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Marx Headroom

Leeboards on a CLC Northeaster Dory

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With no prior boat-building experience and having never sailed a day in my life I'm currently about a third of the way through building a CLC Northeaster Dory. I have literally no idea what I'm doing here. Hell, I don't even know if I posted this in the correct forum. The plan is to mostly sail and row some of the local lakes, with the occasional fair-weather daysail in the Chesapeake and around the Outer Banks. The boat plan calls for a dagger board. That sounded reasonable to me until I started blundering into videos of folks talking about ramming sand bars and tearing out the bottom of their boats. Given how frequently one encounters surprise tree stumps and shallow spots in the area lakes, I'm wondering if leeboards might not be a better choice. Given my rank ignorance I can't tell if this is a great idea or if folks will think I'm deranged for even thinking it up. Any thoughts y'all might have to share would be greatly appreciated.

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Build as designed. Nothing to change, manual will tell you how to build, and you’ll be fine. 

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8 minutes ago, Raz'r said:

Build as designed. Nothing to change, manual will tell you how to build, and you’ll be fine. 

X 2. Woodenboat.com has lots of bloggage on leeboards - and plenty of other useful topics for a newby builder. (With all due respect to the infinite wisdom available in DA...)

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Leeboards rock.  And they don’t destroy the hull when running aground.  If surface piercing foils were so fucking bad, foiling Moths would suck.  

Just sayin’.....

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16 hours ago, Marx Headroom said:

With no prior boat-building experience and having never sailed a day in my life I'm currently about a third of the way through building a CLC Northeaster Dory. I have literally no idea what I'm doing here. Hell, I don't even know if I posted this in the correct forum. The plan is to mostly sail and row some of the local lakes, with the occasional fair-weather daysail in the Chesapeake and around the Outer Banks. The boat plan calls for a dagger board. That sounded reasonable to me until I started blundering into videos of folks talking about ramming sand bars and tearing out the bottom of their boats. Given how frequently one encounters surprise tree stumps and shallow spots in the area lakes, I'm wondering if leeboards might not be a better choice. Given my rank ignorance I can't tell if this is a great idea or if folks will think I'm deranged for even thinking it up. Any thoughts y'all might have to share would be greatly appreciated.

Forum-wise, you're fine here, as far as I'm concerned. We have had boat building discussions before and in many cases the issue of people buying old boats that need "TLC" is actually more involved than building from scratch.

People who talk about running aground and tearing the bottom out of their boat have got some basic problems. 1- the trunk should be strong enough that this does not happen easily..... you're using material with better structural properties than cardboard, right? Cardboard derivatives? 2- the flips side of #1 above is that the daggerboard should be the failure point, not the hull. And 3- you have to be going much faster than most people will ever achieve to break either 'board or trunk, because most small traditional sailing craft are slowpokes.

 

14 hours ago, Amati said:

Leeboards rock.  And they don’t destroy the hull when running aground.  If surface piercing foils were so fucking bad, foiling Moths would suck.  

Just sayin’.....

For most of my sailing career, I thought leeboards looked stupid. Yes they work. But.......... over the past decade or so, I have seen so many boats that were so ugly that leeboards would be a big improvement, that I have changed my mind. And yes they work!

Problem(s): designing a new set of foils from scratch that will let the boat sail at least as well as she was originally designed..... not a task for the first-time builder. Also, the dory has a lot of flare in the topsides, the leeboards would be pointed under the boat..... not optimum. Yes they can be braced to any angle you want but this complicates the design & build process.

The good thing about leeboards, in this particular case, is that they lift out of the water entirely and leave a nice clean clear hull for rowing. The daggerboard trunk will always be drag-gy. A friend with a smallish row/sail boat says that trying to row with the centerboard down feels like trying to row thru soft butter.

FB- Doug

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You can see weed and garbage on them

if you can find a design that has the LB(s) at the same place as the center of floatation, you can use the rowing outriggers as attatchment points for the LB(s), if you’re clever, which is kind of handy.  If you’re outriggers were wide enough, you might even be able to deploy LB(s) as Bruce Foils.:) 

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Why don’t you simply put a pivoting centreboard in? Make the case longer fore and aft and as long as the position of the cupboard in the vertical position is the same as the dagger board everything should be perfect.. put decent slot tapes on and the additional drag with the board up should be almost negligible.

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CLC has a Builders Forum on their website. The question was raised regarding leeboards instead of the daggerboard on the Northeaster. Here is an interesting reply:

"The daggerboard is between the front and middle seats. A leeboard would need to be at the widest point of the hull, between the middle and aft seats. That would give you lee helm unless you changed the sail rig. If you moved the mast aft to compensate, you'd have to redesign the mast step and mast partner and their supporting mechanical structures. Adding in the support structures for the leeboards on each side, you would end up with a more crowded cockpit than with the daggerboard."

Sounds logical to me, but as a sailor - not a boatbuilder. Anybody have any comments on these thoughts? Have you had a chat about the leeboards idea with CLC, Marx?

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46 minutes ago, Major Tom said:

Why don’t you simply put a pivoting centreboard in? Make the case longer fore and aft and as long as the position of the cupboard in the vertical position is the same as the dagger board everything should be perfect.. put decent slot tapes on and the additional drag with the board up should be almost negligible.

Centreboard not cupboard, really need to check everything twice before posting or spellcheck will win every time!!!

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I greatly appreciate y'all taking time to reply with your thoughts. I've decided my desire for a functional vessel outweighs my curiosity this time around so I'll just stick to the script. I might fiddle with the idea a bit with the dagger board out once I get the boat built and if it pans build a second one, omitting the daggerboard trunk.

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13 hours ago, Marx Headroom said:

I greatly appreciate y'all taking time to reply with your thoughts. I've decided my desire for a functional vessel outweighs my curiosity this time around so I'll just stick to the script. I might fiddle with the idea a bit with the dagger board out once I get the boat built and if it pans build a second one, omitting the daggerboard trunk.

If the boat sails OK as designed, this is the best answer for now. You can work out improvements later!

FB- Doug

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Too many times I've seen where inexperienced people building boats from plans start to "solve" perceived problems with the design before ever getting the boat on the water. I've seen people double planking thickness on plywood boats out of the perception that 6mm is too thin to survive impact. The result was a heavy boat and complaints that it didn't sail well and the designer was blamed. I've seen people drastically change sailplans and complain the boat won't sail. I've seen them eliminate centerboards in favor of chine runners and complain the boat won't go to windward. The OP appears to have taken the best advice and will build the boat to plan. Good move. 

Personally, I don't think daggerboards are as big a problem as some folks make them out to be. As long as you build them correctly and sail smart, hitting the bottom isn't a huge deal. What generally happens is the boat stops, you pull up the board a bit, and then sail off. I don't have anything against leeboards per se, but the boat and rig have to be designed out the outset to use them. One concern with leeboards is that they do make it difficult to right a capsized boat since they don't really give you anything to hold onto and multiply your leverage like a dagger- or centerboard. 

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I think the 'tear the DB trunk out' comments originate from the EC sailors. That's mile after mile of extremely shallow water. They hit bottom more in one EC than an average sailor in 10 years.  Build the boat as designed. Later, after sailing it a while, it's easy enough to change...it's wood. 

Leeboards do have some advantages...hard to beat for extremely shallow water sailing, no trunk taking up space in middle of boat, no shells jamming in trunk when drying out. Mr Moons comment about being harder to right is valid. 

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The way my EC boat's CB worked, it might as well have been a daggerboard. My board wasn't weighted which required a downhaul to keep in deployed. On four ECs with it, I hit bottom a few times each challenge. But it was never a big deal. Kick the downhaul out of its cam cleat and we were sailing again. It's not that much different to raise a daggerboard a few inches. The only EC boat I remember tearing out a daggerboard trunk was a Laser. FG boats are bit more brittle than wood epoxy builds like your CLC dory. You're more likely to damage the trailing edge of the board than you are to damage the trunk. 

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Rudder is more likely to be an issue than daggerboard. Tends to be a weak point of home built boats. They need to be pretty strong, esp kick-up rudders.

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