For several months now I've been seriously contemplating a build of Doug Hylan's Bowler design. This is a 26 1/2' semi-displacement hull powered by a 60hp outboard in a well. The boat, Bagatelle built by D. Hylan's shop (from Hylans website):

Bowler - 1.jpg

The boat ticks just about all my boxes. It's a reasonable size, low power requirement, ply/wood/epoxy construction (what I'm familiar with), modest but adequate accommodations, doesn't have to go real fast to be efficient (not a planing boat), and is very nice looking. I have the plans and have been looking at them for a while. The boat will fit into my shop, which is a good thing as far as I'm concerned. It will also fit out the door (just)! My only concern is how she behaves in the water.

Bowler is based on Hylan's proven Top Hat series of boats and he has no qualms about her stability. While I respect his opinion, I'm looking for further assurance. I do not want to invest all the time and money necessary just to end up with a boat that I feel is shaky. Initial stability is a big issue for me and for my wife. I "think" the Bowler will be just fine but would be hard pressed to justify that feeling in a serious discussion.

So my questions to you all: Have you any experience with this particular design or one of it's close relatives? Any opinion on the boat based on familiarity with the like?

At this time I have no questions regarding the actual build. This, to me, is rather straight forward. It's a bigger boat than I've built, but that just means more material and more work. There will be construction questions, I'm sure... but later. As I've done with my two previous builds... I'll be creating a dedicated build thread.

Thanks for your interest.

Jeff