Francis Drake

Dinghies, day sailers, world cruisers. Many small sailboats make ideal rowboats or low-speed power boats.

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TiredParent
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Francis Drake

Post by TiredParent » Mon Feb 28, 2011 9:10 pm

Had to buy some supplies to go into my 8-ball build, and decided to order a Francis Drake study plan. I know I'm not going to be able to build one anytime soon, since it won't fit in the garage, and the HOA around here would frown on anything in the yard... but someday... (probably go after a Minuet next year).

I notice that there is only one FD in the Customer Photos section. Are there any more of them out there, or is this one of those uncommon builds?

Rob Myran
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Re: Francis Drake

Post by Rob Myran » Fri Mar 04, 2011 7:51 pm

It would be interesting to build. Either the Drake or the Lord Nelson if you wanted to do some serious cruising.

I am not sure what i think of the cabin layout on either. Head is in the bow and I wonder how comfortable that would be while bouncing through the waves.

I saw a Island Packet in Chicago Strictly Sail this year. It had the settee and dining table in the bow as a different layout. Likewise I wondered if your dinner would be bouncing off the table. The head was more mid-ships where it would be more stable.

I do like the interior layout of the 27 foot James Cook pretty much. Of course interiors are one area folks can make some changes to suit their desires more easily without screwing up the boat design. I am also a fan of the keel with skeg on that boat.

As for me, I am finishing my Minuet this Spring then I will play with it a bit and would like to build another boat. I am drawn to both the Amigo (probably more practical for me) and the James Cook. It is still trailerable but is on the upper end of what i would want to transport. Heck, gas was $3.50/gal here today.
Both those designs would work for the offshore sailing I hope to do.

Good luck with your building plans.
Another fine mess I've gotten myself into!

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TiredParent
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Re: Francis Drake

Post by TiredParent » Sat Mar 05, 2011 7:32 am

I did look at both the Amigo and James Cook.

My primary objection to the Amigo is that it has a full keel. While the full keel would certainly provide a robust sea-worthiness of the three designs, from the little I've studied on the subject, a full keel makes a sailboat somewhat unresponsive.

On the opposite end of responsiveness are the centerboard/dagger board boats. Those don't have the sea-worthiness.

Between the two extremes are keel boats with a separate rudder Skeg, and a fin keel with a spade rudder. Both the James Cook and Francis Drake are variations of the Keel and Skeg. I considered to James Cook as a possibility, but decided that the wider/longer Francis Drake would provide better long range cruising capability.

For the record, I also looked at the Starpath, which would make an excellent world cruiser. The big problem with it is... its too big. By the time I have the capability to build a larger boat (can't do it where I'm living now), it will just be me and my wife. Why spend the extra money/time to build a boat that is more than I need?

upspirate

Re: Francis Drake

Post by upspirate » Sat Mar 05, 2011 7:37 am

Mike, I have a modified fin keel /skeg-hung rudder with aperture for prop on my Morgan 38 and consider it a great compromise.

It tracks and balances well, and maneuvers well in tight spots.

upspirate

Re: Francis Drake

Post by upspirate » Sat Mar 05, 2011 7:40 am


Rob Myran
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Re: Francis Drake

Post by Rob Myran » Sat Mar 05, 2011 11:02 am

I like those Morgans, too. A friend has a 30 foot Morgan from about 1972.

Finn Keel and skeg hung rudder is a great way to go. I have been to several talks by John Kretschmer http://www.yayablues.com/ and he generally advocates that keel arrangement for cruising boats. That, and the responsiveness and speed is why I keep considering the James Cook instead of the Amigo. I just don't really need a boat bigger than the Amigo.

One consideration I keep thinking about is that as fuel prices rise, trailering all but light small boats will become more impractical as the big vehicle that one may not need except for boat hauling along with the fuel get to be a big economic bite. The James Cook's trailer ability may be nice to transport the boat occasionally and to use as the cradle when the boat is on the hard, as well as move it out of harms way - such as a hurricane. One could even rent or borrow a truck for the times one needs to transport it. But the bigger Frances Drake, etc that stays in the water and seasonal gets put out on the hard may become a more reasonable economy.

Meanwhile my little Minuet will not need a big vehicle to take it places and I will be able to lake, coast and river sail or motor that to my hearts content.

So many options, so little time/money
Another fine mess I've gotten myself into!

Mike Worrall
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Re: Francis Drake

Post by Mike Worrall » Sat Mar 05, 2011 6:56 pm

Mike:

I'm building the Francis Drake / C-flex. Yes, it's a bit of a lonely place to be as there aren't many of us building this design. This may be because the F.D. is too big to be trailered, yet (some may consider) too small to be a true passagemaker. Hence - at 29 feet - it may fall outside many potential builder's design criteria; either they're looking for a trailerable design, or something they can head off to Tahiti in.

Working only on weekends (some of which are usurped by other job or family commitments), I'm now in my 10th year of building and still look forward to "next weekend"...

Holler if you have any specific questions.

Mike Worrall
Francis Drake / C-flex
Los Angeles

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Lowka53
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Re: Francis Drake

Post by Lowka53 » Sat Mar 05, 2011 9:03 pm

Mike Worrall wrote:Mike:

I'm building the Francis Drake / C-flex. Yes, it's a bit of a lonely place to be as there aren't many of us building this design. This may be because the F.D. is too big to be trailered, yet (some may consider) too small to be a true passagemaker. Hence - at 29 feet - it may fall outside many potential builder's design criteria; either they're looking for a trailerable design, or something they can head off to Tahiti in.

Working only on weekends (some of which are usurped by other job or family commitments), I'm now in my 10th year of building and still look forward to "next weekend"...

Holler if you have any specific questions.

Mike Worrall
Francis Drake / C-flex
Los Angeles
:lol: I feel for you I 'am building my 29 foot jubilee lol I am the only one right know and my framing is different from the normal build but some similarity
:lol: 8) :roll:
Don't be afraid to attempt anything. You might surprise your self in the attempt.
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Re: Francis Drake

Post by TiredParent » Sun Mar 06, 2011 7:43 am

Mike Worrall wrote:Mike:

I'm building the Francis Drake / C-flex. Yes, it's a bit of a lonely place to be as there aren't many of us building this design. This may be because the F.D. is too big to be trailered, yet (some may consider) too small to be a true passagemaker. Hence - at 29 feet - it may fall outside many potential builder's design criteria; either they're looking for a trailerable design, or something they can head off to Tahiti in.

Working only on weekends (some of which are usurped by other job or family commitments), I'm now in my 10th year of building and still look forward to "next weekend"...

Holler if you have any specific questions.
:lol: Its going to be a while before I try to tackle the Francis Drake or any boat of that size. My current build is somewhat less ambitious (8-Ball :lol: ), and I'm planning to tackle at least one more build (probably the Minuet :) ) starting next year. If I get to the Francis Drake (or anything over 19 feet), it will be after I move out of my current abode... in say 8-10 years. :lol:

By the way, is the C-flex build any easier than working strictly in plywood and glass?

dad21dog
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Re: Francis Drake

Post by dad21dog » Wed Oct 09, 2013 12:21 am

I will be starting a FD build next spring or summer.....

Mike W., I have watched youtube vids of people in smaller boats than the FD making trips from hawaii to alaska, so it can be done....www.cruisinglealea.com (Albin Vega 27)

I myself want to build and sail down to the ICW on the east coast of the US.


Christopher
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Re: Francis Drake

Post by dad21dog » Sat Nov 09, 2013 2:44 pm

Mike......

I just came across a youtube vid of an electric engine on a catalina 30, and found the website of a company in so cal that makes and sells electric engines for yachts aka sailboats......so am going to invest in electric power instead of diesel or gas for my Drake.....going green you could say......it sounds like it's a worthwhile venture.....
Dad21dawg
aka Christopher

"love should be multiplied, not divided"

Mike Worrall
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Re: Francis Drake

Post by Mike Worrall » Mon Nov 11, 2013 4:13 pm

In RE: electric propulsion...

A worthy idea, and one that - in a general sense - has broader implications than powering a boat.

If you intend to use an electric motor to assist with leaving & returning to the dock, and maybe powering the boat at 3-4 knots for an additional hour, then yes: electric propulsion makes some sense.

If, however the vessel is intended for passage-making the electric motor will require an on-board, fossil fueled generator to re-charge the batteries; the so-called 'hybrid electric' solution.

This of course begs the question: If I need a diesel (generator) on board simply to to re-charge the batteries, why bother...?

The issue is the efficiency of energy conversion, and the incredibly high energy potential to weight-of-energy-storage ratio of fossil fuels (which is why it is so hard to get away from fossil fuel powered vehicles). A gallon of diesel fuel (at 7.2 lbs) and its associated 300 lb engine, will move the 10,000 lb Francis Drake about 6 nautical miles in one hour. To achieve the same distance with an electric motor would require batteries weighing roughly 150 lbs (assuming a typical 144 VDC motor driven by 12, 12 VDC, 20 aH AGM batteries). Add to this the weight of the electric motor, the heavy duty wiring and the charge controller.

After a few hours of use, the electric motor / battery propulsion is "done" - the batteries are depleted, there is no more work to be done by the electric motor because there is no remaining stored energy.

However, the 50 gallon fuel tank in the F.D. (holding 357 lbs of fuel) will continue to move the vessel at 6 knots for an additional 2.5 DAYS!

Sure, I'd love to tell Big Oil to Shove It with my new Nissan (all electric) LEAF... but after 100 miles, I need to plug it in for 6-8 hours to re-charge.

In other words, the all electric solution is perfect if you need to leave-from and return-to the Marina with the electric motor, but completely useless (without an on board fossil fuel powered generator) if you're half way between Brazil and the Azores.

See, for example: http://www.morganscloud.com/2013/04/23/ ... ing-boats/

dad21dog
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Re: Francis Drake

Post by dad21dog » Mon Nov 11, 2013 4:25 pm

I see your point Mike....but there is also solar panels on the cabin top to recharge the batteries, as well as motor sailing which in turn will recharge the batteries and I do not plan on AGM batteries but with lithium ion batteries.....if you put the engine in neutral and leave the power on, the turning of the prop during sailing will recharge the batteries....and also give you 1 to 2 knots added hull speed. I'm not sure what the hull speed of the Drake is as I don't know of anyone on these forums who have built one besides you and that's not quite in the water yet. as for wind here, there's an unlimited supply......our gov't in the province thinks hydro electric power is more economical that wind generation.
Dad21dawg
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"love should be multiplied, not divided"

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Stuart
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Re: Francis Drake

Post by Stuart » Mon Nov 11, 2013 7:01 pm

By the time you get that thing finished maybe there will be lots of high tech alternatives but how about getting the thing started before venturing into the world of perpetual motion. There are also wind generators you can place on your boat and there are generators that work on the up and down motion of a boat. Those electrics will give you lots of things to spend hours and hours of your time staring down on the drawing board wondering and worrying. Best thing is to build it and when you get to that point then find out what the state of the art technology can provide. BTW you can steal electricity from radio waves and the hum of transmission towers. Maybe convert some of that methane in the holding tank to fuel.

Stuart

dad21dog
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Re: Francis Drake

Post by dad21dog » Mon Nov 11, 2013 7:10 pm

Stuart wrote:By the time you get that thing finished maybe there will be lots of high tech alternatives but how about getting the thing started before venturing into the world of perpetual motion. There are also wind generators you can place on your boat and there are generators that work on the up and down motion of a boat. Those electrics will give you lots of things to spend hours and hours of your time staring down on the drawing board wondering and worrying. Best thing is to build it and when you get to that point then find out what the state of the art technology can provide. BTW you can steal electricity from radio waves and the hum of transmission towers. Maybe convert some of that methane in the holding tank to fuel.

Stuart

Oh don't worry Stuart......there will be plenty of methane and turbo boost onboard......tins of beans and wieners in the storage lockers will come in very useful......espec when cooked ontop of a "halibut" marine stove, with fresh bread baked in the oven.

But, yes I am putting the cart before the horse with this build, but I want to get a handle on the cost from start to finish and get it in the water within the next 2 to 5 years. yes very adventurous.....a middle age man with possible aspergers syndrome building the perfect boat to live aboard for the next 30 years, painting the bottom with coppercoat every 5 to 10 years.
Dad21dawg
aka Christopher

"love should be multiplied, not divided"

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