Low Tide

Yacht Designer Tad Roberts' Web Log

Sailing Vessels

R2ak – The Race to Ketchikan

The first sail and oar race to Ketchikan will start on June 4th, 2015, from Port Townsend Washington. That makes the race course about 750 miles of wilderness and open North Pacific Ocean, mostly through BC waters. There are a few Canadian boats entered, and we think the Barefoot entry from Silva Bay[.....]

Modern Schooner Design

It’s been quite a while since I thought of this boat. I made the drawing 13 years ago (2001) and still haven’t seen anyone use this arrangement. It’s based on the old fishing schooners with main cabin in a trunk aft of the mainmast. This is a big boat, 160′ on deck[.....]

Cruising Speed Under Sail

I’m starting to think it’s all rubbish. Sailors love to compare boats, “that’s a fast boat”, “That boat is horribly slow”. One of things that constantly amazed me when officiating during the Shipyard Raids was how close the speed of the various sized and shaped boats was. This was longer term speed, not[.....]

Drawing Signe

I started drawing Signe in January of 1987, the day I started work in Bruce King’s office. Years later I counted through our drawing file and I think there were over 80 sheets in the set. Joe Artese (interior design) made 3-4, Bruce made one, I did the rest. It took me[.....]

Lumberjack, an ocean racing schooner

Black hull, teak house, and tanbark sails is the proper look for a schooner. Few look the part as well as Lumberjack. Lumberjack is a steel schooner designed in 1935 by Victor Brix. She was built by G. De Vries in Amsterdam, originally under another name and ketch rigged. Just after WWII the[.....]

George Bruigom, Boatbuilder

George Bruigom built boats in Comox from about 1970 to 1985. Senang Hati, the 45 footer above, is rumored to have been his last boat. I didn’t know George but I did stop by his shed a few times. George was a busy guy, I remember at least once going by and[.....]

Sterling Hayden and Wanderer

Any story telling session among sailors out here on the West Coast will not go long before someone mentions Sterling Hayden. Writer, Actor, Father, and mostly Sailor, he was a larger than life character who touched the lives of many, but perhaps especially those concerned with boats and sailing. It seems that many[.....]

The Le Clere’s and Pacific Yew

Sometimes it’s hard to believe the riches we in BC are blessed with. I’m thinking about boatbuilding materials today. Many countries or parts of the world have one or no indigenous high quality boatbuilding woods. New Zealand has Kauri, the Philippines have their Mahogany, Africa has Iroko, and Burma Teak. But[.....]

Varua and Starling Burgess

From The Circumnavigators by Don Holm “Varua, which means “spirit” or “soul” in Tahitian, is considered by many aficionados to be the most beautiful and functionally perfect sailing yacht ever built.” Above are the hull lines of Varua, designed by Starling Burgess in 1940. In More Good Boats Taylor reports that Burgess and Robinson tested her model[.....]

Moonraker Cruising BC

Above: Moonraker with the stove going, anchored next to Tzu Hang at Musgrave Landing, BC, in the winter of 1953-54. In August of 1953 Moonraker of Fowey sailed quietly into Victoria and tied at Fisherman’s wharf. Moonraker was small, 29′ overall with a beam of 9′8″ and draft of 6′. She was built[.....]

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