Puslapio vaizdai

Buckeyes are favored only in the South. Originally the buckeye was a log hollowed out and shaped into a boat, and was used by the negroes. To-day, however, buckeyes are built upon carefully drawn plans, and many of them are excellent vessels. They are common on the coast waters south of the Delaware Bay, and are used chiefly for hunting-boats, their cheapness, handiness, and roominess rendering them useful to the sportsman. A true buckeye is a double-ender, but some large ones have been built with an overhang stern, which destroys the ideal and creates a new kind of craft. The buckeye is not considered "pretty" by yachting men, but it is in every respect a serviceable boat, being both speedy and safe. The lee-board, a primitive contrivance designed to check the drift of a sailing vessel, was attached to the earlier buckeyes, but nowadays the regulation center-board is used with these boats. Lee-boards are sometimes used with flat-bottomed freight-vessels such as one sees in the waters of the Great Lakes and the Gulf of California; they are also attached to some sailing canoes, but are not properly a part of the equipment of any boat worthy to be called a yacht. The lee-board is merely a blade of wood dropped at the side of a vessel to give her a hold upon the water.

Similar to the buckeye in appearance is a vessel used in waters a thousand miles distant from those which are the home of the buckeye, and commonly known as a Mackinaw boat. It is the typical vessel of Lake Superior, upper Lake Michigan, and Green Bay. This boat is also a double-ended craft, rigged generally with two leg-o'-mutton sails, sometimes with the addition of a jib. The Mackinaw boat is popular as a fisherman, and the Indian fishers of the Great Lakes use it in catching whitefish, one of the chief industries of those waters. It can outsail the average fancy yacht, and is a very trustworthy sea-boat, two excellent qualities which have led to its adoption by many yachters of the Lakes as a general cruiser and pleasure-boat. The simple Mackinaw boat has no deck, and has a very pronounced sheer and a high bow and stern, but since it became a yachting craft it has been improved by the addition of deck and cabin, and is one of the best yachts for all-round use that one can find.

A few years ago the sailing public was surprised by the appearance upon the waters of a spider-like contrivance which its friends said was a "catamaran." This new claimant for yachting favor was like the raft of the South Sea Islanders only in name; in fact, it was not a catamaran at all, but a new device for racing over the water by means of sails. Wonderful feats were predicted for the future of the catamaran, and it certainly did accomplish some

thing; but after a long and fair trial (for the yachter, no matter how bigoted he may be, will always try a new boat) it was discarded as a useless, dangerous, and decidedly unsatisfactory kind of craft. The theory of the catamaran's designers was that by setting sails upon two narrow, sharp hulls placed wide apart great speed could be obtained, because of the small resistance offered by the water against such hulls, and because the wide spread of the two boats would render the craft uncapsizable under lateral wind-pressure. Theory failed to fit facts, however, and the catamaran has long since disappeared from the surface of the waters; its moldering form may be seen almost any

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where upon the shore of a yachting harbor, a shattered monument to the time, labor, and money that were sacrificed in giving it a trial. The faults of the catamaran were many. It did indeed show speed, provided the conditions under which it was used were exactly to its liking; but Nature has a way of making her conditions disagreeable to the sailor and the ship, and the genius who conceived the catamaran seems not to have taken this into his reckoning when he created his boat. The catamaran was always out of order in rough water; often a moderate chop sea was sufficient to shake it in twain; it had a bad habit of losing or break


ing its rudders; it was even guilty of letting its center-board be twisted out just when the center-board was handy to have; it would not rise to a sea, neither would it go through it steadily, as does a well-fined cutter; and it did actually capsize in a very disagreeable and unseemly manner, kicking up its heels and plunging nose down, as a cat-boat will sometimes "pitchpole," thus turning a porpoise-like somersault, and disgracing both itself and its master. So the catamaran, after a just trial by a jury of all the yachters, has disappeared, and is not likely to be seen again.

Another style of craft, now out of date and rarely seen, is the pirogue, or, as it was usually called, "periauger." This vessel is a doubleended, narrow hull, rigged with two pole-masts eachcarryinga gaff-sail-what might be termed, in brief, a double cat-rigged boat. The pirogue was at one time the Jersey Dutchman's favorite boat, and in the early days, when New York was still remembered as "New Amsterdam" and Jersey City was known as "Powles Hook," a pirogue-ferry was operated by the enterprising Dutch of the two towns on the opposite shores of the Hudson. In those days a "voyage" across the river against adverse winds was considered quite a journey, and the pirogue making the best time became famous. A comparison between the pirogue-ferry of those times and the equipment of such ferries as now ply across the

Hudson is suggestive of the march which progress has made in a few brief decades. The pirogue is rarely seen nowadays, but one meets it occasionally. It is generally used as a hunting and pleasure-sailing craft. Originally it was fitted with a leeboard, but in the modern boat the center-board takes the place of that discarded contrivance.

A new aspirant has recently come into the yachting field, of which much is expected by certain advocates of shoal-boat sailing. This new craft is really an improved "sneakbox," a form of duck-hunting boat in use all over the country. The sneakbox of the West is a rowboat, but duck-hunters on the New Jersey coast and other waters of the Atlantic seaboard inlets have always built their sneak-boxes with a view to carrying sail, and constant improvement has actually developed a boat which is an exceedingly fine sailer, and a weatherly craft. The further improvement mentioned, which has resulted in the creation of a new type of sail-boat, is known by the somewhat non-nautical name of "watermelon." It is a spoon-shaped, slooprigged craft. This unique vessel has been tried

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for two seasons, and reports speak well of its performance. It is an odd-looking boat, but in the hands of a skilful sailor seems to justify the application of the old saw," Handsome is as handsome does."

Lake yachting has certain peculiarities not common with yachting on the salt water. For example, the water-ballasted boat, which is seldom seen upon the sea, has been in use by lake yachters for years. Some of the vessels sailed on the waters of the Great Lakes carry no other ballast. The water ballast is sometimes held in fixed tanks secured at the bottom of the boat; in other cases it is carried in long, narrow boxes which are stowed below like a cargo. When racing with tank-ballasted yachts, it has sometimes been customary to alter the ballast by pumping out the water, or by adding more, as the needs of the racer might require. This ability to change ballast at will gives one yacht decided advantage over another with fixed ballast; since, when running free before the wind, the water-ballasted boat may be lightened so that she may go more swiftly, while, when she is compelled to beat to windward under lateral pressure, a refilling of her water-tanks at once adds to her stability and sail-carrying power. By salt-water yachters such a practice would not be countenanced, since it would be considered unfair.

The water-ballasted boat certainly has one point in its favor-if capsized it cannot sink; and this desirable quality in a yacht has given

impetus in the East to the building of what is known as the Norton life-boat, a vessel constructed on peculiar principles. Briefly described, the Norton boat is of the following design. Her water-ballast is confined in tanks on each side of her keel-line; these tanks are opened to the sea at points near the keel; in the upper part of each tank, along each side of the boat, is an air-chamber. The theory of the inventor is that, when the vessel is pressed down to leeward, the water in the leeward tanks is forced upward against the air-cushions, and the resistance of the air thus compressed holds the boat up. The water in the windward tanks cannot escape, because the outlets are below the water-line of the boat; this water remains as "dead ballast." Concerning the Norton boat much has been written, but no positive proof has yet been furnished that it is all that is claimed for it. It certainly behaves well, and is a very stiff boat in a hard blow. Such a boat really floats upon its cabin floor, or rather upon the upper limits of its watertanks.

Leaving the discussion of the odds and ends of yacht styles, we come, by natural progress, to a type which is destined to greater popularity as time goes on, and yachters learn the ways of the sea, and the best methods of dealing with them. Although the schooner is generally deemed a big yacht, it is nevertheless a fact that small schooners are desirable boats to have, and that the number of schooners of small ton

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nage is increasing. There is no denying the advantage of the schooner's rig over that of the sloop. A schooner of forty feet is handier, safer, and less expensive to run than a forty-foot sloop. The rig of the schooner is peculiarly adapted to all weathers, and a small crew can handle such a vessel with ease, when to manage a sloop of equal size would require the best efforts of "all hands and the cook." The reason for this is that the schooner's sails can be attended to one at a time, which is not the case with the big-mainsail sloop. Any yachter of experience can relate tales of hard trials with a sloop in rough weather that would not have worried a schooner's crew at all. The waters of the eastern Sound and of Boston Harbor have many of these little schooners, and their owners get from them an amount of comfort that can never be appreciated save by one who has had experience with both schooner and sloop. A typical yacht of this kind is the flagship Edith of the New York Yacht Racing Association. Her owner, President Prime, has cruised in her to Florida, and found her as safe and handy at sea as many a large vessel. Such a yacht is cheap to build, cheap to run, and very roomy. For men who seek to yacht for pleasure, comfort, and safety, the schooner and the yawl are beyond question ideal boats. If racing be the desire of the yachting man, however, the cat, jib-and-mainsail, sloop- and cutter-rigged yachts are the boats in which he should invest and sink his cash.

A word concerning the endless "centerboardand-keel" controversy may not be out of place here. As applied to small cruising yachts, it is not out of the way to state that, unless shoal waters make it imperative that one should have only a light-draft boat, the deep-keel vessel is much the better craft for the yachter to use. In such a boat depth gives accommodation, the absence of the center-board trunk leaves the cabin freed from a great inconvenience, while the stability of such a boat contributes to safety. It is generally agreed that the best small cruiser is a boat of good beam and draft, carrying her ballast on her keel. Such a yacht is uncapsizable, a great advantage in a small vessel. The compromise, or keel-and-centerboard type of boat, is also popular. A boat of this kind has good draft, lead or iron keel-ballast, and the center-board is considered a benefit to her in going about and in racing. The very lightdraft center-board yacht is not the best cruiser, the only excuse for her use in that capacity being the necessity of light draft in waters which are shallow, as are the waters of many of our small harbors. A general deduction from these points of view may be summarized thus: use a keel boat if you can; a center-board boat if you must.

With racing yachts the case is different. A racer should be built with one idea-to win; and if light draft and a big center-board will win, one should use them. For rough-water racing, however, it has been demonstrated

quite conclusively that the "skimming-dish," as the light-draft boat is called, is not the best yacht. In bad weather the yacht with good body and draft, and ballast well down, has often proved herself the champion. The narrowbeamed cutter with very deep draft has also held her own in such weather against all comers. And just here a note in reference to the diagrams shown in a and b may be interesting. These drawings show the development of the deep, narrow boat from the shoal type. They are from the scale plans of well-known yachts,


4. Midship section of typical center-board sloop-yacht, forty feet long over all, fourteen feet beam, three feet nine inches deep, exclusive of trunk., Body-plan of typical English cutter, thirty-eight feet long over all, six feet beam, and six feet draft.

and serve better than words to mark the different types. The plan b is an excellent form of keel type, being excessive neither in draft nor in beam; but a is too light for a stable boat. A compromise between a and b would give a good type of boat for general all-round yachting purposes.

Racing with small yachts has for many years been one of the delights of yachters. With the growth of yachting and the development of organizations this sport grew rapidly in popularity, and now racing is always the great feature of a club's yachting season. In the earlier days of yacht racing some droll things occurred. It was soon discovered that a big boat could beat a small one, and the necessity of time-allowance rules became obvious to the yachters. At first it was deemed sufficient to grade the boats according to size; and actual size being an unattainable measure, length was adopted as a standard of size. So the yachts were measured over their decks for the purpose of classification. The began an era of building to beat the racing rule, and the result was a boat longer on the keel than over deck. Objection was made to this unfairness, and the rule was changed, the measure of length on the keel being adopted as fair. In a short time the yachting world witnessed the birth of a new type of boat with the keel cut away forward and aft. Again the boat was made bigger than her measure indicated. Next came the water-line rule of measurement, which was fair, excepting that it took no account of the overhang sterns of many yachts, which thus gained advantage over square-sterned boats of equal water-line length. VOL. XLIV.-4.

So a reckoning was made for overhang, and this is the general practice to-day. When the New York Yacht Racing Association was organized, this question of racing-length was decided in a manner so satisfactory that no just complaint of unfairness has ever arisen; and the majority of clubs in the country have adopted the association rule, which is simple, sportsmanlike, and free from the complications that always cause trouble in clubs which use tonnage and sail-area rules. The association rule measures a yacht by this formula:

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that is to say, one half of the overhang of the stern is allowed.

Concerning this association a word should be said, because its organization marks a new era in yachting. It was formed in 1889 by ten clubs, the object being to create a sportsmanlike spirit and a feeling of cordiality among all yachters. Its growth in popularity was rapid, and in a year its membership had doubled. Today it includes nearly every yacht-club on the waters of New York harbor, New Jersey, and the western Sound. Its annual regattas have made it a success, as a few figures will show. In the regatta of 1889, 120 yachts entered, the largest number ever sailed in any race. In 1890, the entries numbered 180; in 1891, 160 boats entered. The association has been a boon to yachters, bringing them together in friendly intercourse, and fostering a spirit of good-fellowship and kindly rivalry. The association has a cruise every year, and this feature has become almost as popular with its members as the regatta. Sixty yachts participated in the cruise of 1890. In 1891, one hundred little vessels sailed the waters of Long Island Sound,


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