Sail and oar dinghy, light and efficient, able to dinghy cruising


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Hull length: 4.60 m
Waterline length: 4.34 m
Breadth planking / rub-rail: 1.62 / 1.69 m
Waterline breadth: 1.32

Draught centreboard down: 0.89 m
Draught centreboard up: 0.16 m
Lightweight: 100 kg
Weight ready to sail: 140 kg

Sail area: 9.5 + 1.5 m²

Design category/crew: C4
Building time (with kit): 360 hours

 I have already drawn many “sail and oar” dinghies inspired by traditional boats, built with frames reminiscent of old construction techniques, solid wood floorboards and seats… The result is a significant weight that gives good seaworthiness but makes handling on land more difficult.

With Creizic, the idea is to design a sail and oar that better meets the current demand for a light and easy-to-use boat.

To give enough stability with such a low weight, the hull is flat, and the width (1.6 m) is relatively generous while being compatible with using oars of manageable lengths. A side deck allows the crew a better sit out and push back the downflooding angle. In addition, the oars can be stored under the side deck. There are two buoyancy compartments, one at each end, fitted with inspection hatches.

The hull is made of 6 mm thick okume marine plywood for lightness. We use the stitch and tape method, which involves sheathing of the exterior planking and, therefore, good resistance to the mistreatment such a boat can undergo. The stitch and tape building technique makes construction more straightforward over a simple cradle. However, the sheerstrake is clinker built for a better appearance. Some other improvements have been made after the first Creizic (pictured) was built.

Creizic is rigged as a standing lug with a boom for better efficiency. Boom and yard are of moderate length, which can be stowed on the thwarts despite the deck. This is why the sail is battened to increase its area. As an option, you can add a mizzen, increasing the sail area and improving the sail balance in light weather. It is possible to dismast at sea and stow the mast in a way that allows using two pairs of oars. This light hull and long waterline enable long distances rowing. The pivoting centreboard can be extracted like a sabre board. A shock cord holds it, either in the raised or low positions.

There is no provision for a storage locker because of the weight this entails. Experience shows that it is easier to unload waterproof bags than to contort oneself to extract items from a chest. Therefore, we have provided a location for two waterproof barrels, which can be firmly lashed to the hull. These barrels can be used as water ballast, very useful for single-handling, or as storage for camp cruising.

As there are no floorboards, the bottoms receive a non-aggressive anti-slip paint. The very flat bottoms can accommodate an air mattress on each side of the centreboard case for sleeping onboard. The middle thwart is made removable. The side deck makes it easier to install a tent, with rainwater or condensation flowing outside. The mizzen mast, if preferred, also provides an additional means of attaching a tent.

Like my other designs, this new boat is intended for individual and professional construction. In both cases, all plywood parts are cut on a CNC machine, including the holes for stitching. The building manual includes step by step diagrams from a 3D model.

In conclusion, Creizic is an answer to propose a sail and oar dinghy that is more straightforward to build, easier to handle and maintain, a fast sailer and rower, and adapted to camp cruising.


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