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Thread: Ice boating

  1. #1
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    Default Ice boating

    About to go googling for build plans, any suggestion? The grandkids (9 and 7) and I talked with the lone sailor on the lake yesterday. The kiddos want go build one for next year. They are being home schooled so this will fit right in. But, I need a set of plans, found a source for a DN on line, are there others that might be better(slower) for them? Theyíve not sailed before, so Iím not thinking of putting them in a rocket. I have a catspaw dinghy here for when the ice melts, are there plans for fitting runners on regular boat, or would I just have to wing it? Ive never sailed hard water, so Iíll be learning too.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    The Cheapskate: https://iceboat.me/cheapskate/ would be just right.
    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."

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    BF, that looks like it would be a fun build/toy

    and the lateen rig would take the kids right into Sunfish sailing

    sw
    "we are the people, our parents warned us about" (jb)

    steve

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Thanks, Ben, that looks like a plan!

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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Management is the art of counting beans. Leadership is the art of making every being count. --Joe Finch

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Every iceboat is a rocket. My little homebuilt DN-60s topped out at more than 50 mph on smooth ice. The Cheapskate is basically a DN re-rigged with a Sunfish sail. Still, they sound pretty young for a 50 mph boat.

    Another suggestion: build a DN-60 (or the cheapskate), but stiffen up the runner plank and widen the body to make it a two-person boat. Then they wouldn't be alone out there. We did this with one of our homebuilt DNs and it worked well as a two-person boat, though it wasn't class legal anymore. We didn't care, as we weren't racing formally. It'll be heavier, but trust me, it will still move. Iceboats are good at that.

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

    www.tompamperin.com

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Good idea, I’m thinking I don’t want be doing 50 out there either, at least on the first time out.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    That's basically what our Arrow is - a big two seat DN style, though we have had it up around 65 on the GPS at times, and you don't just decide to drive slowly in any iceboat. The wind blows, the boat goes. The book "Think Ice" (kind of the Old Testament of the DN Class Association) has a photo or two of expanded, two-seater DNs.

    The problems with any iceboat which uses a Sunfish sail are (1) it's a damned big sail for an iceboat (more square footage than just about any modern bow-steering iceboat) (2) it has too much draft, which tends to further overpower it, and (3) they get beat up quickly as those sails were never intended for that sort of stress or speeds (so don't invest in a good one).

    I'd much rather see kids in something like an Ice Opti.
    https://www.iceboat.org/buildopti/

    maybe even adapt a wooden version of something similar to a Lockley Skimmer 45. We had a Lockley for several years and despite being somewhat crude, it was a blast to sail and wasn't terribly fast by iceboat standards. They're made with steel pipe frames, but I always wondered about building a wooden one.


  9. #9
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Isn't this pretty much what the Ice Optimist was designed for?

    https://www.iceboat.org/regattas/iceoptimist/

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Worth actually reading the Cheapskate material. Lloyd Roberts ( Think Ice writer) whose design it is was also skeptical of the Sunfish sail. He was surprised. What seems to happen is that it gets less efficient at higher speeds, draggier if you will so it hangs out surprisingly well. That said no one that I know that has one of these has put a new Sunfish rig on it. I don't recall if a double cheapskate has been built. I know that it went through at least one iteration of runner plank length experimentation, originally narrower. Hard to been 3-400 in materials and 40 hours with everything sourced from a big box store. Putting together an ice opti is more expensive assuming the sails cancel each other out as it needs commercial runners. Not sure if there is a sailor size limitation in an ice opti; I know Lloyd set things up for 150-200 and varying leg lengths.
    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."

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Or.... you could go old style, and I mean seriously old style. The funny part is that though you aren't going to be blowing the doors off of modern iceboats, this thing would actually work and kids would probably have a ball with it.

    DSCF0293.jpg

    from the book "Wings on the Ice" published in the 1930s.

  12. #12
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Bradshaw View Post
    Or.... you could go old style, and I mean seriously old style. The funny part is that though you aren't going to be blowing the doors off of modern iceboats, this thing would actually work and kids would probably have a ball with it.

    DSCF0293.jpg

    from the book "Wings on the Ice" published in the 1930s.


    And float when they hit a hole! ( Not that kids are ever inattentive. )

    Kevin


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    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: Ice boating

    Lots of good advice above. Here are some other options and issues to consider.
    The DN is the most popular iceboat in the world and for good reason. It's relatively cheap, portable and fun. It's design criteria was an affordable iceboat that almost anyone can build. That said, it can be a little bit of a frustrating process to build. There is a hodgepodge of plans available but some are dated and others are obsolete. The prevalent thinking nowadays is that the home builder will buy rather than build a rig. A modern rig (mast, boom, sail and stays) is made of carbon fiber, aluminum, etc. These can be quite pricey.

    If you want to build your own rig you'll have to do a bit googling. When I built a DN I ended up cherry picking from four different plans for the hull, mast, plank and boom. Here's a good place to start http://dnamerica.org/archive/Wisdom_web.htm. More DN information than you'll ever want to know. Speaking of plans the best for a hull that I saw was by Paul Goodwin, available here.
    http://dnamerica.org/forum/index.php?topic=86.0. Worth every penny.

    You should also know that all the metal bling that goes on a DN adds up. You can buy a great turn-key boat for same price that you'll pay to build one with new hardware.

    Other options regarding DNs are building a sidecar or building a SuperDN or both. A sidecar is easy to build, install and remove and is a great way to take out kids. A SuperDN is a hotrodded DN that has a 10' plank and a springboard for the steering runner. Otherwise everything else is the same.

    Yet another DN option is a Gambit. This is two-seater designed by Lloyd Robers of the Chickawaukie club. Basically a very wide DN and uses DN hardware.

    Another boat option to consider is an Icebird. This is more or less a wooden version of a Lockley Skimmer and are cheap to build. In NJ these are a relatively popular boat but I've never seen one outside of NJ. The hardest part of building one will be getting plans. The designer is an older gentleman in the Long Branch Iceboat and Yacht Club in Long Branch, NJ. He apparently doesn't do email and I obtained my plans ( $15) by sending a check in the mail. Unfortunately I no longer have the address, but you might be able to get information through the LBIBYC.http://www.lbibyc.org/

    Lastly, take a look at the Bellport Frostfish Shingle. This unusual multi-person boat is easy to build, transport and store. What makes it unusual is that it doesn't have a tiller. It steers by balancing the jib and the mainsail. http://icescooter.org/store.php
    Last edited by Dusty Yevsky; 01-28-2019 at 09:25 PM.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    My Cheapskate build is just getting underway. I seriously considered the Mini Skeeter but I was put off by the dedicated rig and the foot steering. A Cheapskate recently was clocked at over 46mph! I think a DN style sidecar will take care of the occasional passenger.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Pete_on_Frost_Fish[306] ice boat shingle.jpg

    On Long Island, NY's Great South Bay there are scooters and shingles (pictured above). Basically a sled ice boat.

    More info here: http://icescooter.org/store.php

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Quote Originally Posted by Dusty Yevsky View Post
    You should also know that all the metal bling that goes on a DN adds up. You can buy a great turn-key boat for same price that you'll pay to build one with new hardware.
    No doubt that's true if you want to be competitive. But you can build a DN very cheaply if you forego the fancy hardware and fabricate some of your own stuff. Our skates were just 1/4" steel plate. The plans I had back in the early 90s showed a hollow plywood mast. I doubt the entire boat (without sail) cost more than $200.

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

    www.tompamperin.com

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Many years ago in the "Launchings" section of WBM there was a photo of a snowboat -- the guy basically built an iceboat but with skis. The photo showed it parked in some beautiful scenery of snowy hills and meadows-- not a lake -- and it was a pretty craft but I had severe doubts that, in practice, it would generally function, except in some uncommon conditions of snow (and my readings about "desert sailboats" indicated they didn't go up a grade very well). Anybody ever try a "snowboat"? -- Wade

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    A friend built a “sidecar” for his iceboat so he could take a passenger. He made it out of an old Thule rooftop box, I’ll try to get a pic.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Bradshaw View Post
    Or.... you could go old style, and I mean seriously old style. The funny part is that though you aren't going to be blowing the doors off of modern iceboats, this thing would actually work and kids would probably have a ball with it.

    DSCF0293.jpg

    from the book "Wings on the Ice" published in the 1930s.
    Hmmm... now, where are those old rollerblades nobody uses anymore...

    Peace,
    Iceless, But Not Deterred

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    The idea of a snowboat has always seemed interesting, but the resistance is much greater on skis than on skates. I suspect that you would have a heck of a time just getting the thing to move, and up to enough speed that it can start making its own wind. One of the curious things about iceboating is that it is entirely possible and fairly common to be buzzing along at 30-40 mph and pass somebody headed the same direction and not moving at all. I don't mean slowly, I mean dead in the (on the frozen) water. If however, they get out and run a few yards, pushing their boat, they can then hop back in and pretty soon they're back up to sailing speed. While maybe not impossible, I suspect it would be really hard to get up enough speed on a ski-equipped boat to get that self-perpetuating motion going.

    On another note, while looking through my reprints of ancient iceboating books I found a passage claiming that those early Dutch iceboats (which looked kind of like little pirate ships) could be lifted off of their runner planks during warm weather and sailed, once the plank fastener holes were plugged. The stern, steering skate was just a typical sailboat rudder with a metal shoe on its bottom to make it a skate for steering in iceboat mode. I don't know how common this actually was, and they would be kind of small for sloop rigged boats, but there have been some pretty tiny modern versions of such summer sailboats. The 12', sloop rigged fiberglass AMF Puffer comes to mind. Not particularly exciting in use and kind of like a generous bathtub inside, but it will hold a couple of people and sail.

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    I did some iceboating years ago, and my father owned a gaff-rigged stern-steerer in the 1940s. Might note that iceboats are fast due to the ability of a runner on ice developing extreme lateral resistance and little friction. This means basically they are either quite fast, or don't move. There is no middle ground. It also means the loads on the sail and hull, etc., are quite high, hence they should be quite strong. If not, they shatter, collapse, etc. Dunno if this restricts the kid factor--probably similar to go-kart racing. That said, it is hard to beat a DN. The design was intended for home building, and all the parts can be either purchased or fabricated. I once cobbled up a sail by cutting off the corner of an old jib. The sail itself is likely the most expensive thing, if purchased. Dunno what the hardware kit costs today. A friend used to be the major fabricator, who also worked on the original. The boat itself is just a couple of boards bent to shape, and the masts used to be solid spruce--quite simple to make. If you have the weather and good ice, its a wild ride. Googling a bit, it looks like a useable DN (not competitive) can be had for less than $1,000.
    Last edited by Dan McCosh; 01-31-2019 at 05:10 PM.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Don't know anything about this program, but there is a designed called an iceboat Opti, aimed at kids. Almost sounds like the original DN.https://www.iceboat.org/buildopti/

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    This video has been posted here before but it’s worth a rewatch.


  24. #24
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Bradshaw View Post
    The idea of a snowboat has always seemed interesting, but the resistance is much greater on skis than on skates. I suspect that you would have a heck of a time just getting the thing to move, and up to enough speed that it can start making its own wind. One of the curious things about iceboating is that it is entirely possible and fairly common to be buzzing along at 30-40 mph and pass somebody headed the same direction and not moving at all. I don't mean slowly, I mean dead in the (on the frozen) water. If however, they get out and run a few yards, pushing their boat, they can then hop back in and pretty soon they're back up to sailing speed. While maybe not impossible, I suspect it would be really hard to get up enough speed on a ski-equipped boat to get that self-perpetuating motion going.

    On another note, while looking through my reprints of ancient iceboating books I found a passage claiming that those early Dutch iceboats (which looked kind of like little pirate ships) could be lifted off of their runner planks during warm weather and sailed, once the plank fastener holes were plugged. The stern, steering skate was just a typical sailboat rudder with a metal shoe on its bottom to make it a skate for steering in iceboat mode. I don't know how common this actually was, and they would be kind of small for sloop rigged boats, but there have been some pretty tiny modern versions of such summer sailboats. The 12', sloop rigged fiberglass AMF Puffer comes to mind. Not particularly exciting in use and kind of like a generous bathtub inside, but it will hold a couple of people and sail.
    --- Sounds right, for the snow-boat. I did see a few years ago an ad for a kind of sailboard for the snow, which seemed equally unlikely unless on a snow-covered lake, though the ad depicted the snow-boarder leaping off a hilly crest....

    The water-sailing conversion sounds like a good safety feature while ice boating -- perhaps some unwisely planned outing during which the cieboat broke through the ice didn't end in a drowning. -- Wade

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan McCosh View Post
    Don't know anything about this program, but there is a designed called an iceboat Opti, aimed at kids. Almost sounds like the original DN.https://www.iceboat.org/buildopti/
    --- I've seen a video of an Opti or Opti-like boat sailing around a big parking lot on retro-fitted wheels. -- Wade

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Bill I'm going to second the shingle for a couple reasons... biggest one is the Shingle style is a 1-2-3 person boat... an ice boat is not a toy, it's a dangerous machine that if used responsibly and knowledgeably can be a TON of fun. You are going to want to do alot of sailing with the kidos before turning them loose on the ice with any ice boat... a skate sail might be a different thing...
    also the shingle type boat is incredibly simple to build and difficult to use... which means you'll learn alot about sailing from this boat.

    Steven, thanks always fun watching that film... and look at all the pleasure boats frozen in the river :O

    Quote Originally Posted by holzbt View Post
    Pete_on_Frost_Fish[306] ice boat shingle.jpg

    On Long Island, NY's Great South Bay there are scooters and shingles (pictured above). Basically a sled ice boat.

    More info here: http://icescooter.org/store.php
    here's my shingle I built when I was 15... 25 years ago, it's sooooooo much FUN!

    Last edited by Daniel Noyes; 02-13-2019 at 09:08 AM.

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Here's a video of the ice boating on Bellport Bay a few years back...


    http://jeanmiele.com/movies/BellportIceboat109.mp4

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Ice boating

    Sunday and Monday, two gaffers on Megunticook, reefed down flickering about in a northwester gusting to 20. When you stop spinning you laugh. Collective age of the gaffers 150 or so, age of the skippers added together about the same.
    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."

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