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  #21  
Old 11-29-2010
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I've sculled my 21 foot trailer sailer boat. On one trip I found I'd left the rudder home and used the scull oar as a repalcement. It worked. For my 29 ft Cal, I have 10 ft oars and can row it. They need to be at least that log to reach the water. I think the Pardeys just rowed with a single oar with thier first boat. worked fine and was a simple arrangement
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Old 11-29-2010
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While it is a very neat way to move a boat about for short distances, it is incredibly tiring to move a big boat at any speed or for any real distance. As Jeff mentioned, it can be hard on the wrists. The real advantage to me is that you can see where you are going and you can fit in between docks barely wider than your boat.

Personally, I prefer to row than to scull a boat. I can make the boat go much faster and it is much more pleasant. I leave sculling for the tight quarters maneuvering (be careful, some sculling setups make it hard to stop or go backwards while it is easy with others, it all depends on how much you can pivot the oar).
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  #23  
Old 11-29-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speciald View Post
Another way to do it is to fix the rudder amidships and rool the boat from side to side. It works on racing dinghys
I'll have to try that, but... only first in a very private setting. Given the amount of attention I got from other boaters by just moving the tiller back and forth to move along, I suspect that their seeing me running repeatedly back and forth across the deck from one beam to the other might get me locked up for psychiatric observation.

I've found sculling with the rudder to also be a good way to rescue my boat when she's caught in irons - while keeping the sailing pure of noisy smelly beasts with propellers.

Last edited by patrickbryant; 11-29-2010 at 09:03 PM.
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Old 12-04-2010
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Klem (or other rowers of smallish sailboats..)
How do you set up the boat for rowing? I can't quite work out what you do for oar locks or where one would sit. Can you explain?

I used to scull home all the time in my Beetle Cat... it had one of those huge barn door rudders.

Chris
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Old 12-04-2010
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How you set it up is really a function of the boat. The critical dimensions in it are the seat height, oarlock height, distance between oarlocks and oar length. Things like the fore and aft placement of the seat and oarlocks do matter but are not as important.

Usually the first thing to figure out is where you can put oarlocks. If you have a cockpit coaming, it is usually an easy place to bolt on a set. I have also seen people who make a standoff block that bolts through the deck and has an oarlock on it. For boats that don't plan to row a lot, you can wrap a line around the oar and the jib winches (assuming you have them) and it works okay.

Next, you need to figure out where you can sit. Usually a removable seat across the cockpit seats or on top of the centerboard trunk works best. If it isn't fastened down, this will allow you to play around with fore and aft position. The height is important and easiest to figure out sitting in the boat with the oars in the oarlocks. You want the oar handle to be somewhere around shoulder height with the blade just fully buried. If you always row in calm water, you can have it a bit lower but if you row in rough water, you need to keep it high so that the blades don't hit the waves on the recovery.

I hope that this helps.
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Old 12-05-2010
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Exactly.
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Old 12-06-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by patrickbryant View Post
Chalk up another advantage of tillers over wheels.
My Islander 30's large aft raked rudder makes
a perfect skulling 'paddle', I can easily maintain
over a knot of boatspeed, in a flat calm,
and often skull into the slip when the wind drops off.
Since the rudder can turn all the way around,
I can skull in reverse also , which is a handy
feature when sailing on to a mooring or
backing into a slip.
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Old 07-01-2013
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Re: Sculling sailboats?

I have an engineless 8 ton 29ft gaffrigged cutter. I converted my 5 meter long sweep to a 6 meter long yuloh after learning it was better for my boat. It works like a charm. Anyone want to know the process, write me. It was a long research, but well worth it. Sweeps are good for lighter boats, and yulohs are better for heavier boats. Jeff H is right about it being hard on your wrists, after a few sessions, Popeye comes to mind. A well built and rigged yuloh is easy enough for a 15 year old to use.

Engineless sailing requires a different mindset. The rules of nature make you take on a whole new perspective towards it.
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  #29  
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Re: Sculling sailboats?

Quote:
Originally Posted by hphoen View Post
When I was a teenager, our family spent summer vacations in an old farm house on Gwynn's Island, VA, on the Chesapeake Bay. We were adopted by a local waterman by the name of Fossie Smith. He taught me a lot about life on the Bay. One of the things he did was to take the time to teach me how to scull an 18' crab skiff. It's an absolutely Zen way to propel a small boat. You have to do it to understand that.
Bay sculling is a bit different from other methods although I have seen sculling oars which differ little from regular oars. I recall as a kid in the 50s rowing the family skiff down the river and I was passed handily by a neighbor (known as Cap'n Kidd...how's that to impress a youngster?) in his 70s sculling an 18 ft skiff down to the marina to pick up some breakfast items for his wife. A very humbling experience.
The sculling oar Cap'n Kidd used was essentially a tapered flat board with a lot of flex and was used pivoting over a single thole pin on the transom. Once you try sculling on a single thole pin with a flexible oar it is remarkably easy. I only ever saw one boat with a notch in the stern and never two thole pins as a guide.
That said some 15 years ago the grandson of the elder neighbor showed me the sculling oar his grandmother (Kidd's wife) chipped a good sized section out of when she was breaking the ice to get across river during the freeze of 1925 and it seemed to differ little from a standard rowing oar other than its blade was longer. I can't believe that it ever functioned as well as the flexible flat sculling oar which to me seems the model of efficiency.
I've often wondered if it was merely a local variation (SW Branch of the Severn) of the more rigid sculling oar. I talked with a number of watermen and to a man they all speak with admiration of folks who handled a boat well with a sculling oar but it seems to be a lost art nowadays.
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Re: Sculling sailboats?


This is my neighbor sculling his Yankee 30. He used river raft oars mounted in poles he stuck in the holes in his winches.


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