A Winter’s Doodles: Design Notes from Early 2018.

If you leave scrap paper and pencils around this place long enough, sooner or later they get filled up with weird and wonderful boat design notes. And after a long winter of listening to our clients’ hopes and dreams, some dang interesting sketches have piled up around the office. Since it is cold and gray now, why not brighten things up by showing off what the Spirit-of-Tradition world is most interested in, here in early 2018.

The big questions so far are, what does a family need to go sailing and camping in and what does a true, hard core fisherman demand in a sportfisherman. As always, our job was to make these wholesome and traditional notions easier to handle and own.

Let’s take a look at our design doodles for 2018.


  • Old Or New?

This family sought the perfect, classic cruiser.  Zoom in to explore the smartly laid out cockpit and sailing ergonomics.

  • LOA: 48 ft – 5 in. (14.7 m)
  • LWL: 34 ft – 1 in. (10.4 m)
  • Beam: 13 ft – 0 in. (4.0 m)
  • Draft: 7 ft – 0 in. (2.1 m)
  • Displacement: ~20,600 lbs. (9360 kg)
  • Sail Area: ~1066 sq ft. (99 sq m)


This one’s right in our wheelhouse: a yachting family had been dreaming for years about the perfect classic cruising boat. Drawing from influences, like the striking Sparkman and Stephens Palawan designed in 1952, we modeled up a classic sheerline, lengthy overhangs, and a long, low trunk in a 48-footer. The challenge here was to accommodate a roomy cruising interior, just like Palawan’s, inside a modern envelope that enclosed about 8,000 pounds less displacement than Palawan’s 28,000 pounds. Not easy.

Important differences from the classic include a comfortable and ergonomically sound cockpit and a mindful sailing platform, instead of the shallow footwell and limited access to sail controls so common in boats several generations ago.

Ultimately, we couldn’t include everything the client wanted, while remaining within the family’s budget. So this beauty is on the shelf for now. She’d make someone a beautiful cruiser.

Explore the full design here. Old or New: Full Drawing.


  • A Tale of Two Sheers

For this Do-It-All Fisherman, we investigated both traditional and reversed sheers. Zoom to explore how.

  • LOA:   51 ft. – 6 in.
  • LWL:   49 ft. – 3 in.
  • Beam: 16 ft – 6 in.
  • Disp:   56,000 lbs lightship
  • HP:    2,000  MTU


These sketches spin out of our client’s wish to develop a customized downeast-looking sport fishing boat. He seeks a sport-fisherman that could fish for anything, using any rig: Longline reels, bandit reels, pot haulers, bottom fishing, fly-fishing, trolling, green stick: If it swims, he’s fishing for it.

A 48-foot hull was about the minimum he needed to get a lengthy working deck and minimal accommodations. And though he liked builder Stewart Workman’s Calvin Beal design for lobster boats, the largest model there, is just 44 feet. Getting those extra 4 feet was a bigger job than he planned for.

First began an extensive analysis for complex stretching of the 44 footer, aimed at beefier construction and proper naval engineering. Next, the owner wanted a boat as flexible and capable as a Swiss Army Knife. And we ran into all sorts of challenges fitting the needed equipment and systems into an envelope that was probably too limited. That all led to a delicate balancing act of offsetting the added weight, larger propulsion systems, more rations of equipment and let’s not forget a decent fish hold.

These sketches show two alternate ideas compared to the Calvin Beal. The sea-kindly hull is a deep-vee, blended with a semi-round bilge and chine; this delivers performance in many different conditions and helps build in more hull volume for more flexible load-carrying capacity. One take, at the top of the image above, is a more conventional-looking downeast fishing hull form, that leads to traditional foredeck and cabin trunk. And the other, at the bottom, was our favorite. It featured a more modern emphasis on a slight reverse sheer going forward. We like how the powder-horn shape transitions into that flush foredeck.

It’s an attractive streamlined look that results in a dryer design in the open sea. We shall see which one gets built.

Explore the full design here: A Tale of Two Sheers: Full Drawing.


  • SoT Mania.

The client wanted an SoT speedster and day-camper, that they could just hang out on and have a blast. Check out the minimalist systems.

  • LOA: 42 ft 7 in (13.0 m)
  • LWL: 32 ft 0 in. (9.8 m)
  • Beam: 9 ft 9 in (3.0 m)
  • Draft: 6 ft 8 in (2.0 m)
  • Displacement: ~5500 lb. (2500 kg)
  • Sail area: 560 sq. ft. (52 sq m)


This one was lot of fun. Our client knows how to enjoy himself at reasonable cost– at least, for a custom vessel! We’ve been doodling for him for a few years now, and he was inspired by our large daysailer Ginger. He wanted something super-fast, low and sleek that would be the perfect daysailer and camp-cruiser. He’s mentioned cruising in the Bosphorus, of all places. Good for him.

We wound up with something that is light– less than 6,000 pounds — fast and with just enough creature comforts to make overnighting fun, but not resplendent.

Plus, she’ll be a blast to sail. This one will really get up and scoot.

Explore the full design here: SOT Mania: Full Drawing