Mud Dauber 23

The whole concept of the Mud Dauber 23 is wrapped around the goal for her to be the quintessential beach boat. It’s the boating equivalent of carrying a good knife, a Leatherman, and a whole box of good tools. The Mud Dauber can take you to wild remote beaches and can haul the gear and supplies necessary to keep you well occupied with these voyages. She is high sided with a bow platform that has removable boards that can be configured to build a bow ramp and you can beach her and unload without hurting your back. Even a tractor or small sawmill could be carried and unloaded if that is something you might want to do.

The Mud Dauber would work very well with something like a 90-115 h.p. outboard or perhaps even better with a pair of 60-70 h.p. outboards that would provide you with redundant power and allow turning and control in tight spots that would not be possible with a single engine. She is very beachable with twin bilge keels and a very prominent centerline keel with sacrificial UHMW plastic shoes on the bottom to keep her protected from beaching strains. There is also generous below deck stowage for gear that needs to stay dry and kept onboard accessible with flush deck hatches. Both of her deck areas are self-bailing and any water that comes onboard runs back off quickly.

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Like all Devlin boats, she is constructed strongly, capable of doing hard work for many years. If you see a need for a boat that can “project power” into any remote spot with a beach, then the Mud Dauber 23 is calling your name.*

*Webmaster note: This thing is calling my name and I have literally no possible use for it.

The Mud Dauber 23 is available in study and full construction plans.

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Mud Dauber 23 Specifications

Length 23 ft. – 1.5 in.
Beam 8 ft. – 7 in.
Draft 1 ft. – 0 in.
Power Outboard
Displacement 4000 lbs.
Hull Type Planing
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Scaup 16

Scaup16-3DI have been designing, building, and hunting with my own duck hunting boats for more than 20 years now and when the request came along for a bigger Sneak Box-type boat that could hunt 3 hunters with dogs and gear, I leapt on the opportunity. This was from a simple point of view, an enlarging of many boats that I had done before but with a couple of extra twists that would make her hunt more effectively with such a crowd of hunters. It was important to have a boat with a big enough cockpit to handle the shooters but was also important to hold the draft or depth of the boat down to a minimum to allow taking her into the shallows. I wanted to use enough power to plane the boat with her full load of hunters and gear and still keep as low of a profile as possible to almost allow the Scaup to be used as a layout boat for low-blind hunting conditions.

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This boat can carry more than 120 decoys and there is room believe it or not to hunt up to 3 hunters and a dog to pick up downed birds. The cockpit opening is almost nine and a half feet long and more than 4 feet wide. But yet there is enough side deck as to allow the boat to be grassed out and concealed. From coast to coast this is the finest and most concealable 3-person boat going. — Sam Devlin

The Scaup 16 is available in study and full construction plans.

The Scaup is also available in an 18-foot version with study and construction plans. Bring two dogs!

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Scaup 16 Specifications

Length 15 ft. – 11 in.
Beam 6 ft. – 1 in.
Draft 9.75 in. Loaded
Power Outboard 40hp
Displacement 285 lbs.
Speed 28mph w/ medium load
Max Load 890 lbs.
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Sculldugery

We have over the years designed and built 4 different models of scull boats and the Sculldugery is the latest in our offerings. For those of you who don’t know the idic scull boat for the waterfowler is a boat that generally fits a single hunter (usually without dog) and is not hunted in the idic sense over a clutch of decoys. This is a boat that is moved slowly and smoothly through the water towards raft of waterfowl with the hunter lying in prone position in the bottom of the boat. Propulsion is a single oar that extends out through the stern (transom) of the boat and thru a waggling motion the boat moves silently and smoothly forward. When the raft of ducks is closed to a shooting distance, the hunter then sits upright in the boat, ostensibly at this time the ducks take off in flight and with some fine shooting a limit of ducks can be paddled or sculled out to and picked up.

If you haven’t limited out with the first batch of shooting then the whole process starts all over, first the sneak-up, then the shooting. It is a slow and methodical process, and I must state here that it is not the kind of hunting for everybody, you must be patient and careful, but when the success ratio is good this is the closest thing to market shooting that exists in today’s hunting world. The market shooters did the same process the only difference being that they used an extremely large-bore shotgun loaded with just about anything that was on the workbench that was metal. The kill ratios were high and the bird populations suffered enough that the Feds got into the act and put a stop to the fun. The Sculldugery is a true scull boat that must be operated properly by a hunter interested in a type of hunting that few do these days. I hope that you will like the boat, but most of all when you lay down that first double without even setting one decoy and without having to sit for hours in a cold blind I am betting that you too will like this type of hunting. — Sam Devlin

The Sculldugery is available in study and construction plans.

Sculldugery

Sculldugery Specifications

Length 15 ft. – 6 in.
Beam 3 ft. – 2 in.
Draft 6 in.
Power Scull
Max Load 850 lbs.
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Black Brant III

All right, “What is this nonsense about a Black Brant III and why the new design?” In order to properly understand the way life goes out here in Devlin Boat Land, you must first of all take a long distance view of the operation with enough time factor thrown in to really view the scene in geological perspective. Over the twenty some years that I have been designing and building hunting boats, there has been a lot of time and years with which to evolve more than a couple of designs. My Dad says that I am an almost constant “tinkerer”, which is probably a nice way to say that, while I think my designs are the best available and I believe in them without reservations, that I am also aware that nothing in life is perfect and that the way to Nirvana is to continually strive to do better. All this might just be the internal conflict with a Protestant work ethic or some other type of spiritual psycho-babble but the bottom line is that many of our designs get changed, little by little, until they reach a better plateau of use.

After the HuuntBut in some cases the new design, while it has its strengths, doesn’t in a definitive way do the job that much better than the preceding design. In the case of our Black Brant designs, I already had a boat that did its job very well. That job was to allow two to three hunters to safely and efficiently hunt. But along came the desire of some of us to travel faster under power in less draft of water, thus was born the new design – the Black Brant III. This boat is simply a shallower draft and faster speed version of the Black Brant design, and if that is what you need, then this is the boat for you. But the difficulty of replacing the Black Brant was not simple because it also did its job extremely efficiently. So if you find that most of your hunting is in open water and you really aren’t traveling more than a couple of miles from ramp to your hunting area, then the Black Brant design is the best for your purposes. She is quite a bit deeper and a reasonable amount slower than the Black Brant III.

Happy DogBut if you are finding that you need to operate in shallower water and are traveling quite a distance from launch-ramp to the hunting area and a couple of inches more of sitting blind height doesn’t hurt, then by all means choose the Black Brant III. In both cases, these boats are about as thoroughbred of hunting boats as you are going to find and both have undergone trial by fire for more than a few hunting seasons. I hope you can make up your mind as to which is the best for you. — Sam Devlin

The Black Brant III is available in study and construction plans.

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Black Brant III Specifications

Length 14 ft. – 0 in.
Beam 5 ft. – 10 in.
Draft 7.75 in. Loaded
Power Outboard, 25hp
Displacement 225 lbs.
Max Load 780 lbs.
Speed 20mph medium load

 

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Broadbill

BroadbillThis is the smallest of our offerings in the “SneakBox” type of hunting boats. The “Broadbill” is intended for the solo hunter, being small enough and light enough to fit into the back of a pickup or you might even consider cartopping. Its incredible low profile and small size make it an ideal candidate for hunting just offshore from the larger more established blinds in your hunting areas or you might use it as a layout type boat. In either case, a low blind setup is the best way to use her and with your favorite dog between your legs and up to a dozen high quality decoys set out, you will be amazed at how efficient she hunts. This little boat is the Holy Grail of hunting where your biggest problem will be how to raise up the ducks that sneaked up on you and are swimming in with your decoys. She accommodates up to 15 HP outboard on her stern and speeds under power can run up to 30 miles per hour. Many times I have hunted in areas where a lot of other hunters were having no luck and my biggest problem was in hitting the birds before they could land in the decoys. Ahhh…….life should be as simple as this! — Sam Devlin

The Broadbill is available as study and construction plans.

Broadbill Specifications

Length 10 ft. – 8 in.
Beam 4 ft. – 6.5 in.
Draft 4.5 in.
Power Oars, or 15 hp outboard
Dry Weight 105 lbs.
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Honker

The Honker is a lightweight, shallow draft vessel that, with a 60 horse outboard, can race along at 30 knots or idle for hours while trolling for salmon or bottom fish. It was designed as a great sporting platform, equally at home with fishing tackle and duck decoys. With its shallow draft, it is ideal for pushing into hidden corners of the wilderness in search of fun and adventure With its rugged construction, the Honker can be easily beached for hiking, hunting, and camping. As a flexible design, your Honker can be configured with dry, lockable storage for sleeping bags and long underwear.  Room for three people and a week’s worth of their gear is easy with the Honker.

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The Honker is a classic Devlin design. Read how Sam was inspired in his design notes.

The Honker is available as study and full construction plans. There is even a pilothouse option in the construction plans.

 

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Honker Specifications

Length 18 ft. – 3 in.
Beam 7 ft. – 0 in.
Draft 8.5 in. at full displacement
Power Outboard 70hp
Displacement 475 lbs.
Max Load 1580 lbs.

 

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Honker Design Notes

Let’s start out with the description of the Honker design by describing a typical cruise that one might anticipate going on with this boat.

My own two sons are now ages 14 and 10. We all like to fish and explore some of the more out of the way areas in the Northwest where we live and for years, I have been aware of a place on the West Coast of Vancouver Island called Barkley Sound. This year we decided to have a go at exploring this area by boat. My choices were to take one of our larger boats and spend 3 days travel time (dependent on good weather) just to get up to Barkley Sound. Or we could trailer our Honker up behind the family pickup on gravel roads and launch in the sound itself at a place called Alberni Inlet and motor around the Sound beach cruising.

This trailering trip would take only one day to get there and allowed us more exploring time in the Sound itself. Also with our weather being as fickle as it is up here, the chances of being able to pick a window of 3 to 4 days of good weather was far more likely than if we had taken the larger boat and we could do the whole trip in 4 or 5 days instead of just traveling up and back in the larger boat in the same period of time. We could spend nights on the shore camped in a backpacking tent and each day could be spent fishing and exploring our two favorite things to do.

For our purposes, the Honker is ideally suited, being a light weight shallow draft vessel that with a 60 horse outboard, can race along at 30 knots or can idle for hours while trolling for salmon or bottom fish. We can cook the fresh caught fish each night for our meal and all that cooking could be done safely on a small propane barbecue carried on board the boat. Each night the Honker could be beached and the anchor rode carried up the beach and tied off to an accommodating tree or large rock. The split cockpit of our own Honker allows us to carry all camping gear and clothing in a waterproof, lockable, separate compartment. Room for the three of us and our fishing gear would be easily accommodated in the aft cockpit.

Carrying 24 gallons of fuel in four 6 gallon tanks gives enough range and fuel to keep us going for the time spent on the Sound. And just for my own peace of mind, a Jerry jug of 5 gallons capacity was carried just for emergency use. This 5 gallons alone would provide us with an additional 70 miles of running time, enough spare fuel to get back to civilization without worrying about picking up more fuel along the way.

A small vacation done in a vessel like this Honker is inexpensive and easy to do at thelast minute without a lot of preparation or planning. In fact, most of the gear we took was carried as survival packs and loaded into the boat in a matter of minutes. Two medium sized coolers filled by a stop at a grocery store along the way kept us in cold beer, pop and snacks for the trip and doubled in utility by allowing us to put fresh fish caught in the Sound and made Mom just a bit the happier for allowing her troop to go up into the wild and spend some quality time together.

Using a boat this way points quickly to the strengths and weaknesses of a design, and I’m happy to report that the Honker passed with flying colors. Her beachability was the most important quality, and the capability of carrying all gear in a separate storage area and not being underfoot during the day worked to perfection. The fuel and water situation worked out well also and the 5 gallon Jerry jug of extra fuel was not tapped into.

This little Honker has allowed us more useful boat for the dollar and hour of labor to construct than just about any other boat I can think of. I’m looking forward to this years adventures with her and my boys. We are all thinking about a longer even more ambitious trip this year, perhaps we might tackle the Queen Charlotte Islands. Now that would be a real trip!

I’ve even been thinking about building the small pilothouse/cabin that is shown here for the Honker giving us some foul weather capability in case the local weatherman screws up and really runs us afoul of a good mid summer storm for this year’s exploring. Take a look and you will see a real versatile boat that can provide you with a fine platform for playing on the water in your own areas.

— Sam Devlin

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Cackler 14

The Cackler is a new generation hunting skiff designed for hunting in areas where seaworthiness is essential and at a time of year when great distances may need to be covered in a hurry to avoid cold nasty weather. The Cackler will carry a load in those conditions of two to three men and gear. I have been hunting in 40 plus knots of wind with four hunters, three dogs, and six dozen decoys. She performed admirably and still got up on plane. The Cackler has an ingenious outboard well that accommodates up to a 35 hp outboard. Six-gallon fuel tanks fit under the rear deck on both sides of the well. The Cackler can be enlarged to 16 or 18 easily and is an outstanding performer.

The Cackler 14 is available as study and full construction plans, as well as a CNC cut kit.

Cackler 14 Specifications

Length 14 ft. – 3.5 in.
Beam 5 ft. – 9.25 in.
Draft 7.75 in.
Displacement 775 lbs.
Max Load 805 lbs.
Dry Weight w/ Outboard 165 lbs.
Power Outboard 30hp

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