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Thread: A pirate ship for the new age.

  1. #1
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    Default A pirate ship for the new age.

    I have a client who has two sons that are wild about the films of The Pirates of The Carribean and wants to build a thirty five foot brig for just plain having fun! This means that the boat will set square sails on both masts. As a study for efficiency I have made a preliminary design as well as this deck plan model which is half inch to the foot. This model is for a 28 foot boat that is too small to be practical. The boat has yet to be named but will have diesel electric auxiliary power and a bow thruster as well. An after cabin will be a separate place for sleeping and midships births and a galley forward will be incorporated. I just thought you all might enjoy seeing what is envisioned and any comments are welcome. Capstan bars are removable.
    Jay
    Last edited by Jay Greer; 06-07-2020 at 08:21 PM.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.


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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Way cool. Real artillery? Maybe tubes they can fill with starting fluid and spark off.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.


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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Wow! Isn't that a lot to pack into a 30' length?

    Fortunate kids.

    Jeff

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    Way cool. Real artillery?
    The boat will be armed with four 2 pound cannons that are made of fiberglass and will have a carbide "Big Bang Cannon" mechanism inside in order to give a rousing salute. The boat will also have carbide loaded rail guns. Harmless but loud!
    Jay
    Last edited by Jay Greer; 06-08-2020 at 02:33 PM.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Quote Originally Posted by jpatrick View Post
    Wow! Isn't that a lot to pack into a 30' length?

    Fortunate kids.

    Jeff
    Actually the owner wanted a 28 foot boat in the beginning. My feeling was that the rig, which is a topsail schooner with squares added would afford too much windage from the rig to be able to sail well up wind. So, we have compromised up to a 35foot hull.
    Jay

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    What a cool concept. Jay Benford designed a small brigantine for a client who had a large family, and he wanted lots of strings to pull for them. My memory is hazy, but the it was around 35’, and lived on San Francisco Bay.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Since the boat will be sailed in Florida, shallow draft is necessary so, a centerboard will most likely be used. Stability is a major factor here and is of great concern. She will be rigging her with carbon fiber spars, booms and yards in order to keep the top hamper light!
    Roller reefing for the squares will cut down on having to go aloft and simplify dousing sail in a hurry. All manner of safety precautions will be considered on this one!
    Jay
    Last edited by Jay Greer; 06-07-2020 at 08:00 PM.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Schweiss View Post
    What a cool concept. Jay Benford designed a small brigantine for a client who had a large family, and he wanted lots of strings to pull for them. My memory is hazy, but the it was around 35’, and lived on San Francisco Bay.
    In my humble opinion, thirty five feet is about the lower end of length for a topsail schooner rigged boat Paul. This is because of the added windage such a rig is subject to. Every consideration is being used to make this boat successful rather than a pipe dream that is iffy under sail!
    Thanks for your comment and interest!
    Jay
    Last edited by Jay Greer; 06-07-2020 at 08:27 PM.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Swansea pilot schooners were 33 foot long, but were shallop rigged. However, light topmasts and square topsails and fore course could be added. However, at 30 foot I'd not send family out onto the yards to furl the square sails. Scott Metcalfe does so on Vilma, but she is bigger at 14+ meters on deck and put together lice a brick built cludgie.

    Cross post with Jay #9
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Thanks Nick for that info! This boat will be thirty five feet between perpendiculars. The after slanting rake of the Poop Deck will probably extend that to thirty seven feet and change. She will be roller reefed on the squares too, hopefully, keep that people out of the rigging except for things that cannot be done on deck. Again this is only a deck model to show how the layout and creature comforts could be.
    The owner is interested in entertaining as many of his friends aboard as he can. The boat will sail in the Great Lakes as well as Florida so a cradled trailer for transport will have to be custom made. A lot of logistics to deal with here! The main thing is safety for the passengers and crew!
    Jay
    Last edited by Jay Greer; 06-07-2020 at 08:28 PM.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Outstanding. This is what's graciously called a 'folly' among the British gentry.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    I had a 25' gaff rigged ketch tricked out similarly when I was in my early twenties. She had a center cockpit with a wooden spoked wheel on the aft bulkhead. Aft of the cockpit was a raised poop deck with monkey rails beneath which was a small cabin with two berths and old-fashioned windows on the stern and quarters. Forward were two more berths and a galley and head plus a forepeak. She was built of hard chined plywood with fiberglass sheathing. She had a Kermath Sea Twin that never ran worth a damn. Not what I really wanted, but the price was right at the time and she was a lot of fun for a couple of years. People who didn't know boats went nuts over it. People who did know boats thought it was "interesting!" Character boats are great fun.

    Actually, though, I think John Atkin has done the work for you, Jay. He designed a brigantine rig for his 30' Little Maid of Kent hard chine schooner, one of his prettiest designs. http://www.atkinboatplans.com/Sail/L...aidOfKent.html She was called Anna Maria and sailed on S.F. Bay for many years. She went through the brokerage where I worked at one point, IIRC. I've been aboard her and was quite familiar with her. She sailed well enough and was a very good looking boat. One advantage of her rig was that she could be sailed to windward reasonably well with the square sails brailed up.

    The Little Maid of Kent plans are in the public domain, having been published in MoTorBoaTing's Ideal Series ages ago. I've sailed two or three of them. One was welded up of steel. She was as good as the wooden ones. The hard chine design was originally drawn for standard carvel planking but has been built in plywood, as well. (You now how I feel about plywood!)

    The Atkin catalog still has the plans, but not listed separately from Little Maid of Kent. I found an old post discussing her: http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...nna-Maria-quot She wouldn't be a hugely expensive boat to build and the design might easily enough be lengthened a bit if one wanted more accommodation. She's not a centerboarder, but draws about five feet, which isn't excessive for a thirty footer. She's got a good sized cockpit, which is good for entertaining guests (not my cup of tea, but some enjoy that.)



    John Atkin liked her so much he used her on his Christmas cards one year:

    Last edited by Bob Cleek; 06-07-2020 at 09:08 PM.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Roller furling is heavy, I would only consider it for the courses if at all (curtain brailing at the mast is lighter). The topsails can be sent aloft on three hailyards to a fixed or sliding yard and the topgallants can be sent aloft with the yard. The squaresails I would specify to be made out of nylon so that they can only be used in fair weather. No traditional reefing whatsoever, just take them in. In higher winds sail with the fore-n-aft sailplan.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Fun project, though if the client is building it himself the children might be grown and gone before completion! I'm reminded of William Garden's Caravelle or Privateer, they are similarly whimsical, but the square rigged versions only have one mast.

    Ancient Dream Ships, he calls them.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    I'd love to have the model for my grand kids!

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Greer View Post
    The boat will be armed with eight pound cannons that are made of fiberglass and will have a carbide "Big Bang Cannon" mechanism inside in order to give a rousing salute. The boat will also have carbide loaded rail guns. Harmless but loud!
    Jay
    Jay, please rethink that loud cannon notion. I had one of those carbide cannons as a kid. And I had any number of other noise making devices including hammers and a plentiful supply of nails. Gun/hunting were also part of my life. And as an adult I've paid a mighty price. I've been hard of hearing for many many years. I don't hear birdsong and haven't done so for at least 30 years. I get to buy very expensive hearing aids every so often to "aid" my poor hearing.

    I wish now that adults had helped me form better habits as a youngster. Perhaps I could now watch a movie and not have to have subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing.

    Jeff

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Well Jeff I have the same problem with hearing that you have and I was forced to invest in some very expensive aids as well! Routers and other machinery in the shop as well as an actelyne tennis ball gun for schooner battles has left me at a disadvantage too. This is bad because my other profession is that of a cross over singer as is done by Anderea Bocelli. Fortunately the aid amps still work well for me in my music.
    But, this is the owners wish and I am only designing the boat to be as is his desires. I do think that the comments made here are very informative for his dream as well as appreciated!

    Thanks for the advise!
    Jay

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Bob, that is a very good looking Atkin design! I do like it and I thank you for going to the trouble to post the info! However, the owner has his heart set on crossing yards on both the fore and main masts! So the rig will be that of a Brig rather than a Brigantine. The boat will be sailed in Florida and in skinny waters, so the Atkin boat will not work in the shallow draft department.

    His wishes are really what you see here in the model which was made for the 28 foot boat. Fortunately my client has changed his mind for the twenty eight footer and has decided on the thirty five foot design. The bigger boat will afford better stability and more room for passengers as well as ample room for them below. Certainly I do feel that the longer version will be a much better choice on his part. Again I thank you for posting the Atkin design.
    Jay

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Jay

    This reminds me of the brigs used by the Little Brig Sailing Trust which were designed by Colin Mudie.


    Although the trust is now defunct (lack of money) there's some detail on this link. You'll need to scroll down to the 'Bob Allen'.
    http://www.cocatrez.net/Water/Scaled...cas/index.html

    Nick

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rumars View Post
    Roller furling is heavy, I would only consider it for the courses if at all (curtain brailing at the mast is lighter). The topsails can be sent aloft on three hailyards to a fixed or sliding yard and the topgallants can be sent aloft with the yard. The squaresails I would specify to be made out of nylon so that they can only be used in fair weather. No traditional reefing whatsoever, just take them in. In higher winds sail with the fore-n-aft sailplan.
    You are right on Rumars, That is why we are designing vertical reefing of the squares. This will cause the sails to be bifurcated and will place them, when furled against the mast. Actually this will also make the square sails in to two panels rather than one and will cut down on down wind oscillation of the boat as it rolls when sailing dead down wind and will be lighter than a window shade style of roller reefing. In this manner the reefing of the square sails is much more aerodynamic and takes the place of added studding sails.

    We are also using Dyneema cordage for rigging as well as running rigging which coupled with the light spar weight will be lighter than similar rigs of the past. This one has really been a head scratcher and we are still searching for a light weight but bendible material to make the bullworks from. So, if any of you know of a new super light material that can satisfy that need, I am all eyes and ears to hear about it!
    Jay

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Well Nick Bob Allen's boat is certainly interesting! The owner likes the idea of having a high poop deck and so that is why you see one incorporated on the model. It' does interfere with a spanker though. I do like the idea of the short twin bilge keels and might consider that as an alternate to the centerboard concept. A board does take up interior space but it also, when, wighted can add more stability to a hull. Right now that is to be experimented with. I hope Ian will chime in here as well as he once owned a Herreshoff Medow Lark that had external lead ballest bricks along the keel on his boat. It would be refreshing to have a first hand report on how well it works.
    Thanks again Nick for your input!
    Jay aka Bird
    Last edited by Jay Greer; 06-08-2020 at 04:02 PM.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Jay

    A bit of amateur googling also came up with this old thread which mentions the Colin Mudie brigs with some nice input by Tad Roberts.
    http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...igantine-Plans

    Nick

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    77E6744B-43D6-4846-BFB2-8A4C86EDE6DA.jpgAttachment 61866[QUOTE=Jay Greer;6201601]I have a client who has two sons that are wild about the films of The Pirates of The Carribean and wants to build a thirty five foot brig for just plain having fun! This means that the boat will set square sails on both masts.

    Hi Jay;

    I just got your email stating this thread was up, and wanted to check out the comments. It is actually THREE sons (and a daughter), and they all have really enjoyed the first Pirate ship (Fang) that you have given me advice on the past 4-5 years. Also, many of the guys on this forum gave a ton of solid advice that was so appreciated.

    The chance to build another one has been on my mind for awhile, as it is an opportunity to keep all the things we love about Fang, and correct/add the things we would improve. The 35í makes me nervous still, as I donít want to be too limited when trailering, but what the heck, eh? Safety and stability are the biggest factors, followed by coolness factor (the kidsí friends want nothing more than to go out on the one we have now), followed by sailing performance, in that order.

    Canít wait to finalize the design, and look forward to the fun arguments between your experience and knowledge, and my amateur enthusiasm. The new workshop is just about ready, too.

    Rob
    Last edited by lothar4550; 06-08-2020 at 05:22 PM. Reason: Pic loaded

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    18870765-40BE-4614-A283-D029A8F9850D.jpgOk, I am still pad at uploading pics.....
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by lothar4550; 06-08-2020 at 05:34 PM.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Awwww. man!

    Jeeze, Jay; you get all the cool design commissions. I'm jealous! <grin>


    Good an ya - I hope the whole thing comes off wonderfully.
    Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian McColgin View Post
    Outstanding. This is what's graciously called a 'folly' among the British gentry.
    Gosh Ian, I thought a Folly was a Brittish garden house for secluded trysts!
    Jay

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Yes, I am honered that the owner of "Fang" has chosen me to do his new design. We are still working out particulars and have yet to reach a final agreement as to size. My first and foremost consideration is safety and sailing ability for this little boat!

    Here is another study model that took a long time to complete, the "Fly"that was a Brittish Ship of the line messenger vessel. The "fly" has a sloop rig and is close to fifty feet in length. She has an outragious selection of kites and amount of canvas that can be spread down wind! Here she sports a ringtail and studding sails. This type of vessel was popular in the Windward Islands of the Caribbean for its ability to tack and work up wind and its rapid maneuverability! For this reason she was a popular Pirate ship there. A similar boat was dispatched at the Battle of Trafalgar to announce the death of Lord Nelson to England.
    Jay

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    What is the sparred length?

    That certainly is a bowsprit to warm the cockles of Pless's heart! <grin>
    Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    You can see by the photos of "Fang" that her owner is well versed in show quality boat construction! We could have used him at Disney when the Anaheim faculty was being built!
    Jay

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Greer View Post
    Yes, I am honered that the owner of "Fang" has chosen me to do his new design. We are still working out particulars and have yet to reach a final agreement as to size. My first and foremost consideration is safety and sailing ability for this little boat!

    Here is another study model that took a long time to complete, the "Fly"that was a Brittish Ship of the line messenger vessel. The "fly" has a sloop rig and is close to fifty feet in length. She has an outragious selection of kites and amount of canvas that can be spread down wind! Here she sports a ringtail and studding sails. This type of vessel was popular in the Windward Islands of the Caribbean for its ability to tack and work up wind and its rapid maneuverability! For this reason she was a popular Pirate ship there. A similar boat was dispatched at the Battle of Trafalgar to announce the death of Lord Nelson to England.
    Jay
    Those had a lot of beam in order to sdtand up to their rig, not good for trailing up and down US highways.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  33. #33
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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    Yes Nick, that is indeed a problem! A special permit will be needed. I have towed all maner of boats long distance without any problems.
    Jay

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    I don't envy you at all, Jay. It's often very difficult "to speak truth to power" when the "power" is a client with a wad of cash in his pocket and strong opinions on what he wants. It's unfortunate that he has his heart set on a brig of that size. It doesn't take an MIT graduate to know that rig in that size isn't going to sail worth a damn and, given its shallow draft, lack of windward ability, and excessive top hamper, isn't going to be all that seaworthy, either. (You don't have to say that. I have the luxury of doing so because it's not my rice bowl.) I never understand the desire of so many to try to reinvent the wheel. There are lots of good designs to pick from and customize to one's own good taste. I wonder if he wouldn't reconsider defining his parameters in terms of performance and utility instead of his fantasy of what a "pirate ship" looked like. After all, the real pirates and slavers were more interested in speed and windward ability than anything else because their lives depended on outrunning larger square rigged vessels. For this reason, they were very partial to the Baltimore Clipper style of vessel.

    In square rig, as in schooners, "size matters." 35' is better than 28', 35' being about the smallest reasonable size for a schooner. For square sails to be worth the trouble, aside from just being something to play with downwind in the trades, I don't see anything smaller than 45" or 50" in a square topsail schooner. If I were in his shoes, I'd be taking a hard look at some of Murray Peterson's Coasters or Pete Culler's Lizard King (See: Pete Culler's Boats, PP. 366-371. IIRC, Lizard King as designed carries a square topsail. She's as close to what most real pirate ships looked like as anything else.

    Anyway, it's his money to spend as he wishes. Just be sure to but a big "iron spinnaker" in it!

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    Default Re: A pirate ship for the new age.

    I built this "pirate ship" few years ago as a party prop for the company where I worked. They had decided on a pirate theme for the summery party and wanted something that would entertain the kids. It didn't have to float, just sit there in the sand and look like a pirate ship. I built this over a ten day period, working evenings and on weekends. The company was called Pelikan (the founder was German) so the obvious name was "The Black Pelikan"

    Black Pelikan.jpg

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