Favorite Boat

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Scraping Paint
Oct 23, 2007
To get away from the "what defines planing, semi-planing, semi-displacement, displacement, sinking, sunk, sank" discussion for a bit, I thought I'd post a couple of photos of my all-time favorite boat design.*

These boats comprised the tuna fleet in Honlulu from the 1940s when they were built until the 1980s when (a) they wore out and (b) the tuna industry shifted to a whole different way of fishing.* Locally known as sampans or aku boats (aku is the Hawaiian word for albacore tuna), they were day boats.* They'd go into Pearl Harbor in the morning, net live bait in the lochs, then head out into*the open ocean*in search of feeding tuna schools.* When they found one, they would drive the boat right into the middle of it and one or two guys would start shoveling live bait over the side as fast as they could while the boat moved slowly forward,* The baitfish would scoot under the boat to get away from the frenzied tuna, but since the boat was moving forward they'd all end up at the stern.*

About five or six guys would stand on a board across the stern barefoot with their toes braced against a bit of molding screwed to the outside of the board.* Each one had a short bamboo pole with a length of line and huge chromed, barbless hook on the end.* They'd toss this hook into the middle of the feeding frezy of tuna, a fish would bite, and they'd lever the fish out of the water over their heads into the fish hold where a guy woud unhook the fish and yell, and the fisherman would lever the hook back over his head into the water.* All this time the boat is working through eight, ten, twelve*foot swells with wind waves on top of them.* The boat would be surrounded by screaming seabirds (not gulls, there are no gulls in Hawaii),*tuna would be foaming the water, and the air would be filled with fish flying forward into the boat and bare hooks flying back.* It was an absolutely amazing sight.

At the end of the day they would run back to Kewalo Basin in Honolulu and unload their catch at the tuna cannery.* Then they'd do it all again the next day.

The boats were designed and built in Hawaii, and in the 60s there were probably at least a hundred of them, all to this same basic design.* Wood, about 70 feet long, quite narrow.* I believe the word "sampan" is the Japanese word for carvel construction--- smooth-sided as opposed to lapstrake.* They were* beautiful to watch underway in the rough waters around Hawaii.* They would pass us sometimes when we were out fishing in the Molokai Strait.* They were like destroyers, cutting through the waves.* Most of them were powered with a single 6-71.* They were almost all crewed by Japanese-Americans.* At the back of the wheelhouse in every boat was a small shrine to Buddha.

Their hulls were shaped to cut the water, but also minimize rolling.* There are a few-- two or three-- left today, but the ones I saw several years ago were amost derelict.* It never dawned on me all the*years I lived there to take photos of them despite the fact I saw them almost every day.* These photos were sent to me by someone in Hawaii.* In their heyday, they were kept in beautiful condition by their crews.

If money was no object, I'd love to have one of these things, or have one built.* They remain my most favorite boat design, both in terms of aesthetics and in capabilities.

So that's my all-time favorite boat design.* What's yours?* (Not counting your own boat.)


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Full displacement for sure!!!!!
He's planing in that picture.
Dashew's FPB designs!

-- Edited by dougd1 at 08:48, 2007-12-07


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Or Wally Power if I want to go fast!* I guess I just like freaky boats.


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OK, here's my fave. Not real practical for living accomodations, but..l
I second Doug, Dashew's "unsailboat" is the best boat I have seen. That is a boat I WANT.
I think that it's actually a 45' Fast Response prototype. Several companies were in the process of presenting their boats to fit this rather new catagory for the CG. Up til then, the CG did not have a really fast (as in 45-50kn) heavy weather boat. I first heard about these at CG Station Bellingham, and then did a little research. I don't know what ever became of the program. I believe they were all jet drive, diesel power.
The 47' MLB has a raised aft cabin looking device to aid in self-righting, rather than the flush aft deck in the photo.
I went to ebay looking for it, but no joy. I don't know where I would find that kind of money anyway.


-- Edited by Carey at 12:11, 2007-12-09
The George Buehler designed Diesel Duck is my favorite.* This is the 46 plus 2.* Bill Kimley's Seahorse Marine in Zhuhai, China builds this one and a 38', a, 55' and a 70' all in steel.* There are many home builders building in steel, wood and aluminum doing DIY projects, as well as a yard in Turkey, AS Boats that is building a 41' and a 47' in steel.
*This is an owner built wood version, as I recall it is a 38'.

The Seahorse 46 plus 2 took best of show at the Mystic TrawlerFest last year.*

Diesel Ducks are full displacement, long range, ocean crossing passagemakers.* In fact an aluminum Duck (M/V Idelwild)set a record for longest*non-stop passage*for a*power boat (around 4500 nautical miles) in completing a circumnavigation.* It*had previously departed from the Seattle area, went north and crossed the Northwest Passage.*
Hey Eric,

Yes, you are correct about Idelwild not being a Duck but I think there is a strong family resemblance.*She's a 57' I believe built in Canada.* *Go here for a look;* http://georgebuehler.com/Idelwild.html* She was built with a narrow beam for economy (GPH) in anticipation of their circumnavigation attempt.* Seahorse has* a 55' Diesel Duck.* There are photos of that one along with several others* at; http://www.dieselducks.com/.* I'm going to try* to attach a photo of Idelwild from George's site.* Hope this works.



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You gotta like the D Duck!!!!
Anybody know the origin of the Diesel Duck's name? I can figure out the diesel part, but what about the duck? Is it named for the "seaworthiness" of the various species of salt water ducks?

-- Edited by Marin at 01:29, 2007-12-10
Bretram 31 fisherman, a classic!
Nordhavn 46

Gotta have one, never will

That B 31s real high on my list too.
I'm not very choosy. Any boat that doesn't have a bank payment. It must Float and run.

-- Edited by LarryW at 16:40, 2007-12-10
The Diesel Duck is a George Buehler design fashioned afer the NW salmon trollers. He felt that the Salmon troller of the NW made the best sense for a cruising powerboat because they were not like those "bull dozers of the sea," trawlers. They had a more efficient hull due to the fact that they didn't hold a lot of fish. They needed to be seaworthy and cover great distances. The duck has a 4000 mile range and is made of steel. It is very comfortable. It also has sails for stabilization.


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Well....not my favorite but........
Hey Folks,
** While at the Hinckley Yard in Savannah getting the old genny replaced, we saw this Hinckley 38. At over $1,000,000.00 this boat is a real beauty. All I DO know about it is it has two Jet drives, bow thruster, fly by wire steering and if you look at her bow you will see no spotlight. Just a wimpy infrared night vision camera hooked up to the chart plotter. She has air conditioning below with a 10kw Northern lights genny. Oh yea.... its an automatic hydraulic controlled convertible Bimini! They tell me its a composite Kevlar hull. I cant afford it! Just thought Id pass this along!

-- Edited by botemon at 19:42, 2007-12-13


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Dunno if you dudes have seen this boat but......

I talked to this Nordhavn Broker about 6 years ago at the Miami BoaT Show and he has always kept track of me. If I were ever able to buy a Nordhavn, it would be from this dude simply because of his persevereance. With that said, I just recieved their company propaganda(an absolutely beautiful publication by the way......if I had the money, I would buy everything in there).

I dunno if y'all have seen it but the Nordhavn 56 Motorsailor is my new favorite boat. That thing is incredible and ya have to hand to Nordhavn for "marrying" their specialties!!!! I am sure it must be on their website but hte first one is being delivered so it aint terribly new. Anyway, what a badazz boat...
Well, not exactly a boat at 371 feet long and 4800 tons full load, but*the USS Henry B Wilson (DDG 7) of the venerable Charles F Adams class was a real sea boat and as gray things go, a real*beauty.* This was my first ship (I was navigator and ASW officer) in 1970, and in one six month deployment, we steamed over 40,000 nautical miles on our four black oil fired boilers and fired over 5,000 rounds of 5-inch ammo at some bad guys.** You got to have lots of company since she slept 350. Didn't plane, but it cut through the seas at 30-plus knots with 70,000 horses.* As to color, well, it sort of grew on you and pretty soon you couldn't imagine it in*any other color.*


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Rich--- Did the Wilson not have any Sea Whizzes on her?** Or is that a post-1970 weapon? And what was in the box amidships?* Torpedos or missiles or something else?* Good looking ship, especially compared to today's straight-line, slab-sided vessels.

-- Edited by Marin at 22:36, 2007-12-16
This was WAY before CIWS!* The "pepperbox" in between the stacks was my ASROC (anti-submarine rocket) launcher.* It had eight cells for nuclear depth charges (nuclear weapons officer was also my job - a PITA) and/or MK44/46 rocket-assisted torpedoes.* Just forward of it was a magazine with a full set of reloads.* It had a range of about 10,000 yards.* We expected to be temporarily disabled as all the breakers tripped if we ever had to use the nuke.

Janes Fighting Ships of the day called these vessels "pound-for-pound, the most heavily armed ships afloat."*

One of the more interesting facts about this class of ships is that its main weapon, the Tartar anti-aircraft missile, had not completed development when the ships were started, but the Navy was so desperate to get an AAW missile into the fleet that they went ahead and started the ships.* About the first half of the 23 ships built for the US Navy (Germany and Australia also bought a few) were equipped with a doulble-arm missile launcher, while the later ships had a "single-armed bandit."
Is the missile launcher the twin-armed device on the stern?
Yes.* It sits atop its cylindrical magazine - two concentric rings of 40 birds total.* I think it was about 8-12 seconds to reload.

I have located the ACVA, Adams Class Veterans Association, on line, and there is one ship still afloat, Charles F Adams herself.* It was apparently returned from Greece and is now in Philadelphia awaiting disposal decision.* THE ACVA is trying to get her saved and displayed in Jacksonville, FL.* I sent money.
I have a serious lust for a 49' Alaskan. I know of one in a marina that is rotting away,
guy wont talk about selling it. Sure do love those boats.
Max Simmons wrote:


Maybe not as exotic as some of the other dreamboats posted here, but I have*admired this trawler moored on the slough outside Marysville for the last couple years.* There was a write up on it in Nor'Westing magazine back when it was re-built.* An insane amount of money went into it at that time.* If only it would fit in my boathouse......
At $330,000, it looks insanely priced for a wooden 1950's era boat, even if it is a Garden design! Looks like the guy is trying to get back the money he put into it, which NEVER happens!
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