Following are examples of oarlock outriggers… some elegant and some not, but all do the job of providing spread to the oarlocks enabling the use of longer oars.
|Selway-Fisher 15' Adirondack Guide Boat Outrigger|
Outrigger on a Selway-Fisher 15’ Adirondack Guide Boat for David O' Dempsey. Note the thin metal plate on the outboard side of the gunnel that absorbs the torque of the rowing stroke. These outriggers fold 180 degrees to enable coming alongside docks and other boats.
Chris Duff, a long-distance ocean rower, had these outriggers built for his 19 foot “Northern Reach”, a modified Wayland Marine Merry Wherry.
Monfort’s ‘wing’ outrigger is similar to many commercial outriggers. I would make the interior angle greater than his 60 degrees for fear of hitting my knuckles on the ‘catch’ portion of the stroke. I would also have a third bolt at the apex of the wing attached to a cross beam or the forward edge of the aft deck.
|Simple 'Hinge' Outrigger|
“RowerWet” uses this simple outrigger on a canoe as described in this "Instructables" article. I would be concerned about rowing torque either twisting the hinge and/or loosening the fastenings. Fastening a 3/8 or 1/2 inch triangle of plywood to the bottom of the hinge, with the base of the triangle (6 inches) a tight fit against the outside of the gunnel and the apex at the end of the hinge, would provide sufficient strength to prevent the twist from doing any damage.
|Model of Gavin Atkin's OarMouse Outriggers|
Galvin Atkin’s OarMouse plans show another outrigger. Based on those plans, I made a model and here are photos of the outriggers. The outriggers slide under two vertical “L” shaped runners attached to the inside of the topsides as shown in this photo.
|Side View of the Outrigger|
This is a side view of the outrigger. The oarlock socket would be mounted on the upper right. The angle of the (white) top to the vertical slide accomodates the flare of the topsides.
|Two Braces Support the Oarlock Platform|
There are two braces to support the top of the outrigger.
|Outriggers that Slide on the Coaming and are Removable|
These outriggers (from a model) hook onto the coaming. They can be slid on the coaming to make room for a passenger and/or to adjust the rower’s location for fore and aft balance.
|End View of the Sliding Outrigger Model|
This side view of the outrigger shows the ‘hook’ that goes under the inner strut on the coaming.
There is no single best outrigger… they each have their pluses and minuses. Hopefully, these samples will give you ideas on how you can make outriggers for your oar cruiser.
In the next blog, we'll introduce another New Jersey rowing venue.