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Dudley Dix / Didi 26

After 8 years of serious (& fun) consideration, I have finally set my heart on the boat I wish to build.

The Didi 26

A few years ago, I was interested in the Van de Stadt 34 (VDS34), then just last year, Sam Devlins' Soooty Tern, and finally, Dudley Dix's DD26

I received the plans yesterday, and I could not be more thrilled!
The actual build will not take place for years yet though, but what will happen is the distinct pleasure in planning this build out, right from the start, in a relaxed, enjoyable state-of-affairs. We are currently circumnavigating on our N62, and have our hands full with that. The DD26 plans will keep my powder dry while I'm at work, and remind me I have some sailing days ahead of me when our Voyage has come to it's natural end.

I have never built anything before, but the desire to build one's own boat, and then sail it, has become an obsession for me,, & yes I know I need mental help.

Perhaps some sailing folk out there would like to discuss the boat or the future build? Cheers.
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post #2 of 20 Old 08-20-2015
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Re: Dudley Dix / Didi 26

Very good choice. Dudley is a friend of mine. I'm pretty it was me who gave him the nickname Didi.

Please visit my blog. It's fun to read.


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Re: Dudley Dix / Didi 26

Hi Bob,
Great to see you here! I thought the "Didi" was/is a brilliant suggestion (Dudley Dix = DD = Didi) I thought it was clever.
Mind you, it doesn't really take much to impress me.
By the way, while you're here,,, I love your latest designs,,,very cool! & please keep all that yacht design info coming this way,,,food for the soul.

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Re: Dudley Dix / Didi 26

Buying plans is a fun activity but Get to building! woot woot yeah!

"Next best thing to not having a boat? The knowledge from having one!" Denise, Bristol PA, On Tidal Delaware River, Anchor Yacht Club.
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Re: Dudley Dix / Didi 26

Andy,

The DD looks like a more fun boat from a sailing prospective. Probably simpler and easier to build too. As much as I like Sam and staff, his plans are not as modern as i would like from a home build.....IMHO thank you

marty

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Re: Dudley Dix / Didi 26

I too think that you made the right decision to switch to the Didi 26. I know Dudley pretty well. He is a very talented designer who seems to have a wonderful mix of being artful, inventive, practical, and technically knowledgeable and conscientious. He seems to have a real understanding of the materials that he employs in his designs, an clear understanding of amateur boat building which in part derives from the boats that he has built for himself. His designs tend to be very well thought out so as to produce designs which sail as well as and appear to be professionally constructed even though being very buildable by an amateur. The Didi 26 has always struck me a particularly clever design that fits a whole lot of boat into a small package. Personally, I really like the hull form and rig and think that is a very usable interior layout for a small boat.

From talking with Dudley, I am convinced that this method of building should be pretty quick, assure a fair hull and decent shape control, and be suitable to a single amateur builder working on their own. My only concern, and I certainly could be very wrong on this, is that I suspect that the radius chine and the external center spline will require a quite a bit of fairing to achieve the very fair shapes that you see in the pictures of the completed boats.

Of course, the designer in me always wants to tinker a bit. All things being equal, I would like probably want to stretch the boat a couple feet and make it a 28 footer, moving the forward berth and leading edge of the cabin aft by a foot or even 18" and increasing the flat area of the fore deck, and widening the forward berths and table. Personally I would want a little wider side decks, and take the 'crick in the neck penalty. I would probably split of the extra length into galley and settee. I might lose the bench seat between the halves of the galley and add a flip up seat at near the companionway stair. But then again, as some designers might have replied to my tinkering, if I wanted to make those kinds of changes to a design, I probably should have designed the boat myself, which I couldn't, at least not as competently as a real yacht designer, and as Dudley has done in this case.

We will all be looking forward to seeing progress pictures.

Good luck with the project,
Jeff


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Re: Dudley Dix / Didi 26

Denise, Marty & Jeff,
Thanks for your support and participation in this thread.
Right now, I'm going through the various electronic drawings, while I'm working offshore Vietnam. Each time I open a DWG, a hundred individual questions spring to mind. I'm having fun chasing the answers down.
Some decisions made so far:
1. I'm going to order this boat in Kit form. Best possible chance for a successful, timely, & ship-shape finish
2. WEST system epoxy
3. Considering synthetic standing rigging, like Coligo. < what's you thoughts on that?

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Re: Dudley Dix / Didi 26

A couple quick thoughts here:

I am a big proponent of being organized in tracking information as you are building any project. One of the things that I recommend to anyone building a boat is to keep a log (preferably electronic but hand written works as well) with various sections in it.

One of those sections should be questions and answers. As you develop questions, record them in the log, with references to the drawing if applicable. As you get answers, record them.

I would draft a sequence of construction, although I think I recall that Dudley actually may provide that with the packet. But as you look at the sequence, it is helpful to try to insert milestones when items need to be purchased in order to have the tools, parts, and materials on site and ready when you get to that step. I would also carefully consider how and where you will store completed parts. (I once designed a trimaran for a fellow who built it in a ground floor apartment. The outer hulls were built first and stacked in a hallway to the kitchen with their beam set by the width of the hallway. The main hull was built last diagonally across the living room with the length and beam of the main hull designed with the longest length and width that could be rotated and taken out the door.)

Similarly I would keep a log of 'open items'. This is intended to remind you of tasks that need to be completed. For instance, you might have time to prime and get a first coat of paint inside a locker, but never got the final coat(s) of paint on that area. You log that as an open item so you don't forget that still has to be done. Similarly, when I use bed hardware using sealants that are not butyl (I have become a big fan of butyl), I install the item and do not fully torque down the bolts until the sealant has cured. I would record in the log those pieces of hardware that need to have the fastenings given a final torqued, and then check them off as they are completed.

I would keep a log of immediately needed items by which I mean items needed in the next week or two, thereby being able to group purchases to minimize shipping.

I would also keep a longer term shopping list broken down by task. There is no point in buying things too early and have them lying about to be in the way, or get lost or damaged. But for example, you might have a line item in your long term shopping list which is something like 'installing the sink'. There you might indicate a milestone at which everything needs to be ordered and list all the materials, parts and tools required, such as the sink, hoses, faucet, pump, seacock, hose clamps, thread tape, sealants, hole saws, backing plates and everything else that you will need to do that task. You put that list together by thinking through each step of the process. This also is a chance to think about the tools that you are likely to need, and at what point in the construction would be best to do each piece of the work. In other words, in that example, it may make sense to install the seacock before installing the counter top, or before doing the final cabinet installation.

Lastly I would keep all receipts, if only tossing them into a box for future filing. It is my understanding that some states will accept the proof of tax paid on purchased parts in lieu of paying a tax on the boat when you register it. You will need to check that for your state.

As to your questions, I think that ordering the boat in kit form is a good idea. While it saves construction time, more importantly it insures that the boat is more precisely constructed.

While I have used and basically like West System products, and the Gougeon Brothers are heroes of mine, the professionals that I know who have done glued wood and saturated wood construction professionally have been big fans of MAS epoxy products. The claim that the MAS products minimize the amine blush issues of most epoxies, and that MAS products are less likely to cause allergic reactions. This is second hand information, but it came from several people who I consider reliable sources.

I have just looked into the synthetic rigging issue for tdw. Frankly, I only spoke with one rigger at this point, but he believes that synthetic rigging is in its infancy and still has issues with UV degradation and chafe that result in a much shorter reliable lifespan than SS wire. His position is that synthetic standing rigging only has a place on race boats. That may change as the materials are getting better but that was his point for now.

Jeff
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Re: Dudley Dix / Didi 26

very very interestested in this thread, please post process and updates...

I had dreams in my early twenties to build a "mini" dudley dix design and do some solo ocean racing...my thought was it was the only possible way I could ever race in such a way as to not break the bank

I wonder if anyone has used his designs lately for such a purpose

Like others have mentioned 26-28 ft is a perfectly reasonable first build length...I think over 30 and it would get daunting...

please keep posting!

good luck

Merit 25 sold...Islander 36 still afloat? who knows...Im still in Columbus, and back...I think...jajajaja!!!!
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Re: Dudley Dix / Didi 26

Plywood boats are great in just about everything except long term storage It's nearly impossible to keep moisture from getting into the plywood over time. Areas like bunks, cabinets, bilge, have stagnant moist air locked in, that will quickly penetrate plywood (epoxied or not) and start to rot.

Answer with plywood boats? Lots of out of the sun and well ventilated spaces when boat is not actually being used. Larger plywood boats are less likely to last a lifetime if "out there" 365

Yes, I get hate mail....

"Next best thing to not having a boat? The knowledge from having one!" Denise, Bristol PA, On Tidal Delaware River, Anchor Yacht Club.
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