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Thread: Sailing Canoes

  1. #1
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    Default Sailing Canoes

    Anybody thinking of converting or making a canoe into a sailing one?

    Or more specific any one seen or made a box in the canoe for a deep dagger board.?

    Is this an idea that would or would not work.
    Rather than clagging bits to the outside of the hull.

  2. #2

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    I'd say it's got to be a leeboard - I suppose you could glass a centre board box into. GRP boat?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonar View Post
    Or more specific any one seen or made a box in the canoe for a deep dagger board [...] Rather than clagging bits to the outside of the hull.
    There's more than one way to skin a cat... but my starting point is generally to look at what those with stacks of experience do and start from the assumption that they have had good reason to go with that solution: if you look at the canoe sailing traditions of the US and the UK (pretty independent traditions)... the preferred solution has generally been a leeboard.

    I'll flag this up with the good folk of the Open Canoe Sailing Group to try and get you some authoritative input... but in the mean time, here's what Bradshaw says in his Canoe Rig: the essence and the art: "Though not common, it is possible to build a daggerboard well into some canoes". He doesn't recommend it for "general-pupose" canoes (no reasons given), but notes it as a reasonable option for "small plywood canoes designed for sailing and flatwater work".

    FWIW, I've now got a clip on leeboard as a minimal-encumberance solution to to try next time I'm out in a strong wind: something I want to investigate for paddling as well as for sailing (feedback to follow) - but if you're really keen, the Home Built Boat Rally folk seem to have tried just about everything imaginable at some time or another!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by GregandGinaS View Post
    There's more than one way to skin a cat... but my starting point is generally to look at what those with stacks of experience do and start from the assumption that they have had good reason to go with that solution: if you look at the canoe sailing traditions of the US and the UK (pretty independent traditions)... the preferred solution has generally been a leeboard.

    I'll flag this up with the good folk of the Open Canoe Sailing Group to try and get you some authoritative input... but in the mean time, here's what Bradshaw says in his Canoe Rig: the essence and the art: "Though not common, it is possible to build a daggerboard well into some canoes". He doesn't recommend it for "general-pupose" canoes (no reasons given), but notes it as a reasonable option for "small plywood canoes designed for sailing and flatwater work".

    FWIW, I've now got a clip on leeboard as a minimal-encumberance solution to to try next time I'm out in a strong wind: something I want to investigate for paddling as well as for sailing (feedback to follow) - but if you're really keen, the Home Built Boat Rally folk seem to have tried just about everything imaginable at some time or another!
    I was thinking it is a more attractive way of sailing a canoe.
    and can be made adjustable in depth depending on wind conditions
    Like some yachts.

  5. #5
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    Down the years almost every device for providing lateral resistance has been fitted to canoes.

    The clip in place leeboard(s) has a number of advantages.
    - can be moved/changed to accommodate rig or trim alterations.
    - cheap
    - leaves the canoe unmodified - does not kill the re-sale value

    Daggerboards - these have the potential to be the most efficient of all and are to some extent adjustable - but are brutally unforgiving should you meet a shallow rock at speed - ask anyone who has sailed a Unicorn.

    Centreboards - auto retract for the rock problem - but the case does tie up a load of prime real estate in the middle of the boat.

    Both daggerboard and centreboard require one (or more) cases - these are a demanding piece of woodwork in a wooden or ply hull and a virtual impossibility in a Royalex or Polythene hull - the leverage stresses are considerable.

    I did once see an article on "Sea Dogs" - a sort of underwater kite flown to weather on a line which was tethered about a third of the way up the mast - struck me as an interesting theoretical alternative but with endless foul-up possibilities.

  6. #6
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    Default boards - lee, centre or dagger

    Yes, a few people involved with the OCSG have tried both centre and dagger boards over the years but most stick with a leeboard (or one each side occasionally). Strength, space inside the boat, vulnerability to underwater collision or stones jamming are some of the issues.

  7. #7
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    I have had several sailing canoes with dagger boards but i would not recommend them. The case is very vunerable to damage from running into underwater objects,it generally gets in the way unless it is offset to one side and you only get one chance of putting it in the right place. The leeboard wins every time, for convenience, for being able to adjust it fore and aft, and will always kick up if you hit something. Although the dagger board is theoretically more efficient, we have used both in racing and have found very little difference in performance.

  8. #8
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    In the process of building a rig myself. This site may have a few ideas you could use?

    http://www.sailboatstogo.com/

  9. #9
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    I've just converted my fibreglass Apache 16' with a Solway Dory sail--comes with mast thwart and foot--and Solway Dory leeboard thwart. Solway Dory will sell you a very nice foiled leeboard to go on said thwart, but (being financially challenged at present) I found my own solution in a cheap optimist dagger board. (Thank you ebay, and it even chanced to be the same colour as my canoe!) Having sailed it this weekend at Rutland water, and watched more experienced sailors make it perform as well, I'm very happy with my choice.

    Personally I've no problem with the 'fixed' leeboard thwart, which I can bolt or unbolt to the canoe in little over a minute using thumbscrews. The only sign it was there are two small holes in the carrying thwart (which I could fill if I want to sell it, I suppose). Likewise the mast thwart unbolts should I ever want to unbolt it, though frankly I'm likely to leave it in. So only the mast foot epoxied to the bottom of the canoe is more or less permanent. But it is fairly unobtrusive.

    Like you I thought about a centreboard when first considering sailing, but the leeboard has grown on me, works well, is a whole lot less hassle, and I like the simplicity and the fact there is less to go wrong.

    But I'm a beginner. Pay more attention to people like Dave than me.
    Ian

  10. #10

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    I have just rigged up my Snake River 12' solo boat. I have built a simple leeboard, but when sailing up wind on a portside tack,close reach with the board fully down, it has a rudder effect and pulls the boat to port side a lot. It's on the portside.?

  11. #11
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    Where is the board in relation to the centre of the sail area when it is close hauled. If it is too far forward it will give the boat a lot of weather helm (and turn it it into the wind)

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveS View Post
    Where is the board in relation to the centre of the sail area when it is close hauled. If it is too far forward it will give the boat a lot of weather helm (and turn it it into the wind)
    I would say that it's about mid but a bit more toward the mast(if that makes sense?)

    I thought an easy answer would be - put another board on the other side of the boat??

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