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Twin Keels


I really enjoyed Patrick Johnson's article on the twin keels for his Michalak Fat Cat. I remember reading some of his posts when he was asking around about possibly modifying the boat to use a center board or if anyone had other ideas. How nice not to have to worry about messing around with any kind of board as you're sailing. I'm kind of wondering if that means he needs to sail fairly flat for the boards to be effective. If he heels over very far does one of the keels come out of the water?

I was impressed with the performance he was talking about with the boat. I had kind of read mixed reviews of people using that type of arrangement, but perhaps the people complaining about the performance didn't have the boards sized right or located properly with respect to the center of effort for the sail. Or maybe they didn't have that magical 15 degree angle. But in any case, my hat is off to Patrick for a job well done on a nice looking boat. That thing must have a ton of room inside.

Paul Cook

Behind Gumby

Dear Chuck,

The caption below the Gumby Boat photo listed on your website (June, 2006, 'Reports') is missing a name for a paddle. Dan Pelletier is the owner of the wooden paddle running up the rear of the canoe, doing the steering. He is owner operator of a Maine-based canoe guiding business, cares for Gumby year after year and orchestrates the event annually. That is actually the same Gumby that ran the first voyage and now need to be pumped, almost continuously, to keep him up through the entire race. I am the Gumby Guy's girlfriend, which is how I know all of this. I am working on a blog and new website for his business, MaineGuiding, and would be happy to link to your page within our business' blog if you could please make the appropriate changes to the caption as stated.

Thanks for your time, have a good one!

Miss Amanda-Jo Emerson

English Mouse Boat


I relly enjoyed the article on the English Mouse Boat. Who knew a boat would fit in a smart car! And I can identify with the comments. People here find out I'm building a boat in my back yard and they like to remind me that I live in the middle of the desert. I can still remember when I first launched my puddle duck and people asking, "Did you test that thing out?", "Will that really float?"

I'm glad that Mr. Ratcliffe's mouse boat was successful. It was obvious that his daughter loved it. Of course now that he's realized he can build something that will actually float, he had better be careful. Soon he might find his backyard with a couple of small boats in it and be looking at picures of John Welsford and Ross lillistone designs, wondering if he could build a boat with lapstrake construction!


Christmas Gift Idea

Hi Chuck,

with the holidays around the corner I would like to remind your readers about my Paracordwears store named UhFrayedKnot. Anyone using the coupon code DUCKWORKS gets free shipping. I actually used a couple of my lanyards this year to make repairs during this years OBX. The lanyards work really well as handles on dry bags and can help you tell the difference between the same colored dry bags.

Paul Moffitt

Thanks, Paul, I can't imagine you make much on these - especially when you pay the shipping!  This is a very generous offer for Duckworkers - Chuck

Sundew Dory


I have to say Ray Menard's Sundew Dory is a really sweet looking rowboat, although it reminds me more of a sailboat than a rowboat. What great looking lines and I like the added bouyancy compartments, very smart. I guess it's one of those "form follows function" things, but congratulations to him on a beautiful looking design. I hope it takes him to wonderful places and brings him years of happiness.


Happy Customer & Reader

As a customer now for several years, I wanted to take the time to commend the fast, friendly and accurate service your company provides! Your website is easy to navigate and your ever expanding line of products have been a convenience for me. I like how you are boat builders and sailors and are always happy to help other persons to be successful building and sailing their boats! Also, I must mention that Duckworks Magazine is my favorite online magazine and I never let a week go past without viewing it! Feel free to use my endorsements if you wish and my thanks to you! P.S. through the many writings and pictures of you both in the online magazine, I feel as though you are both old friends and I look forward to continuing to hear about your adventures in building and sailing! Tim O'Guin

Port Townsend Watercraft

Hello Chuck,   (links are just for reference...not SPAM)

Russell and I would very much like to be part of your Duckworks community. We run a small boat kit company in Wasington called, Port Townsend Watercraft. We have a few things, besides our nesting dinghy and fuel efficient skiff kits, that could be interesting to your readership.

We have just come out with 2 new sizes of water tight hatch kits designed for SCAMP but could be used on other small boats. 

Other dinghy gear includes machined NACA section foils kits (current special) and hardware such as glue on carbon eyestraps and machined delrin turn dogs.

Russell has also talked about adding to the HOW-TO section with his epoxy tips.

I have not bought into the adwords system wholeheartedly yet. I just don’t fully understand it, but I would be happy to submit classifieds or articles about any of the above.

We can write posts about things we have to offer but I do not know if that is taboo or not. Our business is very small and our advertising budget, a shoe string.

I have inserted links to our pages above and would be grateful for your suggestions.

Many thanks,
Ashlyn & Russell Brown
Port Townsend Watercraft
Port Townsend Watercraft

Ashlyn: I think most of our readers know who you guys are and I think I speak for all of us when I say that we are honored that folks of your talent would want to associate with us duckworkers. - Chuck

Having to Move

Well, now it looks like my company is moving me to New England... but not my unfinished boat project! (They don't move "building materials")

If anyone near Alberta is thinking about building a Pathfinder, I have done some of the work and bought a lot of high-grade materials.

$1000 for...

I am offering for sale the plans, materials, and starting pieces of a John Welsford - designed 17' sailboat. The "Pathfinder" is designed as a cruising dinghy, and makes a very stable and safe platform for exploring under sail. It's also big enough to take the family out for sails on the waters around Calgary.

I started construction on this boat last year, but my life has changed and I will be unable to finish the build. This is a great chance to get almost all of the materials required in one place, and a great head start on building a fantastic boat.

What I've got:
Plans and rights to build 1 boat.
All plywood called out in plans, BS1088 Hydrotec marine plywood
Almost all hardwood called out in plans - white oak planed to thickness (Wood for stringers is quarter-sawn)
All fasteners needed - domestic silicon bronze
Plastic opening ports from Duckworks.
1/2 gallon Silvertip epoxy resin and hardener.
Lead for centerboard ballast
Building Jig

What I've done:
Cut out all frames, and most of the way through construction.
Cut out and scarfed together bottom panel
Epoxied lammels for centerboard together.
Cut stand-offs for bottom panel rocker.

Thanks for looking,

Nutshell Pram Raffle

This was forwarded from Dave Lucas:

Win this Boat! She was a pretty little thing to start with, but we repainted her. And that looked so good we varnished her parts. Then we had to buy her fancy new oarlocks, and line. This Joel White designed, 7 ft 7 inch Nutshell Pram will go to the winning raffle ticket holder on February 18th, and the money raised will benefit the boatbuilding programs at the Florida Maritime Museum. Raffle tickets are $6 each or two for $10. You could send us a check and we will send you the tickets, or you could come in person buy the tickets and check out what we have going on here. We have new programs, exhibits, and lots of people who are crazy about boats.

Karen Riley-Love
Supervisor, Florida Maritime Museum

Karen, we might be able to help sell a few tickets - folks, if you are interested in helping out a good cause please take a look here:

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