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Old 17-09-2008, 16:59   #1
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New in every way and in desperate need of knowledgeable individuals

Hello. I am looking for a few individuals who are willing to provide technical information that I will use in a fiction novel. Basically, I just recently started a new project and the main character will be sailing in various places. The problem: I know absolutely nothing about sailing. The good news: neither does the main character. That being said, I still need to know how to make a fool of the character as he learns on his trip.

So, to start, I need to know what type of sailboat I am giving my character. There are a few necessary features that I need in order to fit with the other elements of the story. They are as follows:

1. The sailboat needs to be small enough that it can be sailed by one person, but large enough to have some presence.

2. It needs to be of a type that is wooden and could have been handcrafted.

3. Similar to an 18th century design.

4. Have that decorative long pointy thing that juts out from the front. (I know--I donít even have a clue as to what that is called. Call me pathetic, but please give a name for it.)


The back story for this item is that it was made by the main characterís now deceased father, who never sailed it--as he didnít know either. He was just fixated with the idea of sailing. Therefore, since it was designed by someone who ultimately only knew the theory of sailing and not the actuality, thereís a lot of room to make this a truly odd but functional sailboat.

Any suggestions as to what kind of sailboat might work? If so, can you point me in the direction of some photos? My brain is numb from searching through photos and having no idea what will fit and what wonít.

PLEASE HELP.

Once thatís figured out, Iíll have a lot more questions, but itís probably good to start here.
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Old 17-09-2008, 17:11   #2
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so for this consultation you will be paying what?
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Old 17-09-2008, 17:34   #3
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If it were my novel I'd make it a 32 foot cutter rig (single mast, two foresails). That pointy thing is a bowsprit. I'd have the dead guy building it himself across a number of years so you can embelish a bunch and make it as weird as you want (haunted, spirits?) Geez I'm already scared. . . . Go to yachtworld.com and look up an older Westsail for a good classic cruser look. Have fun (ain't that the main thing?)
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Old 17-09-2008, 17:36   #4
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Originally Posted by Chuck Baier View Post
so for this consultation you will be paying what?
My enduring gratitude isn't enough? Well...damn.
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Old 17-09-2008, 17:56   #5
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My enduring gratitude isn't enough? Well...damn.
A copy of the book? LOL Just kidding.

What is the time period of the piece. If the dad were building a wooden boat in 1800 it might be different that what he would build in 1900 or 1970.

The pointy thing is called the front

No seriously it's the bowsprit.

Also you might want to click this link for a list of Sailing Dictionary thread on this site.

dictionary - Google Search

As for boat building and building methods, you might try a post in one of our building forums. Those fellahs love to talk boat building.

In fact one of our members has a whole thread about sealing up the planks in his wooden boat the old fashioned way.

Stuffing the gaps with cotton and sealing with tar - how cool is that?

Oh, besides the year, you might want to let us know the "tone" of the story. Modern fast, James Bond? Or slow multi mast, Paul Therroux cruising the islands.

Just like the right boat for cruising the ya gotta have the right boat for the plot.
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Old 17-09-2008, 18:20   #6
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Aloha and Welcome aboard!
You're asking us to develop a boat for your character. There is an Ingrid 38 owner on this forum who has the boat designed in the right year and made of wood. It could be single-handed but not by a novice unless they are really nuts. Look up Ingrid in the search area.
If you click on my profile you'll see a photo of my old boat but it was designed in the early 20th century by William Garden.
Kind regards,
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Old 17-09-2008, 18:25   #7
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Aloha and Welcome aboard! Do a search on this forum for Ingrid. There is a forum member with an Ingrid 38 made of wood.
Check my profile for a photo of my old boat, a Mariner 35, designed in the mid to early 20th century.
Only a slightly nuts novice would try to sail either single handed but it could be done. Over confidence is all they need.
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Old 17-09-2008, 18:27   #8
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P. S. The Ingrid 38 was designed in the late 1800s and is a fantastic boat. My Mariner was wood but they make them in fiberglass now.
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Old 18-09-2008, 11:08   #9
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Originally Posted by Ex-Calif View Post
A copy of the book? LOL Just kidding.

What is the time period of the piece. If the dad were building a wooden boat in 1800 it might be different that what he would build in 1900 or 1970.

The pointy thing is called the front

No seriously it's the bowsprit.

Also you might want to click this link for a list of Sailing Dictionary thread on this site.

dictionary - Google Search

As for boat building and building methods, you might try a post in one of our building forums. Those fellahs love to talk boat building.

In fact one of our members has a whole thread about sealing up the planks in his wooden boat the old fashioned way.

Stuffing the gaps with cotton and sealing with tar - how cool is that?

Oh, besides the year, you might want to let us know the "tone" of the story. Modern fast, James Bond? Or slow multi mast, Paul Therroux cruising the islands.

Just like the right boat for cruising the ya gotta have the right boat for the plot.

Good question: The book is a modern fiction set in the current year. It's not an action/thriller by any means. If I had to equate it to something, I'd say it is going to be like a literary "The Royal Tenenbaums" with equal parts humor mixed with all that comes with attempting to handle grief.

Since the tone is rather humorous and sardonic, I need a boat that reflects the character's quirkiness. I don't want the boat itself to be too modernized. I want it to have its own silent character, and look old-fashioned and highly detailed. Like someone built the boat, and just kept doing stuff to it as an excuse to keep themselves from sailing i.e. making a dream a reality, if that makes sense. The reason I said "18th century" sort of style earlier is because there's a plot element later in the book where the main character encounters some Revolutionary War reenactors.

Thanks for the info about the boat building forum. I will definitely look into that when I get closer to descriptions about how the father builds the boat.

johneri1: You mentioned a cutter. I've looked at some pictures and that looks like it could work. If I choose that, how small can a cutter be? Also, can it be sailed on lakes? The main character is basically supposed to have the boat on a trailer, going cross country, stopping at various lakes to sail it. Would a cutter be within the realm of possibility? If not, does anyone have any suggestions about what would work?

SkiprJohn: Thanks for the welcome and the suggestions!

As to compensation: Until it's written and published, the only thing that I can promise is that anyone who does help, I'd give them a copy and include their name in the dedication. Not really sure if that's worth anything unless you truly love seeing your name in print. lol
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Old 18-09-2008, 11:28   #10
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Underscore79,

Yachtworld.com is a good source for lots of wooden boats that are on the market. Should have lots of photos to get some ideas. One boat in particular that may be what your thinking of is a Bristal Channel Cutter. Here is a perfect example of the boat you describe.

1950 Bahama Sharpshooter Boat For Sale=
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Old 18-09-2008, 11:49   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by underscore79 View Post
I want it to have its own silent character, and look old-fashioned and highly detailed. Like someone built the boat, and just kept doing stuff to it as an excuse to keep themselves from sailing i.e. making a dream a reality, if that makes sense.
From your lines above I can see now the reference to the The Royal Tennenbaums. You are also making me envision something out of a Jules Verne novel, or a boat Captain Nemo or (and I don't know these two pop into mind) James Mason might be sitting in or be sailing.

Michael
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Old 30-10-2008, 06:29   #12
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Get in touch with kjango, he is new to this world of sailing has a 76 year old cutter rigged sloop and looks the part of a revolutionary, not to mention a very humble gentleman. Perfect boat and character.
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