Hey there. I wanted to find a good book based around rig plans and proportions for traditional gaff cutter rigged European working boats. I am doing a gaff rig conversion on our cruising boat, a shortish heavy double ended fiberglass cruiser with a semi full keel (cutaway forefoot.) The boat is a Thomas Gilmer Design and not the first of this type to be converted to gaff rig.

I have worked in gaffers and square rigged training ships for the better part of the last decade and have all the usual literature, sailmakers apprentice, riggers apprentice, young sea officers sheet anchor and the like. But what I am more interested in at this stage is a more detail oriented book discussing actual rig proportions of european working cutters of the 19th and early 20th century, so that I can come up with a "Rough" rig plan, that I will then present to a naval architect for tweaking and discussion to get the centers of effort exactly right and the size of the rig properly suited to the hull.

The working rig will be fairly short, with no topmast, but with still enough light wind sail area to carry her in light airs. For light air work I was considering a Jackyard topsail, set from deck to extend the vertical sail area without a topmast, and so that when the topsail is doused you don't have the weight and windage of a topmast or a higher lower mast aloft. As well there will be a selection of headsails from a working jib to a high cut yankee, and a drifter that can be set on a traveller on the bowsprit. Will be a three reef gaff rigged main and a staysail with atleast one reef band for heavy weather.

The bowsprit is going to be built to be retractable as many of the working rigs of those days, and in heavier airs could be hauled inboard and secured while the mast remains supported by the heavy forestay attached to a stem Iron, while she runs or heaves to under the reefed main and staysail. Similar idea to the Colin Archer designed Norwegian rescue vessels.

I am debating between a tabernacle stepped mast or going the extra mile and keel stepping it. The more I research, the more I seem to find various tabernackle stepped gaff rigs on English working boats, it was something I hadn't considered before.

There will be three lower shrouds a side, running backs, an inner forestay set up to the stem iron and an outer forestay on the end of the bowsprit set up by tackles. All the running rigging is going to be around 10mm heat set dyneema, parcelled and served full length, with spliced eyes going over the masthead, leathered and set on bolsters. The lower ends will be spliced with over sized eyes and seized around deadeyes. Keeping in mind the mast may be stepped in a tabernackle the aft most shroud on both sides could be swept significantly further aft,

Going to have heavy duty bronze external chainplates for the standing rig, well backed and supported, researching the types of bronze people are using for home built rather than cast chainplates now..

Thanks

Ryan