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Thread: Minimal sailing dink for two?

  1. #1
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    Default Minimal sailing dink for two?

    In keeping with tradition, as I work on my current boat, I'm already fantasizing about the next one. I'm building a Peregrine 18, which is a pure rowboat. I'm valiantly fighting the urge to add a sailing rig to her, and instead, may scratch that itch with a small sailing dinghy (in the American sense). 8' would probably suffice; we're two adults that add up to about 300 lbs for the two of us. Nothing that requires athletic skills; I just want to go out on a breezy day and enjoy the tug of the mainsheet and the gurgle as the little hull plows along. Our available bodies of water are small and fairly sheltered. I'm just wondering what others have built and enjoyed? There are SO many to choose from. Now that I've got glued lapstrake under my belt, I'd consider going that route, but a nice multi-chine design could tempt me. What are all of the cool kids sailing these days?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    How stuck at 8 feet are you? That's pretty small for two adults. Something from the pram end of the spectrum would work better than one or two pointy ends.


    Maybe the Oonagh from Doug Hylan/Off Center Harbor it would be sweet but also 11' long
    Steve

    If you would have a good boat, be a good guy when you build her - honest, careful, patient, strong.
    H.A. Calahan

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    For 2 adults I would recommend something larger than 8 feet LOA - 14 feet would be ok and 16 feet comfortable, in my opinion.............I have sailed for 56 years.

    If you'd like a boat that is both pretty and practical I'd suggest you have a look at the designs by Francois Vivier ( Ilur perhaps), Paul Gartside, or Iain Oughtred (Gannet or Whilly Tern). I built Iain's Gannet and am currently building his Caledonia Yawl - both are nice boats but bear in mind the Gannet is designed for planing so I put some lead in the centreboard which reduces tippiness a little.
    IMG_0228.JPG

    Good Luck with your research Regards Neil

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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?


  5. #5
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    I could see going to 10', or maybe a tad more. I want to carry it in the back of a pick-up truck most of the time. I've sailed a lot of boats, too, from a 8' pram on up. My old Snipe was a fun boat, but much to big and complicated for this purpose. My brother built a Gannet; again, too much boat for my needs.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?


    El Toro?

    You would both want to be pretty limber but it could work.
    Steve

    If you would have a good boat, be a good guy when you build her - honest, careful, patient, strong.
    H.A. Calahan

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    Jim Michalak's Piccup Pram https://duckworks.com/piccup-pram-plans/ is a classic two-person, back-of-pickup boat.
    Dreaming of sailing in Iowa, building a Carnell Nutmeg.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    We recently bought a 9' 6" Nutshell Pram and I'd definitely recommend it for two adults over an El Toro or anything of that size. No offense to the El Toro. I spent many happy days sailing one when I was a kid. But they aren't very roomy. The Nutshell is easily big enough for two people and it fits in the back of a standard pickup with some overhang. I like Oonagh a lot as well but she's a bit too large to put in a pickup bed.
    - Chris

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  9. #9
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    I have a 11' 3" Joel White Shellback Dinghy and the only person I can take out in it is my 100+ lbs slight girlfriend and she has to sprawl in the cockpit on lifejackets. I could never take a 'passenger' It has to be somebody that doesn't mind intertwining legs, getting occasionally clocked by the tiller etc. etc.
    It's an intimate experience. I couldn't imagine doing it in anything much smaller or anyone larger.

    I did once rig a Norwegian tiller to take my sister and my brother in law out (one at a time) but as they sat on the aft thwart the boat squatted the entire time making sailing less than ideal.

    People cartop shellback dinghies.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    It's interesting that the Piccup Pram takes 5 sheets of plywood, whereas I built the hull for the 18' Peregrine using only 4 sheets, and had some left over.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    Michalak’s sheet counts include material for the foils and building forms, too. You might could juggle things and use fewer sheets.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    I also spotted the Ozona X, which looks very similar to the Nutshell, and can be built as a nesting pram. Each half is only 50 lbs., which might make hauling it easier.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    A simple little flatiron can be an awful lot of fun and it sure is easy to build!
    This is David Beedes Summer Breeze design.
    11-1/2 feet long, three sheets of ply and a few weekends to build her.



    image004.jpg

    SAM_6254.JPG

    SAM_6311.JPG


  14. #14
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    2nd vote for the Nutshell.
    -Dave

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    Quote Originally Posted by Toxophilite View Post
    I have a 11' 3" Joel White Shellback Dinghy and the only person I can take out in it is my 100+ lbs slight girlfriend and she has to sprawl in the cockpit on lifejackets. I could never take a 'passenger' It has to be somebody that doesn't mind intertwining legs, getting occasionally clocked by the tiller etc. etc.
    It's an intimate experience. I couldn't imagine doing it in anything much smaller or anyone larger.

    I did once rig a Norwegian tiller to take my sister and my brother in law out (one at a time) but as they sat on the aft thwart the boat squatted the entire time making sailing less than ideal.

    People cartop shellback dinghies.
    The bold part is an important point. My full-sized adult daughters are active participants when we go out on Marianita while my wife definitely falls into the category of"passenger". With crew the cockpit is snug but comfortable, a passenger is just in the way. Shari likes power boats, I ought to keep her happy, right?
    Steve

    If you would have a good boat, be a good guy when you build her - honest, careful, patient, strong.
    H.A. Calahan

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    Quote Originally Posted by stromborg;[URL="tel:6721759"
    6721759[/URL]]. Shari likes power boats, I ought to keep her happy, right?
    Yes. You need another boat. Good luck with that!
    Dreaming of sailing in Iowa, building a Carnell Nutmeg.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    There are many fine little boats.

    A glued lap Oughtred Auk is a very good 8ft'er.



    Compared to the equivlent pram (say his Humble Bee) the stem construction gives it a fine(r) waterline entry. It's a burdensome thing without being overbuilt, in essence a small 'normal' boat.

    If you were to be using a small boat for towing then the pram will trip less and be better for that.


    If you wanted the last word in robustness, the Welsford's Sherpa. If you wanted real wood construction and to grow your construction technique repertoire, Gartside's Porgy. No. 195.



    Or something utterly classic, Herreshoff's Dinghy.



    I've had a couple of Wolstenholme Coots. A bit bgger than the 8ft tenders, a bit smaller than the usual 12ft'er's. They are very fast in light air. Even with crappy rig I could gap dad's race winning 12ft scow in a Force 0-1. It's a very hydrodynamic design/ boat for light air sailing.


  18. #18
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    When I was a teenager I had a Naples Sabot, an 8' pram. I'd take the adult friends of my folks out for short sails when we were at Catalina Island. They all seemed to fit into the boat with me and had a good time. And none of the were particularly athletic. The size of the accommodations will dictate the length of "cruise."

    Jeff

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    Quote Originally Posted by stromborg View Post
    Shari likes power boats, I ought to keep her happy, right?

    Oh yeah!

    Jeff

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    We have a 10.5 ft. It's similar in the bow to the Auk and similar overall with more length.
    It's a boomless sail which makes sailing with two (tops) manageable but the passenger can't move around at all.

    With a pointy bow design, about 12' is a good starting point but a 15-17' (maybe someday) would be ideal.
    Last edited by Dinghy Pipedreams; 09-18-2022 at 01:51 PM.

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    Random thoughts on size.
    Pointy ends steal considerable room. My 15' double ended sailboat has the usable room of a 13' boat. Two adults or an adult and a couple kids are the maximum for a semblance of comfort. It has no side benches which my old bones don't like.
    My 17' sailboat with side benches would be fine with four adults.

    IMO you want a minimum 12' so you and your crew will want to go out a second time. Really.
    If overall length is restricted something with a transom at both ends will help the livability.
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  22. #22
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    Default Re: Minimal sailing dink for two?

    I agree with others here that 8 foot LOA is a bit on the small side for a sailing dinghy for regular use by two adults but if you do need to keep to that length I would say that the award wining design described at this link should meet the requirement:

    https://www.hostellerssailingclub.or...Issue%2001.pdf

    The .pdf document at the above link is an illustrated description of the design and the thinking behind it. If you like the design and are interested in building it you need the set of .dxf files that go with the above document and which I think belong to the Junk Rig Association - https://junkrigassociation.org/. If you join the Junk Rig Association, (the subscription is a lot less than most boat designers charge for plans) I guess they will be happy to send you these files.

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