Mark Wallace's Black Skiff

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Scilly Gig 15 lists a number of plans for rowboats, sailboats and power boats. One of those designs is the Scilly Gig 15 designed by She could be converted into another nice oar cruiser.

Lines of the Scilly Gig 15

Description from the Designer

The Scilly Gig is named after a type of very fast row boats that originated in the Scilly Islands, UK and despite what the name sounds like, is designed for the serious oarsman. She is fast: a top speed of 4 mph (6.4 kmh) can be achieved at 25 strokes per minute and at a quieter pace, she will cover more than 3 miles per hour (4.8 kmh). There is a standard and a light version. The light version uses 4mm marine ply and the standard version is made with 6mm marine ply. No compromise has been made to rowing performance for a single crew but if needed, she can carry a passenger and gear without any problem: the pounds per inch (25mm) immersion is 115 lbs (52 kg). A second rowing position is provided by the forward seat. Seats can be rearranged to suit.

 Key Dimensions

Length overall 15' 6" (4.72 m)
Beam 3' 8" (1.12 m)
Weight 80 (36 kg) or 100 lbs (45 kg)

Scilly Gig 15...


Conversion to an Oar Cruiser

Similar to other conversions posted, we would suggest the following:
  • Replace the forward and aft frames with full bulkheads containing large waterproof hatches. This would result in a cockpit approximately 7' (2.1m) long below the decks.
  • Eliminate the center two frames (and seat).
  • Triple the fiberglass taping on the interior of the two chines to provide additional strength.
  • Install fore and aft decks leaving a cockpit opening approximately 4.5' (1.4m) long. The decks could be made Skin-On-Frame to save weight.
  • Add floorboards to provide an anchor for the portable foot brace and rowing seat as well a dry platform for sleeping. See this post as an example. 
  • Add a temporary shelter such as one of these these.

Origins of the Scilly Gig

The following is from Wikipedia: 

The Cornish pilot gig is a six-oared rowing boat, built of Cornish narrow leaf elm, 32 feet (9.8 m) long with a beam of four feet ten inches. It is recognised as one of the first shore-based lifeboats that went to vessels in distress, with recorded rescues going back as far as the late 17th century. The original purpose of the Cornish pilot gig was as a general work boat, and the craft is used for taking pilots out to incoming vessels off the Atlantic. At the time, the gigs would race to get their pilot on board a vessel first (often those about to run aground on rocks) in order to get the job and hence the payment. 
Today, pilot gigs are used primarily for sport, with around 100 clubs across the globe. The main concentration is within Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, however clubs exist in Sussex, Somerset, Devon, Dorset, Wales and London. Internationally, there are pilot gig clubs in France, the Netherlands, the Faroe Islands, Australia, Bermuda, and the United States. 
All modern racing gigs are based on the "Treffry", built in 1838 by William Peters of St. Mawes, and still owned and raced by the Newquay Rowing Club. However non-racing gigs have been built which do not conform to the exact specification of the Treffry and are disallowed from racing in competitive races.

Cornish Pilot Gigs Racing

The Scilly Isles

Aerial View of Scilly Isles that are Located....

...40 Miles (65km) West of "The Lizard" (Southern most point in England)

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