Sunday, August 21, 2022

Dix 38 Pilot in Patagonia

 In years gone by a few metal boats built to our designs have cruised in high latitudes, including the Arctic, Antarctic and Patagonia. Visits to those areas have been on the Dix 38 Pilot, Dix 43 Pilot and Vickers 45AC. The most recent was the Dix 38 Pilot "Spailpin", that visited Antarctica two years running, in 2018 and 2019. Read about her voyages.

There is another steel Dix 38 Pilot cruising Patagonia and sending me beautiful photos from their sailing. "Madogwy" (meaning Freedom Lover) was built in Wales in 2007, bought by the current owners for their planned voyaging. Note that all of the photos shown here are courtesy of the photographer Magdalena Nykiel and cannot be used elsewhere without first getting her permission.

After a refit and upgrades, she circumnavigated Iceland and then Faroe and Shetland Islands in winter, preparing for their voyaging in the South.



From Scotland they did a quick crossing of the Atlantic and tropics, then headed south to the fjords of Pategonia. They are cruising there in the relative calm of winter.


Plans for the future have changed for the owners of "Madogwy". They are putting her onto the market in Puerto Montt and can deliver to a buyer in Chile, possibly further. This is a well-proven boat that is ready to take on tough cruising and should be well worth the asking price of US$60,000.

Her interior is outfitted to a very nice standard and comfortable for a family for distance cruising. Interior video tour.

Anyone interested in buying "Madogwy" can contact me by email, then I will forward to the owners so that you can negotiate directly.

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Fast Eddy, 35ft Aluminium Adventure Cruiser

 I drew Fast Eddy in 2017 for Seaforth Expeditions in Sechelt, British Columbia, Canada. Her purpose is adventure cruising in the desolate wilderness waters of Eastern British Columbia. These waters are mostly sheltered by the many islands but can be wild and treacherous, with strong tides and unchartered rocks. They are also known for the massive logs that litter the shores, having escaped from the logging companies. Those that have not yet found a beach are a danger to boaters, particularly when they are nearly waterlogged and floating vertical, with only a few inches of one end above the surface and very difficult to see. Ready to punch a hole in a hull right at waterline, they are known as deadheads.

Gaff schooner sail plan
Aluminium was chosen for this boat as the best material to survive potential collisions with deadheads or rocks when far from any rescue services. As an added safety feature, most of the space between hull and deck is foam-filled for flotation.

The hull is the same family as my lapstrake plywood Cape series of designs and we decided to keep the lapstrake format, for the character that it adds to a classic hull form. That meant that between the builders and myself we had to work out construction details that would look good, without excessive welding that aggravates heat distortion. Built by John Dearden of Gibsons BC, helped by owner Tom McPherson and his dad, they did a beautiful job of the build.

Aluminium Fast Eddy hull on turn-over day.
The work for this boat after launch is taking charters into those wilderness waters for adventure camp/cruising, nature photography touring, youth training, corporate team building and similar activities far from comfortable civilization. It is work that needs to be done with absolute minimum disruption of nature and zero destruction of the places that they visit. To that end, this is a sailing and rowing boat, with a backup outboard motor stowed in a locker and only used as a last resort.

The cockpit takes up most of the length, with four rowing positions on each side. Under the seats are personal storage lockers and between them are insulated food lockers. Insert panels convert the individual seats to long sleeping platforms. Forward of the cockpit is a bow cabin with enclosed heads, galley and V-berths.

The sailing rig is gaff schooner, basically a cutter rig forward, with the normal boom replaced by a wishbone boom and stepped in a tabernacle to fold aft. Another identical mast and sail, without headsails, stands aft. This one is also stepped in a tabernacle but folds forward. The pivots are rotated 2 degrees off centreline so that the masts pass each other and each rests in a cradle on the tabernacle of the other.
Primed ready for paint, tubes still to be completed as masts.
This boat is a  maxi trailer-sailer, at 35ft long and only 8'3" wide.  It is very slim, with extremely fine bow. This makes it easily-driven for rowing and for sailing in light breezes. Sailing reports are that it is very quick as long as there is some breeze. She competed in the R2AK event in 2019, averaging 3.3 knots in mostly rowing conditions but recorded 13 knots in the stronger breeze of the finishing stretch.
Launch day.
To see this and our other designs, go to our main website or our mobile website.



Friday, December 17, 2021

Cape Deseada 36TC, Lapstrake Plywood Family Cruiser

 Our Cape range of lapstrake cruiser designs started with the Cape Cutter 19 about 20 years ago. Commissions came in periodically, always pushing upward from what we had before. They grew to the Cape Henry 21, Cape May 25, Cape Charles 32 and now the Cape Deseada 36TC.

So, why is this one titled a "TC" and not the others? This one has a trunk cabin deck configuration, whereas all of the others have a raised sheer and flush deck. It was commissioned by two amateur builders on different continents but both wanting similar features in a bigger boat than we could offer with the Cape Charles 32. Overall they wanted a larger version of the 32 but with trunk cabin and side decks to give more secure footing when working on deck in rough water.

Cape Deseada 36 with Marconi rig.
This initial version has a Marconi rig with squaretop mainsail, a powerful and efficient rig for performance with a small crew. The working sails are mainsail and an inboard jib tacked to the stemhead on a furler. A Genoa, code 0 and asymmetrical spinnaker can be set flying on top-down furlers from the end of the bowsprit. A gaff rig will also be completed when a builder wants that version.
Accommodation layout of the Cape Deseada 36TC
Interior layout is much like the 32, with some differences. The main benefit is that all berths are more than 2m in length, the aft double being 2.3m long. The offset V-berth in the forecabin has a chain locker under the head of the port berth, fed by an anchor windlass on the sunken foredeck. The chain pipe is a reinforced rubber hose to stop the chain from rattling crew out of their sleep.

The layout plan might be described as boring but it offers safety at sea rather than party space for lying against a marina dock. Everywhere that you go inside this boat you will have things to grab onto or to lean against when needed on bouncy water. 
Deck plan and profile of the Cape Deseada 36TC
The hull has a long waterline and fine bow, for easy motion and performance in a wide range of conditions. The lapstrake hull is skinned with plywood over stringers and bulkheads. Construction is within the capabilities of a reasonably skilled amateur, it doesn't need professional boatwright skills. The ballast is bolted through deadwood and the rudder is transom-hung for simplicity. The skin in the ballast area is glass-reinforced inside- and out, with the glass wrapping over the plywood internal structure of backbone and floors as well.
Midship section of Cape Deseada 36TC
Read more about this and our other designs on our main website or our mobile website.