Christmas Eve is upon us and the end of 2021will follow swiftly. We are so very thankful to all of our customers and friends, many of the former becoming the latter and some of the latter becoming the former too! Thank you all. holidayPT11-21

Chesapeake Light Craft has been shipping PT 11 kits this Fall and more are being prepared for January. Some are asking about the PT Spear and when it will be in production. Please stay tuned and we will post updates on that when we know for certain.

Thank You Chesapeake Light Craft!

Russell and I wish everyone good health, joy, and happy boating in 2022.

Russell's latest adventure on Jiminy, the new Pod-Cat.
Russell's first adventure on the new Pod-Cat.

It has begun, Friends! Chesapeake Light Craft has their first orders for the PT Eleven Nesting Dinghy and we look forward to this relationship being successful. image of the clcboats.com PT 11 page

The CLC team has been working diligently through the many details related to our collaboration. We thank them for including the PT 11 in their catalog.

Ordering info Link

Port Townsend Watercraft will be updating our website to function better on multiple devices and to reflect the changes in our business. We will maintain information about our designs as supplemental to the CLC website, and we will be creating new content related to our designs and our books.

We remain open to feedback, photos, and those particular questions that only we might be able to answer for now. Please send your favorite PT 11 photos to Ashlyn's GMAIL : PTWATERCRAFT@

THANK YOU to everyone who asked us to keep production of the PT 11 active and to all who have built our boats.

We are particularly fond of PT 11-in-action pictures and beautifully scenic pictures where even a small portion of the PT 11 is visible. Did you personalize your boat with some special detail? What color did you paint it? Of course, we love animals and pets-in-the-PT 11 pictures are welcome too.

PT 11 kits will become available this year if all goes as planned. The hiccups include supply chain issues and rising shipping and material costs. We are making forward progress.

We have been working with a well established kit company who long mentored our fledgling business and really wants to produce our kits. We will continue to manufacture and supply them with specific parts that make our kits unique.
This has been an incredibly interesting and challenging task to put our process into a transferable format. We are ‘creatives’, not ‘business managers’ persay. That we have managed, is nothing short of amazing to me as I fill in lengthy spreadsheets with suppliers, part numbers, current pricing, how many of what per kit, etc. Everything needed updated numbers. This rather daunting assignment has simply taken time to accomplish as Russell continues to make large runs of certain parts that get stocked in advance, to determine how those parts should be priced.
We have redesigned our rudder and daggerboard with help from very skilled friends. The new foils are thinner (18mm), denser, and slicker. The birch plywood is not as handsome for clear coating as the Okoume but we are pretty pleased with the overall change. Modifying the foils kits affected several other parts of the kit, so those changes are being made as well as a total rewrite of the foils manual.
We are working on a boomless rig for the PT 11. Why? Besides greater simplicity of set up and even lighter weight, a large portion of the cost and labor in our current sailing rig is in the boom. We have asked our favorite sail designers to work on this but getting a prototype is one of the supply chain hiccups. We know there will be trade-offs. It is the only way we see being able to keep producing sailing rigs that we would want to use ourselves.
With the retirement of our connective hardware machinist at the end of 2019, early inquiries at machine shops nationwide were not encouraging and we will not take this overseas. We discovered, however, that Port Townsend has a first class, family owned and operated machine shop. Truth be told, the initial quote took time to digest but we considered quantity, precision, and other local advantages. We just picked up the first run and the parts are excellent.

Kit pricing is to be determined but we expect minimal change. Our efforts to simplify parts of production are also intended to offset increased costs in other areas aiming to stabilize cost to the builder.

We expect to announce kit availability later this Summer. The details of ordering will be explained in the next update.

I continue to add names to a list of seriously interested builders. Everyone on that list will receive an email update before this blog. I do this because some of you have been waiting a year for news of kit production continuing. It is all of you on that list especially, whom I wish to thank for your patience and encouragement. It is deeply appreciated. We are excited about finding a pathway forward.
First in production will be the PT 11 Nesting Dinghy and second, the PT Spear. We are not 'there' just yet and we totally understand if you find or have found a different project to work on.

Thank you again,
Ashlyn Brown

P.S.
The PT Skiff is not in our hands at this time. There is no manual that addresses design changes. The designers may have some information for experienced builders but we will not be offering tech support for that project for the time being.

Customers launched new boats in 2020 and I am happy to share photos and comments we have received.

Klaas-BiketrailerPT11
Bicycle trailer!

"Russell & Ashlyn   I wanted to let you know that we finally finished our PT11 dinghy.   And although we haven’t sailed it yet in warm water, we have tested it out in CO.  My wife has proclaimed rowing it is “oargasmic”.  So I am very happy to have built it, and thankful to you for such an awesome design, kit and instructions. " JB

B.AlexanderPT11_1309
With an EP Carry 'outboard'
 
R-SchipIMG_2484
"Back in the late 60's, Tim Buckley put out a delightful album titled "Happy/Sad". That somewhat describes my state of mind these days: I'm very happy to have completed my PT-11 and beyond happy at how exquisitely it rows and sails. But I'm also sad at not having more shop time and the learning that came with its building. In all my years of construction and car restoration, I have never had a project which I enjoyed as much (except sanding the fillets). So I want to express my appreciation to the two of you for the design, support, and unbelievably complete construction manual." RS
JSAMUELS_512b27b3e3_ojSamuels_02c7c12215_o (1)
johnMottlNZimage002-1
Garland Skiff001-3
Nick pt1180220_9947
PeterMacNZPT11-1GUCKbackseat_1750
SOUTHWELL_5923
"As you can see, my maiden voyage was a row with my wife- then I went out sailing on my own. I hadn't built the bailer bungee, so the bailer was in one of the compartments, tied in with a long line. Needless to say I capsized and couldn't get to it, but since I was pretty close to shore I discovered that the Spear sails pretty decently fully swamped. I tipped out the water on the beach and then had a great sail. Back on the beach a crowd was formed to see the nut sailing in November in Nantucket, but as soon as they saw the interior the questions started- what kind of wood is that? What kind of varnish did you use to get that awesome finish (er, well, none yet)." DS

IMG_1066SirIsaacSM

foggy sailboat scene
fog and smoke in the San Juan Islands September 2020
social distancing on the water in a PT 11 nesting dinghy and a PT Spear.
social distancing on the water in a PT 11 nesting dinghy and a PT Spear.
SamStittPT11rd
Raptor deck
PT11 in Pacific atoll
A PT 11 touring the Pacific
Sighting-marblehead_0357
A "sighting" in Rhode Island

PT11DickMcCurdy_9270 Southwell-spear5829

 

rileybowlift saade-interior

Seadeck
Seadeck

PT11-Vito-tow

Port Townsend Watercraft is not closed!

As the signs indicate on our website, we are not able to take orders for kits (PT 11 and PT SPEAR) at this time. We had hoped to have a clear path figured out by now but we are still exploring what production might look like in 2021. By the end of the year, we really should know more.

We are collecting names and contact information of would-be PT 11 builders who want to be notified with updates on availability. So many of you have made it clear to us that discontinuing production of the PT 11 and the PT Spear would be, "tragic". We hear you! Solutions are being sought. Our most simplified explanation: "It's complicated".

For those of our builders who are looking for rigs or foils kits, we are building some new stock so that we may continue to serve the boats being built now. These will be available near the end of the year and early in 2021.

We also have books on our books page! There is a draft taking shape for a new book as well. (Spoiler alert; DIY hatches that really work) Plus we have swag and gift ideas on our mecantile page.

We missed everyone at the Wooden Boat Festival usually held at Point Hudson. We hope that you are all managing the current time we live in, in good health and good company.

You can also sign up for our newsletter for periodic updates.

Thank you for your understanding as we work through this transition in our business.

-Ashlyn Brown

Join the list: info @ ptwatercraft.com

 

 

 

Subject: “Oh, Puhleez...

Say it ain't so, Joe!
How disheartening to see a vendor of such nice craft from Port Townsend no less call a fender a "bumper."  This is such a lubberly mistake that it pains me to even draw attention to it.  It is akin to seeing a movie star pick her nose.  I sure wish I had never seen that!   But what is done is done and the best thing  you can do now is correct that horrible gaffe and we all shall agree to forever pretend it never happened. P.J. Nolan"

Russell and I do have a sense of humor and that email cracked me up! It is rare to receive such a harsh-and-gnarly critique that compliments at the same time. I must say, that takes some skill.

Fender or Bumper? I just had to find out. Searching online I found that vendors use the terms interchangeably for an assortment of barriers used on boats and docks. Could it be that we are all just movie stars picking our noses?

Since there is no reason to believe the internet, I turned to a more trusted source.

I actually still own a hard bound dictionary. It is 4” thick, weighs about 10 pounds, (it flattened my 6# postal scale) with gold lettering that proudly reads; The Random House Dictionary of the English Language. I had to haul it out, lug it to the table, and dust it off. Flipping through the musty pages, my handy-dandy magnifying glass was of considerable assistance.

FENDER; definition #5; A piece of timber, bundle of rope, or the like, hung over the side of a vessel to lessen shock or prevent chafing..."

Most commonly called 'fenders'.
Most commonly called 'fenders'.

Hmmm, that sounds about like what I was thinking except I picture the inflatable kind found at a marine chandlery.

 

 

 

Bumper: definition #3; Any protective rim, guard, pad, or disk for absorbing shock and preventing damage from bumping."

The PT 11 glue-on, "bumper", EPDM extrusion.
The PT 11 glue-on, "bumper", EPDM extrusion.

Now that sounds about like what we have permanently attached to the outer edges of the gunwales on our dinghies.

For argument’s sake, one could say that they both serve a very similar purpose and regardless of their possible origins, for better or worse, language evolves.

In truth, the most accurate term for what we have is neither fender nor bumper, but, rubber rubbing strip or for an internet search; "rub-rail".  At least, for now, I can relax and not feel embarrassed.
However; I do take issue with the term, “lubberly”. I had to look that up too, just to be sure that I was properly insulted, at least for Russell's sake if not my own.

lubberly - clumsy and unskilled;  "unskilled labor"; "unskilled workmanship", inexperienced in seamanship...

Hardly the case, my dear fellow. That would be a “horrible gaffe” on your part. But, as I am a friendly sort and would not want to disrespect anyone’s preferences or “pain” someone with my own, I heartily agree, “to forever pretend it never happened.”

Thank you for the challenge. It was fun. 😉 AE Brown

Our local heroine, again!

For the second year in a row, Russell and I have had our minds blown as summer boating gets going. The Seventy/48 human-powered race from Tacoma to Port Townsend was a mere curiosity to us when first announced in 2017. We thought, ‘cool!”; another great brainchild of Jake Beatty and Daniel Evans of the NW Maritime Center. Then Inger walked into our shop.
Inger Rankins of NW Sails & Canvas, is a highly skilled canvas master, creating boat covers and dodgers that are jaw-droppingly beautiful and perfect. She is a fit Norwegian-born 50 something that can be seen walking or biking all over Port Townsend with her trusty and adorable, canine side-kick, Rupert. Inger is also a close friend. I admire and appreciate her on so many levels. So when she asked Russell if she could borrow our PT 11 nesting dinghy to row seventy miles up Puget Sound in a race?... First, Russell tried to talk her out of it. Then, he took her seriously, albeit in bewilderment.
During the 2018 inaugural Seventy/48, Russell nearly pulled his hair out in elated disbelief when he realized that Inger was going to finish in the top 30% of over 115 long and sleek human powered craft, in an 11 ft, fixed seat, rowboat; our rowboat. She became and instant local heroine and for us, the star of the year.
As the 2019 race approached, she was struggling to find training time. She rowed to and from the sail loft where she was working with husband and sailmaker, Sean Rankins. The distance from Point Hudson to the NW School of Wooden Boat Building is roughly 6 nautical miles each way and weather and current present many challenges. But injury can also stump training efforts and she hurt her back at work. Inger doggedly kept training when she could, and was smart to get well rested before the start date.
A lot had been learned from 2018’s race and Russell sent her off with a lighter boat, lighter oars and encouragement to quit the race at any time. Everyone knew she had already done the impossible, a feat difficult to beat and potentially dangerous to try. Stubborn as she is, she tried, and she succeeded! In conditions rougher than in 2018, Team Valhalla beat her own 2018 time by a solid 45 minutes. She finished 30th out of 108 boats. A collection of friends, fans, and Norwegian flags greeted her at 2:13 in the afternoon as she rang her finishing bell. The first aid crew went down a list of questions about how she was feeling and checked her off as fit to row to the beach. I listened with wonder and searched her face for signs of trouble. She was instead, grinning after over 19 hours of rowing non-stop.
Yep, heroic in every way.
Will she do it again in 2020? There is a good chance she will. She told me how she had felt mentally fresher this year and that her body liked rowing. She said she cannot describe how happy she feels when she is out there on the water. I think to myself, ‘amazing’. She’d been told that the Platte Canyon High School Team PCHS had watched her 2018 post race videos for tips and inspiration, and being able to inspire others, has been a real bonus for her.
Russell and I want to publicly thank Inger for her tenacity and the pure joy she has given us by doing this race in our boat. It is a priceless gift we will always treasure.  Some photos follow.
Videos from 2018: An interview with Inger Rankins  Overboard practice before the 2018 race. And look for a really well done video about Inger on the Off Center Harbor website.

Valhalla fans await Inger Rankins in the Seventy48 2019: ptwatercraft.com
Valhalla fans await Inger Rankins in the Seventy48 2019
Team Valhalla arrives just after 2PM in the Seventy 48 2019 race: ptwatercraft.com
Valhalla arrives just after 2PM
Team Valhalla as 30th:ptwatercraft.com
Arrival times for the 2019 Seventy 48 race showing Team Valhalla as 30th.
PT 11 dinghy after a 70 mile race.
Pulling into the beach after 19 hours.
Inger Rankins basking in joy.
Inger takes a seat and answers questions.
ptwatercraft.com
Inger stretches out on the beach with Rupert looking like he'd been the one to row 70 miles.
Homemade trophy; ptwatercraft.com
Port Townsend friends created this awesome trophy for Inger.
ptwatercraft.com
Our friend Nate Rooks arrives.
Team no dream #11
Nate Rooks of Team No Dream (one of the early finishers) showing painful hands. Nate finished 11th by 9:15am. (70 miles in 14 hours)
ptwatercraft.com Team No Dream and a beer.
Nate Rooks of Team No Dream cooling off with a beer at the finish.
70-48 resting time for Team No Dream
Nate finally gets to snooze under his boat.

Retail businesses in WA will have received this recent notice from our Department of Revenue:

Starting July 1, 2019, retailers can no longer make tax exempt sales to nonresidents based on their residence (i.e. Alaska, Oregon, Montana). Instead, consumers residing in qualifying states, US territories or provinces of Canada may request a refund of state sales tax paid from the Department once a year. Please see our Special Notice for more information. https://dor.wa.gov/find-taxes-rates/retail-sales-tax/sales-nonresidents

I can only assume they are trying to accumulate less paperwork by asking eligible customers to keep track and submit only once a year. Thank you for your understanding. AEB 😉