Site update – Disruption

Well, folks… Someone swiped (spoofed) the IP address of a big, famous (and therefore unlikely to be filtered out) technology company and used it to pound our database server to smithereens yesterday. No one got in and no internal data was accessed. It was basically just keeping our server too loaded up to respond to normal users – also known as a Denial of Service Attack. As of now, everything is turned back on, and server loads look totally normal. Please let me (Jim) know if you have any trouble accessing anything on our site. My email is on the footer of every page.

There are three legs to getting web information to you. The first is our site, which is fairly complicated machine under the hood. This allows us to organize information more easily, and to translate the presentation depending on what kind of browser or device you are using to view it. The second is our host, who operates the server you talk to when you access our site. We pay for enough performance to get you the information, and they make sure the information is somewhat protected and delivered quickly. The third is the internet at large, which goes through lots of steps from here to you, and is subject to all kinds of bad actors trying their best to wrestle money out of the network at both our expenses, finally filtering through whoever you pay to deliver the internet to your computer of device.

When something goes wrong, we have to check all of those things in that order. Is the machinery of our site running haywire for some reason? Perhaps a new update has a bug. That means that we turn everything off and see how the server responds. Then we and our hosting company check everything about the server itself to see if something is misconfigured, or the server itself has a bad software update. In this recent case, it was the internet at large causing the problem. Let’s just blame the Russians. That seems popular.

For our part, we take the security aspect very seriously. Our site runs security on 8 levels, counting the two that are part of our hosting package. When you make a purchase, you can add all of the PayPal security mechanisms on top of our local security. It’s tight. All of this to say that we will always err on the side of caution, even if it takes the site down for a day. As always, thank you for your patience, and thank you to those who let me know things were amiss. More information is always a good thing.

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Blue Fin 54 ‘Lucky Star’ – Built in Russia

It would be hard to find a more sterling example of a customer built Devlin boat. This Blue Fin 54 was built by Temur Rukhaya and his crew in Russia. Temur named her the ‘Lucky Star’. He not only builds a beautiful boat, but he makes great videos as well.

Here is his showcase video for the ‘Lucky Star’.

In Temur’s own words…

About four years ago (or more) I ordered the Blue Fin 54 boat project.
In the spring of 2014 the boat was launched.
I called the boat “Lucky Star”

Today  the boat ran over 8,000 nautical miles.
This year, I came to the White Sea and was in Sankt- Petersburg.
During this pass, I crossed about 100 locks. On Ladoga Lake was a heavy storm.
Technology “stitch and glue” deserves the best endorsement.
The boat is very comfortable, quiet, easy to use and on the go.

Temur was kind enough to make a build video.

Being a boat building company, we always want to know the details. Once again, Temur delivers in fine fashion.

Installed engine Vetus 231 hp / 2500 rev / min
Transmission 1: 2.78
Propeller 4 x 28 “x 27”
Displacement about 8500 kg
Fuel consumption: 14 knt – 0.75 l / km
9 knt – 0.5 l / km
Max. speed (unloaded boats) 16-17 knt
Two fuel tanks 1,100 liters each.
Diesel generator Vetus 4kW
Solar cells 6 x 140 watt
Water tank  2×230 liters
Black water tank 230 liters
Air Conditioning 9000 BT
Heating – diesel boiler combined with the engine cooling system.
When sailing – the boat is heated by the engine. On mooring – from the boiler(diesel heater).


Although Temur has noted the comfort, quiet operation, and ease of use of the “Lucky Star’, the hallmark of the Blue Fin 54 is her easy running efficiency. Here are his calculations for fuel economy.


RPM Speed (knots) Fuel Consumption (l/h) Fuel Consumption (g/h)
750 5.1 5 1.32
1000 6.5 5.5 1.45
1100 7.0 7.2 1.90
1200 7.8 7.4 1.95
1300 8.4 7.4 1.95
1400 9.2 8.4 2.22
1500 9.7 9.5 2.51
1600 10.4 11.6 3.06
1700 10.8 14.6 3.86
1800 11.4 15.8 4.17
1900 12.0 17.4 4.60
2000 12.8 26 6.87
2300 15.3
2400 16.1
2500 16.8

As an example of what this kind of efficiency means in practice, look at this video of the acceleration of a 54 foot boat.

Our congratulations to Temur for a spectacular build, and our thanks for all data to go with it! All that information folds back into Sam’s ongoing understanding of how to design great boats across the spectrum of nautical goals and dreams. The ‘Lucky Star’ is more than a boat. It’s a builder’s example of what can be done with a dream, a design, and dedication.

Now, finally, some interior shots of the build, including the ever popular “Dog is my Co-pilot” shot. Lucky dog!

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Chip Hanauer on the Flipside of Boating

It’s safe to say that Chip Hanauer is one of THE names in unlimited hydroplane racing, which my father called the most dangerous sport on Earth. Bear in mind my dad once owned a Bumblebee Bass boat capable of 110 mph, so what would he know? Chip is an inductee of the International Motorsports Racing Hall of Fame, he has won the APBA Gold Cup 11 times, and he drove the Miss Budweiser in the 1990’s, for goodness sake! In fact, his accolades as a boat pilot are too many to mention. Why would a man who spent his career at the ragged edge of boat performance choose a Devlin Candlefish 16 as a recreational boat?

One could imagine that a man who spent his life on the water, testing the boundaries, would eventually decide that the water itself was enough of an answer, and when it comes to a purist vision of getting out on the waters of the Puget Sound, the Candlefish 16 ‘Stanley’ is a good answer.

I’ve got about 15 hours on Stanley and I absolutely love it!

The Candlefish 16 can carry a heavy load in comfort and stability. In the case of Chip’s boat, she is a simple tiller driven skiff design that carries Chip, his friends, and everyone’s gear in relative performance and safety, all of which is built into a design which takes in to account the safety off all, including the gear. Sam Devlin doesn’t design a boat without considering all the use cases of the design. In the Candlefish 16, as well as most of the rest of Sam’s design catalog, it safe to think of the boat as a platform that can be built in a number of ways, with a vast number of final details. Here’s an example from Chip:

We ran into another Candlefish 16 on Lake Washington. It was a kids sailing school on the east side and it was used as the, committee, safety boat. The young guy waved us over and excitedly asked, “Is that a Devlin Candlefish?” He said he loved theirs as well, but that was envious of our 60 HP engine. Theirs had a center steering station. I’m glad I have just the tiller, as I’m really enjoying the spaciousness and openness of the boat. It makes it very flexible as far as where to put things and where people like to hang out.

One of those details on Stanley is the vertical bar, perfectly positioned for Chip to operate the motor while standing. Here’s what he has to say about it:

The, “stripper bars” are so useful! They are positioned perfectly for stepping up into the boat from the fender step on the trailer. Great for stepping down, into the boat from the dock. Both of us just found ourselves with a hand on it all the time at the tiller. It’s super sweet when you are standing up while operating the boat. I only got about three hours on it today, but I’m telling you, I’m already very much in love with it.

Apparently Chip didn’t completely abandon performance when he stepped down from turbine powered racing boats.

As far as speed goes, faster is right! I’d guess over 40! A friend has a gps app. that should let us know for sure. I can’t leave the throttle open until I get the motor more broken in. But bottom line it’s fast! You were certainly right about going with the 60HP, engine as opposed to something smaller. I had two people in the boat, totaling about 325lbs total and having the horsepower was really nice.

Chip’s own video of his break-in hours on ‘Stanley’ gives a sense of what he is saying.

A lot of thought, discussion, and consideration go into every Devlin-built boat. The result is an elegant balance in a rugged, lifelong boat. You can fish from it, you can hunt from it, and you can simply escape to your yacht or a weekend getaway in a package that melds classic, proven design with the need to ‘just get out there’. A Candlefish 16 will just handle the work you need to do, without fuss, in a smooth-riding platform that allows you to go where you want to go, do what you want to do, and come up smiling at the end of the trip. For a boat company, a smiling Chip Hanauer is a great reward.

But then, Chip says it best.

Sam, in a word, ‘Stanley’ is perfect!” I know there is no boat which is actually perfect, but for my intended use, ‘Stanley’ couldn’t be better! It rides solid and smooth. Both of us could stand at the rail on one side and the boat barely heeled over at all. That’s great for crabbing out of a small boat. It quiet and has a solid sound and feel to it. I couldn’t open the engine up beyond half way, as it’s still in break in mode. But half throttle was plenty and perfect for fast cruising.

Chip’s site is currently down for maintenance, but his Facebook feed is chock full of goodies.

You can find more Chip Hanauer videos on the Youtube Channel.

You can read more about the Candlefish 16 on this page, which links to plans, kits, and Sam’s notes on the design.


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“Thank You for Your Patience Sale” Just Ended

***Update*** There was a hitch with the sale timekeeping system. Apologies to anyone who tried to shop when the sale was accidentally down.


*** Update*** Thanks to Igor for pointing out a really should-have-been-obvious flaw! There was really no way to to get to the Shopping Cart. Now, the Store link has sub-links to go directly to your Cart and to Checkout. Also, if you have something in your cart, you’ll see a list on the right hand side of the page. My bad… We’re extending the sale until midnight to make up for it.


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Store Update

*** Update Monday Morning ***

We seem to have the download issues ironed out. That said, there may be some minor mistakes in linking products to their respective downloads. I went through them quickly on Friday night. Please let me know if you get the wrong file for your order, and I will fix it.

I’m also aware that we are delivering insecure images alongside secure content. It’s because the images were added before we moved to our new secure server. I can assure you that it does not compromise your security; there are 6 layers of security protecting your account and transactions. But, I can understand if makes you nervous. I’ll be looking for a way to secure those images today.

***Update Friday night***

I fixed all the download links and updated all the orders to make (pretty) sure the downloads work. For those of you who ordered as guest, I sent out new emails, with updated links.


***Update  Friday afternoon***- Ok, we figured out the download problems. It will take a few hours to fix. For those of you who had trouble downloading, I believe I have sent out plans, but if I haven’t, please let me know. I will also go back and fix the existing orders with new download links. If you ordered with an account, you can go to your account and get fresh links soon. If you ordered as a guest, I can send you a new order email with updated download links.

It came to my attention that people are trying to sign in with old store credentials. In short, they are gone with the old store. It’s an entirely new system. There is no way to incorporate them into the new store without making a mess, so please sign up for an account on the new store if you wish. That way, you can get back to your purchases any time.


The store is up. At long last.

The old store links will no longer work. You can reach the new store through the main menu link on the site.

The designs in the catalog with plans are linked directly to the correct products.

You can also find products through the main site search as well as the store search. I may separate the site and store searches. Site search returns a lot of results.

Plans are grouped by boat design. There are three types of products right now. Downloadable study plans, downloadable construction plans, and printed construction plans. The downloads are in zip files that contain pdf files. You can read pdf files on anything, or easily have them printed. Printed files are the plans we print for you and ship.

Everything is linked back to the catalog entry for that boat. You’ll find the return links in the product description.

– Jim



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Happy New Year Site Update

Hi Folks,

We just finished moving to new hosting company to fix some ongoing problems, to improve performance, and to update the store to something a lot less creaky. It was not the smoothest site move I’ve ever done, if I’m being honest. What this means is that we lost some site activity in the process. If you signed up or made a comment recently, it probably got lost in the shuffle. Please feel free to repost anything. The good news is that we’re now on a much more solid foundation and what we do from now on will work. The site came up just a few minutes ago. I see that the new store is not up yet, so I’ll be working on that until it’s right.

I appreciate your patience through all of the changes. Feel free to contact me with any site issues. More information always helps.



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Site Update #3

Ok, we’ve worked far too long to solve some relatively basic problems on our host, so we are moving the entire site to a company that understands our technology stack. What this means is that will disappear for a couple of days, give or take, depending on where you are in the world. When it comes back up, the features we have not been able to deploy will come with it. We apologize for the hassle and inconvenience in recent weeks. – Jim

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