Surf Runner 27

SurfRunner27FAThe Surf Runner 27 begins with the performance runabout (with cabin and berth tucked in) and extends it a couple of feet. What a difference those two feet make on a boat this size! The runabout style can extend into a pilothouse for rainy days, and the boat can sprout a flying bridge for those great views and the wind in your face when the sun is out and the air is warm. The diesel stern drive can maintain the performance of her smaller sibling without sacrificing the tight handling and smooth passage through the chop. If you need a little more space on a boat that is still conveniently trailerable, this may be a design that speaks to you.

Contact Sam if you would like to develop the Surf Runner 27 into the perfect boat for you.

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Sockeye 62

Sometimes I get asked what boat I would be if I really had to grow up.  But the better question would be what boat I would be if my own ship came in and I could really afford to build the dream boat to take me on the journey that eventually ends up in Valhalla – presuming, of course, that I die in battle with my weapons (Scotch and cigar) in hand.  As for me, I would settle for just pitching off the deck someday and hopefully from the deck of one of my own designs. Yes, all this is a little morbid and only points out that as I age, the ever-present gargoyle looming over my head is the limited number of days that we have on this Earth and the strengthening reminder that each day is precious and needs to be lived without remorse or regret. Now, back to what I would build if my own ship comes in.  Hmm, let’s see, would it be power or sail? Would it be small or large? All good questions to ponder…

I think it would be this Sockeye 62, a real “man’s boat” if I can say that in this day of pussy footing around social correctness in our speech and writings. In fact, it would take a real man to tackle the tricky job of handling her with a giant propeller and while I might succumb to the temptation to add a big hydraulic bow thruster, with this hull shape, it’s tough to add a stern thruster to her as she is pretty much a double ended hull.  So the Skipper will be forced to actually learn to run her, learn to walk the prop into the dock, and learn to become the master of the machinery around him.

Think of the pack of friends that could be invited to come along for the day — lots of tending lines to do and the Skipper needs to focus on keeping the boat in the channel.  These drawings are pretty much self-explanatory and worth a walk thru the boat from stem to stern. A hull laminate of fully 2.25 inches of sandwiched marine plywood with a layer of Kevlar cloth embedded between each layer, this puppy will stop any bullet shot at it or blunt off any deadhead she encounters. Range would be something north of 3,500 nautical miles and the comfort level would be very high.

As for me, part of the dream is sitting around that stern with a pack of friends. The spirits are going to be high with the excitement of just starting a long cruise North into the Inside Passage. The boat’s loaded with good food, good friends, and the only option we have is to have a great time, in fact the time of our lives.  The only hard part of this decision is whether or not to build the Flying Bridge model or the Bald headed version.  This, my friends, is what I would wish given my own ship comes in. It’s not just about dreaming, it’s also a lot about taking action. Enjoy the viewing!  — Sam Devlin

The Sockeye 62 is available as study plans, and as a custom build from the Devlin crew. Contact Sam to develop your own unique nautical path to paradise.

 

 

Sockeye 62 Specifications

Length 62 ft. – 6 in.
Beam 17 ft. – 6 in.
Draft 79 in.
Power Inboard diesel 285-425hp
Displacement 86000 lbs.
Hull Type Displacement

 

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Blue Fin 48

Lately I have noticed that two themes have become more constant in my life, one being that I have way less spare time than I used to (and I never had much to start with) and the other being that when my wife and I have the time to go cruising, we enjoy more a cruise “in company” with friends than a cruise where our friends are literally cruising onboard with us. So let me explain the concept to you. Living in the Pacific Northwest, we have amazing cruising grounds literally at our doorstep with smooth, and for the most part, protected waters stretching almost 1,100 miles from our home in Olympia, Washington to Skagway, Alaska. About 900 of those miles are in wonderful wilderness with solitude and beauty surrounding every day spent on the water and every anchorage at night. We have done that cruise several times over the past 20 years, sometimes with guests traveling in the boat with us and sometimes with friends taking their own boats and traveling alongside us. And in retrospect, our favorite trips were the ones with friends traveling alongside doing what I refer to as cruising “in company”. This type of cruising affords all participants a bit more privacy and intimacy than one with a pack of people all on the same boat. There is also a very significant safety factor involved with cruising “in company” because if there is an emergency or the need for a repair, there is a vessel nearby piloted by friends that can help reduce the extra tension involved in an emergency far from help. This safety factor is one that I usually refer to as being a “good boy scout” as you hope that you never need the assistance but it’s there when you need it. It is simply the best preparation for a journey and the best reduction of all the possible fate based factors that may thrust their ugly heads into the realm of a calm and relaxing vacation.

Forgive me for this dialogue but it’s only included to give you a little bit of the mindset for this new design that we are offering up for review. Considering that cruising in company is our preferred way to cruise and that my wife and I don’t really need that much space inside the boat, I started down the path of musing on what would be the most ideal boat for the time and space that my life might allow for cruising in these busy and active times. And so out of that inspiration came the Blue Fin 48, fueled by a very slight influx of dollars from a preliminary design commission by Bill and Meri Roberts, a couple with mostly parallel daydreams as to the perfect cruising boat. Out the door went any consideration about the economics of owning and operating a vessel of a length and breadth that would normally have multiple staterooms and a cost to construct somewhat north of a million dollars and into consideration came what could and would handle a couple for cruising, do it as efficiently as possible at speeds that would cover lots of ground when needed and yet allow unbelievably quiet, smooth and comfortable cruising in anything from 8-16 knots of speed. The only thing that is really extreme about this vessel is that she is basically the layout and the accommodations that you would normally have in a 30-34 ft. boat but is set in a boat that is 48 ft. long. In other words, she will cost certainly more than the typical mid-thirty foot boat, but not as much as her over-muscled brother, and will cruise faster, smoother, and have more space for all the functions of cruising. The downsides to this design are only one; dockage and moorage fees will be the same as the 48-50 ft. skyscraper of a floating condo moored next to you. For my book, I will pay the extra expense for the moorage in exchange of being able to move thru the water at the speed and ease that this vessel would be capable of.

BlueFin48BowSo let’s talk about the design a bit with the first topic being the powering options for her. My first inclination for powering her was a twin diesel arrangement with the engine boxes being set just on the aft side of the rear bulkhead to the cabin. That would allow us to use the top of the engine boxes as seats or tables in the cockpit when entertaining and believe me this cockpit would be a fine entertainment gathering spot for the group of cruisers once the anchors were set firmly and everyone had a quick freshen up after a long day on the water. Picture a pitcher of some refreshing drinks, some background music (not so loud as to drown out conversation) and perhaps some aromatic cigars being lit and puffed on with your friends around you and a whole hectic world left behind. In the twin screw version you will note that I show a couple of really comfortable arm chairs in the cockpit. I really like these folding chairs with their capability of being positioned where I want either out in the sun taking in the last rays of the day’s warmth or under the other half of the covered cockpit out of perhaps a sun too bright or some left over drizzle (remember it rains quite a bit here in the Northwest). It’s always good to have the chance to change one’s seating position and get some fresh air after a long day’s journey and comfortable chairs help with that equation. The other advantage of the twin installation is twofold, the first being the redundancy of power so that if something conspires to leave us with a powering issue, we still have a standby engine that will enable us to continue our journey until we get a chance to fix whatever went haywire on us. The second advantage of a twin installation is the maneuvering advantage that a twin has and with such a long and narrow boat, she will want to go forward far more easily than sideways and the ability of a twin installation to spin the boat either to port or to starboard is rather amazing. Coupled with the bow thruster way up in the nose of the boat, this would be a very easy boat to move about in the close confined waters of a marina or during a docking maneuver. So the twin screw/engine option is a good one and with the main door to the cabin opening into the pilothouse being on the centerline, we can have a nice balanced interior arrangement with the galley on the starboard side, the helm seat just at the forward edge of that space and a “L” shaped dinette on the port side with co/helm on its forward edge.

BlueFin48SternBut it wasn’t long before economy and ease of operation cropped up in my thoughts and I started musing about a single screw version of the same boat. Could it be done on this narrow of a boat without feeling like we are missing or eliminating too much of the useful function of the twin screw configuration? After many hours of cogitating on the problem and trying out the spatial use of the areas that would result, I came across what might really be an even better option to my original twin screw configuration. Looking at the single screw layout, we see the companionway skewed off to the port side of the boat allowing enough room on the centerline for the larger and longer engine box that would be necessary. The galley is set on the port side just forward of that companionway and has a built in co/helm seat at its forward edge, an arrangement we have used successfully in our Surf Scoter and Black Crown designs many times. This may not be quite as compatible for the co/helm but look at the larger “L” shaped dinette area in the pilothouse and as a bonus, aft under the covered part of the cockpit, a mirror image of that dinette aft in the stern area of the boat. Now I can see this version would be an even better socializing cockpit or cabin area with good space to spread out a feast of eats and drinks. For the single screw I would pick the John Deere 4045 diesel which is available in anything from 150-225hp versions and would give us a top speed in the 18 knot range and a cruise speed of 14 knots with 4.4 gallons per hour fuel burn. With about 350 gallons of fuel, that would give this version a range of over 1,000 nautical miles. But slow her down to 8-9 knots and the burn rate lowers to well below 2 gph and the range would improve to well over 1,500 nautical miles. What an efficient and beautiful boat this would be to cruise in!

Soon after working on the single screw version, I started fooling around with a flying bridge version of her. Not being an immediate fan of flying bridges, I changed my tune after assisting in bringing a converted Seine fishing boat back from Alaska to the Puget Sound area many years ago. That boat had a large flying bridge with an unlimited vista and it really was surprisingly warm and dry (even in the wind and rain) with a rain shadow developed by the vertical walls of the flying bridge walls. Trying to steer on that vessel was virtually impossible from the lower helm station with its very small windows and lack of visibility. So after that trip and being “flying bridge enlightened”, this version of the Blue Fin really appeals to me. We can either steer from the lower helm on those heavy weather days or using the flying bridge upper helm in less extreme weather when really wanting maximum visibility.

BlueFin48FlyingBridge

I have a couple of thoughts about the focsle sleeping cabin to make, the first being having enough space to have a proper head and separate shower being one of the advantages of the longer platform of this stretched boat, and the second being the chance of either having single queen sized island berth up forward or with port and starboard single berths with the option to put in a filler between the bunks to make an even larger queen sized berth for when you are cruising with your best first mate. This latter arrangement with its dual function really appeals to me. When going out with some guy friends, we can have port and starboard berths that allow proper separation for personal space and when cruising with my wife, I can put in the filler and sleep with my sweetie with tons of extra room.

The final feature that I want to talk about is the lack of a swim step at the stern of the boat. But you should also notice that her transom folds outward and makes into an integral swim step allowing easy and safe boarding from a dingy or from a stern tie at the dock. But while running at sea, the transom is hinged up to a safe and confining normal configuration. The primary reason why I like this folding transom arrangement is the capability of sliding easily onto and into the cockpit of my 13ft Candlefish skiff. This is a large skiff for this size of mothership but capable of taking us on outings that a normal shorter dingy could not handle. It also allows us to do our cruises with the dingy in the cockpit, keeping the center of gravity and weight low and our flexibility with this design at a real maximum. For those of you that need a conventional transom, this will accomplish that function but for those of you that want a really versatile arrangement in the cockpit, then this configuration will be a real asset.

That’s enough for a really long winded write-up but I am very hopeful to get this design off the drafting table and into the water. Feel free to call me to discuss her merits in detail…. So long for now (till my next design voyage). — Sam Devlin

The Blue Fin 48 is available as study plans and as a custom build by Sam Devlin and his team.

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Blue Fin 48 Specifications

Length 48 ft. – 4 in.
Beam 11 ft. – 0 in.
Draft 36 in.
Power Inboard diesel, 150hp – 225hp
Displacement 14800 lbs.
Hull Type Semi-Displacement
Speed 14 knots cruise @4.4gph/18 knots max
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Josephine 40

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In extensively cruising my 1934 salmon troller Josephine, I’ve come to appreciate many of her qualities. She’s a strong boat, comfortable in a rolling sea, and graceful in a classic workboat sense. Owning a stitch and glue boat business, it was only natural for me to take what I felt are the best parts of Josephine and adapt them to my method of boatbuilding. The result is a boat with all the aesthetic appeal of the original with the added benefits of increased interior room and decreased boat weight. The result is the Josephine 40.

It would do little good to belabor the various layouts in writing as the study plans will do a far better job. Submitted to you, dear reader and future Captain, are a number of idea drawings ranging from a working salmon fishing troller/fishboat to a motorsailor to a flybridge expedition yacht. Of course, the Josephine 40 can be built to whatever reasonable configuration the owner chooses. Give the shop a call so we can set up a time to talk about the particulars. The waters are waiting for you. – Sam Devlin

The Josephine 40 is an extensive design. The study plans are available to help you get a handle on the many options.

Josephine 40 Specifications

Length 40 ft. – 9 in.
Beam 12 ft. – 3 in.
Draft 53 in.
Power Inboard diesel
Displacement 28000 lbs. – 42000 lbs. (Full fishhold)
Hull Type Displacement
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Devlin Cruiser 37

A design that started life as an mid-winter Sunday afternoon’s romp thru the waters of my mind, with the intention of serving as a dream platform to replace my venerable 83 year old salmon troller “Josephine”. My experience of living and cruising with Josephine over many years has been enlightening as to just what is necessary and what is not necessary in a simple motor cruiser. Limiting the bending and gymnastics of living with an old work boat are high on that list (on Josephine one can only go forward by turning around facing backwards and going down a steep ladder into her deep focsle, not exactly what one does good either while in a hurry or early in the morning without some stretches to limber up). Good sleeping area forward with lots of bed space (approximating the home bedding as much as can happen on a boat). Privacy head areas forward and well away from guests when entertaining inside the main cabin on a cool evening. Engine room accessible and spacious with plenty of light, space and organized for tools etc. Access in this case is thru the cabin sole of the pilothouse thru large floor hatches.

Moving up in the main cabin, a helm seat that can seat two if necessary or one with many options of position, dinette area that can seat a proper crowd of friends and guests, and galley up with all the nice qualities of being able to stand at the sink or cooking and seeing out into the great landscape.

A partial covered cockpit (I would now cover the whole thing) and U-shaped seating around the stern of the boat and twin boarding doors port and starboard to get onto her. For my money and pleasure I would opt for the flying bridge opening up another zone of use and allowing me to run the boat with unlimited visibility when desired, but with the option of going down below to the main pilot station when the weather is inclement.

So here she is, a simple and usable cruiser with many options of configuration but all based on an easy to run and sea-kindly hull. I hope you share my enthusiasm for her.

The Devlin Cruiser 37 is available as a custom build from Devlin Boats. Contact Sam if she appeals to you.

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Devlin Cruiser 37 Specifications

Length 37 ft. – 4 in.
Beam 12 ft. – 4 in.
Draft 50 in.
Power Inboard diesel
Displacement 23000 lbs.
Hull Type Displacement
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Bullfrog 20

Bullfrog20Plan1Some people love to fish. It’s a great pastime and a wonderful way to spend time on the water.  As for me, I do quite a bit of fishing myself, except I spend my time trolling for customers.  It is more than a little mystery to me what new type of boat will come into fashion in this sometimes crazy world.  Even in my own life it occasionally feels a bit like being inside a tornado, and even I get a little confused as to what type of boat would suit me best.

Here is our little Bullfrog 20 and she would be a great boat to spend some time on fishing, pottering about on the water, and you could even do a bit of an extended cruise in her, something like a quick trip up into Canada or even all the way to Southeast Alaska.

Features are a high volume boat with plenty of knee room in her cockpit.  Full headroom in a standup head compartment in the flying bridge model.  She features a really nicely usable cabin area in her in both models, with good space use and lots of places to stow gear.  She is very trailerable and would move very nicely with a 90 or 115hp outboard.

Running out over the bar at the coast for a day’s fishing would be one of the major uses of the little Bullfrog 20 and when you’re musing over the her potential, imagine her about 4 ft. longer. Now that would be a really neat dream. – Sam Devlin

The Bullfrog 20 is available in study plans. Talk to Sam if you would like to see her developed into full construction plans.

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Bullfrog 20 Specifications

Length 20 ft. – 3 in.
Beam 8 ft. – 5 in.
Draft 20 in.
Power Outboard 90-115hp
Displacement 3600 lbs.
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