Lit’l Coot Full Keel Design Notes

After doing the twin bilge keel version of the “Litl Coot” design, we had a flurry of letters from potential builders around the world with their own flavor of what would make the perfect pocket type sail design and it was finally Guillermo Martinez from Spain that ponied up and really convinced me to do some changes to the design. I present Guillermo’s dream here as a completely separate version of the same hull — the intent is quite different but the expression is the same, a small pocket cruiser that would be capable of taking its skipper to places that can only be imagined in a creative mind. She is seaworthy and capable with enough space on board for the organized sailer and enough potential to keep most of us water-tyros satisfied.

The biggest change to the original design was the addition of a fixed keel with draft of 30”, a radical departure from the twin bilge keel model that I had originally designed. This would allow her to stand up to weather that the shoal draft model could only aspire to and would keep the cabin freed up of any trunk or other structure. The rig was moved aft, the mizzen was thrown away and a sloop rig was designed for her. Guillermo wanted a bowsprit but I convinced him that she (the boat) would be much safer without the extension forward of the bow and would keep the sailor safely on deck by not working in front of the boat. With a club fitted jib, she will be self tending during tacking and I feel this sloop rig fits very nicely within the motorsailer genre that the original design was fit for.

A cockpit coaming was designed that would allow better support to the back for long watches under sail and provides a bit of increased freeboard in case some really rough waters are encountered. The twin rudders and centerline mounted outboard were retained and after just coming back from a recent trip sailing a 37ft. boat (or more accurately, I should say motor sailing) down the Pacific coast from Washington to California, I am more than happy with this design feature. This will allow us to keep that motor running when she might lift her heels up and rotate the prop out of the water as might happen with a conventional mounting of the outboard to one side or the other of the transom. All other features stay the same with the exception of the pilothouse where I put in a double faceted front window instead of the single pane unit on the original design. This will keep the window sizes smaller and it looks very nice on the profile drawing of the boat.

With the fixed keel, I was able to place another 50 lbs of lead in the keel and lower than if it were in the bilge of the boat with the result of the design being able to carry sail much deeper into an increase in the wind. I usually plan on casting about 75-85% of the anticipated ballast (in this case 650 lbs) before launching and then finish off the final ballasting after checking her trim in the water and re-assuring myself that the weight is located where it is most needed to keep her floating level and on her lines.

This is a pure 50/50 motor sailer and on this size boat, I think the little 9.9 horsepower Yamaha or Honda 4 cycle engine in hi-thrust configuration is just about ideal. It’s a great little engine, barely sips fuel, is almost soundless at idle and will work very well on this design. Once we joined the two tillers together into a single link arm, then my next problem of how to allow an inside steering station to be rigged was easily assisted by having one common link with simple shackles made up to fixed lines and led thru turning blocks to a fore and aft pivoting vertical tiller that will be fixed in the pilothouse on the starboard side. If I desire to steer from this inside station, I can sit in a comfortable seat on the starboard side facing forward and steer her by either pushing or pulling on the tiller. There is enough drag in this type of steering system to keep the helm steady for short periods of time if I needed to have her self steering while fixing a spot of tea or perhaps making a snack. One of the main ideas with this design is that all functions could be done while sailing, or motoring, solo. There is room to take a buddy along but you don’t necessarily have to. In fact, there might be a lot of days when just my dog, Bella, might be the perfect crew for an adventure on the “Litl Coot”. So all the halyards, topping lifts, etc. are lead aft to the sides of the pilothouse.

So we now have a boat that can sit on a trailer (mind you a bit higher on a trailer than the shoal draft twin keel model), fit in a normal sized garage for berthage when we aren’t using her, an inside and outside steering arrangement, a couple of berths for doing some simple cruise/camping, and one that will sail or motor at a fairly efficient level whether the wind is blowing or not. And did I add that she is towable behind most of the small to mid-sized SUVs or pickups? She is a vessel that can take on some coastal waters without compromise and still be manageable size and expense-wise. I can sail her either on my own or with crew but again all systems and setup can be done on my own if that is the way I choose to use her. In final expression, I have found the “Litl Coot-Full Keel” to be absolutely beguiling during her design stages and my armchair cruises built around her platform have been wonderful. My best guess is that her real life adventures might be just as good or better and that adds a lot of spice to my life – just the ticket for a modern, busy world!

Amateur plans consist of 16 drawings printed on 24×36 inch paper and a simple building booklet. You can either buy printed sets of plans directly from us or buy a downloadable version and print on your own. We are now producing basic hull kits for her or we could build you the whole boat if you would like. I look forward to seeing many of these capable little sloops on the water very soon.

–Sam Devlin

Share This:
Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestlinkedin

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.

Scaup16Side

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!

Scaup16Top

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.
Share This:
Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestlinkedin

Noddy 16

In my opinion, there are very few vessels designed for use specifically on Puget Sound. Most small outboard boats can be beached, but with some compromise to their structure over time. And when was the last time you looked at a fishing vessel under 20 long with a lockable cabin and self-bailing cockpit?

Our Noddy has been designed for use on Puget Sound. It is my intention that she could sit handily on a mooring through rainstorm and sun without becoming a hassle. Her keel allows beaching and isolates wear in one very strong and maintainable spot, the bottom of the keel. An interesting point is her lockable cabin door that actually hinges down as a flat seat and then up to the rear cabin framing to form a watertight door. This is useful when on a mooring and to make a cabin for informal cruising. The cabin sole is almost 8′ long and has plenty of room for a couple of air mattresses and sleeping bags. Outside, the cockpit is self-bailing and has good access to the 40-50 hp. long shaft outboard. Under the rear deck there is room to store a 12 gallon fuel tank. With trailering weight under 1000 lbs., in essence, she is simple, designed to be used and shows a good turn of speed with reasonable power.

Noddy is also available in 18′ and 20′ versions. — Sam Devlin

The Noddy 16 is available in study and construction plans. Contact us for the 18 and 20 foot versions.

Noddy16Plan

Noddy 16 Specifications

Length 16 ft. – 0 in.
Beam 7 ft. – 3 in.
Draft 14 in. w/ outboard retracted
Power Outboard 50hp
Displacement 928 lbs.
Speed 22mph w/ medium load
Max Load 840 lbs.
Share This:
Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestlinkedin

Bella 16

Bella16FrontBackThe Bella 16 rounds out our three-strong series of pulling/motoring skiffs. This largest version could easily carry three passengers, or even more if motoring instead of rowing. With only four 4 x 8 sheets of ¼ inch plywood and a few other odds and ends, the boatbuilder can have an attractive, easily driven, light craft. This boat is built upright without a jig, saving on time and materials. As with the Bella 10 and Bella 12, this boat is primarily a rowing skiff and her shape suits that purpose nicely. Whether fishing a pond in Wisconsin, rowing for recreation on the Puget Sound, or pulling her up on a Florida beach for some camping, the Bella 16 is a handy skiff. In a world that needs more boats, I’m happy to offer plans for the boater whose needs are balanced equally by aesthetics and utility. — Sam Devlin

The Bella 16 is available in study and construction plans.

Bella16Side

 

Bella 16 Specifications

Length 15 ft. – 8.125 in.
Beam 3 ft. – 9.75 in.
Draft 6.5 in.
Power Oars, Outboard 2.5hp
Share This:
Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestlinkedin

Mallard

MallardBeauty1This is an old and venerable design by now with the first design and boat built more than 20 years ago as I write this. She is of the “SneakBox” type of boat with the transom accommodating up to a 15 hp outboard motor, but she also rows or poles very well. In fact, of all the “SneakBox” types of boats that we design and build, the little Mallard is the best at rowing. Now all that good rowing performance does cut down into her top speed under power and if you envision blasting around the duck marsh at something exceeding the frostbite limit of the end of your nose then you would do well to search on to another of our designs. But if you are looking for a very fine little duckboat that will power well under oar and will hunt with you and a buddy in a safe and efficient manner then the “Mallard” is a fine selection.

There is positive foam 3 point flotation that allows the boat to float level and upright even if the cockpit were full of water. There is a lot of piece of mind to this flotation and we use it on all of our hunting boats. The hull is built of high grade marine plywood covered with epoxy resin and sheathed on the exterior with epoxy resin and fiberglass cloth. The result is a lightweight, durable boat that isn’t as noisy as straight fiberglass or metal boats and the hull itself is more insulative and on a cold day in the marsh, that makes a lot of difference in comfort.

MallardBeauty2

Our “Mallard” is a great boat for the hunter that likes to occasionally hunt alone, or with a buddy and a good dog. She accommodates up to about 3 dozen decoys with two hunters on board and is very concealable (low profile). This is a good, quality duck hunting boat, designed for the marsh and her purpose in life is to place you in circumstances and situations that might just be life memories. — Sam Devlin

The Mallard is available in study and construction plans.

MallardPlan

Mallard Specifications

Length 12 ft. – 11 in.
Beam 4 ft. – 10 in.
Draft 5 in.
Power Oars, 15hp Outboard
Displacement 155 lbs.
Speed 15 mph (medium load)
Max Load 580 lbs.
Share This:
Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestlinkedin

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.
Share This:
Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestlinkedin

Guppy

GuppyThe “Guppy” is a cousin to our Polliwog and has a similar look and appearance but with an overall length of 19 inches longer, it has a greatly increased capacity to carry weight as a dingy and sail area as a small sailboat. The Guppy is a fine candidate for the all around dingy/skiff/small sailboat, without vice, she does her job efficiently and smoothly. It’s always hard to find a boat that is this versatile but the Guppy seems to do it so handily that it makes the job look easy.

With a small outboard on her stern, she makes a fine dingy for exploring a quiet anchorage and for ferrying people and pets ashore. We’ve had 3 adults and gear on board and she seems to handle it all in style. The Guppy has been designed to be easily and quickly built by amateur boatbuilders with a minimum of tools and experience.

The Guppy is available as study and construction plans.

Guppy Specifications

Length 9 ft. – 1 in.
Beam 4 ft. – 4 in.
Draft   Board up/Down 6 in. / 32 in.
Power Sail, Oars, or 2 hp outboard
Useful Load 585 lbs.
Dry Weight 80 lbs.
Sail Area 54 sq. ft.
Share This:
Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestlinkedin

Dipper 17

The Dipper 17 was designed for the fisherman and pleasure cruiser that wants to get in and out of the weather and for the diehards that want to be out no matter what the weather. The boat is built using the WEST Epoxy System utilizing the latest technology with quality marine materials. The result is a boat with good looks, excellent performance, low maintenance, and the warmth and individuality of a custom wooden boat. All of these things make the Dipper an ideal boat for inland and coastal waters.

Dipper17PlanView

The wheelhouse is cozy, with room for a small galley, heating stove, refrigeration, double berth and storage. The aft cockpit is large, 64″ x 6’2″ with seating for three and stowage under the seats. The Dipper is easily trailered for fishing or pleasure cruising and at 2,460 lbs., it can be towed by almost any size vehicle. For power on the Dipper 17, we recommend an outboard in a motor well. A 10 hp Yamaha or a 15 hp Honda 4 cycle provide quiet, smooth power, and cruises Dipper at 7-8 knots speed with good range.

The Dipper 17 is available as study and full construction plans, and as a CNC cut kit.

 

Dipper 17 Specifications

Length 17 ft. – 0 in.
Beam 7 ft. – 0.5 in.
Draft 18 11/16 in.
Power Outboard
Displacement 2460 lbs.
Hull Type Semi-displacement
Share This:
Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestlinkedin

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.

HonkerProfilePlanView

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.

 

HonkerPilothouseOption

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.

 

Share This:
Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestlinkedin

Pelicano 23

Like the Pelicano 18, the larger Pelicano 23 comes in three distinct configurations. Bassboat, Center Console, and Shrimper.

Pelicano23-3way

In every case, the Pelicano 23 offers the unique combination of real world durability mixed with the classic Devlin style. Every configuration presents a very practical boat for a wide range of needs. The Bassboat and Shrimper both feature good berth space for overnight adventures; the shrimper adds a sheltered helm for operating in harsher conditions. There is ample dry storage below the deck. The Center Console version provides open space for wrestling those big fish and hauling bulky gear.

No matter your needs in a mid-sized speedboat, the Pelicano 23 delivers a strong, durable, and versatile answer.

For more information, read Sam’s design notes.

The Pelicano 23 is available in study and construction plans for all configurations,

and as a CNC cut kit for the Shrimper.

Pelicano 23 Specifications

Length 22 ft. – 9 in.
Beam 8 ft. – 5 in.
Draft 12.625 in. at full displacement
Power Outboard 150hp
Dry Weight w/engine & battery 2300 lbs.
Weight at Load Waterline 3300 lbs.
Share This:
Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestlinkedin