Thinking of buying this boat- any input?

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Thinking of buying this boat- any input?

Postby mkeegan » Tue Jan 05, 2021 5:28 pm

I'm just getting back to boating after a long hiatus, and there's a local daysailer that I just looked at. I've been reading through a bunch of info on this site, which has been fantastic, but can't figure out what's going on with the cuddy of this boat. I was hoping to find enough space below to camp in a pinch, or at least for my son to curl up in, but when I looked in, I found a bulkhead with storage above and presumably flotation below located a few inches forward of the stepdown to the foredeck, leaving less than 4 feet of space forward of the hatchway. Sorry for the cruddy photo, but it was raining like stink today.
5FP8SB-8BMh75S-vy0G0c7vRwADXqK_nDNYNZ_x4luHhjZkf6FgCWDvL_uXdJNpTHO1MhiPWXR_LLNl9K6vKcds9pc1ODpsDmk6BBPAOpSW-4mcuXwZzKu8QOKOi5_YNpVUqBKJirCxyuOqeljLLIVv8xVZMjX0UdLdKDkHIL2xxnPrBq_uWxjYEM_uP7IAB6fDZ0E74xzX1L2B_6q58.jpg
5FP8SB-8BMh75S-vy0G0c7vRwADXqK_nDNYNZ_x4luHhjZkf6FgCWDvL_uXdJNpTHO1MhiPWXR_LLNl9K6vKcds9pc1ODpsDmk6BBPAOpSW-4mcuXwZzKu8QOKOi5_YNpVUqBKJirCxyuOqeljLLIVv8xVZMjX0UdLdKDkHIL2xxnPrBq_uWxjYEM_uP7IAB6fDZ0E74xzX1L2B_6q58.jpg (62.89 KiB) Viewed 761 times

This is what I had anticipated seeing:
file.jpg
file.jpg (7.64 KiB) Viewed 761 times

And this is the rest of the boat, hull #20249, Class #3733 on the placard:
118112570_10158954673559994_4316812925417865472_o.jpg
118112570_10158954673559994_4316812925417865472_o.jpg (103.55 KiB) Viewed 761 times


So is the plywood bulkhead above structural? I'd be hesitant to remove it if it's adding integrity to the foredeck. But even if I remove it for footroom, it seems a bit high to build a platform back from the fiberglass part for sleeping. The boat needs some redoing anyway, since I can feel waterlogged styrofoam through the drain plugs to the seats, but the boat is otherwise in great shape, and has a nearly new trailer.

Any thoughts on the bulkhead?
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Re: Thinking of buying this boat- any input?

Postby GreenLake » Tue Jan 05, 2021 10:01 pm

What's missing in the first picture are the set of wooden floorboards that were factory provided for the DS1. The boat can be sailed without them, of course, but having a bit of a platform, even as shallow as the floor boards, would provide a bit of level surface in the cuddy. (The floor boards would rest on either side of the keelson and be almost the same height; a sheet of plywood with a bit of supports could be made so it rests on the keelson in the middle and then meets the hull on either side in a sort of curved triangle shape; it would provide a level surface and prevent any small puddle in the bilge from getting your gear wet).

With floor boards, or something like them, small children enjoy the space. A waterproof duffel filled with clothes, a spare life jacket and the odd cushion seem to be sufficient to build a "nest" where they can rest, sleep and otherwise while away the time to the next landfall.

On the other hand, most people who use this type of boat for extended trips end up either camping on the beach, or camping in the cockpit. The latter may involve bringing boards that can be fashioned into a bit of a platform and / or a tent suspended from the boom. The solutions are as varied as peoples' creativity -- some approaches were discussed here in the past.

I've been on a five day cruise on a friend's DS, and there was just enough room in the cuddy for all the food, water and gear we were bringing, so we camped on shore.

The plywood bulkhead in the cuddy opening will stiffen the boat (and help keep your gear dry in case of rain), but it is not factory original.

From the pictures, the boat looks in great shape and well taken care of.
~ green ~ lake ~ ~
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Re: Thinking of buying this boat- any input?

Postby Fly4rfun » Tue Jan 05, 2021 10:07 pm

I'm fairly new to the DS1, got mine in Oct. but what i have read and found on the internet and in comparison to my DS1 #2675 that the bulkhead is a addition and not structural as it was not original. if you want more room I would not hesitate to remove it. but let the experts chime in
"Sail Aweigh" 1966 DS1 #2675
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Re: Thinking of buying this boat- any input?

Postby tomodda » Wed Jan 06, 2021 12:03 am

That boat is a DS1, with a wooden bulkhead added at the cuddy opening by some previous owner. The forward bulkhead is in the same place as other DS1's, and yes it's about 4' from cuddy opening to for bulkhead. Your second setup is a DS2, a different beast entirely, as it has a false deck and bilges underneath. More on that in a moment...

Depending on the exact vintage of the boat, the DS1 has either a full forward bulkhead, a "shelf", or a shelf with a false bulkhead above with some hatches for storage. Your's appears to have the last option. The fore bulkhead is mostly there to hold foam flotation blocks, it's not structural. Note that I wrote BLOCKS, the flotation is nothing but big styrofoam blocks, which eventually (years) get waterlogged. So, right off the bat, I'd say you can take out the foreward bulkhead if you want and gain more space, but.... #1 you have to put the flotation somewhere! You could just reverse the order though, keep the "floor" clear for your son and put proper two-part liquid foam along the roof. #2 How much are you planning on being up on the foredeck? It does in fact flex, the support underneath is nice to have. That being said, in two seasons of sailing, I've been on my foredeck two-three times max. Of course, I have a jib downhaul, so no need to go forward while underway. However, with both those points in mind, I caution you that there is not THAT much useable space forward of the bulkhead along the deck, maybe 10 inches before it narrows too much. There's more room at the top behind the bulkhead, maybe 18 inches? Really not much, I don't think the "juice is worth the squeeze". As you photo shows, the DS2 puts the forward bulkhead further forward and therefore has less flotation foam. That's because the added flotation is under the false deck, not sure if there's foam down there, but there is at least a big bubble of air. Not much help if you're turtled, but that explains the smaller bow flotation. As I wrote, your're really not gaining that much.

AS GL wrote, let's attack the problem from the other end (like a monkey peeling a banana, right?). You want a space for your son, who I presume is small enough to get up into the cuddy? Then build floorboards and give him some soft stuff to lie on, he'll be fine. Also a good way to keep your things out of any bilgewater. The floorboards should be built to the level of the top of the keelson, and there are plans floating around online, I think on this site as well. You wind up with a space that it 4 feet x 4-ish feet, with sloping sides (the insides of the hull), overall it's like sitting under a dining table. I'm 6' tall and wear a size 48 suit-jacket, but I go under there for a sit when it's raining. A pain to get in and out, but otherwise a fine place to wait out the rain. I rarely use my floorboards, I've got two pieces of indoor/outdoor carpet that I use for sitting around (under cuddy, ashor for picnics, etc). Of course, I don't have that cuddy bulkhead so I can get down there when I want. Personally, if it were my boat, I'd get rid of it. Doesn't look watertight at all (huge opening), so what's the point? Now, for sleeping aboard, you have two options, you can either sleep in the cockpit, maybe with extra boards between the seats (make a sleep platform), or you can rip out the cuddy bulkhead and build a shelf going forward,. The later would be at seat height, going from the seat to the forward "shelf", rip out the forward false bulkhead (with the two little hatches) and you have your extra 12' of legroom. Check it out here, very last photo (and a great read!):

https://sites.google.com/site/dinghycruising/

Either way, you'll need a cockpit tent, but that can be as simple as a tarp attached to the boom. The author of above article used an old pup tent, that works too. As GL noted, the next problem is where to put provisions and gear. As it used to say in my math textbooks, I'll "leave that as an exercise to the reader," but I'm sure you can be creative. Drybags are your friend! Beware that the DS does not like to be heavily loaded, it will sail but like pig. Then again, I'll take a sailing pig over a powerboat any day, so it's all relative. Overall, good looking boat, looks ready to sail and you can modify things at your own pace.

Good luck!

Tom
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Re: Thinking of buying this boat- any input?

Postby GreenLake » Wed Jan 06, 2021 12:07 am

The small forward bulkhead with the two small openings is structural. If you simply remove it, you'll have to add strength somewhere else.

For making a limited platform for the cuddy only you wouldn't need a template. Simply use a piece of cardboard and whittle it down until it rests flat on the keelson and the sides of the hull. Then cut a sheet of 3/4" plywood to that size (leaving a notch or hole for the mast step). You'll need a bit of support/cushioning where the platform rests so it doesn't grind down the laminate. The space below will be tall enough to stash some fenders and similar items below it, accessible from the cockpit. Depending a bit how directly this rests on the keelson. I've been using a similar ad-hoc platform for a while now, it floats a bit (1-2") above the keelson, which adds to room available below. One thing I've not needed is anything to hold down that platform, it doesn't seem to shift; but if you wanted to you could add two small wood blocks to help center it on the keelson.
~ green ~ lake ~ ~
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Re: Thinking of buying this boat- any input?

Postby tomodda » Wed Jan 06, 2021 1:10 am

Well, we basically agree that one shouldn't remove the forward bulkhead, build around it.
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Re: Thinking of buying this boat- any input?

Postby GreenLake » Wed Jan 06, 2021 4:19 am

well, you can remove it, but then you need to support the cuddy opening instead, e.g. with a stiff hardwood arch.
~ green ~ lake ~ ~
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Re: Thinking of buying this boat- any input?

Postby mkeegan » Wed Jan 06, 2021 8:51 pm

Thanks for all the input! And thanks for the link to the Maine cruising article. Penobscot bay used to be my cruising grounds. It's a different boat without the cuddy obstruction:

cockpit.JPG
cockpit.JPG (26.04 KiB) Viewed 711 times


Looks workable. I'm going to make an offer on the boat. Needs some oarlocks too, but I have to decide on whether to rig up a fixed or sliding seat first. If anyone has worked out a slick solution for installing a sliding seat over the centerboard trunk, I'd love to know. I saw a link in the archives of a video of a Daysailer with one, but couldn't see any detail of the installation.

So much to do before spring! Hope to take some photos and do a writeup of the refurbishing process if all goes well with the purchase.
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Re: Thinking of buying this boat- any input?

Postby tomodda » Wed Jan 06, 2021 10:32 pm

Good luck on the buy! GreenLake is correct, of course.. if you are going to take out part of the fore bulkhead, then put in something to support the foredeck. I wasn't emphatic enough about that in my prior writings. Maybe a post in the middle and a brace under the deck. The Daysailer bylaws also specify that you must support the foredeck:

5.7. The forward bulkhead may not be removed, unless it is replaced by an equivalent deck-supporting device to take its place; however, the two closures may be removed from the bulkhead.

As for sliding seat rowing, yes the Newfoundland Daysailer Cruise video shows a quick shot of what they set up - a sliding seat between the rear of the centerboard and the aft bulkhead. I wonder at the "hobbyhorse" effect as you shift your weight around that far aft. I think you'll be just fine with a fixed seat over the centerboard. as your DS appears to have a the higher centerboard trunk, you'll have to build yourself a "booster seat" which fits over it at the thwarts (essentially a box). Better rowing geometry if you're higher + your weight will be right at the boat's center. Perfect. And for now, you can operate your boat just fine without rowing ability. Unless you plan on going far, you can paddle this boat like a canoe, maybe 1/2 mile or so before you get sick of it... enough for maneuvering near the dock anyway. BTW, the sliding seat setup was on a DS2, with the false floor, different geometries. Seems like a lot of un-needed complication to build a sliding seat above the CB. Suggestion, take a look at the "Electric Paddle" - EPCarry - it's a small wonder. Not cheap but once you total up the costs on a sliding seat + decent oars (8' or 9' long, spoon blades, maybe Carbon Fiber shafts) you'll be close to the same prices. KISS...

Looking forward to following along with your refurbishment process. And man, I miss sailing in Maine. Neptune willing, I'll be back in July, two weeks of small boat sailing around Deer Isle and Jericho Bay. I'll kiss a lobSTAH for you :)

Tom

P.S. https://www.clcboats.com/life-of-boats-blog/woodenboat-magazine-240-the-geometry-of-rowing.html
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