Sunday, June 6, 2010

Canal Boat Design

As we've mentioned, Dragonfly was formerly the Honeyoe, one of a fleet of "hire boats" (hire boats being boats you can rent and pilot yourself) operated by Mid-Lakes Navigation in Macedon, NY. Here are some interesting aspects of our boat's design.

Look at the tiller (photo at right, the wooden thingy that you use to steer). The boat-builder, Peter Wiles, Sr., specifically designed the tiller to be high enough to clear a beer can left on the seat. Spilled beer, would, of course, be wasteful.

Also, notice that though the steersman sits under a canvas canopy, there is NO windscreen. If it's raining, or cold and windy, there you are, out in the elements. Again, this was deliberate design. Peter Wiles said, "If the weather is bad, I want my boats tied up at the dock!" (Not out on the water with an inexperienced captain.

Some folks have been expressing concern about the sea-worthiness of Dragonfly . . . to which we can only say, we promise to follow the good advice of an expert boat-builder and stay in port in bad weather.

(Not to mention, we only drink beer on the stern when we are in dock.)

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