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Thread: Farm Boat Designs for Puget Sound

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2013
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    Default Farm Boat Designs for Puget Sound

    Hi Friends,

    I promise that later this fall or winter I'll tell you the story of designing and building my 12'7" faering type boat, Vestyr.

    But first, I have a question for the collective mind. I've recently moved up to an amazing little farm on Camano Island in Washington state. Ever since that article on the Beth Alison and her owner, David Berry in WB a few years ago, I've been jonesing to do a similar kind of thing. My friends that have started the farm are all about it, especially as traffic gets worse by the week. I haven't done any real market research, but there are a dozen little towns within easy reach. The thought is we could have a day a week in which we visit a handful of them, share our farm goodies, and make it home. I'd also love a boat for pleasure outings in Saratoga Passage with the farm crew and friends.

    Beth Alison is a 34' New Haven sharpie, and Mr. Berry say's she's perfect for his needs. She lives on a mooring. Our boat would be trailered, and the launch at the state park is on the tight side.

    She'd need to be able to haul a few hundred pounds of produce and 2-5 people.

    For power, I want sail and (ideally) electric inboard (outboards, even tastefully done in a well, just don't look right to me. I recognize that's totally just my aesthetic opinion), and probably oars or a yuloh for when we want a workout.

    I did a very little poking around and quickly found Atkin's New Hope (24' LOA) which is a NH sharpie type. The size I think is about right. I like the simplicity of the rig that would facilitate switching between market and underway functions, the economic eye with which he drew it, the lack of CB trunk (I know, I know...I'm proposing taking up more space with an inboard+battery bank...)

    I would need to get someone's blessing to build her without a cabin and with an inboard, or as Mr. Berry does, bolt the cabin on in the winter and go cruising!

    I looked for contact info for Mr. Berry to get his thoughts, but all I could find was maybe a snailmail address for his farm. I also know how busy it is on a farm right now, so I might try again in the winter.

    I also have it on my list to get my hands on a copy of The Sharpie Book.

    So that's what I'm thinking/dreaming of...if anyone has any insights, thoughts, inspirations, questions, etc. on any of the above, I'm happy to hear!

  2. #2
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    Nov 2011
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    Default Re: Farm Boat Designs for Puget Sound


  3. #3
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    Default Re: Farm Boat Designs for Puget Sound

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacobwolf View Post
    Our boat would be trailered, and the launch at the state park is on the tight side.

    She'd need to be able to haul a few hundred pounds of produce and 2-5 people.
    That is going to need a big trailer and a big tow vehicle. You will be looking at 25 to 30 foot long and 8 foot beam.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
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    Santa Fe NM
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    Default Re: Farm Boat Designs for Puget Sound

    How much are you planning on spending? Not trying to be rude but it matters as to the design. Just buying an existing boat cheaply, dropping on a good electric motor, painting and misc. will cost something. Going from scratch will cost much more than something. If you want to talk about ideal designs without the money factor that’s ok too.
    "Yeah, well, that's just, like your opinion man"
    -The Dude-

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
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    Default Re: Farm Boat Designs for Puget Sound

    This thread is timely since this we just had another thread about this boat for sale in B.C. recently:

    https://vancouver.craigslist.ca/van/...702465215.html

    That's the same design Gib posted above. Really too big to store and launch from a trailer but hard to imagine a better boat for the purpose, or a better price. There might be problems with commercial use given that it's not U.S. built but I'm not sure if that would apply in the OP's case. If the boat is not carrying goods or passengers for hire, and it's not being used for fishing, is it subject to the Jones Act?

  6. #6
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    Aug 2015
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    Santa Fe NM
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    Default Re: Farm Boat Designs for Puget Sound

    Wow, that is a deal!
    "Yeah, well, that's just, like your opinion man"
    -The Dude-

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Berkeley, CA
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    5

    Default Re: Farm Boat Designs for Puget Sound

    Beth Allison used to come to the island I go to in Maine, loaded with produce and 3 or 4 people. She is not very big for 34 feet being narrow of beam and of low freeboard and shallow draft. I’m not sure you could carry as much as you’d like in a similar boat scaled down to 24’. From the business side she had a devoted clientele!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2013
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    8

    Default Re: Farm Boat Designs for Puget Sound

    Thanks for the replies!

    I include myself among those that have never found a scow particularly pleasing, yet I do respect their efficiency of space. I'm certainly not above them. Given our size restrictions, it might be wise to look into them. 40' is definitely too much for us! That one in BC is a good deal, though

    I don't have a budget yet. Not sure I will have much of one. I would really like to barter with someone nearby who is clearing land for some logs, get them milled and go that route, a true workboat. As much as I would love to build it, I'm certainly open to finding the right used boat, and would appreciate the time saved. I'm just casting a very wide net right now seeing what other great ideas might arise (like scows!)

    I'm also curious if there are any small, shallow cargo boats that evolved in these waterways?

    I think about 25' is about the max we could handle. Atkin says New Hope is about a foot wider than a true NH sharpie of the same length, so she might have volume more like a 28'er...(?)

    Doing some very rough calculations from the lines on the website, looks like New Hope would settle about 1" for the first 300# (and increasing rapidly). There's no displacement that I see given on the page, but surely he's accounting for at least 300# in the DWL (?), so with 900# of additional cargo/farmers she'd be down maybe 2.5". That doesn't strike me as much of a problem, whaddyathink?

    nrs5000, that's cool you used to see Beth Alison! With your testimony too, sounds like we might need to limit the number of farmers who go along for the ride. Fortunately for me, as the resident sailor, I guess I'd have to go every time...oh darn!

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Farm Boat Designs for Puget Sound

    Also from American Small Sailing Craft there's this "San Juan Sharpie", about 36' x 9' but it could be scaled down. I have an idea Reuel Parker did a plywood version of this boat.

    SanJuanSharpie.jpg
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
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    St. Helens, Oregon
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    Default Re: Farm Boat Designs for Puget Sound

    Here's a 32' X 8'-1" from the Wooden Boat Store. "Two Lucys" could work for you. https://www.woodenboatstore.com/prod...rpie_TWO_LUCYS I might be inclined t see if it could be adapted to ply construction for speed and ease.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2013
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    8

    Default Re: Farm Boat Designs for Puget Sound

    I like the idea of the San Juan sharpie. A historical local type would be ideal in my mind. It would certainly need to be scaled down for our purposes. I like the versatility of two masts and a CB, but I keep coming back to New Hope's open layout, lack of mizzen and trunk in the middle of the action...

    Two Lucys is nice looking sharpie, again I think too big. I looked at Egret, too. I would have hesitation about trailering with that rudder. I like double enders, but I think we need to maximize our interior volume relative to length, which of course transoms facilitate...

    compromises!

    Thank you for the feedback.

    I might reach out to the wooden boat centers in the region and see if any of them have more info on local types...

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