A Double-Ended, Flat-Bottom, Centerboard Auxiliary Sloop


Working on the premise that many men and women interested in boats and boating are searching for useful, practical and out-of-the-ordinary little vessels John and I both feel the design of the 45-foot over-all double-ended, flat-bottom, gaff-head rigged auxiliary gracing these pages will be enthusiastically received.

Feeling it highly advisable to keep the sail plan all inboard and efficiently low the double-ender is rigged with gaff-head mainsail, staysail and jib. This particular rig, because of its short mast, simple and highly practical standing rigging, Manila cordage, galvanized blocks, white oak cleats, wooden boom and gaff jaws, etc., will cost far less in money and labor to produce than the high-strung jib-head rig. And for this particular boat the gaff rig will prove to be the faster of the two. I might add that the runners are precautionary rigging and need only to be used in bad weather. Another thing worth mentioning is that the gaff-head rig will cost far less in upkeep than the modern jib-head rig.

The cabin is laid out for the accommodations of three, and an extra pipe berth in the forepeak. The headroom under the cabin trunk is full six feet beneath the carlins; beneath the forward deck, 4 feet 3 inches. The space beneath the bridge deck and cockpit floor houses the motor; a four cylinder 25-45 h.p. Red Wing, this is a medium-speed engine and will give the long skiff a speed of close to 8 miles an hour; with this particular motor a reduction gear is not needed.

The design this month shows an unusual kind of cruising boat, and in many ways, an excellent one. Her overall length is 45 feet; waterline length, 39 feet 6 inches; breadth on deck, 11 feet 2 inches; and draft, 2 feet 6 inches. The breadth on the bottom is 7 feet 6 3/4 inches; the freeboard at the bow, 4 feet 5 1/2 inches; the least freeboard, 3 feet 3 inches; and the freeboard at the stern, 4 feet 2 1/2 inches. A study of the lines shows the bow and stem sections to be nearly alike; deck and bottom breadths are identical for both ends; the heights are not alike. There is generous flare in the topsides; the purpose of this feature is to provide reserve buoyancy as well as dryness in rough water.

In comparison to many present day designs Missie and Laurie is a narrow boat, and well needs to be. She is a happy combination of breadth to waterline length; if wider she will be slow and uncomfortable in any kind of rough going; if narrower she will lack the stability to stand up under sail. Under power a narrow hull is always a better performer than a wide one, and this is especially true in the matter of comfort while underway. And doubly true in the flat-floored or bottomed hull. Some yachtsmen look askance at flat-bottomed boats; this is understandable because many boats of this model are excessive in breadth; keep the bottom width in a hull of this model at a modest dimension and in return have a very satisfactory boat, be it skiff, outboard, sailing boat, motorboat or barge.

Of one thing be certain. The easiest and least expensive kind of hull to build is one of flat bottom with flat topsides; this applies to anything from a 6-foot punt to a 600-foot barge. Therefore to the amateur boatbuilder I would like to mention again that there is a lot to be said for flatbottomed boats. While we are discussing the form of the hull of Missie and Laurie let's agree to build her exactly as indicated on the plans and in the text.