The Pacific Loon is a Skin on Frame (SoF) rowboat that is 13' 4" (4.1m) long, 4' 8" (1.4m) beam available in plan, paper patterns or kit form.
|Two Pacific Loons Loaded for Cruising|
Actually, this is not just a rowboat that can be converted into an oar cruiser. It IS an Oar Cruiser, designed for cruising, although it functions beautifully for fishing or just sightseeing. The custom tent for sleeping on board can be made from the included plans.
|The Tent for the Pacific Loon -- Plans Included|
The frame is an ingenious design that goes together, as Matt Hickey (owner and designer at “Hermit Cove Boats) says, “…like Ikea furniture.” This approach guarantees that all components of the frame will be perfectly aligned and locked together. The design includes a floor that sits on top of the frames (a couple of inches above the skin) and is long enough and wide enough to be a comfortable sleeping platform.
|A Composit Picture of the Frame|
The design, based on Phil Bolger’s recreational rower (see The Folding Schooner... Chapter 21), is comfortable and can easily carry a passenger for day trips with its two rowing positions.
|Rowing from the Forward Rowing Position with a Passenger|
The topside flare, freeboard and lightness of the hull all ensure that the Loon can handle rough water.
|Rowing in Rough Waters|
Matt says she is not a fast rower…“If I row the 14 foot Loon at an easy pace she goes 2.5 knots. If I throw my back into it, 3 knots.” That’s the price of sea worthiness, comfort and carrying capacity.
I really like this boat for her designed-in cruising ability. And she’s pretty.
Let me know your thoughts in the Comments below.
(Thanks to Matt Hickey and Friends for all the photos)