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Thread: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

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    Default Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Iím still building my first simple skiff, but Iíve been having so much fun reading my way through the small-boat journey back catalog. Iím fascinated with a tiny niche in boat design in among some of the different things Iím reading. Iím wondering what is out there in modern plans for the home builder for a boat like this? Let me explain what Iíve been reading and then try to turn that into a brief for the boat.

    Maybe the first book in this niche was Nathaniel Bishops Four Months in a Sneakbox https://archive.org/details/fourmonthsinasne05686gut where he paddles down the Ohio, Mississippi, and the gulf coast in a Barnegat Sneakbox, a decked hunting boat from New Jersey (Chris Cunningham talks about a similar boat here https://smallboatsmonthly.com/article/out-of-line/). It rows, sails, Bishop sleeps on board snugly and itís light enough that he portages it around New Orleans with the help of some porters.

    Next up was Nathaniel Stoneís On the Water https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/575487.On_the_Water where he rows from New York back to New York. He switches boats after the river part, but the key feature of his boats is that they are easy to move with oars, and he sleeps aboard the coastal one. (He talks about who made that boat but Iím forgetting right now.)

    Then Warren Ritcheyís Wihout a Paddle https://www.goodreads.com/en/book/sh...thout-a-paddle about his Ultimate Florida Challenge victory in a sea kayak, narrowly beating an expedition canoe and Matt Leyden in Enigma (I think). He strongly prizes the efficiency under human power, but often envies the other two their sails. He also portages it solo on a wheeled cart.

    And now, Iím reading Banden-Powellís Canoe Traveling https://archive.org/details/canoetravelling01powegoog where he describes a sailing canoe trip on the Baltic and gives details of a suggested boat. His recommended design can be slept aboard, sails (downwind mostly, no boards that I can see), moves well under double paddle, rights well after capsize, and he often finds willing helpers to carry his canoe up into hotels.

    So my fascination is with these solo boats that are well-suited for human power, light enough to be dragged or carried, suitable for sleeping on board and also have the ability to sail. It seems like this would be a rich vein for boat designs over the last 150 years, so Iím curious what designs are out there now in this niche?

    I know Jim Michalak has plans for a Sneakerbox at 140 lbs. I remember seeing a web page for a lovely solid wood double-paddle canoe, but I donít think it had sails or internal sleeping room. One of those Hobie Islands might be in this category just barely if you like plastic and buying things. Canoe yawls seem like they got much heavier after Baden-Powell. What else occupies this tiny and historic niche of solo adventure sailboats?

    As always, thanks in advance for any suggestions.

    -Neil

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Angus Rowcruiser, Gorfnik, Oar Cruising blog, 50-50 sailing canoe, Bufflehead

    http://theoarcruising.blogspot.com/

    A few to start researching. I am sure there are more out there.
    Last edited by skyl4rk; 04-04-2022 at 08:45 PM.

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Any lightly built ply skiff will do the job. I set up my Steve Redmond Whisp with this kind of cruising in mind, but I can't say that I have used it much for the purpose. But this boat is under 100 pounds, is big enough to sleep in and easily carries gear enough to spend some days aboard. What's unique about the Whisp is that has much less beam than the usual boat of its type. As a result, you get lightness and a very easily driven hull. I have a sail rig for it, as you can see, but going strictly with oar power would work quite nicely, I think.

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Quote Originally Posted by Woxbox
    Any lightly built ply skiff will do the job. I set up my Steve Redmond Whisp with this kind of cruising in mind, but I can't say that I have used it much for the purpose. But this boat is under 100 pounds, is big enough to sleep in and easily carries gear enough to spend some days aboard. What's unique about the Whisp is that has much less beam than the usual boat of its type. As a result, you get lightness and a very easily driven hull. I have a sail rig for it, as you can see, but going strictly with oar power would work quite nicely, I think.
    Whisp is a great suggestion, as you said, much more slender and rowable than other skiffs. It would need a tent for camping onboard, but otherwise it checks the boxes. What do you have for leeway prevention with the sailing rig? Is there a daggerboard trunk in a thwart?

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    What do you consider "luggable"? By whom and how far? My Feather Pram is a bit over 60 pounds, 6'8" long and 44"(?) in beam. It is no fun carrying it around, not so much the weight but the overall awkwardness of the thing.
    Steve

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Quote Originally Posted by stromborg;[URL="tel:6639532"
    6639532[/URL]]What do you consider "luggable"? By whom and how far? My Feather Pram is a bit over 60 pounds, 6'8" long and 44"(?) in beam. It is no fun carrying it around, not so much the weight but the overall awkwardness of the thing.
    I had been thinking mostly of the way that Bishop and Baden-Powell use their boats, where a couple or a few people can pick it up and move it overland for a ways. Maybe that’s less common now than it was 100+ years ago when they were writing, but the same weight I think allows for pretty easy beaching by one person, or maneuvering over snags or shallows (thinking of Tom’s recent Fogg in the Forest surprise ending).

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Mirror Dinghies have done some amazing trips. Adventures of Jack de Crow is a fun read.

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Have another rabbit hole...

    http://www.ocsg.org.uk/
    I'd much rather lay in my bunk all freakin day lookin at Youtube videos .

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Quote Originally Posted by NeilMB View Post
    Whisp is a great suggestion, as you said, much more slender and rowable than other skiffs. It would need a tent for camping onboard, but otherwise it checks the boxes. What do you have for leeway prevention with the sailing rig? Is there a daggerboard trunk in a thwart?
    I've modified my boat quite a bit. The plans call for one big leeboard. I've added those side decks and a daggerboard case is built into the port one. I've also added flotation/stowage compartments fore and aft. But there's an 8' by 2' open stretch of flat sole in the center of the boat. Enough room to roll out an air mattress and sleeping bag. The boat is just under 16' long. It can be built as light as 70 pounds and transported on a standard kayak/canoe dolly.
    -Dave

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    I don't think you can beat SOF for this use. Dave Gentry's Chatauqua seems perfect--he even mentions on THIS THREAD that there is/will be a "cruising version" that can sleep one.

    FOGG, as I discovered, is way heavier than optimal... But really, with a few people to help, many modern sail & oar type boats would qualify as "luggable"--or you can rig a simple set of wheels to carry aboard even for a boat that's borderline "too heavy," as my brother did for his Phoenix III during the Everglades Challenge portage (which portage, granted, is short, flat, and paved):

    PIII wheels.jpg

    Probably cost < $10, and allowed one person to roll the boat along like a wheelbarrow. Though for solo loading, the Phoenix III (perhaps a bit less than 200 lbs empty) would be about as heavy as I'd like to try.

    Tom
    Last edited by WI-Tom; 04-05-2022 at 06:36 PM.
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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    On The Water is such a neat book. Now I want to eat peanut butter and crackers.

    You mentioned Michalak and Tom mentioned Chautauqua, so I figured to mention Michalakís Paulsboat canoe. Itís a simple build, as these things go, and itís got plenty of room to sleep aboard. Might be simple to rig a tent over the rig, too, using the masts, as sheís a yawl.

    Anyway, the plans are cheap, and the boat wouldnít cost much, or be too hard to make.

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Neal,

    John Welsford's Walkabout comes to mind. At 200lbs the luggable part may be tough but I was already going to suggest wheels like Tom did. The SOF suggestion was GREAT. I live Dave G's work. You may require a sleeping platform of sorts. The Wlakabout comes from the designer with accommodations designed in.

    Another winner would be John's Harris's slight redesign of his Northeaster Dory for camp cruising. At 100lbs half the weight of the Walkabout, proven track record (Everglades Challenge, Boatymoon). Also, CLC offers their Skerry Raid or Wanderlust Sailing Canoe, both designed for expeditions and weight under 200lbs (The Guider is heavier)

    I have to confess I have "shanty boat" dreams for getting my wife out on the water but I really am not sure how much that interests her. The fall back or maybe better plan is something along these lines. I poke around with a Shellback now but can't sleep on board and it may not be as heavy weather friendly as any of the ones I list.

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    I think this is fascinating design area. Have you looked at some of Matthew Layden's later boats such as Enigma and Elusion (and even Sand Flea)? They were built for inland/coastal waters and significant portages.

    ETA. Of course you have, you even mention one of them in your original post.
    Last edited by Clarkey; 04-05-2022 at 09:59 AM.

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    Default

    There is a sliding scale between luggable and liveable I think, depending on how easily you are able to lug it and how comfortable it is to live aboard. My stretched Walkabout is quite liveable, but I have tried lugging it on a wheeled dolly with an ebike pulling it and would not want to go far that way. Forum member fossilfool is lugging his First Mate around by folding bike and camping aboard, that looks like a reasonable balance. Angus went even farther on luggable with his row cruiser trip, maybe a bit cramped for me. One way, not so pretty, could be an inflatable that you fold up and lug in a bag. Agree on SOF, we need a new design 100 lb camp cruiser with built in wheel sockets as fossilfool made.
    If you are going to lug it you have to go light on the supplies and gear too. It's easy to add 50 to 100 lbs of stuff for a long trip, which is one of the nice things about non lugging dinghy camping when compared to backpacking or even bike camping.
    Last edited by rgthom; 04-05-2022 at 07:01 PM. Reason: stupid tapatalk

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    I have a 7 minute walk with 60' of elevation change between shop and launch point for my 40-ish pound Pygmy sea kayaks. A two--wheeled cart (like the one pictured on the Phoenix III) straps to one end. Not too bad on the flat pavement but you definitely have more work to do on the hills and the soft sand on the beach adds a lot of resistance. There is a fair amount of technique in getting those things on top of the car too, much less my Vanagon camper... Good one person pick up and carry-around handles are hard to find on boats. I have a 100 pound concrete sphere and cylinder I made back when I was training for a stone lifting, anybody who wants to lug them around a bit is welcome to come over.

    The best solution I think I've seen are the canoes with a good portaging yoke built into the hull. Even then you need the strength and dexterity to get 50+ pounds of canoe overhead. Something similar could be rigged in any small boat. We haven't even discussed moving gear yet, as a one time motorcycle tourer I can attest to just how fast the load adds up.

    I sound more pessimistic than I mean to be but I've moved a lot of stuff over the years and there is a big difference between what you can move in the gym and out in the real world.
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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    I'll echo Stromborg's sentiment.

    My 90 pound Summer Breeze, with oars, a bucket, the sailing rig and a fishing rod, and other afternoon trip miscellany in it probably weighs 120-ish pounds. I wheel this 300 feet over a lawn, pavement and the final 50 feet of sandy shoreline, to get to the creek across the street. I have a cart with good sized wheels. I find it is easier if I move the wheels about 1/3 of the length toward the center of the boat. That way the wheels carry more weight. With the wheels at the end of the boat, I carry more of the weight.

    In any event, its not something I'd want to do for too much more--maybe double--the 300 feet I am going.

    Kevin
    Last edited by Breakaway; 04-05-2022 at 12:45 PM.
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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    I feel very bad for you both with your torturous walks to the nearby water.

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Quote Originally Posted by amish rob View Post
    I feel very bad for you both with your torturous walks to the nearby water.
    Yes, I share the pain too. This forum does provide a window on other people's hardships.
    -Dave

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    So yes, I guess some help with distances you wish to lug would help. My Shellback scoots down the highway at 70mph on an aluminum Trailex trailer. This trailer is light enough that I frequently detach from vehicle and walk it to the water. Easy enough but again not something I'd wish to do frequently or far. Algonquin park in Canada has some portages that are marked as "cart" friendly as opposed to just lugging, but I have not thought about trying them. I have lugged the Shellback over beaver dams while exploring back waters.

    The Trika 540 comes in at 70lbs and seems to be semi car topable. I carry my 12' canoe over portages - beefy little piglet at 50lbs. The weight is ok but it is ungainly.

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Quote Originally Posted by jshaley View Post
    The Trika 540 comes in at 70lbs and seems to be semi car topable. I carry my 12' canoe over portages - beefy little piglet at 50lbs. The weight is ok but it is ungainly.
    That's an interesting trimaran choice. I was also looking at Mark Gumprecht's Drifter trimaran last night thinking about this category. I don't think that the main hull in the Drifter 12 has enough floor space for sleeping. Maybe the Trika 540 does? The cockpit looks fairly wide in the overhead shot here



    The sailing Angus RowCruiser is in some ways its own interesting take on the trimaran, but since it's for rowing not paddling, it has a very different interpretation of the outriggers.

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    I'll add another vote for both the Whisp​, which can even be built with a portage yoke, rows so very well, sails well and is long enough to sleep in;
    And the Summers Breeze, which no doubt falls into the "Any lightly built ply skiff will do the job" catagory!

    It's what I've been using for this sort of thing lately, this is me on the first Salish 100 -


    48246250821_b952ac6152_o.jpg

    But this mission screams CANOE to me. The humble canoe has done just this sort of trip since it was invented, albeit one often sleeps under it, not inside it. But canoe-like craft as small as Jim Michalaks Toto have been used. Jim would pull his Toto ashore and then sleep aboard. No damp earth or creepy crawlies that way. Any old canoe would work, perhaps modified to eliminate the center thwart for clear sleeping space and why not add a sail?

    For a purpose built boat I think Jims Sneakerbox could be made to serve very well, or his Paulsboat might be just about ideal, or even something simple like his Twixt, a design I happen to like allot. The center cockpit is 6-1/2 feet long.




    Or maybe my Trinket would work!

    It's only 11 feet long, surprisingly light, and has a cabin!


    SAM_9897.jpg


    I'm sure I could portage it easily on a canoe-type cart, but I haven't figured out how to row or paddle it well yet...

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    I use a kayak trolley with 14" bike wheels to move my Joel White Shellback from my trailer fairly long distances up and down hills and over varying terrain and across beaches to launch in places that don't have ramps. I do this when it's filled with all it's usual gear plus extra paddles, ropes, guitar backpack etc etc. It weighs 100 lbs by itself. It's not too hard and kind of funny actually. (to me, everyone else doing this sort of thing has kayaks)It's an excellent rower and sailer and with the addition of a removable sprit and small foresail, it points well, goes quite fast and tacks quickly.I've packed it full of camping gear for two and sailed it 20km and stayed a couple nights. 11' long 4'5" beam

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Speaking of canoes, I grabbed these from one of the archive.org versions of Canoe Travelling and pasted them together. Fully decked, two masted, 30" beam.

    nautilus3.jpg

    I'm curious about how full those sections are. I'm not sure if this Nautilus was ever built, but if someone had lines of it, then it would be a lot easier to try to copy it.

    This article from Hugh Horton on Bufflehead design has great perspectives on the trade-offs https://www.bootsbaugarage.ch/hugh/h_essay5_en.htm

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Quote Originally Posted by NeilMB View Post
    I
    Next up was Nathaniel Stone’s On the Water https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/575487.On_the_Water where he rows from New York back to New York. He switches boats after the river part, but the key feature of his boats is that they are easy to move with oars, and he sleeps aboard the coastal one. (He talks about who made that boat but I’m forgetting right now.)
    The Loudon boat by Rossiter Boatworks. They went thru some troubles a few years back and now only produce fiberglass speedboats.

    Here's one I've been looking at a lot lately:

    https://www.clcboats.com/life-of-boa...on-Dinghy.html

    I like the idea of it just fitting in the back of a compact truck or minivan, or strapping it on a pallet and shipping it to Brest or Douarnenez.

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Kremer View Post
    Here's one I've been looking at a lot lately:

    https://www.clcboats.com/life-of-boa...on-Dinghy.html

    I like the idea of it just fitting in the back of a compact truck or minivan, or strapping it on a pallet and shipping it to Brest or Douarnenez.
    Ooooh, I like that idea too.

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Kremer View Post
    Here's one I've been looking at a lot lately:

    https://www.clcboats.com/life-of-boa...on-Dinghy.html

    I like the idea of it just fitting in the back of a compact truck or minivan, or strapping it on a pallet and shipping it to Brest or Douarnenez.
    Hmm... I see the appeal, but "luggable" might be a stretch with this one. From the designer's notes:

    This is one of the rare occasions when I set out to make a boat heavy on purpose.
    So...

    How 'bout the Duckworks Scout for a different take? This one comes close to my own personal vision of what a "minimal" cruising boat might be.

    Tom
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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    I used a home-made bike cart to haul my shellback around. Just a very simple steel frame with full-size 27" wheels and a couple of wooden bunks and straps. I regularly moved it 1 or 2 kilometers on city streets by hand. No resistance. Up and down hills no problem. It wasn't really suitable for off-road use, but was absolutely perfect for paved roads.

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Quote Originally Posted by rgthom View Post
    There is a sliding scale between luggable and liveable I think, depending on how easily you are able to lug it and how comfortable it is to live aboard. My stretched Walkabout is quite liveable, but I have tried lugging it on a wheeled dolly with an ebike pulling it and would not want to go far that way. Forum member fossilfool is lugging his First Mate around by folding bike and camping aboard, that looks like a reasonable balance. Angus went even farther on luggable with his row cruiser trip, maybe a bit cramped for me. One way, not so pretty, could be an inflatable that you fold up and lug in a bag. Agree on SOF, we need a new design 100 lb camp cruiser with built in wheel sockets as fossilfool made.
    If you are going to lug it you have to go light on the supplies and gear too. It's easy to add 50 to 100 lbs of stuff for a long trip, which is one of the nice things about non lugging dinghy camping when compared to backpacking or even bike camping.
    My typical ride to the water with my bike-towed sailboat is 2-4 miles. My boat weighs 350-400 depending on how much extra gear I'm hauling. At this weight I have experienced numerous wheel related failures: hubs, bearings, spokes/nipples, rims, and many flat tires. The things that haven't failed on my towing setup include my sockets in the boat, the stingers that go into those sockets, and the 5/8" one-sided quick-release wheelchair wheel axles.

    I don't recommend using bike trailer wheels if the weight is in the range of my boat. I will be trying airless tires next. Here's my thread where you can see pictures of the bike-specific mods that went into my project toward with some good stuff on page 2 of the thread: http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...r-Bike-Sailing

    I have also made my boat campable. Camping means I need to carry food, water, and the boom tent, which increases the weight and stress on the wheels. I have successfully done it but my approach isn't strong enough and I've been using an electric car to keep sailing of late. I want to return triumphantly to bike sailing but I'm on hiatus at the moment! Thanks Rick for the mention.
    Last edited by fossilfool; 05-17-2022 at 05:23 PM.

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    Default Re: Sleepable, luggable human-powered boats that can sail?

    Since this thread got revived I have to mention the inflatable kayak, at the luggable end of the scale. I've used an Innova (Gumotex) for years and it checks some but not all of the OP's boxes.

    1. Lightweight at 26 lbs and comes in its own waterproof backpack which can be used to keep things dry onboard. I keep my kayak inflated in summer so it easily slides in the back of the pickup for a quick afternoon paddle. Inflated, it is easy to carry to the water's edge, and I can't say that about my hard kayaks.
    2. Comfortable to sleep in, with the inflatable floor. I've taken naps on the water but a tent would be a challenge.
    3. Obviously unsinkable, is not difficult to crawl back in if you capsize, and self draining floor means no water to bail. I have 5 kayaks and consider this my safest, the one I most trust in bad weather.
    4. Very tough thick fabric and will bounce off rocks and docks. I have never cut mine, but sharp rocks and piling bolts could be a problem. The light weight means I don't drag it over the barnacles, but just pick it up and carry it.
    5. Sailing would be a challenge, except maybe with an umbrella. A real sail rig would spoil the light weight and simplicity.
    6. The only other drawback (not related to its small size and carrying capacity) is that its speed is about 75% of a good sea kayak.

    Overall, it is my most-used boat, mostly due to its weight, but also because it is safe enough for almost any waters. I used it as a secondary dinghy on a trip around Vancouver Island, and it was perfect for exploring the various anchorages. I liked it so much we bought a second one for my wife.


    IMG_2917.jpg

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