Sunday, December 11, 2011

2012 Calendar

Introducing the first of what we hope will become an annual feature. It is the "Boats of Dudley Dix Yacht Design - 2012" calendar, with photos of a wide selection of our boats. This was a project that happened very quickly, under considerable time pressure because it started so late in 2011. The photos selected came mostly from those that have been sent to me by owners and builders over many years.

Cover of 2012 calendar

There are only 12 months and 1 cover available, so there is a limit to what we could include. I have shown as many boats as I could fit in, so some readers will be lucky enough to be included this year. We have many beautiful photos but most were automatically excluded by being of low resolution.

February photo page

If you are interested in buying the calendar, go to . You can view before buying. Current price is US$17 but if you register on the Lulu website, you will receive regular discount offers by email to get it or other publications at a reduced price. They are printed by suppliers in many countries, so yours will come from your closest supplier for reduced shipping cost.

I invite all owners and builders of our boats to send me your best hi-res photos for consideration to be included in future calendars. They must be at least 300dpi resolution, the higher the better.

Thanks for reading. To see our full range of designs, go to .

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Hardy Boatbuilders

I have built all of my big boats outside, sometimes with temporary shelters over them to allow me to work through the winter rainy season or to protect new materials that were sentitive to moisture. I built a 36 footer (not my design) when in my 20s, a 34 footer (CW975) when in my 30s and a 38 footer (Didi 38) when in my 40s, all of them from plywood.

I had it easy, compared to many builders of our boats. A few days ago, Bill Connor in Boulder Colorado sent me this photo after an early winter blizzard. Doesn't look like a boat but under all that cold white stuff is a Didi 40cr  hull and deck.

Stern view of Bill Connor's Didi 40cr

Bill writes the following. "As you know, building ourside requires an understanding of local weather, cooperation with the weather you are given (as opposed to forecast), perseverance, and a sense of humor, not unlike sailing itself. Local weather in Boulder means Chinooks, cold, and snow. The winds came early this year with 85kts. at the house mid-October, so the tent had to come down for the season. I finished glassing the deck and cabin, but the cockpit coamings were in progress so they'll have to wait under plastic until an Indian Summer or until Spring rolls around - so it goes. Meanwhile, I'll work on assemblies in the shop with an eye towards next Summer's goal: painting the exterior and decking."

Bill highlights something that I mention in various places on my website and documentation supplied with our designs. It is important with a large project like this to always have a few sub-projects on the go or being planned so that you can carry on with other work inside the workshop or inside the covered boat. If you are going to sit and wait out the rain or snow then the boat might never be finished.

Igor Pokusaev is building his Hout Bay 30 in
Moscow, Russia.

So, almost wherever you are, you should be able to build a boat. You must make allowances in your planning for your local conditions and you might have to seek premises that will allow you to build indoors. However, by making suitable choices, you will be able to successfully build a boat.