Saturday, September 12, 2009

Valgerda or Kari?

The plans arrived from the Atkin Co. in November 2004. I had a lot of work to do to get my shop to where I could accommodate building a 19-foot boat and other projects that needed finishing. While I was working on those other things I studied the plans, built models of Valgerda and fretted about how I was going to build her.
Atkin designed Valgerda in 1952 taking the lines off of a faering imported from Norway. He praised the workmanship and design of the faering that was the inspiration for his design. The only thing he changed was the keel. He said: "I designed a new keel - the original boats had a long, shallow keel approximately 4 inches deep. When loaded, they had sufficient lateral plane to hold the little craft on the wind. With expert handling, they had little difficulty in reaching port." He drew a shallow ballast keel that housed 106 pounds of lead. The other change he suggested in building the faering was that marine plywood be used for the planking since 20-inch wide pine planks are hard to come by.
As my list of projects in the shop diminished, my doubts about whether I'd chosen the right design grew. Then I found another faering, this one was designed Selway-Fisher firm in England. The lines for this design were taken from a historic 1892 boat that now resides in a museum. It was designed for "stitch and glue" construction, which appealed to me also.
In the Selway-Fisher catalog it says of the Kari 2: "The original (was) built in 1892 for the sum of 70 Kroner (£3.10.0). The original is now in a museum and still in excellent condition, having been used by several generations for holidays and a few long expeditions. We have now taken the original lines and produced construction drawings for modern stitch and epoxy construction using plywood. The hull is a close resemblance of the original but we have given her a deeper keel to enhance her windward performance."
I ordered the plans for Kari 2 and they arrived in November 2006 and I built a model from the Selway-Fisher plans. The deeper keels on both Valgerda and Kari bothered me because it was a departure from the original faerings and because I felt I needed a boat with a shallower draft to explore the parts of the Oregon coast I yearned to go.
I decided to build my faering using the Atkin plans for Valgerda. Part of my decision was because I had a hard time wrapping my head around the metric measurements in the Selway-Fisher plans. But more than that Valgerda just appealed more to me ascetically.

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