POPPY - a classic dayboat

POPPY is a unique wooden sailing craft built in 2002. The details of her design, construction and finish emulate the Victorian sailing canoes popular over 100 years ago. At the same time she gains the advantages of modern plywood construction to give a wooden boat suitable for trailer-sailing. She was built with especial care for robustness and durability and she can be maintained with comparative ease.

LOA 7.3m (24 ft); LOD 6.5m (21 ft 4 ins); Beam 2.0m (6ft 6ins); draft 0.3m/1.5m (12ins/ 5ft); air draft 7.2m (23ft 8ins); Working Sail Area 19 sq m (205 sq ft); bare boat weight 700kgs (1540lb); max displacement 1150 kgs (2530 lb).

for more information and to talk about the boat's design and construction contact FB - it's always possible, too, to produce variants of the Blackwater Sailing Canoe model

POPPY is a large but easily managed half-decked dayboat, the design having evolved from the original, smaller, Blackwater Sailing Canoe (ROB ROY - 1984). She has the capacity to sail with four adults (or more), yet she can also be managed happily single-handed. Unlike the canoe yawls of the past, her rig is actually a ketch, with a larger mizzen and smaller mainsail. The hull carries 150kgs of lead ballast in the bilge rubbers and the centreboard. As well as giving a variety of useful sail combinations, the ketch rig gives us a short main mast, which is easy to handle for trailer sailing.

Built for estuary and coastal sailing, camping aboard, and trailer-sailing, POPPY meets category "C" of the Recreational Craft Directive. The hull form and overall proportions give a well-balanced and seaworthy type of craft, well-suited to stronger sailing conditions. She has a removeable canvas cuddy for extra shelter. There is a large volume of built-in buoyancy, and additional hatched stowage compartments. Twin bilge pumps make for easy removal of water from the bilge. There is a draining anchor locker in the foredeck for her CQR anchor and chain/warp

For auxiliary power she has an outboard well which will accommodate various small outboards; the outboard cannot pivot, but is clamped to a cassette; one can sail with the outboard in place, or the outboard/cassette combination can be moved into the outboard stowage locker and the well aperture streamlined with the corresponding fitted plug.

The rig can be quickly mounted or lowered once the boat is set up in commission: the mizzen ("leg-o' mutton sprit" -type) is unstayed and the sail furls round the mizzen mast; The mast is in a tabernacle - the mainsail, gaff, and boom, run on a sail track which lines up with a track on the tabernacle, so the sail is kept "in place" with the mast lowered; the mast is stayed with fixed shrouds and a lanyard to tension the forestay, the lanyard being undone to lower the mast. The bowsprit can be left in place on the trailer, or may be quickly removed. Thus the boat can be stored and trailed with the rig in readiness, though the rig itself is as complex as many gaff-rigged boats!

a condition report after 14 years

POPPY has been in use for 14 years and carefully looked after, and all the hull structure and fittings and accessories are in good condition. There is the odd "bruise" on the teak rubbing band but on the whole there are few cosmetic defects. The Hull topsides and Boot-top have been repainted, and all the spars taken back to bare wood and re-varnished. The deck has had a light sand and been re-oiled but will return to the normal silvery-grey appearance soon. Sails and rigging are all original and still in good serviceable condition. Really, the boat had not needed much attention apart from anti-fouling over the years, and this is a good example for new wooden boats - the extra work over that on a similar grp boat is small, whilst the aesthetic rewards (etc!) are great..............

The following photos show details of POPPY after 15 yrs

Original Building Specification

for POPPY (there may be inconsequential variations in the finished boat)

[The intention is]......to create a boat which has the appeal and appearance of a traditional ”wooden boat”, whilst at the same time being built no heavier than necessary and utilising modern plywood building technique to good advantage. The boat will be suitable as a dayboat for estuary and coastal use......

stem, centreline, bilge rubbers - Iroko.
frames and hull stringers; African Mahogany or equivalent
deckbeams & stringers; suitable, ash, spruce, and/or pine.
bottom planking: Bruynzeel Regina Mahogany plywood - 8mm thickness (2 layers of 4mm near bow); sheathing up to plank land above waterline.
topside planking; Bruynzeel Regina Mahogany plywood - 8mm
deck ; plywood - 4 mm Bruynzeel Gaboon “Premium” range plus 2.5mm teak veneers with epoxy gluing and seams to look like teak laid deck (not swept)
centreboard case. Plywood with hardwood framing and glass/epoxy sheathing internally.
thwarts, Brazilian cedar or Mahogany
Sole of 9mm marine grade gaboon plywood with non-slip paint.
bulkheads Bruynzeel Regina Mahogany plywood
cockpit sole to use suitable marine grade gaboon plywood. and painted to give non-slip finish.
Coaming - plywood core with teak veneering
other coamings, cappings, rubbing band and trim - teak.
rubbing band of teak with spruce inboard laminate.
Buoyancy compartments and access hatches arranged to meet flotation requirements of RCD and also provide some useful dry stowage.
Rig - mainsail, gaff and boom to be on track. Boom to have track. Lacing to main gaff and mizzen. Stays of flexible stainless steel wire, with lanyards for tensioning.
Spars - Spruce (Canadian Sitka)
ballast and centreboard; ballast total approx 150kgs fixed to hull and in centreboard. Board to be of wood and lead, streamlined, sheathed with glass/epoxy.
Outboard motor – [to have] an outboard well in the stern and stowage in the boat. The outboard motor to be used/accommodated is a: Yamaha model 4AC - 4 h.p. 2 - stroke short shaft outboard motor - weight 27 kgs. The outboard motor to be used has been supplied by the owner. For certification an assumed weight of 30 kgs will be used.
Gluing -Main gluing is with SP epoxy 106 resin or WEST/other equivalent. Polyurethane glue and mastics, Cascamite etc may be used where appropriate - deck sheathing/ plugging, etc
Fastenings; silicon bronze and stainless steel. Copper bolting/riveting may be used as necessary.
Fittings will generally follow a traditional approach. Gunmetal and bronze will be used where possible. Stainless steel will be used for fabricated fittings mainly to do with the rig; shroud plates will be stainless steel “U” bolts. Galvanised steel will be used where appropriate - e.g. mast and bowsprit spider bands - for strength. Keel band galvanised steel.
Hull to be sheathed below boot-top line (sheathing runs under bilge rubbers and external keel.
Sheathing - 200g.s.m. glass cloth with epoxy resin (as wood glue) and weave filled and finished with Blakes Epoxy Primer Undercoat (or International paint equivalent).
Priming - basically 2 coats of clear epoxy glue, or epoxy paint, or polyurethane woodsealer, as appropriate for further painting, varnishing, or gluing etc. Painting - 2 - pot polyurethane paint and varnish on ply surfaces; teak deck oiled; solid timber traditionally coated (e.g. spars).
Colours Ivory Topsides; black boottop; grey antifouling; grey floorboards.

(Note - I will be adding some construction photos shortly- April 2015),