2022 has been a busy year for plans so far and I am way behind with getting word out that we have added several new designs to the Duckworks collection. We're always on the lookout for new designs to offer you. Really, it's a fun job engaging with Naval Architects from around the world looking for new designs, as well as talking with our long-standing friends to see what exciting new plans they have been working on. It's a little like perpetually being on the verge of a new project myself, which works well for me. I like the dreaming and planning as much as anything. The build is good, but part way through a build I find myself dreaming about the next one "Wouldn't it be fun to build a..." I suspect that many of you feel something similar. We're here for you, ready to provide the plans and supplies for that next dream build. So without further ado, here’s what’s new…
HEATHER by Tim Nolan
“A compact double-ended center cockpit pilot house motorsailer.”
This cool little boat is well known close to home here in Port Townsend. Tim Nolan's Heather is unique, built with purpose in mind, and she is lovely.
“At first, I was sketching a long, skinny, canoe-like ketch, then a long and skinny sloop. As I got more serious about building a boat for myself, I became more practical (time, cost) and wondered how “small” I could make a boat that had everything I wanted. Then meeting that challenge in a creative and tasteful manner using engineering principles became the goal of my design."
– Tim Nolan
(P.S. You can read more about Heather in Small Craft Advisor magazine issue 134 March/April 2022).
A dozen beautiful plans from Francois Vivier
And if you like pretty boats, you can't go wrong with all the additions from Francois Vivier. "Boat plans to make the sea more beautiful" is the motto right on his website and I couldn't agree more with the sentiment. There are many noteworthy attributes about his designs and the ethic that helps shape his boats. Designs inspired by traditional and classic boats of Europe and North America and he focuses on excellence in his designs rather than simply producing vast quantities of them. Further, he has you, the intrepid home-builder in mind. That means NO LOFTING, and no special tools or particularly difficult woodworking is needed to build a Vivier boat. Take a look at the links below, they really are lovely boats.
Aber A classic sail and oar dinghy at 14' (4.3m)
Ebihen 16 strip planked A traditional strip planked sailboat just under 16' (4.8m)
Ebihen 15 strip planked A traditional strip planked sailboat just under 15' (4.5m)
Kernic Glued lap ply construction just under 19' (5.7m) team sail and oar dinghy for a crew up to 7, but light, simple and small enough, in order to be easy to store, to trail and to maintain.
Lilou 2 Stitch and glue plywood construction just under 17' (5.1m) a "Friendly day-sailer, easy to build"
Seil 18 A large pram designed initially for a group of yachtsmen from Nantes (France) area, eager to have a sail and oar boat suited to navigation on the Loire, and rivers in general. 18' (5.5m) Stitch and glue plywood construction.
Youkou-Lili Sail and oar boat inspired both by the Norwegian “faering”, and by the American “Swampscott dory”, stitch and glue plywood construction under 19' (5.7m)
Kerisper A classic powerboat for day ventures and fishing, in sheltered waters as well as in open sea, under 16' (4.81m) stitch and glue plywood construction with a touch of Clinker for looks.
John Welsford plans now available in PDF!
John gave us the go ahead to offer 34 of his plans as downloadable PDFs. Most of John's designs are stitch and glue plywood construction with interlocking bulkheads, the boats come together really easily and are incredibly strong for their weight.
Among John’s designs you can find tenders/dinghies like Tender Behind and Sherpa to the fun open day-sailers like Walkabout and Truant, more substantial sailboats with a cabin and accommodations like Sundowner and Penguin and some really cool power boats like Trover and Daniel's Boat. (And of course the famous Scamp – though that one is only available in hard copy for the foreseeable future.)
The PDF option offers nearly instant gratification with no shipping or waiting – in just a few clicks you can be poring over John's nicely detailed plans. And as if having access to John's designs right over the computer isn't exciting enough, coming soon we will be able to offer full sized templates for the most critical components of his designs, bulkheads, transoms, planks etc. Between the downloaded PDF and the printed or printable full sized templates you can be up and building really quickly!
Pictured: Long Steps from John Welsford
PS. If you prefer printed plans, don’t worry - those will not be going away. Personally, I like making notes all over printed plans. By the time I'm thru with a build I've added notes all over the place… rigging component part numbers, paint color, locations or details of things you can't easily see once the boat is completed. Kind of a record of all the things I want to remember, but don't want to trust my memory!
Two new Warren Messer boat designs with fishing in mind
Warren Messer of Red Barn Boats has many designs drawn with fishing in mind, and the time he spends fishing on rivers and lakes plays a large role in his creative process. The two newly added boat plans both use Warren’s “bevel bottom” design. Why the bevel bottom?
"I hate totally flat bottomed hulls, as there is no safety when you get them over on their edges, and they turn turtle. With his hull, the lower beveled panels act as a safety zone to give you a bit of insurance."
– Warren Messer
If you've ever been caught sideways running downriver just about to smash into a mid-river boulder or a surprise sweeper laying across the river just under the surface, you can appreciate what that beveled bottom could do for you. In a word, keep you from having a really bad day. If that sounds interesting to you, check out his two new designs below:
12ft. Cedar River Drifter is a small 1-2 person drift boat. Capable of running smaller rivers, the ones that you normally just walk and wade, this little boat can open up miles of new water for you. But don't feel limited to small rivers, this boat would be at home on tamer medium and larger rivers too, just pick your drift well and have a great day!
The 12ft James Boat is the last of his "bevel bottom" boats. You just have to click to take a look for yourself and see what you think.
… and more great plans are coming down the pipe!
That's a head-turning number of designs added already this year, and we're just getting started. I don't want to jinx it, but I've been having some great conversations with a naval architect with a fantastic catalog of really cool designs. I'm talking sail and oar, tenders and launches, displacement and planing hulls and some self described "barges" with a lot of character. And all of them suitable for the home builder! I am very excited and can't wait to announce the new additions, fingers crossed.
A bit about me, the author
I have used "I" quite a lot in this post. I suppose that means I should introduce myself, as I too am a new addition to Duckworks in 2022. My name is Scott Jones, and I’m the new Operations Manager here. Although none of the descriptive words like "lovely", "beautiful" or "classic" that apply so well to the nautical creations of our partner designers can accurately be applied to me. (Solid and purpose-built are nearer the mark.)
I was born here in the Pacific Northwest and I enjoy a quiet day floating a river as much as a quiet day under sail, which is to say, quite a lot. However I am more likely to spend my time in the shop building or repairing boats, and my skill set is more inclined to that. I spent a happy year at the Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding in Port Hadlock, WA in the late 2000's learning from the school’s accomplished teachers. I then went on to working at and then managing the shop at the Northwest Maritime Center, here in Port Townsend, WA. NWMC is most famous for putting on the Wooden Boat Festival and the R2AK, but the day to day and less glamorous stuff is what kept me busy, chiefly maintaining the training boats. I got a thorough "post graduate" education in my role at the NWMC. I worked on all sorts of boats, carvel, lapstrake (sorry I don't call it clinker even though earlier I used it in a description), strip planked, plywood on battens, glued lap ply, all the "and glue's", stitch and glue, nail and glue, the variant stitch and tape... and glue, screw and glue, skin on frame, some fiberglass hulls, I taught classes, I learned from master shipwrights, I made a lot of mistakes and learned that sometimes they work out well, sometimes not.
A curious question for the global boatbuilding community
When I started here at Duckworks I quickly gained an appreciation for the many relationships with designers from around the world, and the customers from around the world who reach out to us for boat plans and the supplies to build them. The curious part is that I noticed we have zero designers that we work with from South America, Africa and southern or eastern Asia. So this is my plea to you, and it's two-fold:
First, who should I be talking to in those parts of the world? For example, are there naval architects with small boat designs in South Africa or Brazil or maybe Japan that I should be reaching out to?
And second, are there designers or designs out there that you would love to see be made available through Duckworks regardless of what part of the world they hail from?
With that I sign off, thank you so much for your attention,
Duckworks Boat Builders Supply