Cash prize of 250 GBP - Dinghy Design Competition

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  • 17 May 2022 01:04
    Reply # 12782782 on 10211344
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    In response to suggestions on this forum we have put a page under "events and projects" for reference material related to the dinghy designs.  If any of the designers wish to have documents linked to from that page, please do let me know.

    Last modified: 17 May 2022 07:55 | Anonymous
  • 11 May 2022 07:23
    Reply # 12775617 on 10211344
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Thanks Dave. I've now replaced that image.

    Last modified: 11 May 2022 07:23 | Anonymous member (Administrator)
  • 11 May 2022 06:07
    Reply # 12775595 on 10211344

    Very complete document Graeme, just one correction to my AD design, The photo of the half hull is of DD!!

     All the best, David.

    Last modified: 11 May 2022 06:07 | Anonymous member
  • 09 May 2022 03:00
    Reply # 12772517 on 10211344
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Portfolio of JRA Dinghy Design Competition Entries

    An illustrated write-up of all 10 designs (together with five concept designs which were not officially entered), has been compiled and collated into one PDF document which can be downloaded by members of the JRA.

    It comprises drawings, photographs and introductory articles from each of the designers.

    We can call this a “Portfolio of Study Plans”.

    If it is the wish of the committee, this document could go into the website “Documents” section, but in the mean time I have just put it into my own blogsite, so if anyone wants to have a look and provide any feedback, make suggestions etc. please do so. At the moment, together with a couple of other PDFs about the models, it can be downloaded from

    Jan is currently working on a shortened version, edited and laid out in a form suitable for publishing as a magazine supplement, if the JRA committee decides to go ahead with that. I have seen some sample pages of what Jan is doing, and it looks very good and I think it would be great if Jan’s work could be published and souvenir copies sent out to all subscribers to the magazine – that’s my hope anyway.

    Dinghy fun

    such a photo would cause much "tut tutting" where I come from...

    Last modified: 09 May 2022 09:29 | Anonymous member (Administrator)
  • 26 Apr 2022 09:01
    Reply # 12751201 on 10211344
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Karl, could you please do us all a favour: keep a photographic record of the various stages of building, and when you have finished maybe it can be included with David T's plan package, which will make it so much better for whoever comes next.

    (Dave W went one step further for the prototype build of his DD design. He kept photos and made a full length PowerPoint demonstration, photos and expanatory text. Quite impressive.)

    Karl, some time ago you asked: can anyone tell me were do I find the plans of John Perry 's GP pram.

    It appears that the Dinghy Design Competition has not yet been taken to its conclusion, which was, as you say, to make these plans available to members.

    However, John is a member of the JRA and his email address can be found in the Directory in the Members' Area of the website.

    Last modified: 28 Apr 2022 23:04 | Anonymous member (Administrator)
  • 26 Apr 2022 08:14
    Reply # 12751136 on 10211344

    Im looking forward to such a complete collection of all the dinghys of the design competition and especially the design of David Tylers Tender to Sibling which I want to build. At last I found a shop which can waterjet cut the 3 plywood sheets according to Davids dxf files with his newest adaptation of a higher bow for 360 Euros. I will let You all know about my progress of the build. I especially like that I can use the daggerboard on PS or SB and store it at the bottom for rowing the dinghy which I will often do on a nearby slow flowing river.

  • 20 Apr 2022 23:34
    Reply # 12716522 on 10211344
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The competition produced such a wonderful selection of dinghies that I think it is imperative that the efforts of the designers be placed on some permanent record.

    To this end I am trying to promote the printing of a dinghy design supplement to the magazine – a sort of souvenir supplement which would go to each person who subscribes to the magazine.

    (A magazine supplement would have to be restricted to 28 or 32 pages, which is a little restrictive, considering there were 10 official entries and another five concept designs which I think are also worth putting on the record. However, in the interest of economy, compromise is necessary.)

    The first step in the process will be to create an electronic version, in which we can allow three pages of text and illuistrations for each design. This means about 50 pages total, including front and back. (It will have to be further edited down later, to 28 or 32 pages, if the paper magazine supplement idea is accepted).

    The electronic version can reside in the document section of the JRA website for people’s future reference. Each of the three pages for each design will comprise, as far as possible, just the words of the designers themselves, gleaned from the material they presented with their designs, and supplemented in some cases by material they have posted on this thread of the forum – together with drawings and photographs from what is available. The electronic file is intended to give an overview, ie study material, for the complete suite of designs, in the words of the designers themselves.

    It is not an easy job to collate 15 individual efforts, in 15 different styles and formats and degrees of completeness, and try to make a unified document from it. The most difficult part is deciding which bits to leave out. However Jan and I will be working together, the project is well under way and I think the result will be acceptable.

    I do hope the committee decides to approve the second step, which would be the creation of a 32-page souvenir magazine supplement, to go to all subscribers to the magazine. It would be a fitting keepsake, and a tangible way of rewarding each of the designers who contributed to the competition.

    Last modified: 21 Apr 2022 02:58 | Anonymous member (Administrator)
  • 15 Apr 2022 11:59
    Reply # 12709544 on 12709324
    Anonymous wrote:

    PS: as the series, at one dinghy per magazine issue, would stretch out over a period of more than a couple of years, I personally think it would be more useful to print a magazine supplement dedicated to the dinghy designs - with a copy sent to each of the members who subscribe to the paper magazine - and a digital copy to the other members, and to be added to the digital magazine archive. That, of course, is a matter for the Editor and the committee to decide. I have no idea what other members think of that idea.

    I think that's an excellent idea and have been thinking along those lines myself. As you may know, I'm helping the magazine editor (in a very minor way compared to the effort she puts in to the magazine, I must say) with getting to grips with new desktop publishing software, our current modus operandi is that the next issue is being produced by Lynda on the old software that she is used to and I am replicating it from scratch on the new software and then the October issue will be fully on the new software. Due to a recently broken arm all my boating, gardening and work projects are on hold and I'm taking the opportunity to really get to grips with the software, I'd be delighted to take on this dinghy supplement as long as it happens in the next month. Whether or not it is physically published is another discussion, a .pdf version might suffice. 
  • 15 Apr 2022 03:13
    Reply # 12709324 on 10211344
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Hello John, it is good to read your thoughtful and illuminating post on this forum, and congratulations on submitting the winning design.

    The Editor of the JRA magazine has asked me to write a series of articles, one for each of the dinghy design entries. I have thought it best to make each of these articles comprise the words of the individual designers themselves, and I can do this by editing the designers’ comments which they each submitted with their entries, together with comments they themselves have posted on the forum.

    The editor has suggested about 1,000 words and perhaps 5 or 6 illustrations. There is probably sufficient material already contributed by the designers to make this possible – the hard part will be deciding what to leave out, as each of these unique little vessels has many features of interest.

    In my mind, the purpose of the series will be to document permanently this rich portfolio of dinghy designs, for members’ future reference and use, on behalf of the designers. I Intend to keep any comments to a minimum (perhaps just in order to point out obvious good features which the designers may have omitted to mention, or were too modest to do so). If any of the designers would like to make further comments on this forum, now is the time. Also, in some cases, further photographs and drawings will be welcome. Where we do not have a photograph of the dinghy, I guess we can resort to a photo of a model, as a scale model for each has been made.

    If any of the designers would like to take on the job themselves, of writing up and illustrating their own design within about 1000 words, then by all means please do so. Otherwise I will do it, based on what the designers have already written.

    I think Arne’s specially-designed dinghy junk rig is worth an article in itself, either written by Arne or based on a compilation of what was written in this forum. In addition, there were a number of designs which were mooted, gave rise to discussion, but were not officially entered. I think they too are worth documenting, and with the designers’ permission I intend to do so.

    Thank you to each of the contributors.

    PS: as the series, at one dinghy per magazine issue, would stretch out over a period of more than a couple of years, I personally think it would be more useful to print a magazine supplement dedicated to the dinghy designs - with a copy sent to each of the members who subscribe to the paper magazine - and a digital copy to the other members, and to be added to the digital magazine archive. That, of course, is a matter for the Editor and the committee to decide. I have no idea what other members think of that idea.

    Last modified: 15 Apr 2022 04:48 | Anonymous member (Administrator)
  • 14 Apr 2022 23:23
    Reply # 12709095 on 10211344
    Deleted user

    I have just come across this discussion.   I was pleased to hear that I won the competition and I have transferred the prize money to Sailing Horizons,  a charity that offers a chance to try sailing to young people who might not otherwise have such opportunity.  

    A few comments:

    Since submitting my entry to the competition I had the thought that my design might be better with a single wheel at the bow rather than two wheels at the transom.  Pic attached shows how it would look with a single wheel at the front, the oars could be drawn back through holes in the transom to become handles like on a wheelbarrow.  I think this would have some advantages. A possible dissadvantage is that if you have to land on a beach under oars with any waves breaking I think you are best coming in stern first in which case strong wheels under the stern would give some protection to the hull.  Maybe not a big thing but if anyone wants to build my design and would prefer a wheel at the front I would be happy to modify the dxf files.  Alternatively the wheels could be left off althogther, its hardly worth altering any files for that since the changes are fairly obvious.  I would say though that we have wheels on a longer row boat that I built and we find those wheels very useful.

    There is a sugestion that the mast of my design should be further forward and that if the bow storage compartment should be smaller to make that possible.  I wonder why it is thought that the mast should be further forward - is it that the helm balance is wrong or is it something else?    The mast and centreboard positions as drawn are my guess at what is needed for good helm balance and having a pivoting centreboard does allow for some adjustment of helm balance.   The bow storage compartment may be larger than some people may need but I see very little gain in making it smaller - with the bow storage as drawn there is still room for three, or maybe four, people to sit in the boat, albeit that would be a heavy load for any boat of this size.

    There is a sugestion for a daggerboard rather than a pivoted board. (I will call it a 'pivoted board' rather than 'centre board' since it is not on the centreline).   I do think that a pivoted board is much better than the daggerboard arrangement and not really much harder to build - basically the difference for the builder is drilling a hole and fitting a bolt or a pin, with something to seal the hole.  I think it is a big advantage to be able to sail into shallow water with little risk of serious damage.  Also a pivoted board looks after its own storage when it is not in use. When a daggerboard is partially raised it is sticking up and very much in the way, when fully raised you have to find somewhere to put it.  I think there is only one reason why daggerboards are popular for the smallest sizes of sailing boat, this being to minimise the space taken up in the middle of the boat. However, with this design the pivoting board is built into one of the bouyancy tanks so takes up no usuable space in the centre of the boat.  So I sugest that a pivoting board is the best option for this design, but if a daggerboard is really preferred the changes to the files would be slight and are fairly obvious.

    I dont recall the rules of the competition requiring a junk rig but I chose a rig that from a distance looks a bit like a junk rig.  I expect the JRA will know what is and what is not a junk rig - is it to do with the number of battens or the sheeting being taken to the ends of the battens?    Certainly the design could have another batten or two and a pole could project behind the transom to allow sheeting to the batten ends. It might even sail better that way but I think it would be a bit fiddley for this size of boat.

    It seems that some people would like a boat design to include a table of offsets.  If someone actually wants to build this boat and are sure they would prefer a table of offsets then I can make one. Since it is a chined hull the offsets presumably would be measured from the chines to the centre plane and from the chines to a nominal waterplane. So for this '5 plank' hull that means 3 pairs of numbers for each cross section - not too hard.  How many cross sections? I think 10 cross sections is fairly normal but may be more than necessary for such a short boat.  But I would say that I would much prefer to build a plywood boat from .dxf files defining the shape of every piece of plywood rather from just a table of offsets.  Ideally one would start by getting all the plywood parts cut out automatically from the dxf files, although this is not the only way.  This adds cost certainly, but it also bypasses much of the more tedious parts of boat building, leaving the builder with the more enjoyable work and reaching the launching point much quicker.  As I think someone said, if you havent tried it this way you may not appreciate the advantage it offers.  I fairly recently built a 15 foot plywood rowing boat from dxf files and I got a price quoted for waterjet cutting and for cnc routing - the waterjet cutting turned out fine and was about half the cost of cnc routing but perhaps another firm would price these options differently.

    When I sent in my design I did include all the dxf files and I dont mind these being published.  If they are not going to be published I can email them to anyone who wants to use them for building. I cannot gaurantee that all this data is actually correct - to the best of my knowledge it is but I dont think anyone can be certain of that without building a complete boat.  Do let me know if you find any mistakes so that I can make corrections for any future builders.  And if you view or print out the files and think anything looks wrong ask me about it before you cut out material.  I can say that I fairly recently produced a set of .dxf files for our 15 foot row boat using a similar design procedure and that boat all fitted together as intended with no problems. In that case, since I knew just what fittings I was going to have on the boat, I included every fastener hole in the dxf files - nice not to have to do any marking out at all - just bolt the fittings on with bolt holes already cut out by waterjet.

    At the present time the dxf files for this design are not 'nested' - they are at somewhat random orientations.  If automatic cutting is envisaged, or even plotting at full size, the next step would be 'nesting' the shapes so that they can be cut out with minimal wastage.  I think it is unlikely that there will be any great demand for this design, there are so many small boat designs already available, but if there are a few people wanting to build to this design then maybe I could do some nested files.  For our 15 foot rowing boat I did this with software called 'mynesting' which you pay for each time you use it, not too expensive though, at least not compared with overal boat building costs.

    Talking about boat building costs, I dont think you should build your own boat to save money - if you just want a boat as cheaply as possible get a second hand one, if you look around I expect you will find a good one for less then the cost of materials, or even for free from someone who just needs to clear storage space.  I think the only justifiable reason to build your own small boat is for the satisfaction of doing it, which I have found can make it very worthwhile.    


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