1 April 2003.
of April, did you get caught?
I was at work at the day job today,
and the war in Iraq, movements in foreign exchange and
uncertainty in the world economy finally lead to a considerable
reduction in the companies workforce. No April fools joke
for most of my now ex workmates but I have at least something
to fall back upon, so I am a full time designer as of this afternoon.
Scary but nothing like a wolf banging on the front door to concentrate
But this is a trade that I love, to
see a use, an environment and opportunity for a small boat to
give someone the means to realise their dreams, to draw
the boat, puzzling over the compromises and features, to research
both the shape and structure and then to draw, first the shape,
proving it with the maths and statistics, then drawing out the
bones and and flesh so others may build what I have visualized.
Its a very rewarding thing, to see one of my designs afloat
as a result of someone else's faith , sweat and elbow grease.
I'm playing with a couple
of concepts, "Bocks" I have mentioned
in other forums, she is to be a serious attempt at an alternative
lifestyle for those who wish to be afloat and mobile, almost
a houseboat that will sail decently rather than a yacht with
accommodation crammed into her tapered and rounded shape.
"Rotoiti" is a charter day launch for a local
operator, a little over 7m long and of trailable weight
and beam she will be powered by a fourstroke outboard rather
than an inboard diesel, the boats are short range cruisers and
those superbly quiet new motors are ideal for this sort
of business and fit the quiet of the peaceful bush clad hills
around the lakes where the fleet will operate. There will be
plans for this one, and as she is one of the rare commercial
commissions that will suit the amateur both in construction
method and in type I am keen to get her finished and "out
there" for those who want an alternative to the high speed
planing hull that is so dominant in the powered boat market.
"India Packet" Inspired
by discussions with David LeBlanc about a workable very small
serious cruising yacht, India Packet is well under 6m
long but very tough and surprisingly roomy. She is intended
as a long haul coastal cruiser, adequate for a single
person to live aboard for quite long periods while away exploring
far distant harbours as well as themselves, her traditional
gaff cutter rigged beamy full keeled hull also cope with having
a friend aboard and will carry enough stores to provide for
those two for a month or so at a time. An interesting
little boat that could suit those who don't want a big boat
but need something very seaworthy.
There are lots of other
boats on the list to be done one day, and I've other opportunities
out there. Lectures to write and deliver to Marine Technology
Students at the School of Design at a local University ,
a possibility to be involved with a sawmill producing ( among
other things) boatbuilding timbers, and of course I will now
have some time to get on with my own "Emerald City"
project. Our 13.6m x 3.450m 15 tonne long range cruising
launch that is still only a stack of frames, a huge lofted drawing
and a 3cylinder Gardner Diesel.
It will be a busy time.