"BADGER" - Outboard modified
dory, wood. 15' 1" LOA, 4' 3" beam. 275 Ibs.
Plans include original article from Sports Afield Boatbuilding
Annual, lines, offsets, profile, construction drawings,
and suggested bill of materials.
No small vessel can top the Gloucester dory
as a boat able to take punishment and ask for more. But a true
dory is the world's crankiest boat. Badger has all the dory's
virtues of sea kindliness and husky charm, yet she'll be easy
to power and maneuver.
Badger is a modified dory suitable for the lower-powered
motors. As seaworthy as the wave tops thernselves, she is comfortable
as an old shoe. She has enough lumber in her to last under hard
service for a long time. A better all-around camp boat couldn't
She is 15 feet 1 inch overall, by 4 feet 3 inches
beam. She weighs dry about 275 pounds, so is not a boat you
can carry on the car top. At present prices, depending somewhat
upon locality, $75 should build her. (Editors note: Remember
this was written long ago!)
She'll require a goodly space in which to be
built and this space must be dry, because rain will swell and
readjust her slats until you'll scream at patching up her bevels.
All boats are like this. They must be put together dry. If your
garage or basement isn't big enough to accommodate her, build
a lean-to to shelter the work. Since there are only ten boards
in her hull, she builds easily and no hot bending is needed.
The dory type is well known in Eastern coastal
waters. Usually these boats are slab sided, narrow sterned and
are built so as to "nest": that is, the thwarts are
stowed in the bottom, and one dory goes into another. By this
means deck loads of these boats are carried to the Grand Banks,
where they are used far offshore by the fishermen handling codfish.
Such boats are seagoers. but the pure dory design
is cranky and requires able handling by men who know how.
By modifying the type, widening the bottom and
giving the stem end some bearing, the dory is made into a docile
craft for small outboards. Badger, shown in the opening photograph.
and in the drawings here, has proved fast with small power because
her waterline is narrow with a light load. As she goes down
in the water, these waterlines widen and she becomes quite stiff.
The more you load her, the more stable she gets.
I have used the boat shown in the photo tor a
long time; I have had her out in anything Lake Superior could
throw. I have hauled rocks for the crib of my dock until her
wales had only an inch of freeboard. She is shown after one
such trip on a calm day resting placidly at the end of my dock.
Just enough rocks have been left aboard to tip her and
show her shape. The photo was shot from the window of my design
office, right over the drawing board on which her drawings were
The first thing to do in building any boat is
to lay down her lines full size. Use either brown butcher paper
taped to the floor, or, much better, a couple of panels of cheap
plywood, size 4', 8' and 1/4" thick for this. These, laid
end to end, serve as a record for the bevels and stem and frames.
It is much better to use this plywood "lofting floor."
On the floor you strike a line near the top,
to represent the dotted line shown on the lines profile drawing.
This line represents the building floor, A distance of 31"
away strike a parallel line. This represents the waterline,
and it is from this line that the dimensions for the rocker
in her bottom are given. Another line elsewhere below will serve
as a centerline for the half-breadths measurements.
Using a pine batten about 1" x 1" and
16 feet long, reproduce the lines profile drawing as close to
the measurements as your batten will come. This, then. gives
you a full-sized lines profile drawing to the outside of the
planking. On this drawing, and at this time, you draw in also
the outline of the expanded transom and the outline of the oak
stem piece, shown on the Sectional View of Stem, Keel Boards
and Transom. Later, you can pick off these patterns on thin
plywood to use in cutting your actual transom and stem.
Next, sweep in the half-breadth plan. Carry along
with this the fore body and the aft body plan, noting that the
point of reference is to the outside, under edge of the planking
lap. This planking is 1/2" thick of cedar, juniper or white
pine. Red cedar is not recommended because unless it is in strips,
it is too brittle to lap well and won't hold fastenings.
The lap line is thus established from the profile
plan, the half-breadth plan and the point of reference for the
lap is put on the body plan. Now you must determine the inboard
point for the jog in the frame, or the change in frame angle.
This is done by subtracting the planking thickness.
When you have the fore and aft body plans "gee'd"
up, inscribe a line inboard 1/2" to make the actual frame
line. In other words, you subtract the planking thickness. When
the face of each frame has been marked, then outline the final
frame pattern 2-1/2" inboard of this, sweeping the chine
portion or heel of the frame across the bottom.
As shown in the drawing, these frames are three
in number, 1" x 2-1/2" white oak. and are joined at
the chine heel. A good way, in fact the best, for this boat,
is to put a saw cut 3/8" wide in these heels, and insert
a gusset of 3/8" waterproof plywood. Using waterproof glue,
the frame can be glued up right on the body plan, first placing
a piece of waxed paper under the joint to catch drip. When set.
the joint can be riveted. The complete frame then can be beveled
from the actual frame line without having to make allowance
for fore and aft movement as when top and bottom frame are handclasped
at the chine.
The stem is of 1-3/4" white oak, molded
as shown. The transom may be of 1-3/4" fir or oak or vellow
pine, even cypress. It should be feathered at the joint.
Bear in mind that the projected transom on the
body plan is not the transom to build. You must expand the transom
along the raked depth. This will give you the true beveled
shape for the piece.
(click image to enlarge)
Patterns for the stem and transom are made. and
these pieces got out. Next, cleat up the bottom keel boards.
These must be a full 1" thick to properly bevel and to
take fastenings. The two center boards are 7-1/2" wide.
The wing boards may he left until cleated, and the width to
''come." Cypress, oak, yellow pine will make good bottom
boards. Yellow pine is perhaps the most available. The cleats
are of yellow pine, marked "intermediate ties" on
the half-under view of the bottom.
Now lay out the centerline of the boat and the
frame station on your shop floor, and erect the frames: then
bend down the keel board and secure with bronze or galvanized
screws through the keel boards into the frames. Use about 2-1/2"'
No. 12 screws. Bronze is to be preferred.
Brace the works up to suit, and then make a template
for the chine planks. These are of 1/2" material, and should
be fastened starting at the transom and working forward, having
first ascertained the shape. Allow a little over along the chine
for trimming, and do not bevel for knuckle No. I until the plank
is fastened. It is easier to bevel the edge true this way, working
right from the frame. The overlap will be about 1", as
the sectional sketch above the lines' half breadth shows.
A good device for horsing home the planks at
the stem is shown in one of the sketches. Triangular pieces
are temporarily screwed back of the landing portion, and clamps
can then be used to bring the plank up to the stem bevel. Use
1" screws No. 8 on 1-1/2" centers for the stem fastening.
The hood ends are trimmed off and a 3/4" oak batten is
bent around as a stem band.
The laps in the seams of the planks are clout-nailed,
using 1" copper clouts, or rivets may be used. About 2"'
centers is right. Marine supply stores carry them.
Removable slat floors go over the inboard cleats.
These may be of 3/4" x 4" pine or other
light wood. They should be spaced about 3/8" between slats,
and be tied across underneath with 1" or 2'" crosspieces
screwed to the
slates from underside. Each of these floor slat sections is
a unit between the main frames and is hence removable for cleaning
out sand and debris. You will find that these floor slats are
more than worth the trouble it takes to build them as without
them bilge water and sand will always be wetting your feet.
The thwarts had best be made of 1-1/8" x 12" material,
screwed to the riser at the height shown on the blueprint. The
riser is 3/4" x 2'", white oak.
Painting and general finish is the same as for
any boat. Buff interior, white outboard is fine.