An Occasional Publication for the Home Boat Builder
Glen-L Marine Designs - 9152 Rosecrans Ave. - Bellflower, CA 90706
In this issue
Feedback: Tunnel Mite
I purchased a set of your Tunnel Mite plans as a weekend project. I'm including several pictures that show progress for the Glen-L photo archives. As a first time boat builder, I found the plans very descriptive and easy to follow. I took extra care in assembling the seams of the bottom so there is no fiberglass used, just marine grade fillers and sealers to make the bottom impervious to water. Only a few modifications to the original plans such as slightly higher coamings which results in a higher dash for the steering wheel and "triangular" blocks to re-enforce the transom. I used a 25 hp Tohatsu which is plenty of power and just slightly over your 100 pound weight suggestion. Speeds in the upper 30's with an aluminum stock propeller. I suspect 4 to 6 mph faster with a higher pitched SS propeller. The boat rides a little "shifty" from side to side at slow speeds but smoothes out and really begins to lift at top speeds. Handles very well in light chop water. This boat was fun to build and a blast to drive. Got "White knuckles"?
Emerald Coaster in the Florida Keys
by Don HodgesThe Emerald Coaster is Don's version of the Sweet Caroline.
After 18 months building, my "Emerald Coaster" was ready to go to sea in March 2001! Her shakedown cruise would take me and Tom Hillegass to the Keys, far from her home waters in the Florida panhandle. Tom's son married my daughter in 2000, and this 6-day cruise let us build some common experience. Tom wanted to snorkel the ocean reefs at Looe Key and the Pennekamp Coral Reef Preserve along Key Largo, and I wanted to explore the capabilities of the little 20-foot dory skiff.
(Link to website no longer valid. 6-05)
Yes, my email is still working.
The boat went together in much less actual working time than I imagined. I took, however, about 7 months to complete it. That included only a couple hours here and there and very few 8-hour days. I kept no log and regrettably, have very few pictures of the process. I would say that I could do it again (better), knowing what I know now, in a couple weeks not including painting. It really is THAT easy. Of course the glassing was no treat but even that took less effort and had less problems than I imagined.
Three cheers for Glen-L!!!!!! The design was straight-forward and completely logical. Even so it yielded a really slick package that looks and performs better than the sum of it's parts.
The Outrage is lightning-quick out of the hole. With a normally tuned 120 it rides on only the last 6 feet of keel which I think is really cool! But, trying a change of direction at full onions is something you will want to avoid.
The change in the rear involved using more wood and building a rear end like a 70-80's vintage production model with the motor well being about 1/3 the width of the transom. The boat is heavier as a result and it really was a pain in the neck but it looks cool. Anyway, the design in the plans is the way to go on that score.
The change forward involved a thicker dashboard joist mounted to the carling/coaming between the 3rd and 4th frames. The carling/coaming are thicker and higher than the design and made of vertical grain cherry (EXPENSIVE here in Japan). They really were beautiful but now covered up completely.
I don't know if these changes were prudent or dangerous but I approached them carefully and logically. I hope they are over-engineered. Anyway no related problems since. I would not recommend these changes to anyone.
Mike Irace Lake Biwa, JapanThe following is in response to my question about the response of the local people to the Outrage.
No the shape of the outrage is not strange here. But it is not like any other boat at my marina. Most are larger, more comfortable types.
But the list of non-professionals who would even attempt to build his own boat over here is extremely short. The first day I trailered her to the marina for her maiden, the crowd that gathered was very excited. They said it looked too fast. They were also amazed that anyone would build his own. There were also many comments about how surprised they were that a hand-made boat could look so finished.
Thanks again. Always happy to answer any questions.
Shop Talk: Odds and ends
Bow eye: As a general guide, the bow eye on small boats is located approximately 20" above a straight line extended from the keel. It should be installed perpendicular to the angle of the stem. We recommend fitting before fiberglassing as it is easier to correct mistakes or to flatten an area for the eye if necessary. After fitting, remove the bow eye, fiberglass and redrill the hole. The bow eye should be bedded in a marine mastic or sealant.
Breasthook/stem fairing breasthook: The breasthook mounts on top of the stem and provides a place for the sheers to attach. In our plans, the breasthook is usually made of two pieces of plywood, glued together. The bottom piece is notched to fit around the stem, the top rests on the end of the stem and is glued and fastened to it. The forward end of the stem will stick out beyond the stem, more or less, depending on the design. On some designs such as the Tornado, which has a long bow, the overhang can be long. This is necessary because the breasthook is faired so that it continues the curve of the stem.
See the drawing at the right.
We have frequent questions asking why the point of the breasthook extends so far... "perhaps the notch is too deep?"
I hope that the drawing answers this question.
Poxy-Shield as a glue: Although this is discussed in many places on our web site, we still get questions asking what glue we recommend and what filler we use for gluing. Our glue of choice is Poxy-Shield. This epoxy resin is also used for coating, fiberglassing, and stitch and glue fillets. When we use it for gluing, we always add a filler. Fillers insure that the resin will bridge gaps between uneven surfaces and allows you to put more glue into the joint. The filler Allyn uses is our #1 Silica (Cab-O-Sil or Aero-Sil). #1 Silica is a fumed silica. When mixed with the resin, it acts like adding flour to water: it becomes thicker and less runny. Other fillers will work, but none is as creamy and easy to use as #1 Silica.
by Dale Mogk
My best friend and I bought plans for the Rebel in October of 1985. We were living in Lompoc, CA at the time (just north of Santa Barbara in CA). By July of 1986 the boat was in the water in Lopez Lake which is behind Arroyo Grande, just south of San Luis Obispo. It was a 9 month gestation period.
Our boat is named the "Lunatic Fringe" and we actually had the name before the plans. We went to our local drive-in movie and watched Vision Quest and the ending credits rolled to the song Lunatic Fringe by Red Rider (an obscure Canadian band). I announced that this was the name of our (imaginary at this point) boat. After looking through the CA registration requirements we decided upon the Rebel as our preferred design.
Soon after we received the plans we were headed down to the intersection of Anaheim and I-710 for wood. Except for the frames, which we bought from you folks, the structure is oak - we expected to need the strength. We got "spiral cut" mahogany plywood for the deck area, it looks great - the deck changes color as you walk around it. We clear coated it with Z-Spar Polyurethane. The rest of the hull is white and the sheer, plus some accents, is a dark blue. The motor well and interior is a much lighter blue.
We have a full array of the necessary deck hardware including open chocks, cleats and snap sockets (or whatever those gizmos are) for fenders, two on each side. It really looks like a late 1950's vintage ski boat. Just aft of the bow cleat is a button sticking up just a little - it's the (electrically) retracted antenna for our AM/FM Cassette deck and CB radio. When we launch we play Lunatic Fringe on the cassette deck.
We looked through all the "Penny Saver" type handouts for older (1950's - 1960's) Mercury motors in our area. Eventually we wound up with a number of Mark 78's and 700's. We then raided our local Mercury dealership for all their on the shelf stock of parts for these motors. Now, the boat has a Direct-Reverse Mark 78 with a Merc 700 power head. Extreme care must be exercised when approaching the dock as the motor must be stopped and re-started in reverse when coming in hot - a dicey operation to be sure. We know it's not the stock color for this vintage Mercury motor, but we had the motor epoxy-coated black.
As it is a left hand rotation motor, we put the steering wheel, instruments and controls on the left side of the boat. The right side of the dashboard has our (ski) glove compartment. The front seat is actually two bucket seats, but the area between them is filled with a 15 gallon fuel tank (we can go all day!). The rear seat faces aft. There is no windshield.
When the Lunatic Fringe was complete we contacted our local DMV office. They got a general description of her and decided we didn't need to actually bring her down so they could see her.
"A homemade, 14'-10" plywood boat with an outboard motor" was a sufficient description. They assessed her at $650, sight unseen. This represents quite a savings in unsecured property taxes, I assure you. We paid the fees and got our hull number. We never actually totaled the cost, but it must come in around $8,500 somewhere. Remember, this was in late 1985 and early 1986. Things have changed here in California, I understand.
They did want to see the trailer, also built from Glen-L plans. We had it welded by a fellow who worked at Diablo Nuclear Power Plant - the welds are outstanding!
With the direct reversing motor, it can be a real handful in marinas. With the oak construction, it will do about 36 MPH at redline on the (somewhat less than) 77 hp the motor puts out through our Volvo/Penta 3 bladed prop. Viewed from the front she puts out quite a bit of spray, but it stays outside the boat except in conditions we don't want to be out in anyway. Skiers report a very nice, small tabletop and minimal wake. I don't know as I just love driving her and my uncorrected vision leaves something to be desired. With a moderately sized skier at the end of the ski rope we can do about 33 at full throttle and a couple of hundred rpm below redline.
All-in-all it has been a very satisfying project. We have pictures in two large albums, unfortunately my brother, my best friend, nor I have any idea where they are at the moment. My best friend swears they are with the boat. My brother swears he never got them. The boat is back in Lompoc, in my brother's custody.
As I just bought a set of "Bayou" plans for my '92 Dakota, perhaps when I complete the camper I'll go over to Lompoc, hitch up, and drag the whole shooting match down to Bellflower to show off.
Dale - top of the Cajon Pass, Phelan, CAThe greatest difference between genius and stupidity is: genius has its limits!
Subject: Re: Glen-L 17
Thank you for your Email request! I really appreciate how you're always upgrading your website & keeping in contact (like your message to me)! Yes, my Email address is still good. The project, GL17 isn't completed (kidding) have been sailing her for 15 years. The reason 'it isn't completed' is because I'm always upgrading...or trying to. A few months ago I added roller furling to the jib...one of the best things I've ever done. Then, over the Holidays, added a 60 watt stereo system that is fabulous to listen to...especially downwind. I'm also, in the process of adding a battery cut-off switch because of the additional electronics added. New cushions are in the future as well. Thanks again for your question...and...I hope 'the project is never complete'! Peace & great sailing to all.
Subject: Super Spartan model
Just thought you might like to look at my model Super Spartan. It's 50 inches long, 24 inches wide and does 40mph +. Runs 3BHP weed eater engine
Below is the result of your feedback form. It was submitted on Friday, April 18, 2003 at 16:35:01
name: Johann Hedinsson
Greetings from the frozen north.
Subject: my completed mai tai
Note: The Mai Tai is designed for plywood and is not detailed for aluminum. It can be found in the Cruiser section of our on-line Catalog (with cabin).
Subject: Re: Scull Boat
My project is complete and I hunted out of it for the first time this past fall. I was successful in trying to scull but will need a lot more practice. The boat is very stable and I took it thru some rough waters with breakers going over the bow just past the port hole on occasion :(. It held tough and I did not have far to go. I punished it in the ice and it was great. A well designed boat.
Thank you for asking,
Subject: Squirt in the works
We thought we'd send you in some pictures of the boat we are building from your Glen L "Squirt" plans.
It was started during the Christmas holidays, and we're hoping to have her ready to launch this summer. It is for our 11 year old daughter, Vanessa.... and she has already christened the boat "L'il Nessy".
We have take 10 pictures of the boat in progress.... from the construction of the frame... to it's present state - the deck caulked and varnished, and the hull painted black.
Love your website, love the Squirt!!
Some things to be aware of if you're new at this boat building thing,
Well boat builders it's been alot of fun and sometimes frustrating. I think I'm going to build the Tunnel King next winter, I've got a nice 200 to put on it.
Safe Boating Dudes
Subject: For the WebLetter
April 8, 2003
This is the 3rd of four Glen-L designs I have built. The Audeen has mahogany frames, decks, cabin trim and motor cover. The longitudinal battens are oak with stiffeners. The outer hull is 3/8 marine plywood. It is powered with a 283 V/8 engine. The boat was completed in 1988 and is still pristine and being used regularly. The hardware, including the windshield brackets are from a 1954 Chris.
I just completed my second Topper and will forward pictures soon.
Very truly yours,
Subject: Recent email
Hello Barry, the Power Skiff is complete and it saw some serious action last year. After a few test trials on a local lake, I took it up north for a week of fishing and camping. It performed beautifully! We had some pretty rough water to contend with on the trips in to the campsite, at first I was very cautious, not being real used to the boat. I soon found my comfort zone and had a real good time skipping over the waves. I had bought a tiller extension which seemed to really help when I was out by myself. The other guys were real impressed with the boat. The best thing? I had always had the slowest boat out of the group, now with the light skiff, I have the fastest. Kind of nice getting to the fishing hole first for a change!
I actually ordered another set of plans from you for the Gypsy. I have most of the lumber now and plan on starting building soon, this winter has been very long and cold, and I am looking forward to starting another Glen-L project. I love the registry, and am currently in contact with Kurt Ayers from Illinois, who is building a Gypsy now as well. So between us I'm sure you will have some questions directed your way!
There is more about Daniel's project in the Project Registry. Plus some other good information from other builders.
Subject: Re. Malahini
I completed the Malahini last summer. It looks great. I put a 70 horse Merc. on it and it runs great. Making changes to the seats. Putting captain's seats in and adding a stabilizer. The one thing I wanted to do was have a mahogany deck. I didn't do a good job in finishing the deck, so I had to paint it. Either this summer or next I think I would like to do the deck over. Mahogany plywood is hard to finish. I've seen some really great looking finishes that I will have to find out how they were done.
To be honest, the fun has been in the building not as much in the cruising. I'd love to build another boat. After all I have learned, I could do a better job and much faster. Overall I am very pleased.
Subject: Kingfisher update
Hi, sorry I didn't get the time to update my progress. As of today, April 10 2003: The frame members were assembled. I used epoxy glue with a mixture of silica and microspheres for most of my permanent contacts and stainless steel flat-head screws for fastening. Then I built the building form and started to place the frame members on the stringers. After that, I placed the battens, chine log and sheer clamp. I had a bit of trouble with the chine. What happened was, I had started fairing the chine just after frame #5 and in the blink of an eye, snap it broke, even with the boiling water on it, it broke. Oh well, better now than in the water. That was probably the worst thing that has happened, other than that, everything is going very well.
I have all the plywood panels put on, I could not find any 10' B.C fir plywood so I had to use 8'. It just meant that there were 2 extra butt joints. After that I applied the 10 ounce fiberglass with epoxy. I found the video that I bought from you great to have. I watched it about 8 times and didn't make one mistake. When the fiberglassing and sanding was done I used a two part epoxy primer to cover the glass and then I used a white Interlux bottom coat for the bottom of the boat and ocean blue for the sides. It was 3 weeks ago today that myself and my brothers turned the boat over, it was quite a moment, I was very happy. The motor well is in, the deck is on, the cockpit sole is on, and now I am in the process of making the seats and the control console. Oh, and about a month ago I purchased a 150hp Johnson. It is a 1987, but I was told that she works great. I will write you when I am finished.
P.S thanks for answering all of my crazy questions
Subject: Re. Squirt
Subject: Re. Stripper
I was able to finish my boat late last year and finally take it out in the water a few weeks ago. The boat performed real good and the wife felt very much at home in the front. I sent in an update a few weeks back and believe it is in archives.
It was just like I heard. When you take a strip built boat out you meet people that are interested in it. It happened to me in the Chick-fil-A parking lot. I'll be taking the boat to the wooden boat show in Beaufort NC next month. I think it will be a good time, since I've only been a spectator in the past.
Thanks for a good boat design and I'm looking forward to starting your center console next year.
Subject: Minuet update
Attached is a picture and it tells it all! Launch was January 14th at Port St. Joe, Florida. 'MISS BOO' lives up to all my expectations. She sails better than I expected. Is faster for her size than I expected. Points very well. Is extremely stable in rough seas. Thanks to GlenL for their advice during construction.
John Van Newenhizen
Subject: Re. Marauder
We launched in May of last year, although to be honest have not really completed performance trials - the day job got in the way - the boat has been in dry dock for the winter and is due to be relaunched in the next few weeks.
As you are aware from earlier correspondence we actually fitted 2 No. 291mm Hamilton Jets each coupled to Ford Magnum 400hp Mermaid Marine Engines. When launched the boat was left for approx. six weeks before we started motoring - work got in the way again - but during this time unknown to us there was huge growth of barnacles on and within the Jet Intake plates ( having missed this area with the anti-fouling, I know, don't go there ) which resulted in the intake plates being closed approx. 70%. We didn't realize this until we took the boat out in October for the winter, even still she would comfortably achieve 17/18 knots at 1800 rpm. We are interested to see the performance this year now that the intake blocks have been cleaned, and yes, anti-fouled.
Been done for 3 years now I think. She runs at 53mph with a 200 merc EFI. I lengthened the hull to 20'4" and it has a 15hp kicker on it.
Lots of great comments from onlookers.
Subject: Re. James Cook
Thanks for the interest in my James Cook. I'm finishing my standing rigging with only a couple more to make up. If everything goes OK I'll be stepping the mast to make sure all my lengths are correct. That being said, I'll be able to launch in a few months. I got my fingers crossed and hope everything goes all right. Ken
Below is the result of your feedback form. It was submitted on Tuesday, April 08, 2003 at 10:37:58
name: Marc Draleau
Comments: I am presently building "Tiny Titan" with my 15 year old son. This is our first boatbuilding experience and so far we've enjoyed every aspect of it. From hunting through lumber at the lumber yards to trying to decide a color scheme. We're hooked!
Subject: Lord Nelson for the old boat registry
Lord Nelson 33 / Keith Zwart / Glen-L Lord Nelson 33, purchased November, 2002. Boat is in pretty good shape. Cold-molded mahogany hull and plywood decks. The paperwork indicates that the boat was built by Lyle, and the hailing port for at least 8 years has been Seaford, VA.
I am repairing some deck rot (chainplates) and doing a re-power. Also rebuilding some deck hatches and prepping the deck for repainting.
Any information about the history of this particular boat is greatly appreciated. Some items on-board suggest that she's been to the California coast, and I'm curious about her travels.
Planning a voyage up the east coast to Newfoundland, Iceland and Norway.
Love this boat. Extremely comfortable accommodations!
Anyone know anything about this boat? Mr. Zwart can be reached through the Old Boat Club on the Glen-L site.
My Glen-L 15 was finished in May of 2001. We now live on a small lake in northern Indiana and the boat saw a fair amount of use last summer. I was not a "sailor" until I built the boat, so I don't have much to compare it to. The boat is very stable and is easy to sail. We get a lot of compliments since it is the only wooden sailboat on Loon Lake. This will be our third season and the boat is holding up well with a minimum of maintenance. I will probably re-finish the mahogany decking in the fall. We may look to repaint the hull which is white enamel next year. I am looking to built more boats, but with the move I do not have an appropriate building right now.
Subject: Tango update
04-07-2003: For the past 2 weekends I have been building a trailer for my Tango. I ordered the metal delivered from a local supplier for $188.00 and I ordered a utility trailer kit from Southwestwheel for $351 including shipping. The kit included a 3500 lb. axle, springs, bolts, hangar kit, 14 inch wheels & tires, fenders, coupler, jack, lights, wiring, and license plate holder. http://www.southwestwheel.com/traileraxles.htm
I must tell you I brag about your website all the time. Thank you for being there. Thanks for all the help. Is there a short history available for the Glen-L enterprise. I would be interested in reading the Glen L. Witt story sometime. I am trying to keep a really good photographic & text record of my experience as I progress. I am a design engineer at a weapons laboratory. I build guitars & mandolins (and a bass now and then) as a hobby. Boat building is new for me with my Tango. I researched in libraries and on line for 3 years before deciding on your Tango for my project. I started last year in April and I have allowed myself 3 years for completion. I think I am ahead of schedule for now. Your own expert guidance as well as the boat builder connection were my main reasons for choosing the Tango, after of course, the design. I hope to turn my entire experience into a manuscript of sorts which I will pass on to you with full release & publication rights. I hope to encourage others to follow in my path. I must confess that although I grew up swimming, skiing, and boating, I had never sailed until last year. There is a really great lake within 45 minutes of my home that is a no wake lake and lots of sailboats. I was fortunate enough to meet a friendly seasoned sailor who invited me to sail with him. I will be sailing with him again and taking lessons as I build my Tango. This is by far the most rewarding endeavor I have ever undertaken. I will keep you up to date. Once again thanks for all the help and thanks for being there. Just for your information, I am 52 years old and expect to spend many years sailing my Tango.
Subject: Glen-L 15
The project has been completed for a while. The first outing went well right up until I pulled the boat out of the water and hit a branch and snapped the mast mount and all the rigging. It took most of the summer to get it back up and running. It still leaks a little, but you can finish your beer before you need to bail a can of water. :-) On the bright side, at least the mast didn't break.
Photos, including my first boat, a Topper with TopHat sail, are located at: http://www.thesonntags.com/ark2.html Actually, I used the main from the TopHat sail (with a little trimming) as the jib for the Glen-L 15. I haven't actually taken any pictures under sail, but hope to this summer.
Subject: Glen-L 12
It is good to hear from you guys out in California. I have completed my Glen-L 12 and have made two good weekend trips to Panama City, FL to play on it. She handles great. She is very responsive to her rudder and has a surpassingly large amount of speed capabilities when sailing both up and down wind. The boat sails particularly well wing and wing on a downwind run. You can set the jib to the desired position and then gibe the main over and away she goes. I really appreciate all of the help that you at Glen-L provided for me throughout the building process. When I get around to it I will scan some photos and e-mail them to you.
Subject: Glen-L 36 Delphin
GLEN-L 36 Delphin (midship cockpit) / Miguel Abaunza Sr. & Miguel Abaunza III / El Paso, TX / After a long period of research, learning about boatbuilding purchasing tools and lots of clamps we finally purchased the GLEN-L 36 Delphin plans back in January 2003. After studying the plans and instructions we have now completed the building form on April 6 2003.
NOTE FOR GLEN-L:
While doing our research, my 14 year old son and I had decided to build the GLEN-L Francis Drake. We ran into the name of Mr. Miguel Occttaviani on your site. Mr. Occttaviani happens to live also in El Paso, about 1/4 of a mile from where we live. He is in the process of building a GLEN-L 36 Delphin. After meeting for several weekends with him, it became obvious that by joining efforts, we could solve many of the boatbuilding problems together.
We jointly decided to build identical sailboats about 1/4 mile apart. The experience has been great. We research a problem at a time and meet on weekends to discuss possible solutions. Living in El Paso, Texas around one thousand miles from the nearest ocean and in the middle of the Southwest Desert, finding Mr Occttaviani with similar sailing interests and dreams was a strock of luck. Thanks to your web site.
Subject: S&G Eight Ball
The project went very well. My first association with Glen-L was when I was about 9 or ten years old ( I am now 54). My Dad and a friend of his built a ski boat from Glen-L plans called L Dorado. I saw some pictures of this very same boat on your website a while ago. This whole process somehow imprinted on my mind and I have had the bug ever since. In 1974 I built a Glen-L 12 and taught myself how to sail with that boat. This too was a very successful project for me. I owned this boat for about 10 years and had many, many compliments on how well it sailed and how great it looked. I now own a Catalina 27(1973 model, hull #902 of about 6600 built) and needed a dinghy as tender. I turned to a trusted resource, Glen-L Marine, and chose the stitch and glue Eight Ball. I have had the boat in service for about two years now. The construction concept is great, I tried to do a very good job so I probably had more time invested than some might have used. I would estimate that I have the straight time equivalent of about 100 hours in the boat. I used all Glen-L epoxy and fiberglass supplies as well as the deluxe hardware kit. I cut my own sail from a blown out Genoa on the Catalina. The Eight Ball performs well rowing, with 5 horse outboard, or with sail. I will be teaching my 4 year old son to sail this summer with this boat. Thanks again for a great and world class customer service.
Regards, John Knoll
Subject: Mummysue is Launched
Dear Gayle and all at Glen-L
Mummysue, is Launched and at her berth, she is the talk of the Marina,
got her up to 5.6 Knots at sea, she handles like a dream.
Lost for words at the moment,
Mummysue is Bob's version of the Jack Tar. The construction and launch will be featured in the next two issues of the British magazine, Water Craft.
Subject: Re. Eight Ball
Build more boats
GLEN-L boats, of course