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Chick Ludwig

Sport Boat

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I had an online discussion with one of the other guys about Turtler. Here is his post:

"Have a decent inet connection at the campground in FL today so checking out the posts and pondering alternative narrow river & spring explorer craft to our canoes as we age a bit and would like more, sit comfortable, stretch legs, and move-around space. Maybe around 13'x40" < 50#. Maybe along the lines of your Turtler? Or, a very light weight Gheenoe type craft maybe out of ply S&G. Can't remember details of turtler beam and weight(car top ability). Want to power it with a maybe 50# thrust trolling motor in a tunnel type hull to protect the drive sliding over submerged logs, bars, etc like we can in a canoe. Probably just "dreaming" but you're one of the most experienced small craft builders I know, and wanted to catch up and see if you have any thoughts. Have a safe winter. Thanks,"


Here is my reply:

I love Turtler for the use I put her to. But she is not efficient enough as a displacement hull to use an electric trolling motor effectively. I've tried and have to use too much power to get any speed (a relative word in this case compared to planing speed). With my weight moved forward, she will plane with my 'zuki 2.5 hp motor. With Debbie aboard, she will not plane, but is fast enough to "putter" around the lakes or creeks. I had planned to use a 6hp "Johnrude" that I got from you, but am satisfied with the 'zuki for now.


The problem I see in general with the electric motors is the lack of enough speed to actually get anywhere. I realise that a motor like the Torqueedo will get you the speed, but then running time and range become the problem. The best solution would be for the gas motor to "get you up the creek" and a trolling motor for "messing about" in interesting little coves, (or for catching turtles).


Turtler was intended to be a cartopper, but is too heavy for me to be able to do it comfortably. I can raise one end to rooftop level, but Debbie can't. I could raise the bow to a roller on a roof top rack, then pick up the other end and push it on, but a trailer is much easier.


Your thoughts on a narrow Gheenoe type boat would be good, but narrower than 40" to be used as an electric. I see no need for a "tunnel" on this boat. You would just tilt the motor in shallow water situations. i do this with my 'zuki and electric. A tunnel only makes sense in a planing hull. A Gheenoe is designed like Turtler as a planing craft. For electric, a "flat back" canoe would be better. Chopping the end of of B&B's Moccasin-2 would work fine, but you would probably be happier with a bit more beam. 


Why not give Graham a call and see if he'd design one for you like he did Turtler for me? It's actually easier (and cheaper) for him to make cut files for the CNC machine than to do design and construction drawings. I think it would be a good boat to add to his collection. of designs. Call it a "Super-Moccasin".

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Thanks Chick for the info and thoughts.  Have a decent connection tonight. Been thinking the Moc II with a small square stern for the trolling motor, battery in the middle, but aging joints calling for more upright seating for us.  Also saw a small dory type with ~6" wine glass stern for motor and minimum drag but probably less stability and more complex build than the Moc II. Only has to go paddling speed 3-4 mph and can supplement with paddles. Maybe a wide beam square stern tandem canoe would be simpler if I can find a good used one in kevlar or carbon at a fair price.  Going to finish the Amanda when we get back and see how she goes with electric.  Need to contact Graham on the Washington Marine Market coming up April 30 and will mention my dreams/schemes. TSCA/Raleigh considering something like a one-sheet/one day build at the Market and then selling/raffling off to help our new Washington Maritime Museum.  Keep safe,  Rick 

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Maybe not one sheet, but these were popular a few years ago.  http://messing-about.com/forums/topic/1441-6-hour-canoe/


Here's another.  http://www.storerboatplans.com/wp/news/woodworker-puts-plywood-canoe-together-in-4-hours/

Or a simple flat bottom 8ft. dink? Canoe more useful to more people.


Keep me posted on what you come up with square stern canoe wise. I'd love to see a B&B version. Kinda thinking about something like that to carry on the van while we pull the pop-up camper. I think a "Super-Moc" would be great. Wider than a Moc-II, with more buoyancy aft, but not TOO wide a transom. Box seats fore and aft for flotation and support for the wider bottom? Possible trouble meeting Coast Guard regs. If I remember rightly, the transom must be less than 60% of the max. beam to not have to have upright and level flotation, and maybe not over ???HP. 


Here is the square back version of the Quick Canoe.



By-the-way, Miss Debbie and I took Turtler for a short "cruise" today. Still kinda cool for me---especially for Stumpy and his friends---but we enjoyed being on the water anyway.

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