks like a decent boat but they make a lot of its speed and I cannot find any race results.
    The owner / designer at B&B, Graeme. Is an Aussie. I think he uses many Ozzie innovations.
    Mik Storer says you guys were innovative because development classes were more popular and economic forces meant that glass dinghies were slower to take hold down under.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    That's pretty true, but one can add that there were three strong development classes in the UK too. In some ways the Brits were ahead of us, partly because their heavier minimum weights and use of clinker construction instead of ply gave them more freedom in cross-sectional shape. The Brits got into the U-section shape seen in most modern boats when we were still designing boats with Vee sections for several reasons, one of them being that designers were trying to put more U along the keel line but were limited by the amount of curvature that could be forced into ply.

    There is arguably a bit of exaggeration about the down-under lead in design. For years the only development class in which northern hemisphere and southern hemisphere met was the Moths, and there the Brits regularly beat the Aussies with the Americans and French also taking turns to win. I've also spoken to the guy who won the last "open 14 worlds" where the pre-amalgamation Australian 14s raced against the International 14s. At that time the International boats were much heavier and had smaller rigs and understandably the Australian boats won, but the winning Aussie skipper was actually surprised by the performance of the International boats. In light winds their shape gave them lower wetted surface, and in strong winds they were less likely to nosedive. The top Aussies actually kept very hush-hush about the potential of the International boats, because they didn't want the Brits to realise how strong they were in certain conditions. Once the two classes formally amalgamated the US and UK designers started to utterly dominate.

    To bring it back on topic (sorry for straying) the above tale could illustrate how often it's only by competition that we get to really compare some aspects of boats and their performance, which is why I would like to find objective data about the Spindrift's race results. It would also be interesting to see a revival in "yacht tender" racing going on.
    Last edited by Chris249; 04-15-2017 at 05:16 PM.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Quote Originally Posted by dave119 View Post
    Thanks everyone for ideas - I still like the Liata or the Selway Fisher - would need to look at flotation though in both. A funny thing, I have 2 brochures for the Liata, one in French, and one from Turkey but in English from boat builder who build this design - they are the same but the Turkey (English language) one - it lists the "centreboard" at 44 kg - not sure but maybe that's how it gets a Cat C rating, maybe timber one gets a Cat D, but then again the Turkey one lists it as Cat D - I don't know, maybe looses something in translation. Can't find anything about this on the designers website.
    (Hey, Hudson Marine - you are just down the highway from me).
    Yep, not far !

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Quote Originally Posted by dave119 View Post
    johnw - had a look at the Rinky Dink (stupid name) and it looks very interesting - love the centreboard (about 22lb/10kg steel), add a kick up rudder (original not for some reason, sort of defeats the purpose of the centreboard), 70 odd sq ft sail - not too much or too little, dumb sheer - I recon it would be as weak as - nothing actually supporting it - make gapped inner and outer just for the looks, change rig to an unstayed lug of some sort (I'm good at coe clr, etc), box in for and aft seats for flotation/stowage, maybe add side seats - easy enough - hmmm - I could work with the basic s&g hull and go from there - not bad, thanks. (and this is another one with polyester instead of epoxy - have to really look into that one day - strength, brittleness, etc - and, yes, I know people already have and Payson supports polyester - see the Cartopper instructions where he says a bit about this. Big boats are mostly made of polyester - way too expensive to use epoxy, but then again why not use vinylester - anyway that's another discussion).
    Thanks all.
    Back when the boat was designed, polyester resin was what was available. I see no problem with using epoxy, and the rig change you propose would make the boat a lot quicker to rig.

    The class never caught on, so I don't think you're stuck with the name.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    johnw I would use epoxy - read to many bad things about polyester delaminating after a while, not really good at adhering to timber/ply, being brittle etc. Currently working on sail plan - probably a standing lug to move the mast forward and get it out of the middle of the boat as much as possible with keeping the centreboard in the same or roughly the same position. CE is is just about in the middle of the centreboard - but a little aft - not much though. On a separate issue - looked at your Scribd stuff and see you interest in sampans (sampoa's). I've always wanted to build a little (12-15 ft or so) (traditional-ish) sampan with a little shelter and propel with a yuloh - I reckon that would be great for (and would probably get some weird looks) around my local rivers. -something like this - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Sampan-01.png - probably really easy to build - any thoughts from what you know?

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Quote Originally Posted by dave119 View Post
    johnw I would use epoxy - read to many bad things about polyester delaminating after a while, not really good at adhering to timber/ply, being brittle etc. Currently working on sail plan - probably a standing lug to move the mast forward and get it out of the middle of the boat as much as possible with keeping the centreboard in the same or roughly the same position. CE is is just about in the middle of the centreboard - but a little aft - not much though. On a separate issue - looked at your Scribd stuff and see you interest in sampans (sampoa's). I've always wanted to build a little (12-15 ft or so) (traditional-ish) sampan with a little shelter and propel with a yuloh - I reckon that would be great for (and would probably get some weird looks) around my local rivers. -something like this - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Sampan-01.png - probably really easy to build - any thoughts from what you know?
    Dave I think you are right. I used polyester on the first boats I built. Polyester is OK if you are VERY fastidious about everything, but it will never give the same kind of bond as epoxy. The boat I am building now is using epoxy. Also check whether any CSM you are using is powder or emulsion bound. You need to use the right one depending on if you are using epoxy or polyester resin.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    Johnw - I knew I had seen something somewhere and found it again with lines etc - http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb....y_sampans.html - I'll stop hijacking my own thread now.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    A friend of mine actually built a sampan.





    Here's the thread that picture came from: http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...ding-questions

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    That's the thread is was referring to in my other thread on sampans. I have all the drawings from Craig o'd pages. The little orange one here is what I am thinking about -
    http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb....us_sampan.html
    My wife could sit in the shade under the shelter and I could yuloh around the place! - well that's the current thinking - as soon as I finish with this pram thing, I'll try to sort some drawings - lines etc - for this - I like the way Craig says it is very similar to the one in the Audemard's sketch of the Hung'tou- so I do have a bit to go on.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    I have the book that drawing came from, and while Worcester's drawings are very informative, none of them are suitable for building. The plans Ernie built from were from the William Maxwell Blake collection at the Smithsonian, which you might look into. Black was in charge of the drydocks at Singapore, and his drawings are much more useful.

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    Default Re: Sailing Dinghy Similiar to Mirror

    OK - thanks will look into the Blake stuff.

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