Above: The singlehanded sailing skiff SWIFT SOLO by Bram Dally was part of his design quest to prevent loss of stiffness in small boats.
Cover Photo: The SWIFT SOLO is a single-handed skiff built by Bram Dally. Stiff, durable hulls are crucial to skiff speed.
One of the little-known or understood characteristics of modern fiber-reinforced plastic composites is the loss of some initial stiffness capability after repeated cyclic loading. Loss of stiffness can be significant enough to cause a noticeable effect on performance, depending upon laminate makeup and degree of cyclic loading. Continue reading →
There are those who still question the longevity of an epoxy composite structure. They state that the technology is still too new to know how it will hold up long-term. Some have said that epoxy composites fail in the tropic heat; other critics have warned of the hazards of wood and freshwater. However, I’ve recently visited several boats that are living testimony to the long-term reliability of epoxy composites. Of course, careful construction and good Continue reading →
Cover Photo: A decked sailing canoe combines seaworthiness and comfort.
As a life long sailor, I have always had some mystical attraction to the canoe. As a young man, I read the exploits of my French Canadian ancestors who plied our beautiful Great Lakes for over two centuries in their birchbark canoes in pursuit of the fur trade. More recently, I followed the adventures of Verlen Kruger as he traveled by kayak from Alaska to South America. Continue reading →
The original sailing rigs on both Serendipity and Puffin are Hugh Horton’s sophisticated version of the old, but efficient sliding gunter rig (Figure 1). Hugh had put a lot of thought into sailing rigs for canoes and had chosen the gunter because it best fit several needs that he considered mandatory for a cruising canoe. Continue reading →
On January 18, 1997, Gougeon Brothers Inc. co-founder and CEO Meade Gougeon, 58, became the oldest person ever to win the North American DN Iceboat Championship. He explains how he managed this feat in what is essentially a young man’s sport, in this article excerpted from the DN Newsletter. —Ed.
I was still out on the ice watching the last two races of the Silver Fleet for the North American Championships when word got to me that I had won the series. To say the least, I was shocked. I figured at best that I might have made the top five, but the fact that I was in the hunt to win never crossed my mind, even up to the last two races where I managed second-place finishes. Continue reading →
The 70′ sailboat RAGE holds the record for the fastest elapsed time for a monohull from the west coast to Hawaii. In 1994, she set the record of eight days, seven hours and thirteen minutes in the West Marine Pacific Cup from San Francisco to Kanoehe, Hawaii. RAGE took another seven hours off that record this past year. Continue reading →
Cover Photo: ADAGIO was racing with fast company in the 1996 Port Huron to Mackinac Race.
It was after eight months of building that we originally launched Adagio, our 35-foot cruising trimaran. It was on July 6, 1970, and she was then a unique boat in three respects.
First, she was the first large wooden boat entirely bonded together with epoxy using no permanent fastenings. While this is common today, it was revolutionary stuff back when adhesives for wooden boatbuilding (including epoxies) were looked upon as a backup to traditional wood fasteners like nails, screws and bolts. Continue reading →
It was 100 years ago this spring that Joshua Slocum departed Boston Harbor on the first single-handed voyage around the world. What made this feat even more amazing was Slocum’s boat: the 37’ oyster dragger was rumored to have been over 100 years old when it was given to him in 1892. She lay rotting in a field when Slocum began a restoration that took two years of hard work. He also modified her original design, making her more seaworthy and easy to sail single-handedly. He named the boat SPRAY. Continue reading →
Cover Photo: The Formula 40 trimaran ADRENALIN is just one of the high-end epoxy composite structures built during Gougeon Brothers first 25 years.
Editors note: Our head chemist Tim Atkinson penned this piece on some of the history of Gougeon Brothers, Inc. on the occasion of our 25th anniversary, back in 1994.
In 1969, Meade Gougeon and his younger brother Jan founded Gougeon Brothers’ Boatworks to build iceboats. These lightweight, sail-powered vessels were built of wood laminated with epoxy. By 1973, the company was the largest builder of iceboats in the country. The company rapidly expanded its business into other boat-building efforts. Continue reading →