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Thread: What's a PROA?

  1. #1
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    Default What's a PROA?

    The VIDEO below answers that, the way we see it....
    Keep Shunting,
    Balkan Shipyards

    https://youtu.be/nX7r2McgAMk

  2. #2
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Good question if you don't get bogged down with diversions like them being the "fastest" "cheapest' multihulls etc..
    Sure Rael, I get the message of your quest to get sailing on a boat you have designed and built yourself... this is pretty much the primary justification for going with a proa rather than figuring the sensible option being to just get one of the many available conventional craft, multi or mono, and fix it up. Building or working on a boat that you regard as beautiful, can also be a factor leading to becoming a 'proaconstructor', if the aesthetics of Newick designs have grabbed you at some early stage. Then there is the generally unexplored pathway of shunting rig options to lead one off onto the proa track. Making rig components that fit with the classic wood or workboat ethos is another reason to go with a proa.
    Last edited by Lugalong; 05-17-2021 at 08:16 PM.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Interesting summary, it pretty much defines me.... Though you didn't mention strength. Proas are strong, that I love, it's shunting that makes them so....
    I'll be honest, shunting is hard work. Tacking is far better! But a Shunter is a vessel that can receive the wind from one side only (Pacific style rather Atlantic, since Atlantic is under compression vs Pacific which is under tension, the latter is stronger) resulting is a very tough boat.
    I find it easier to design hulls where the axis of symmetry is 90 degrees to their motion, it takes away the thinking of bow vs stern.
    Finally I like the speed, my Proas are not fast compared to performance multies. But I will easily cruise at Mono "wow" speeds.....
    I'm not a racer, I don't even like the latest bit of flashy technology... I'm a cruiser, as such, one must understand that stronger is better. That's a Proa. Should have put that too in the Video..... U see now what did..... gotta shoot 1 more......
    Keep Shunting my friend
    Rael

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Why would you want a boat that only takes the wind on one side?
    thumb_horse-blinders-for-humans-52530330.png
    ​​♦ During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act
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    ♦ George Orwell

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    or
    Quote Originally Posted by Autonomous View Post
    Why would you want a boat that only takes the wind on one side?
    thumb_horse-blinders-for-humans-52530330.png
    When the boat has more than one hull it will otherwise have to duplicate living space to port and starb in order to take the wind from either side. Then ( with duplicated hulls) the mast needs support where it calls for additional weight and structure(midway between hulls) and this comes with the penalty of windage. Keeping a certain side dedicated to or permanently to windward allows a shroud to maintain constant tension even if the hulls pitch independently and the deck is not swept by a boom or two at the same time. Windage associated with shelter for living can also be oriented to deflect the breeze away from the companionway, like when there is spray.
    Last edited by Lugalong; 05-18-2021 at 05:30 AM.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Since you have talked about Proas for at least 3 other times I would guess we all know what you think a Proa is.

    Or is this just an advertisement?

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Well, since I’ve learned a ton about proas from you, Rael, and even designed my own based on some of your postings and videos, I for one hope you continue to advertise.

    Whatever Tf that means? It’s not as if you or someone else is praising your catalog of designs available to buy, after all.

    I thought experiments with boats was why we were here?

    C528DAA4-B850-4C0D-880B-BF53CA4B8226.jpg

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Quote Originally Posted by amish rob View Post
    Well, since Iíve learned a ton about proas from you, Rael, and even designed my own based on some of your postings and videos, I for one hope you continue to advertise.

    Whatever Tf that means? Itís not as if you or someone else is praising your catalog of designs available to buy, after all.

    I thought experiments with boats was why we were here?
    My thoughts exactly.

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Love your boat Rob, Thanks for applying some Balkan Style. It's clear that the Force is with u!
    You know, Forums are funny at times mate...
    Keep Shunting Brah

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Quote Originally Posted by upchurchmr View Post
    Since you have talked about Proas for at least 3 other times I would guess we all know what you think a Proa is.

    Or is this just an advertisement?
    You hit the nail on the head man! I'm advertising Proas big time, and you know why?
    Because they are amazing, yet many that don't understand them have a negative opinion about them. I have read so much BS on the net, written by armchair sailors that have never even seen a Proa, that yea, I decided to build a bunch and share my conclusions, That's all man.
    Keep Shunting,
    Balkan Shipyards
    Last edited by rael dobkins; 05-18-2021 at 12:41 PM.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Quote Originally Posted by rael dobkins View Post
    You hit the nail on the head man! I'm advertising Proas big time, and you know why?
    Because they are amazing, yet many that don't understand them have a negative opinion about them. I have read so much BS on the net, written by armchair sailors that have never even seen a Proa, that yea, I decided to build a bunch and share my conclusions, That's all man.
    Keep Shunting,
    Balkan Shipyards
    What he might have meant was advertising your business, not a popular thing on here. As for proas, a fairly niche subject. Plus points for your enthusiasm, just sounds a bit frenetic. Their 'shunting' results in a lack of close quarters ability and not many want to use the concept for longer trips. Small ones are a bit 'tight' on the accomodation. Bigger tend to be replaced by more conventional ideas.

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew2 View Post
    What he might have meant was advertising your business, not a popular thing on here. As for proas, a fairly niche subject. Plus points for your enthusiasm, just sounds a bit frenetic. Their 'shunting' results in a lack of close quarters ability and not many want to use the concept for longer trips. Small ones are a bit 'tight' on the accomodation. Bigger tend to be replaced by more conventional ideas.
    I'm not advertising my business, cos I got nothing to sell, not boats nether designs. Balkan Shipyards is us but it's just a name to describe who I am, where I build boats in my spare time, with my spare pennies....

    I work my ass off as a roofer 12 hours a day for what western roofers can make in an hour......
    Let's just get things into concept, what ever I learned about Shunters through blood, sweat and tears, I always shared free on the net. Why?
    cos it seems that you may not understand them yourself my friend. No offence but sailing a shunter in close quarters would be the like taking a Ferrari off road. Sorry, you just wouldn't shunt close quarters. Who sails close quarters anymore? They all start their engines 2 miles out anyway....

    Shunters are for open water, where we spend 99.999% of our time if we are sailors. Shunters have many advantages like strength, simple engineering, low cost, easy and fast motion, they are perfect for longer trips, if properly designed...... That's our job, Balkan Shipyards will prove what a cruising Proa can do, With almost 10 years experience with shunters I believe I know more than people that have never sailed on a Proa, some never even saw one.

    As for less accommodation, correct! much less! That's the true problem in a nut shell, nothing else. Why buy a boat that can't take all the luxury that other boats take? Why even build such a boat?? Build a Cat and load it twice as much... Washing machine, Aircon, Dishwasher, 90 inch Plasma...... That's the Problem! Not close quarters....

    A Shunter is an extreme boat, it's not for all and never will be, A cruising Shunter for 2 will have to be around 30 foot long, that's a lot of boat for 2 spartan cruisers. Who would want such a boat? Who would want to even produce such a boat?? There's no market, there never will be......

    Proas are seaworthy, the Pacific Islanders have proven that for thousands of years, their biggest problem is that they will never be able to match western luxury standards, meaning the bigger they get the harder they become for shunting, that's no good, and a 30 foot spartan real sailing machine also isn't good, it's too spartan......

    So, the problem isn't with the Proa, it's the wasteful education of modern man, that wants more, that sells more, that buys more, more, more, more.......

    Proas are more, because they are less, they are so much more..... it's like arguing apples or oranges, I love all boats, so why don't all boaters love Proas???
    When u build your Proa, when u sail it, you will understand, They are so strong, stress free, fast and comfortable that u get addicted.... How many people will do that? 0.0001% maybe.... Those are the shunters, the rest are tackers......

    Keep Shunting, Balkan Shipyards

  13. #13
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew2 View Post
    What he might have meant was advertising your business, not a popular thing on here. As for proas, a fairly niche subject. Plus points for your enthusiasm, just sounds a bit frenetic. Their 'shunting' results in a lack of close quarters ability and not many want to use the concept for longer trips. Small ones are a bit 'tight' on the accomodation. Bigger tend to be replaced by more conventional ideas.
    Well sure, shunting is slightly archaic when modern rig technology, heavy industry produced ballast keels, and aerospace inspired foil assist stability features are the norm. Then the idea of a wooden double canoe might be considered something of a "niche" concept.
    People who design and build their own boats are pretty much a dying type and if the purpose of this post is to kick a sod onto their collective grave, well done.For those who want to be working with generally available wood, adhesives and fastenings, there is reason enough to consider the possibilities opened by venturing down this old and well worn track.

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    As one who is building a small cruiser and have a home built faering in the garage, plus a few in the past, including a small tri, I fit into the self builder pocket. Not trying to kick a sod into anything. Proas are interesting, just don't suit the majority of needs. Fun if you want to, but very few do.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Rael has explained fairly well where he is coming from and headed, and Andrew 2 makes it clear that a proa is just too unorthodox to warrant much consideration.
    Might as well try throw some light on the subject by providing a personal account - as one who has verged on the "frenetic" side in an attempt to get as much return from a boat in the way of shelter and sea miles as possible, keen interest has been paid to all kind of craft; small monohull cruisers and some multihulls as well.These have been easy enough to understand, while a proa that offers a reasonable measure in habitation facility and also some aesthetic appeal like that of a small ship, has taken many more years to uncover. Feeling my way through a range of canoe hull shapes has divulged the form that can be developed from laminated sheet stock or plywood and be applied to the displacement components of an assemblage best described as a proa. Materials other than wood have been used in this quest, although, it started out with a self designed craft of strip timber and plywood 55 years ago. Had I understood what a proa represented and could offer back then, the frenetic aspect might well have been avoided.
    Close quarters ability can be mitigated by judicious use of a motor, just as it is with many conventional craft. In fact the ability to smartly back-up is to a proa's advantage. Virtually writing a proa off for the reason that shunting is unusual is no different to writing a trimaran off for being too beamy.
    Last edited by Lugalong; 05-19-2021 at 06:22 AM.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Let's just go back to where it all began, it's knowledge and the understanding of circumstances that defines success or failure.
    There's no 'bad boat' (all things being equal) but there could be a bad situation for a certain boat, all have their strong and weak points, nothings perfect.

    Shunting is hard work, true, yet putting up with it is very rewarding. Proas break all the rules, they are demanding.... But once understood, the extra effort shunting takes, vs tacking is ignored. Since actually it's the root of their advantages.

    A lightweight windward hull, that may pierce waves or ride up and down with relative ease, puts little to no load on the vessel as a whole. Other multies are the opposite, each hull is in a different sea state, therefor akas are loaded with tremendous twist forces as 1 hull rises while the other falls. Above that lightweight Ama, will fly easily without loading Akas and rigging...

    A mast on Vaka again takes huge loads off Akas and bridge deck. A mast placed on one hull and a shroud on the other, is the widest rig base of all vessels, providing great strength and stability with minimum tension and simple gear, simple rope and deadeyes, vs wire cables and turnbuckles.....

    The list goes on, they ride smoother, are cheaper, faster, simpler.............

    BUT if u don't understand the sea, if u lack the knowledge, if you don't know the dangers..... Then yes, you will learn the hard way.
    My most frightening day at sea was on a Proa, I will never forget it.

    Keep Shunting
    Balkan Shipyards

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    I have been involved with Proas since 1982 when I with two other guys i worked with at Mikes boatyard in Old Leigh built one for the sailing class in the Southend raft race. This was a legendary event ostensibly intended to raise money through sponsorship for the RNLI. In reality it was an excuse for an almighty party & bender for 90% of its participants during which vast (industrial) quantities of booze were consumed. Originally a paddling race the local sailing clubs asked for a sailing class & this was created for the 82 race. We built a 25ft wharram style proa from scrap timber & covered in geotextile membrane which was tarred. The reason we built a proa was one of the builders was a Maori from New zealand. The race itself was on a saturday afternoon in a strong onshore breeze, we made it about 100 yards to windward before we capsized & sank. The RNLI then siezed the oportunity for an exercise complete with helicopter who insisted on lifting Lionel the maori out. It was an absolute blast & by some miracle we won the race as we had actually gotten off the beach. We all got horribly pissed & stoned
    Over the next 2 years the competition got better so we went for the big one. The course was set as a reaching course out to the end of Southend pier & back so a bigger proa was in order. We acquired three ex USAF grp drop tanks & cut & shut them together into a 36ft long cylinder, all beams were blagged from a building site skip & the rig was all scrap. Sails were a 170sqft standing lug from an Admiralty whaler with jibs on roller furlers at each end.
    This proa was christened Voodoo Child, he weighed 850 lbs & was 36ft long with a beam across the ama of 16ft. Total sail was about 250 sq ft.
    It was not a comfortable boat to sail, it was very wet, very fast & frankly at times terrifying to sail, In a strong breeze on a beam reach we once sailed him with two men right out on the ama & another halfway out, flying 4 to 6 feet over the water.
    In all my born days i have never sailed anything like it since.
    My son & i are building another one out of recycled junk, It is important not to over think them, Think of a proa as a fast dayboat in which to have a lot of fun is our aim.
    They are simply the most fun you can have with your clothes on!

  18. #18
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Great story Keith. I seem to have fluid leaking from the corners of my eyes and my wife is looking at me funny.

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    To give an idea of what Southend raft race was like, It was held in early september so usually good sunny hot weather, It used to attract anywhere up to 150 entries with crews of anywhere from 6 to 15 people, so anywhere from 2 to 3000 participants, most were paddlers & side by side lined up the rafts covered over a third of a mile of beach. Many would arrive with vans full of beer & by the time the tide came in in the afternoon many were steaming drunk, many thousands of spectators & the big pub across the road did a roaring trade. As the tide crept across the flats many wouldnt wait for the rocket maroon to start & went regardless. When the maroon went off a great roar went up & the sea was churned to foam. Flour bombs & eggs flew though the air, Fist fights between crews in the melee were not uncommon.
    The sailing class had collapsed as Voodoo child rather outclassed his oil drum hulled rivals & the other clubs didnt have the imagination to compete with us.
    Trying to sail a triangular course in a large proa in this lot was not really practical or safe so we just used to start & then go for a blast.
    The race ended about 30 years ago after a couple of serious accidents & H&S concerns finished it off. Over the ten years we did the race the Voodo Child raised approx £4000 in sponsorship for the RNLI.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    I'm very pleased with this thread guys, I've understood that I'm not alone. Most of all I have found a Proa community I enjoy. There's lots to gain here, reviving the Proa is the future for low budget home builders, The revolution Wharram started with Catamarans may just repeat itself in the form of a Proa...
    It's all about sharing what we all Know, I'm learning here from hands on people like Lugalong, Rob and Keith, it truly helps reading other points of view or other ways to describe the physics behind a shunter. Pennies drop guys and every time they do, there's a Tinggggggggggggg......... Every Tinggggggggg..... realises dopamine, when that happens a light bulb lights up as the gears start grinding......

    Keep Sharing guys, and Shunting.......
    Rael

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    One thing im really surprised about is the interest in Proas that has happened on the Baltic in Poland, Of all the places in the world for them to have caught on this wasnt where i would have thought! https://www.facebook.com/PJOA-373181732853344/, I would love to go to one of their rallies.

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    I agree many times as I correspond back and forth with them, I have claimed Poland to be the Proa capital of Europe...
    Except for building true Pacific Proas, they are true to the Crab Claw and swear nothing's better. They're quite the mob, hardcore shunters!

  23. #23
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    A VAKA is born... Pretty sleek for a cruiser.... Low windage, yet beamy for displacement. VIDEO BELOW.
    A hull in a month... Keep Shunting guys
    Balkan Shipyards

    https://youtu.be/RmZMmwJh9XI

  24. #24
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    2nd Episode Vaka Build, moving well, looks pretty balanced, I feel good!
    Keep Shunting guys.
    Balkan Shipyards

    https://youtu.be/ym7gGj9Pkxs

  25. #25
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Bro, how TF do you DO all this? These videos must take so much time.

    Keep grinding, itís looking great, and inspiring as hell!

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    I know it is the done thing to sternly counsel people on the forum about the need for detailed plans from established designers but to see this boat coming together from raw creativity and judgement borne of experience is thrilling (the same goes for Rob's build).

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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Quote Originally Posted by amish rob View Post
    Bro, how TF do you DO all this? These videos must take so much time.

    Keep grinding, it’s looking great, and inspiring as hell!
    They do bro, but it's almost fun at times....... Boat coming along well, i got a good feeling about this one!
    Keep shunting bro, now it's your turn......

  28. #28
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Quote Originally Posted by Clarkey View Post
    I know it is the done thing to sternly counsel people on the forum about the need for detailed plans from established designers but to see this boat coming together from raw creativity and judgement borne of experience is thrilling (the same goes for Rob's build).
    Clarkey, Except for doing this for the sake of the Proa, I'm doing this for guys like you, open minded thinkers live off my stuff, but their input and opinion keeps me alive and makes me a better thinker....

    Keep Shunting man...

    Rael

  29. #29
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    Default Re: What's a PROA?

    Third Episode BUILDING VIDEO, the HAVAYA 30/25 or as it's called Proa 'One Force 213'
    Boat moving well, a Vaka is born.....
    Keep Shunting,
    Balkan Shipyards
    https://youtu.be/4tjPg2G0eDs

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