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Texas 200

I have been captivated by the Everglades Challenge ever since I heard of it probably for the same reasons that I enjoyed backpacking for several days at a time when I was younger. Something fulfilling about being out with nature and pushing yourself a bit that is just hard to explain to the unitiated.

The Texas 200 sounds like an event that just fits me better than the EC. For one thing I like that it is a cooperative event and I get to camp with other people on the event every night and share stories. This is the equivalent to the campfire when backpacking. I also grew up in Houston, Texas so it is kinda like coming home (though I wish it were a little closer). Only reason I didn't do it in 2008 is I already convinced the family to go with me on the BEER cruise and I don't want to pass up on that quality time before the kids are off on their own.

So, I have read everyone's accounts and have looked at my available store of boats and decided on taking a self-designed and built 12' dory type boat that my wife named "Plum Crazy" in honor of me and because I used left-over purple paint on the boat. I think the mere fact that I want to do the Texas 200 gives the name justice in her mind, but she is very supportive.

The boat is narrow but stable and has sealed floatation chambers both fore and aft. The daggerboard is offset leaving the middle of the boat open with 8' of length giving me enough room to stretch out in her on the beach. She has push-pull tiller steering and is rather comfortable with forward facing seating using one of those blue cushions with seat back from west marine. The rig is a boomless sprit which folds up or deploys in a second (have timed it) and allows for a bimini to give me shade while I am sitting in my comfortable seat. As for capacity, I can easily carry an additional 200 lbs which I am hoping will be enough gear though I would love to hear opinions. Probably 50lbs of that will be taken up with water.

Scott W

Mystery Boat

As if I don't have enough projects to try to finish before winter arrives, I do have a desire to finish straightening and then taking the lines of this old rowboat that I have managed to prevent further deterioration to by getting it off the ground and tenting it with a tarp. My reason for bringing it to your attention is to hopefully discover an existing plan or other leads to identifying the boat on the chance that one of the readers here might recognize the craft from the photos.

I obtained the boat from a nearby town on the northern west shore of Lake Michigan, with the owner's permission to just get it out of there. Apparently it had been used with oars and possibly a sail. An added on, 2 inch deep, wood keel extension runs most of the length of the boat. The keel extension was covered with a heavy iron strap, possibly for added weight and to protect the keel while beaching the boat. There is no evidence of any outboard motor use at all. I was told that there used to be a small coaming on the aft edge of the bow deck with an oval bronze builders tag. We were unable to locate it, but the owner recollected a location, from having read the tag, being somewhere along the central to southeast shore of Lake Michigan. Possibly Cedar River or South Haven, MI, but was not sure anymore.

Boat particulars are: LOA 15'- 8" BEAM 3'- 10" Stem Height about 26" Midship Depth 16" Transom size 36" x 18" The forward deck and seat and the distinctive stern sheet supports with the slight tumblehome in the transom, along with the cast bronze knees are a couple distinctive features. Vertical wood belaying pins of some sort had been installed in the transom knees. 5/8 inch clear carvel planking seems to be a hard yellow pine or possibly cypress over light oak frames fastened with galvanized screws. Stem, timbering, keel and transom appear to be oak. Apparent by bronze fittings, a rudder had been fit to this boat, though there does not seem to have been any aft skeg aside from the added one described above. It is not a wineglass type stern.

Any information to help me discover the origins of this boat is appreciated. Thanks you

Don Freix

(Don asks that you contact him on the Duckworks Forum if you have information about this boat = Chuck)

Tiller Extension


You had a nice article on making a tiller extension. I did one a different way on my 19-footer, and I thought you might be interested in how I did it.

On the theory that even a very crude picture can be easier to follow than a description, I've included a drawing. (I'd give a photo, but I sold the boat some years ago.)

The idea is to make a connection between the tiller and the extension with two pivots, one horizontal, one vertical, giving complete freedom of motion.
I made a U-shaped part out of wood. It lies flat on tiller, and is held in place by a vertical bolt through the base of the U. The end of the extension is between the legs of the U, and held by a horizontal bolt.

My drawing does not have dimensions. The U was made from stock about 7/8"
thick. The extension can be surprisingly light since the forces are push and pull, not the bending forces that would break it. I think mine was about 5/8" square section, and about 15" long. I put a short piece of dowel through the other end to make it easier to hang on to.


Pathfinder Turnover


Here are some pics.  I built a rolling frame for several reasons - I've never flipped a boat this large; I wasn't sure I'd have enough guys to manhandle the hull; I was concerned about messing up the edges of the strakes since they've not been rounded off, yet; I wanted the experience for the next one (bound to be larger and heavier!). 

Rolling frames are usually built fairly heavily (and intended for heavy boats!) - Jonas' penguin is a beautiful example - but I did not want to build the frame any heavier than necessary since the frame add a substantial amount of weight to a relatively light hull.  But, I braced the hull well and stiffened the frame properly and there was absolutely no shifting or racking.  I was afraid to keep track of the cost, but I'd guess about $60 worth of wood/bolts, though I spent more than that buying an excess of some 2x stock and plenty of bolts (I can't believe how cheap Menards sells 1/4 inch bolts, nuts, washers, etc.)  Much of this will find another use somewhere down the road, I'm guessing. 

I've marked and saved the pieces of the rolling frame, but I'm also considering another technique to roll the boat back.

All went very smoothly - had plenty of hands available, beautiful weather.  We had a nice little party afterwards.

Speed Boat

Submitted by Bruce Armstrong

Battana Romagnola

Here is a picture from a friend in NY who's brother in Italy had a beautiful Battana built by a yard on the Adriatic.

submitted by Bruce Armstrong

Centerboard Trunk Installation

Here are a few photos from several weeks ago. I put the centerboard trunk in my Windward 28 while it is upside down in order to get a good bond at the opening to the hull bottom.

(That is my motorcycle lift on top of an old pair of table saw legs pushing the trunk up into the opening along with clamps and very large screws.). Worked great.

Richard Laux

Sweetie Update

Hi Chuck

I thought you would like to see how Sweetie is progressing.

Wayne Tedder


Baby Tender

Here is a picture of a Jordan Baby Tender 2 that I built for my grandaughter

Stan Kowalski

Offer of Captain

Ken (our oldest son) called a few days ago and said they had offered him a Captain position for the coming year. They have moved the ship back to the states from Alaska and will finish the season as they started on the Columbia and Snake rivers.

So far he has resisted the offer of Captain as he wants more experience before advancing. The paperwork gets added to the job too not to mention ultimate responsibility at all times. He is looking forward to the break between seasons and returning to southern California and family. His schedule has been 6 weeks work then two weeks home so he is looking forward to more time at home with family, friends and RC flying.

He is the guy (1st Officer) under the "C" in the first photo.

The experience has been quite different from the Navy job of twenty years and he seems to have enjoyed both a great deal.

Kilburn Adams


Photos from Port of Anzio

Many Thanks

I send you, foto made in port of Anzio 8 sept. (My boat unfortunatately is behind)




Here is my Pathfinder patiently awaiting sails.

Stephen Grimwood

New Plymouth, New Zealand

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