Beth sailing canoe heading downwind with little fuss in British Columbia - article on fleet racing BETH.

How does the BETH sailing canoe go in mixed fleets and handicap racing?

BETH sailing canoe – The designer has lots of fine things to say about the sailing performance of BETH – but Andrew Barclay has been racing his against mixed fleets in British Columbia where she sails equal with Laser Radials in light wind and gradually outclasses them in stronger. I provide some tips about getting a bit more from the boat.
June 11, 2013 2

Looking for plans of Rickard Sarby’s Olympic Finn Dinghy in wood

The Finn Dinghy has been one of the most important of the racing classes over the past six decades. It was always in the forefront of sailing developments. One fellow contacted asking if there were plans to build a Finn dinghy … and I was able to find a partial answer.
April 15, 2012 1

Boat designs influenced by rules? History shows us canting keel maxis are stupid

This is an article about how bias in thinking produces weird results in terms of boat designs. I compare a silly boat design trend of 100 years ago with modern canting keel maxi yachts. Personally I don’t think they should be allowed to use engines to run the keels and the various systems – if they do then they should be disqualified from the event results. The conventional human powered boats should be listed as the winners of events.
February 18, 2012 5

A week fast building two Quick Canoes for touring the Loire in France – Part 1

The above photo was taken on the third day of our Canoeing trip on the Loire River in France. The two black canoes didn’t even exist a week ago. When I wrote the original article on Disposable Canoeing I had no idea at all what it would lead to me and a bunch of adventurers, wine and cheese connoisseurs. Most of us didn’t even know each other! The picture above is the result of this adventurism, but what happened to make it happen? What technology was involved to make the boats faster to build than most stitch and glue boats and what weather conditions did we have to overcome to make it all happen.
February 10, 2012 2
Goat Island Skiff going fast downwind with heavy load - Texas 200

Strong wind downwind in unstayed Cat Ketches and Cat Yawls – more safety and efficiency

John Goodman and I sailed the immaculate Goat Island Skiff he built from my plan in the Texas 200. The boat showed itself to be one of the faster in the fleet despite loading up such a short boat with food, water and camping gear for six days with little outside support. We played with sailing the boat by the lee – a method used by racing boats to gain both speed and control. I document the method here including a video showing how the angle of heel can be controlled using the mainsheet.
July 4, 2011 4

Photos from Goolwa Wooden Boat Show 2011 – looking forward to 2013!

Photos and slideshow from the Goolwa Wooden Boatshow 2011. Over 250 boats – mostly in the water. Wooden hydroplanes, “restricted 21s”, riverboats, putt putt launches, classic sailing boats, kayaks, canoes and more. I had the quick canoe, the eureka canoe and the OzRacer on the stand that was shared with Duck Flat Wooden Boats and Boatcraft Pacific. Good time was had by all.
February 28, 2011 0

12sq metre Sharpie (Heavyweight Sharpie) for sail in Australia.

A rare beast, a circa 1960s 12 square metre sharpie with some of the original rig is for sale. I am not involved, but in the interests of helping preserve a little bit of Australian sailing and boat design history I would like to help find it a good home. The 12sq metre (heavyweight) Sharpie came to Australia for the 1956 Olympics. NZ first, Oz second. However the boat totally changed the approach to the design of Australian skiffs. Thought you might be interested to read my understanding of the design issues and influence. How the Sharpie name went from the USA to Europe and then to Australia – and how it changed our boats.
January 25, 2011 24

Setting up for performance – Balance Lug – Goat Island Skiff

John Goodman who recently spent 5 days semi racing a Goat Island Skiff in the Texas200 event got back to me with some observations and even some pictures of aspects of the boat and the sailing. I have responded with suggestions to make some further improvements. Between John and me there are some useful tips about setting up a boat for more speed. However the standard setup of the Goat is fine for most – it is still pretty quick in standard form. There is advice for both lug and sprit traditional rigs here.
July 1, 2010 0

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Podcast Online – Wooden Boat Design by Michael Storer – 1 of 3

This talk is the first hour of my exposition on boat building and design. There are two more parts to come. This covers some of the background and design issues. The second is more on the building side and the last is a bit more about why the Australian (and New Zealand) wooden boat tradition is different from the Northern Hemisphere. You can stream the talks over your internet connection or download them as a podcast.
November 26, 2009 0

Pics of historic Finn sailing

This Finn is owned by OZ wooden Boatbuilder and Designer Ross Lillistone. The boat was built for the 1956 Olympics and has been restored by Ross. The photoset of the restored wooden Finn Dinghy are here This is what Ross says They are of my wooden 1956 Oympic Finn which I took out for a […]
September 19, 2008 2

Antique Racing Dinghies – International 505 and Moth in Timber

While in Port Vincent for the Wooden Boat Festival (great little show!!!) someone pulled out this 505 class dinghy. It is in REALLY bad condition – but the exciting thing is that it has all the original gear and fittings. So it is a time capsule from around 1959. “State of the Art” down to […]
May 8, 2008 0

Traditional rigs can GO! Lugs and Sprits

Here is a video of a Lateen Rig on a large yacht going like a rocket. It was filmed in Dubai, so I suspect that it probably doesn’t qualify as a low cost rig – but it is still traditional including in aspect ratio. It blasts along very seriously for some time until a large […]
May 23, 2007 0

Kirribilli – historic 5.5 metre yacht starts restoration.

Duckflat have started work on Kirribilli for a consortium of owners. Keel is off – boat is upside down – hull is half stripped and half splined – starboard side. I’m assisting with the technical side. If the end result is as nice as the work Duck Flat and I did on our last keelboat […]
May 23, 2007 3

International Star Class revisited

I wrote this because the Star Class is one of my all time favourite boats. Crazy, fast, wonderful. Would it be possible to homebuild a simplified construction boat in plywood and cedar strip and still hit a similar weight and stiffness as competitive boats, but at a much lower cost?
November 11, 2006 6