2020 WFH is a stitch and glue composite offshore skiff tailored to offshore/island fishing and camping in southern California. No work hours were harmed in the creation of this boat. 😉
Home Port: Bremerton, WA
Year Built: 2012
Owner: Alan Gwinner
Designer: Peter Cullen
Design: Sharp Wherry
My boat, yet unnamed, is a Pete Culler designed wherry, a traditional riveted white cedar lapstrake hull. Built by Geoff Burke, Chocorua Boat Works, NH, 2012.
Home Port: Port Townsend, WA
Year Built: 1956
Owner: Sugar Flanagan
Designer: Frank Prothero
When we think about boats, we often wonder, “Is she a keeper?” Alcyone is definitely a keeper. She was designed and built by Frank Prothero in his backyard in Seattle. He sailed her for 9 years and then sold her to the Hanke family who took care of her for 22 years. We have now owned Alcyone for 34 years, major maintenance projects are continually happening, but she has always been well maintained—never rebuilt—and remains a keeper.
Launched in 1956, she is one of the first replica boats, predating the Bluenose II, Pride, and Californian. Frank designed her after the Gloucester Fishing Schooners and built her in his backyard so as not to take up room in the commercial yard he and his brother ran on Lake Union. She was designed to have a square topsail. Frank even built three yards; that aspect of her rig was never finished.
When we bought Alcyone, in 1987, we wanted to add a yard for offshore sailing. Getting in touch with Frank, we found out that he still had the metalwork and the course yard in his shop—he had cut up the top yard for a bowsprit. So we bought the course yard, made a course and rafee, and sailed with them down the coast for our first offshore trip in 1988.
To Frank, Alcyone was a labor of love. She took 6 years to build and even though there was some community help, it was his personal project. When he sold her to the Hankes she had all hand-stitched cotton sails. We still have the hand-stitched fisherman. When asked about the sails he said he would spend his evenings, for months, watching TV and stitching. Alcyone can polish up and do a boat show with the best of them, lead a fleet of gaff-rigged schooners chasing down those pesky Marconi rigs in a race, and cross oceans in comfort, all the while always turning heads when she arrives in port.
To us, she has been a business, a home, and always an adventure. We lived aboard her for 22 years raising a family, operating a charter and sail training business, and completing 5 offshore trips, 100,000 blue water miles, and more than 6 years away from our homeport. At this point, to us, she is part of the family
Home Port: Port Townsend, WA
Year Built: 1964
Owner: Ethan Cook & Mary Dilles Cook
Designer: William Garden
The Aleutian Tern was designed in 1963 by the legendary Northwest designer William Garden, for Seattle builder Warren Teller. Teller built her in the yard at his home in Seattle over the next 3 years, launching her in 1966. She is very heavily built on lines paralleling those of the halibut schooners of the Northwest.
With a wheelhouse aft, a flush deck forward housing cavernous accommodations below, she feels like a much bigger boat than she is. The Aleutian Tern is 38’ long, 13’of beam, and draws 5’. Teller built her for his own use with plans to take her to Alaska regularly. Tragically he passed away before he could realize that dream, but she has been to Mexico and was even abandoned offshore on her return from there as she caught fire and was left to burn.
Thankfully the fire put itself out and she was repaired in California before being bought by her long-term owner Pat Dana, who knew her builder, and had hunted her down hoping to buy her for himself. He and his brother, Buzz Dana, brought her home to Seattle in a rough nonstop offshore delivery from San Diego, about 25 years ago.
Pat took especially good care of her for all those years and only recently decided to sell her to us. The Aleutian Tern is a unique vessel in design and construction. “Stout” would be quite an understatement. In Garden’s own words, “The Aleutian Tern is built of massive yellow cedar construction, she is a far cry from the average glassed in power cruiser, and her plans will be of interest as another man’s solution to the perfect ship.”
Home Port: Olympia, WA
Year Built: 2008
Owner: Capt. Peter Wilcox
Designer: Carl Chamberlan in collaboration with Capt. Peter
Design: Wilcox 36
Type: Gaff Ketch Petroleum-free Motorsailer
Ama Natura is a 36’ custom gaff ketch motorsailer built by the NW School of Wooden Boatbuilding, launched at Point Hudson in 2008 and used each year since for marine decarbonization demonstration, clean water, wildlife protection advocacy, and exploration.
Under the expert design guidance and deep knowledge of the NWSWB’S Carl Chamberlain, AMA Natura (“She Loves Nature”) was collaboratively designed with the owner, Capt. Peter Wilcox, to be an extremely low-impact NW cruising vessel, and a floating laboratory of decarbonizing green technologies.
The 36′ LOA, 10-ton displacement nearly 14-year-old vessel has consistently utilized 100% waste source biofuels—first biodiesel (B100) and over the last two years Renewable diesel (R99)—in its 48HP naturally-aspirated, slow turning diesel, and the same for heat when needed. AMA’s sailing salmon troller-inspired hull was modeled for efficiency and with its 3:1 gear reduction and 24” feathering prop, AMA sips ¾ GPH or less at a non-cuprous bottom paint hull speed of about 7 knots. Her auxiliary is a modest gaff ketch sail rig with just over 500SF of canvas that both steadies her motion and drives her near hullspeed on a beam reach.
Even the motor oil, transmission fluid, and steering fluid used in AMA are low carbon, low toxicity, and bio-based, the same ones in fact that NOAA has employed in many of its fleet for the last 15 or so years. AMA has a composting Air Head, and 255 watts of solar PV capacity with four carbon-foam Firefly house batteries and an Optimal gel starting battery to meet her electrical needs at anchor or dock. She seldom uses shorepower while underway, and we normally only plug her in at dock for the darkest three months of the year.
AMA is the flagship of the Inside Passage Decarbonization Project, started and led by Capt. Peter and Mate/Decarbonizer Community Builder, Bridget. The “IPDP” has been building partnerships with First Nations, ports, resorts, fuel docks, environmental NGO’s like Greenpeace Canada, and boaters up and down the length of the Inside Passage to implement its 20-year vision of dramatically lowering carbon emissions, eliminating toxic liquids and implementing 100% renewable shorepower throughout the Inside Passage by 2035. The IPDP also researches and advocates for fully recyclable boatbuilding materials, including durable and stabilized woods.
Home Port: Vancovuer, BC
Year Built: 2014
Owner: Arnt Arntzen
Designer: Roger Long
Design: 23' Cutter
Type: Gaff Rigged Cutter
ANJA’s design is based on the legendary Bristol Pilot Cutters of Britain. These boats were able to weather strong storms as well as be sailed short-handed. They would take the pilot out to large ships waiting in the Bristol Channel. Modern racing yachts evolved from this design. Construction is of mahogany plank on oak frames.
Roger Long of Woods Hole, Massachusetts designed this boat in 1976, and two have been built, a fiberglass version in Norway and Anja.
Bought by Arnt and Valerie Arntzen in 2019 and sailed to their home berth at Vancouver Maritime Museums Heritage Dock they started upgrading right away.
-steering wheel removed
-cabin added with 7 portholes
-galley and saloon added to the interior
Arnt’s first build was a 36’ on deck steel gaff-rigged Pinky Schooner which he built with his father in their back yard.
Arnt and Valerie sailed this boat in 1980 to Monterey, California, and back. He also worked on the refit of Ancestor, a wood 40’ gaff cutter built in Grenada, WI, his brother Leif’s boat, and was in wooden boat festival.
Arnt built his last sailboat from a salvaged 20-foot aluminum lifeboat with lots of fabulous local wood most cut by himself. He is a master wood and metalworker. ODIN was featured in Pacific Yachting Magazine in June 2008. They sailed this boat for 20 years all over the coast of BC and circumnavigated Vancouver Island with ERN in 2014.
Home Port: Vashon, WA
Year Built: 1991
Owner: Jack Stewart
Designer: Greg Foster
Design: Jolly boat
Type: Lug rigged, rowing Jolly boat
Ariadne is a Jolly boat designed by Greg Foster and built by the owner, Jack Stewart. Throughout her life, she has carried Jack, his wife, his three sons, and three generations of family dogs on many voyages throughout the Salish Sea. Her first long voyage was in May of 1992 when she followed Peter Puget’s route through the southern sound from Bainbridge Is. to Olympia.
Ariel of Victoria
Home Port: Anacortes, WA
Year Built: 1980
Owner: Christine Scoggins Granquist
Designer: Fred Peterson
Ariel of Victoria’s keel was laid in Fred Peterson’s boatyard on Vancouver Island near Nanaimo in 1972. Carvel planked in Alaskan yellow cedar over oak frames with a western red cedar deck, she was launched in 1980 after “seven years of madness” by Ronald Hunt and Peterson. Doug and Jane Bond bought her in Victoria and raised two sons aboard, sailing her in the Salish Sea and participating in the local racing community. In 2009, Jane sold Ariel to Christy Granquist who, with Daniel Joram, brought the boat to Seattle and began a hull & systems restoration/renovation project (planking, frames, transom and aft cabin, electrical, water, sewage). In 2012, another renovation push involved a new galley, engine rebuild, fuel & exhaust systems. And in 2015, she was hauled out for 18 months to rebuild her decks and main cabin, re-cork, fair, install new steering & nav systems.
In between all the projects Ariel of Victoria sails extensively, covering 5000 miles in the Salish Sea between 2010 and 2015, and racing in several local events. We are looking forward to taking her further in the coming seasons.
Home Port: Seattle, WA
Year Built: 1938
Beam: 10' 2"
Owner: Roger & Nancy Newell
Designer: Ben Seaborn
Built in 1938 by Blanchard Boat Company in Seattle for Markus Mayer Jr as “We’re Here”. Launched with sistership Tola. Past owners include Dr. Carl Jensen, AC Woodley, David Skinner and Dr. Robert Smith. Over the years the name was changed from We’re Here to Oscar IV, Avolonte, Kate, and currently Arroyo. The yacht was extensively raced in NW waters winning the 1949 Swiftsure Lightship Race and numerous Seattle yacht Club races. A half hull of the yacht currently hangs in the dining foyer of the Seattle Yacht Club.
From 1995-2000 the yacht underwent extensive restoration in Pt. Townsend under the guidance of Phil Rome and many other marine craftspeople from Pt. Townsend. Reconstruction included replacing 80 ribs, new deck, and deck beams, a new cockpit, new electrical, rebuilt engine, new electronics, prop, shaft, exhaust, galley, and complete hull fastening. New sails were added in 2001 and a new diesel engine in 2014. Arroyo has participated in numerous wooden boat festivals in Seattle and Pt. Townsend. The yacht is currently moored on Lake Union, only minutes from where the yacht was originally launched.
Construction includes: 1 1/8″ cedar planks on 2’x2′ oak frames, 3/4″ Okume plywood decking on mahogany beams, spruce mast and boom, System 3 fiberglass deck coating with silica sand, teak and mahogany brite work, and a Yanmar 40 hp diesel engine.
Avanti and Red
Home Port: Gig Harbor, WA
Year Built: 2020-2021
Owner: Riley Hall
Designer: Riley Hall
Design: Avanti - one sheet
Type: Power and row
While Avanti and Red are quite different in appearance, both hulls of these little vessels were constructed from one sheet of plywood. With some additional material used for structure decks and trim work, the goal is simplicity, grace, and usability. Both boats can easily be carried by one person and don’t take up a lot of space in the garage when not in use.
Avanti weighs in at 80lbs when fitted with her 2.5hp outboard and will get a 140lb driver up to about 10kts, just fast enough to not get into too much trouble. Featured in small boats monthly, she is an eye-catcher both online and on the water.
Red weighs in at 30lbs with her oars and bailer aboard and will do 3kts with ease, or tap out around 4kts if you really try and make her go. Light and small enough to carry down winding overgrown paths, Red’s cruising grounds extend from any reasonable launch site within a 5-minute walk of a parking spot.
There are about 12 one-sheet skiffs now plying the waters of WA, RI, and ME. each a little different and all a lot of fun. They are a popular attraction for the youngsters at Learn To Row Day in Warren, RI, and have been an easy tow behind yachts as famous as Dorade.
Home Port: Olympia, WA
Year Built: 2020
LOA: 19' 10"
Owner: Thomas Allen
Designer: Chesapeake Light Craft
Design: Chesapeake Light Craft
Bad Rabbit is a stitch and glue construction from a Chesapeake Light Craft kit. It was a COVID-19 pandemic project, helping the builder cope with social isolation. A boat that was built for my husband and named based on his sense of humor. She is painted red, has mahogany interior, and paw prints adorning her stern and bow.
Home Port: Shoreline, WA
Year Built: 2000
Owner: Eric Hvalsoe
Designer: Eric Hvalsoe
Design: Hvalsoe 16
Type: Yawl Rig
Bandwagon is HV16 hull #1 built in the Seattle area by the designer, Eric Hvalsoe. Bandwagon is part of a family of sail and oar designs including the HV 13, 15, and 18. Bandwagon is of traditional Red Cedar lapstrake construction with copper clench nails, and riveted teak gunwales. The boat started life with a simple spritsail rig but has since been converted to a balanced lug yawl. With the yawl rig, she has cruised Puget Sound, The San Juans, and Canadian waters as far north as the Broughtens.
Home Port: Rio Vista, CA
Year Built: 2017
Owner: Richard Herman
Designer: Sam Devlin
Design: Banjo 20
Banjo was designed to live on a trailer and has cruised waters from the Gulf Islands in British Columbia to San Francisco Bay to Monterey. My wife and I have spent as long as ten days cruising in surprising comfort for such a small boat. It is a common sight on the California Delta, and perfect for making a spur of the moment decision to motor a few miles for dinner or an evening cruise.
Designed and built by Devlin Designing Boatbuilders, the twenty-foot hull is powered by a reliable ninety horsepower outboard and honors the tradition of a Lake Union cruiser. Its spacious cabin has a small but functional galley forward and a built-in fireplace that easily warms the cabin on cold mornings. The jaunty Charlie Noble smokestack on the forward deck adds to the classic look. The pilot house is open at the back with a fixed canvas bimini and side curtains that create a very comfortable aft cabin at night.
Banjo is very stable and maneuvers with ease in congested areas. I have experienced winds in excess of 25 mph with four to five foot waves. By slowing and maneuvering, Banjo brought us safely home.
Home Port: Cornet Bay, WA
Year Built: 2020
Owner: Tom Peebles
Designer: D.N. Hylan
Design: Point Comfort 23
Barquito II is a Chesapeake Bay dead rise skiff with a D.N. Hylan design hull and a builder imagined cabin. She is intended to be a slow cruising highly efficient camp cruiser.
Barquito II is a COVID-19 project. When it became evident in early 2020 that I would have time on my hands, I ordered the plans and started construction on April 3rd. We rolled the hull over on July 1st and commenced with finishing out the hull. Cabin creation commenced on November 22nd. Barquito II slid out the shop door and onto her trailer on May 17th.
Home Port: Seattle, WA
Year Built: 1957
Owner: Jeff Uehling
Designer: Howard V. Siddons
Design: Jet 14
Restoration of This Boat, Hull #246:
Beware of the “free” boat.
Hull number 246 was past its useful life when it came into my possession. Large sections of planking had rotted along with the keel beam around the centerboard trunk. Despite cracked deck skin there was something compelling about the boat.
I initially resisted the offer to take this “free” boat, recognizing at once the massive undertaking required to bring it back to life. If it were not for the pleading of my son, of high school age at the time, “wouldn’t it be a great project for us to work on together,” the boat would never have found its way into my garage. For a while, my son helped me, but then he moved away to college. The project boat remained.
Occasionally I would furiously practice my woodworking on hull number 246, but life and career kept getting in the way. My son graduated and took a job in another city. The project boat remained.
Fifteen years later, having retired from my paying career, I realized that hull number 246 still sat unfinished in the north half of the garage. I needed motivation or this derelict would never be gone. At the time, the city of Seattle was struggling with a massive tunnel construction project for our local Highway 99. The tunnel was suffering delay after delay. I thought “surely I can finish this boat before the tunnel digging machine, called Bertha, finishes the tunnel.”
It was a race. Bertha and I became a close match. Sometimes I would get ahead and sometimes Bertha was ahead. In the end, I applied the last coats of varnish shortly after the final signage was installed in the tunnel.
We now call Hull number 246, “Bertha” and she looks great for a boat originally constructed in 1957. My son made a special journey home for successful sea-trials on Lake Washington.
It can be done, but “beware of the ‘free’ project boat.”
Jet-14 Class Association and History:
The Jet-14 design has a 65+ year history and has an active Class Association. The boat seems rare on the West Coast, but there are several active fleets throughout the Midwest, Mid-Atlantic, and Southeast.
The Jet-14 Class Association started in 1955 and produces a quarterly newsletter “JetBlasts” and an informative website, www.jet14.com.
The Jet-14 was originally created by a New Jersey skipper, Howard V. Siddons along with Harry Sindle, who combined the sail plan and hull shape from other designs to create a one-design with good performance, minimum cost, low maintenance, and is easy to transport.
The design includes elements to make it easy for do-it-yourself construction. These include solid wood spars and a solid plate iron centerboard.
Fiberglass versions of the boat entered competition in the 1960s, some of which were built in the Netherlands. As technology advanced, the Class approved further changes such as aluminum spars, use of spinnakers, a mid-boom traveler and jib furling gear.
The Jet-14 has seen varying degrees of popularity over the years. In 1965 there were 888 boats registered with the class association from 37 chartered fleets. The November 1999 issue of Sailing World included a feature about Jet-14s. Although Jet racing seems to have decreased since those days, after 65 years, these boats are still used in organized competition!
Home Port: Olympia, Wa
Year Built: 1964
LOA: 16' 6"
Beam: 6' 2"
Owner: Chris Fry
Designer: Ludvik "Louie" Piotr Zbigniewicz
Bibi is a hard-chined, plywood centerboard sloop built in 1964 by hobbyist Ludvik Zbigniewicz, apparently to his own design. She has a long, fine entry, considerable rocker, and a tiny, distinctively squared-off cuddy with a small porthole on either side. BIBI is bronze fastened and heavily framed for her size—a reflection of both the conservative approach taken by builders experimenting with plywood in its relatively early days, and also of the fierce prairie winds and steep chop on Lake Winnipeg, for which the builder designed her.
Her prior owner, Jack Mathias of Nanaimo BC, owned her from 1997 until 2017 and relayed this history. “She was built…for sailing solo on Lake Winnipeg … If you don’t know that lake, it’s roughly 400 km long, north to south, 100 km wide, and averages only 12 m deep. With that length of wind fetch, flat surrounding countryside, and shallow depth, the lake can get extremely rough. That’s why the vessel is built so strongly, comes with a canvas storm jib and a drogue has extra fore and aft flotation, and has the roller boom for reefing the mainsail. I suspect the small thermometer and barometer mounted in the forward bulkhead of the cabin is to watch for squalls and thunderstorms, for which the prairies are famous.”
The builder’s daughter confirmed that Mr. Zbigniewicz built BIBI. “As a matter of fact”, she wrote, “he built several and this one was the largest, built when the new baby was born, to accommodate his growing family. I’m that baby.”
Zbigniewicz was born in 1918 in Warsaw, Poland. He enrolled in the Sea Cadets and sailed tall ships in the Baltic. He enlisted in 1939 and served in the Polish army before being captured by the Germans and imprisoned for the duration of World War II. After being liberated, he rejoined Polish troops in Italy and eventually emigrated to Manitoba, where he worked variously as a farmhand, lumberjack, for a gas company, and as a business owner. In addition to woodworking, Zbigniewicz also enjoyed working in metals, and he cast or machined all of the metal fittings on BIBI. He passed away in 1997.
With only three owners from new, BIBI remains remarkably original and is a proper little yacht.
Big Wave Dave
Year Built: 2021
Owner: The Center for Wooden Boats
Designer: Eric Hvalsoe
Design: Hvalsoe 16
The Hvalsoe 16 lapstrake dinghy is considered by Eric Hvalsoe to be “the great compromise,” as it both rows and sails well. This craft’s fine ends make the Hvalsoe 16 an excellent rowing boat, while it carries enough beam to make it stable under its 85 square foot sprit-sail rig.
Marked by an elegant curved stem and rake wineglass transom, the design is narrow at the ends with a powerful, stable midsection.
The rig is an unstayed, loose footed spritsail. The sprit rig is a model of simplicity and flexibility. It features a convenient brailing line, spruce spars, and sail assembly that may be stored inside the boat. Mast, sprit, and sail come in a long canvas sleeve for tidy stowage and transport.
These boats will stand upright on the beach with their wide plank keel and are protected with tough, UHMW shoes and rubbing strips. Hull interiors are finished with Seafin Teak Oil, exteriors typically painted to the owner’s specifications. But don’t be fooled by all the gloss, as seats, transom, trim, etc., these boats are coated with an incredibly tough, flexible urethane coating. Results over the years have been proven excellent.
This vessel is built of vertical grain western red cedar, clinch nailed on steam bent oak frames. Its back bone is made of mahogany with a teak transom and Sitka spruce spars. The hull was built through a series of classes in 2020 with students at The Center for Wooden Boats. Several generous donors made it possible for Eric to finish the vessel at his home shop during the pandemic. It was launched in February 2021 and built in memory of David Allman.
You can learn more about the project here: https://youtu.be/TSytGUIkog4
Home Port: Edmonds, WA
Year Built: 2021
Owner: Barry Clark
Design: Prospector Canoe
The Birddog is a traditional Prospector design, very stable with larger loads due to the wide beam and taller side walls. She is 16 feet and is constructed with Birdseye Maple, Walnut, Black Walnut, Cherry, and Padouk with Mahogany, Ebony, and Red Cedar strips. My passion for bird hunting inspired me to build a handmade canoe that would blend with nature. I enjoy creating artistry with wood and using unique grains and designs.
Home Port: Winchester Bay, OR
Year Built: 2009
Owner: E. Gary Weathers
Designer: Teddy A Ryder
Ted Ryder designed and built the Blue Duck which is strip planked and cold molded. In 2006 Ted started construction in Western Yankee Boat Barn, Shady Cove, Oregon and launched her in Winchester Bay in 2009 after over 3000 hours of work almost totally by himself.
He acquired rough lumber from a small mill nearby and milled every piece which was all air-dried V.G. Doug Fir. Everything was covered in 10 oz. cloth and West System epoxy. The caprails and rubrails are Angelique from Edensaw.
He purchased a new fresh water cooled, three cylinder Yanmar 35 HP engine and built two 40 gallon fuel tanks that would allow a 1,000-mile cruising range.
Home Port: Seattle, WA
Year Built: 1928
Beam: 18' 6"
Owner: Chuck and Linda Barbo
Designer: Ted Geary
Design: Fan-tail Motor Yacht
Built for an important Seattle architect, the Blue Peter is a true Seattle original. Most of the wood and other parts and materials were made or harvested right here in the Pacific Northwest. Designed and constructed by Seattle hands, the yacht entered service with the Seattle Yacht Club as one of her first appointments. During the 2nd world war, the yacht was conscripted by the US. Army and used to patrol the newly constructed Canol oil pipeline, in Canada and Alaska. She was later “Surplussed” by the army and was purchased by Horace McCurdy of Seattle, who had been a fan of the yacht since her original construction.
The McCurdy family brought the boat back to her original grandeur and maintained her until 2001. The Barbos bought the yacht from the McCurdys and continued to maintain and improve her care. In recent years, the Barbos have commissioned several large repair projects like the replacement of the teak decks, and the electrical system, repair and upgrading of the plumbing systems, and the upgrading of electronic equipment on the bridge, This past winter a large project to repair and replace elements of the drive-train and bearings, as well as replacing foundational woodwork in the stern of the hull were carried out by shipwrights at Haven Boat Works.
Blue Peter is employed primarily as a private yacht for the Barbos, their extended family, and for family friends. She is starting to become available for limited chartering here in our local waters. If you are interested to know more, the captain of the yacht will be available to answer further questions. Welcome Aboard!
Home Port: Eagle Harbor, WA
Year Built: 2016
Owner: Mike Yates
Designer: Mike Yates
1500 hours from first sketches to varnish. The boat is a cedar-strip, recreational/open-water scull, loosely based on Graeme King’s immortal Kingfisher. It’s built with 1/8-inch Western red cedar & Alaska yellow cedar pin-striping. The hull is covered with 2-oz fiberglass, inside & out. All strips are block-planed with a rolling bevel to mold into the hull shape. The soft-chined, V-hull is monocoque constructed with a hard deck. The material was provided by Joe Greenley, Redfish Kayaks. Custom riggers, sliding seat, foot-stretchers & adjustable-pitch pins are by Carl Douglas (UK). Oarlocks & carbon sculls are by C-2. Shoes are H2Row. It rows like a dream.
Home Port: Lake Oswego, OR
Year Built: 2004–2006
Owner: Ray Brown
Designer: Renn Tolman
Design: Tolman Alaskan Skiff Jumbo 24
Bright Star is a Tolman Jumbo 24, from a design by Renn Tolman of Homer, Alaska. As are all the Tolman boats, she is a plywood stitch-and-glue wooden boat.
The Tolman Alaskan Skiffs began as 18′ open boats, built for fishing in Alaskan waters. The basic design has evolved. Most now are cabin boats 22′-24′ long, with a few built at 26′, and built by the people who plan to use them.
Ray built her on our backporch. It took 2.5 years, from delivery of plywood to launching. We customized ours as a cabin cruiser, for cruising and fishing.
The boat is powered by a Cummins diesel MerCruiser 1.7L, 120hp, inboard/outboard. Cruising speed is 18 mph and cruising weight is 3800 pounds. The boat is light for its size and is easy to tow.
We get great fuel economy. With two 36-gallon tanks, we have a range of 300 miles, at speed. So far, we have 7500 statute miles under our keel. Note: This is at WBF application time. More cruising happens before Festival 2021.
Local home area day trips and cruising have been in the Willamette and Columbia Rivers. But most of our cruising has been up north, in saltwater. Having a trailerable boat allows us freedom easily to go farther, and get into saltwater in Washington and BC. As former long distance offshore sailboat cruisers, we find it great fun to get to places faster and have more time in ports for exploring.
We’ve explored the South Sound, spent a lot of time inside, along Vancouver Island, in the San Juans, more time in the Gulf Islands, went up the Fraser River, and north on the BC mainland side. We cruised in the Broughton Archipelago, taking the ferry Coho over to Victoria and driving up to Port McNeill to launch. An outside trip was from Port Townsend to Walters Cove, almost to Brooks Peninsula. It was off of Tofino, with a front coming in, that we learned Bright Star can fly. We went back to port, for four days, and headed out again.
2020 was a bust, as far as cruising. With more time at home, Ray built another boat. Based on a Tolman hull design, it is a 21′ open speedboat, modified to be all-electric, with Tesla batteries and solar panels.
More information on the building of cabin boat Bright Star — http://www.backporchboat.org/
— Ray Brown & Anne Thompson
Home Port: Wenatchee, WA
Year Built: 2018-2021
Owner: Mark Briley
Designer: Renn Tolman
Design: Tolman Widebody
The boat hull is built with a hybrid stitch and glue construction, while the upper cab is built in a more traditional manner. The majority of the vessel is marine plywood skinned with fiberglass cloth. Exterior grade ply and glass were used on a few parts of the interior cab. I built the initial hull upside down on my driveway during the summer of 2018, then flipped it and put it in my 2-car garage on a diagonal so it’d fit while started work on the interior over the fall and winter. It was a challenge working in such a tight space, and it drug out the building process considerably.
I pulled it out of the garage in the spring of 2019 and erected a temporary shelter over it in the driveway while I began completion of the rest of the upper structure. By late fall of 2019, I ended up getting a good deal on boat storage for the winter and moved it there along with its trailer. I started back up on construction in the spring of 2020. I was able to have a shop built that spring, so the boat was moved into that and I was able to make slow but steady progress until her launch in July of 2021.
The Cara Lynn is primarily intended for fishing/camping in the lakes, with occasional trips to the West Coast for short cruising/fishing trips. Currently, it’s powered by a 1984 Mercury IL6 “Tower of Power”, but there are plans to upgrade that to a 115 Mercury 4-Stroke next year.
Home Port: Seattle, WA
Year Built: 1935
Owner: Peter & Melissa Evans
Designer: Harold Lee
Design: Flush Deck Cruiser, custom
Commissioned in Tacoma, Washington in 1935 by Norton Clapp, Carmelita was built as a private yacht. Harold Lee of San Francisco designed her to Mr. Clapp’s specifications, and her construction at the Mojean & Erickson yard took nearly a year. She was outfitted with Cooper-Bessemer diesel and was featured in their advertisements in 1935. For sixty years, his family members and guests enjoyed time aboard the Carmelita on trips between Tacoma Washington, and Glacier Bay Alaska.
During World War II, Carmelita served in the U.S. Coast Guard as an Alaskan Patrol Vessel. During her twenty-six months of service, she was painted gray with standard Coast Guard numbers CG-68006 on the hull. When Carmelita was refitted in 1946, Anchor Jensen installed new Gray-Marine 6-71 diesels.
Carmelita is designed for efficiently cruising the protected waters of the Northwest Coast. She has made more than 30 voyages from Puget Sound to Alaska and returns. An 81-day trip to Alaska in 2006 logged 3001 miles of comfortable cruising at 10 knots. An 83-day voyage in 2015 included 47 days exploring Haida Gwaii, the home of the Haida Nation 60 miles off the coast of British Columbia.
Home Port: Port Hadlock, WA
Year Built: 2020
Owner: Dan Newland
Designer: Dan Newland
Design: Pegasus 17
Celeste is one of two kayaks of this design I have built. The first one I built for my wife, Linda and was named Feather. It used a variety of woods including Sapele, dark-figured Western Red Cedar, Alaskan Yellow Cedar, Peruvian Walnut, and Bird’s Eye Maple. She was beautiful and rowed well.
For the next one, I wanted more challenge and artistry in the build. I searched for nearly 2 years before finding a clear rough sawn Western Red Cedar plank with fantastic figuring to make the topsides. Vertical stripes show where branches were and the bow started with a pink cast that transitioned to chocolate brown chevrons aft. I ripped the strips, bookmatched and sequentially routered the strips going from the waterline over on to the deck before changing to Sapele, extremely dark figured Peruvian Walnut, Khaya crotch, Padouk, and Bolivian Rosewood plus various other woods used for the inlays. Each of these were unusually figured, for example the Khaya used in the bow and stern came from the crotch of the tree and has a Herringbone pattern with grey, red, orange, and brown. The Ebony has creamy streaks reminiscent of clouds, a moon of Japanese Plum has a knot for a crater, etc. She was finished in 6 ounce fiberglass inside and out then sprayed with 12 coats of Alexseal clear.
In order to solve the problem of extreme twist torquing the strips, I created an external frame that used wedges to force the strips into position. The total weight of Celeste is 39 pounds.
Home Port: Port Hadlock, WA
Year Built: 1993
Owner: Matthew McCleary
Designer: William Atkins
Design: Little Maid of Kent
Ceridwen was lofted in the Fall of 1982 at Magner & Sons Boatworks in Carlsborg, WA. Matt McCleary with the help of John and his son Kevin, started building the Atkins’ “Little Maid of Kent” Schooner. Poured 2500lbs of lead for Keel, Balua Keel Timbers, Oregon Oak floor timber’s and steam-bent oak frames, Port Orford Cedar planking, old-growth Douglas Fir cabin sides, Honduras Mahogany Taff rails, laid Teak decks over plywood sub deck, mahogany covering boards. All tankage (water and diesel), electrical system, and Diesel engine were installed. Pete Langley of PT Foundry cast most of Ceridwen’s deck and Spar hardware. Hassey-Petrich sails were built. Launched in August 1994, and then masts, bowsprit, and spars were finished and rigged.
Maiden voyage was in August 1996 from Port Angeles Marina to Port Hadlock Marina, Ceridwen’s Home Port to this day. Ceridwen’s custom interior was finished over many years from my garage shop in Hadlock. 20+ years now of adventures with family and friends in the San Juan Islands and Gulf Islands, BC.
Home Port: Hat Island, WA
Year Built: 1950
Owner: Bradley Tinius
Designer: Harrison Butler
Chencharu is one of two Harrison Butler boats built in 1950 in Malaysia. I bought her in Australia in 1977. I circumnavigated Australia and then eventually sailed most of the Pacific, ending up on Hat Island. I recently built a new mast as the original split. I am. Currently on my way back from Hawaii. This is my second time single-handedly sailing to Hawaii and back. This is a classic wooden sailboat with a beautiful wood interior. I completely sanded and refinished the boat last year in anticipation of the trip to Hawaii when covid hit.
Home Port: Renton, WA
Year Built: 1986
Beam: 5' 8"
Owner: David Smith
Designer: Charles Mower
Design: Swampscott Racing Dory
Using only the lines drawing from the Dori book we measured and created a sheet of offsets to loft her. Thanks to the Newport Marine science center loft and bandsaw, I was able to fully loft her and then create her sawn frames in 1983. Thanks to Dick Tucker in Langlois Oregon I was able to order perfect Port Orford cedar for plankIng. Jamestown distributors was the only mail order supply company back then for Marine supplies (and linguica sausage)!! Coincidentally Silva Bans was being built in a nearby barn at the same time so had to have her!! The schooner Rueben de Cloux was just launched and sailed in Yaquina Bay to our delight and inspiration! Launched as an open row boat I explored the eirie Pools slough where another recluse boatbuilder was creating a wooden sailing masterpiece deep in the woods.