Friday, October 5, 2012

A Lesson in Keels

This evening we biked over to the nearby marina, Sailcraft. There, they let you dock your boat, and they also have full service for working on your boat. There are boats everywhere -- on every available swatch of grass or gravel. So Adam gave me a lesson on boat hulls, and now I'll give all that information to you -- because I know some of you landlubbers are just as ignorant of boat hulls as I was!
This boat has a full keel. The little piece on the back is the rudder. See the propeller in between?
Same boat from the back. Here you see why they needed a full keel on this boat -- it's wide. Pretty shape. This is called a "double ender," which means that both ends of the boat are rounded, i.e., neither end is cut off, as you'll see in the next picture ....
See how the end of this boat is flat? That's a transom stern. I prefer the double ender myself.
Back to hulls and keels. The keel is the part of the hull that extends down below the rounded body of the boat. This is a deep fin keel.
This boat has a shallow fin keel. It has a skeg and rudder. The rudder is the piece that turns in the water. The skeg is the triangular-shaped portion that the rudder is attached to.
Isn't this darling? This is called a bulb fin keel, and you can see why.
Another full keel, a double ender. Its propeller is inserted in the opening between keel and rudder. Nice new paint job.
Here's a funny shaped rudder.
And another ....
And yet another. Keels seem to come in all shapes and sizes. Adam called this a "modified full keel."

This snazzy fin keel is for racing.
And finally we have a bulb keel with wings! Will wonders never cease?

Here's a close-up of one of the boats being repainted. They've stripped it down to the fiberglass. You can see the fibers.
Holes in the hull! These are called through-holes, and fittings go in there to allow you to discharge your bilge, engine cooling, gray water and all that kind of undesirable stuff, from your boat. It's better than heaving it overboard in a bucket, but it does look scary to have holes in your hull, yes?
Look at this monster! It's used to lift the boats up out of the water and transport them to a place in the boat yard where the owners can get to the hull to do work.
The owners direct their boats into this spot. The lift rolls neatly out over it on these tracks and lifts the boat up into slings.
A catamaran, just in case anyone out there hasn't seen one --
Isn't this little boat adorable? She has lovely lines. She's called the "Flounder."
That's all for today, folks! Thanks for joining us on our jaunt to the boat yard!


  1. Oh the places they've been! I love thinking about it, MK.

  2. We were reading about the Titanic in reading class yesterday. It took 3000 men three years to build it. My uncle worked on his sail boat until he died. It was in the garage of his island home.
    When are you going to get a canoe?

  3. Oh, Pom -- Adam does want a sail boat, and if he is patient I'm sure one will present itself around here for give-away. He doesn't want anything very big -- just enough to toodle around in the river. It'll happen one of these days!

  4. How very interesting. I suppose there are reasons for the different keels. I like the Flounder. It reminds me of Tootles the Tugboat children's book.


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