Frank Blake
An 18' 6" Flat-Bottom Fin-Keel Knockabout
By William Atkin
A Fin Keel Sloop
This latest of the family, Frank Blake, is 18 feet 6 inches in length overall; 16 feet on the water line; 5 feet in breadth; and draws 2 feet 4 inches. The freeboard at the bow is 1 foot 11 inches; at the lowest point, 1 foot 5 1/2 inches; and at the stern, 1 foot 11 inches, exactly the same as at the bow. The model is a perfect double-ender; both ends being exactly alike in every respect.
The little boat is rigged as a knockabout, and all inboard. She has a large mainsail and not too big a jib, for there seems no sure reason where actual sail area is fixed by rule to use large overlapping jib. The sail plan has been well tried out as drawn and is very satisfactory. Frank Blake complies with the building and sailing rules of the Square Foot class, details of which have appeared from time to time in previous numbers of MoToR BoatinG. Sail area is 123 square feet.
The deck arrangement plan shows a small shelter cabin. This has headroom for sitting beneath, and is a place to keep dry. With thick sleeping bag one can be snug and comfortable on a camping-cruise. There is a thwart handy to the tiller; but it will be comfortable to sit on the floor boards while sailing. Plenty of sailing room for two. At stations 2 and 8 there are water tight bulkheads made from 1/4 inch thick fir plywood. The compartments formed by these will easily float the boat and crew.

The sides show generous flare, and this feature in a flat bottomed boat indicates certain stability. The sections show a slight convexity not unlike that in the design of the famous Star class boats. There is a gentle fore and aft sweep in the profile of the chine and keel lines. And a nice boldness in the sheer line. The stem and stern profiles are alike. The rudder is hung from a small skeg that prevents floating seaweed, grass, etc., from catching on the rudder only to trail and hinder the speed of the boat. There is a fin keel made from cast iron; this also not unlike the keel carried on Star boats. This keel will weigh very close to 198 pounds.

This kind of flat bottomed boat really has a lot of merit, and there is a great deal to be said for the type. I feel that for sailing it is superior to the V bottom, and undoubtedly is cheaper and easier to build. It will be noticed that when a V bottom boat is heeled down the draft of the hull is decreased and the flat of the V is presented to the surface of the water with consequent slapping and shaking wind from the sails. The flat bottom like our subject, on the other hand, gains depth in the hull and sails on the sharp corner of the chine which is obviously an easier form against a head sea.

Plans for Frank Blake are $100




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