Friday, November 6, 2009

Avocet: another Ed Davis Tropic Bird design.

Bernie Amell wrote me to say he built a boat based on Ed Davis' Tropic Bird, which was the design that inspired Laingdon Schmitt's Sparrow.

Bernie has named his boat Avocet for a shorebird that is common in Alberta, Canada where he lives. He says the bird is nimble and beautiful in a unique way, which is a good description of the Tropic Bird.

"I built her in fits and starts over the past three years. She was on the water as row boat in 2008 and launched under sail in mid July 2009. I live in a condo development where we have a shared workshop in our underground parking garage. I rented the parking space adjacent to the workshop and used every last centimeter of the space to build this boat."

Bernie has made a few fitting and woodwork modifications, which I hope he will detail for us soon. He is justifiably proud of his creation...

"I have sailed and rowed her on lakes in Alberta and Wisconsin so far. I'm biased of course by being the builder, but she is a fine handling boat even in a respectable breeze."
"In the dozen or so times that I have sailed this year I always get appreciative comments from fellow sailors – and even from many motor boaters!"

I've never heard of someone building a boat in a parking garage, but motivated people will do amazing things! Apparently venues for sailing are slim in Calgary, because Bernie tells me he's towed Avocet 2300km each way (with a VW Jetta Diesel) to a lake in Wisconsin; the setting for the photo shown here. He estimates that the boat with rigging weighs about 750lb and was easily towed with his small car.

When I next hear from Bernie, I'll let you know...

Thanks Bernie for the photos, you have a very nice boat there!

No comments: