Russell Brown at Port Townsend Watercraft is now offering posters of CHEERS to benefit the Newick family. It is a painting by Bruce Alderson depicting the the proa in action, racing singlehanded across the North Atlantic in 1968. This is my favorite image of the most famous modern proa in history. The posters belonged to the late Richard C. Newick, and are in limited supply. Find out more here.Read Article
Spring is in the air here in the northern latitudes - the ice is melting, trees are budding, and the forums are becoming more active. Some recent threads of interest:
Bionic Broomstick: Skip launched his 14’ proa on March 13 at Lake Somerville, Texas, for a successful first sail (nothing broke!). The boat is highly experimental and features a buoyant “floil”, stem mounted rudders and a cambered panel staysail. The Broomstick is Skip’s test platform for a larger camp cruising proa.
Simplest Proa Rudders: Dave Culp muses on how to achieve counter-rotating rudders with a minimum of moving parts. A great thread that has taken a life of it’s own via the creative solutions presented by forum members.
Herbie: The Volkscruiser Proa: Your editor attempts the impossible: a simple, safe and fast multihull that is also cheap and easy to build. It is a proa, of course.Read Article
The Proafile Forum has some interesting threads we’d like to point you toward if you are so inclined. This is just a teaser, head to the forums to check it all out.
Skylark: A Dymaxion Yacht. Your editor asks the question: “What would Bucky Do?” and finds an enclosed teardrop, aluminum, wingsailed proa in the answer.
Wingsails on Proas! Inspired by the circular cam of Peter Worsley’s wingsails, members are hard at work adopting the concept to shunting craft.
Proud Mary. Discussion of home designed and built shunting proa, inspired by traditional Marshall Islands asymmetric hull proas and Bolger’s “minimum proa” concept. Plywood/epoxy construction, no boards, a steering oar, and “Gibbons” sailing rig with 9m kite as sail. Doesn’t get much more zen than this.Read Article
Quick on the heels of the proa Madness, John Harris of Chesapeake Light Craft has announced the new Outrigger Junior as the latest member of the CLC stable. A 15’ plywood stitch-n-glue sailing outrigger, OJ is car-top-able, beach-able, tack-able, build-able and afford-able, so maybe not so crazy after all. Special thanks to Proafile reader Brian P. for the submission!Read Article
Paul Bieker has announced that study plans are now available for the 32’ Jester class proa - a collaboration between himself and Russell Brown. This design has already got the interest meter pegged in the forums and this will only turn it up to eleven.Read Article
This intriguing Pacific proa is from the board of French naval architect Julien Marin. LIttle is known about the design except it is 50’ long and the cassette rudders sit in rotating cylinders, permitting an adjustable draft while maintaining rudder control.Read Article
Not multihull or America’s Cup, but probably the most inspiring sailing story of the year:
“…Seeking a more sustainable way to get his grain to market, the Vermont farmer Erik Andrus conceived the Vermont Sail Freight Project to find out if this model could work again today. In April, he raised more than $15,000 on Kickstarter to build a 39-foot-long plywood sail barge named Ceres (after the Roman goddess of agriculture)...
Last night, Richard C. Newick, one of the great multihull pioneers, passed away. The father of so many brilliant designs, but to a proa obsessed mind, he stands apart because of CHEERS, the “giant slaying” proa of the 1968 OSTAR.
Dick often talked about how in a previous life he must have been a Polynesian outrigger canoe designer, and perhaps that is the best explanation for his gifts. We can only imagine what sort of vessels he will be working on in the next, and no doubt there will be little resting.
Here in Port Townsend, there was a powerful wind storm last night, 40 mph winds with gusts even higher, and then… suddenly, it stopped, like a light switch, flat calm. Never seen anything like it. There will be many eulogies of Richard Newick spoken by men, but there are few men who’s passing is saluted by the very elements with which he worked.
Please share your memories and condolences here.Read Article
Frederic Monsonnec reports on the annual meet up of classic racing multihulls and the people who love them - from Sète in the south of France. ~Editor
Every year since 2005, many French sailors passionate about “old multihulls”, but also Spanish, English… meet in the Mediterranean around their boats. These “fans” are members of the association “Golden Oldies Multihulls” (you can find an English page and many pictures and video on the Golden Oldies Multihulls website).Read Article
Gary Dierking has completed plans for his new Va’a Motu, a 20’ Tahitian-style sailing outrigger canoe. As usual for Gary Dierking’s work, the boat is a clever amalgam of traditional Pacific design and modern construction materials and methods. The canoe features a low, wave-piercing bow and a tall, upswept stern, wave-piercing ama, and a high aspect, fully battened marconi rig. Plans are US $135.00 plus $15.00 for international air mail postage, available now from Gary’s site.Read Article