This September we had the opportunity to play with an EP Carry electric motor for the first time.  Dinghy owners often ask about an outboard for the PT 11.
Our preference is to discourage outboards on our dinghies because good rowing and sailing boats never make great motor boats. But some people really want to be able to use an outboard. That's understandable, but the fact is that the smallest gas outboard motors currently available are really too big for our boat; too much power and too heavy.

Now there is an option we can support; the EP CARRY electric "outboard". All of the  technical information about this innovative little motor can be found on the website ELECTRICPADDLE.COM. Though it is compared to a 1HP on their website, it has sufficient power to get the PT 11 up to a cruising speed of about 4 knots. The USCG however, considers all small electric outboards as "2HP". Based on that formula, the PT 11 and PT Spear are rated for "2HP" so, the EP CARRY aligns with the Coast Guard figures.  The amazing thing about this motor is that it weighs only 14.4 Lbs. This makes it very easy to mount and remove. The battery pack weighs 6.3 Lbs, making the total package less than 21 Lbs. There are several design features that add to the ease of handling as well. ptwatercraft.com
(At this years wooden boat festival, Russell showed up with the motor in his bicycle bag.)

Our recent experience with the EP Carry was very positive and to my surprise, I caught Russell grinning after speeding off to visit other boats in the anchorage. "Mr. anti-outboard" was actually having fun and we enjoyed it further by taking a friend on an evening "cocktail" tour of Reid Harbor, a deep bay with lots of shoreline and  many boats to observe.
We spent a couple of days, driving along the shore of Sucia in the San Juans,  in Shallow Bay making watery doughnuts, backing up, going forward, generally goofing off, and then venturing out to 'Danger Reef' to "brave" close proximity to a group of Stellar Sea Lions. We were pleasantly surprised by how far the battery went on one charge. You will notice in our video that we carried our oars with us but we did not need to employ them. ptwatercraft.com
This motor is not silent. Neither is it loud. Our lightly built plywood boat seemed to acoustically amplify the sound a little. Even so, there was no need to raise our voices for conversation. In fact, we could almost whisper and still communicate. This was a plus to me. Loud outboards in quiet anchorages are, in my mind, a real nuisance and many of us are familiar with boaters talking in their loud dinghies barely hearing each other and assuming no one else can hear them either...but of course we hear every word. Sound is a funny thing. With the EP Carry, the birds, seals, and sea lions were undisturbed by our passage. It made it a great modus for exploring the nature around us.ptwatercraft.com/ashlyn E Brown
Another thing that is really attractive to us about this motor, is that even with our limited house battery power, we could re-charge the EP Carry Battery. It does require a 150-200W inverter, but this lithium battery requires a third of the power than comparable models to recharge. At home, it is simple to plug it into a normal outlet. Beyond charging the battery and rinsing the unit after use in salt water, there is virtually no maintenance. Yet another plus.
(see our video exploring Sucia with the EP CARRY)
When our EP Carry arrived at the door, unpacking it was quite amazing. The care taken to pack it and the detailed contents made for a well thought out and complete package. It was a positive reflection of Joe and Linda who have spent  years perfecting their product. They, like us, had a vision that they worked and reworked in every detail. In fact, the original mount did not fit the PT 11 and now it does.  Further, the EP Carry, designed right here in WA State, is assembled in the USA. It is yet another example of admirable American ingenuity with style and a small business making a positive difference in the world. Of all the outboards on the market, we feel confident that the EP Carry is a good fit for the PT 11.

USER MANUAL PDF
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PTWatercraft.com Ashlyn E Brown

 

Just because I could, (and the opportunity to learn something new came up), I have made a limited supply of unique sterling silver pendants that feature the PT Swift silhouette that is our logo. Each one is different in design and with its own serendipitous imperfections. If you think this might make a nice appreciation gift for your partner, your can order them HERE. There are only eight (8) all together!

I will ship First Class with tracking and I will include a leather or hemp cord, or for a little more, a 1mm, 16", silver ball chain. In order to price them easily, I can only ship within the USA. (The rope chain pictured is not available)

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ptwatercraft.com DSC_0466 DSC_0468 DSC_0471 DSC_0475 DSC_0476Plus, don't forget we have some really special books, - for children, "Sailor Sai on the Big Blue" , land boating on the beautiful horse drawn "Toti Bleu", racing history with "Project Cheers", How to books for epoxy and painting and more!

 

Book sales proceeds from Sailor Sai, Toti Bleu, and Project Cheers, benefit three special women and  their projects. Pendant proceeds just might pay for another batch of silver clay and more pendants for next year.

Another wonderful and creative person in my family has a sale running on her amazing accessories. Fun and beautiful, these already under priced gems may not be available again for a while. FEELGOODGEMS by Dana Ecelberger

Thank you! AEB 😉

We now have a pattern for the PT 11/Spear cover. This option allows owners to pay their local canvas shop for time and materials to stitch it up but not for the time to measure and make a new pattern. Owners may also have the skills to stitch their own. The cover is for the PT 11 assembled to its full length or the PT Spear.

These photos show the first prototype cover that now belongs to PT Spear Hull #10. I regret not getting better photos with the poles installed to peak the center line but you can see one sent by a customer at the bottom of this post..

The pattern can be ordered here on our website. It gets shipped US MAIL rolled in a tube. The roll is 36" x 12 ft. long and includes general instructions.

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Bow detail
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Shown here with 18" dowels installed to raise the center line to shed water.

 

I made a clip correction on our leg one video of Russell's Race to Alaska. (the new video is below)

This is the start of the race from Port Townsend to Victoria. Alex Spear and myself were on board for that portion of the race and we finished first (!) nearly an hour ahead of the next boat, which was a little lonely but exciting too. I have a few clips of Russell's race to Ketchikan and a lot of video from our return to Port Townsend. It will take some time before I pull a decent video of those together. AEB 😉

Boat Haven yard rates in Port Townsend have been in question for the last year. Due to a collaborative effort between the Marine Trades of Port Townsend and the Port of Port Townsend, NEW winter rates have been posted. While every yard has its own formula for presenting the numbers, the port has accepted the recommendations of a tenant task force that methodically studied comparable yards in the region to come up with this pricing schedule.

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Port Townsend is one of the most highly respected working waterfronts on the west coast.

Please help make this effort a success while you take advantage of one of the very  best marine trades collectives on the west coast, a beautiful town with wonderful people, and a location near some of the most amazing parks and recreation in the US.

See new yard rates.

See the Port Townsend Marine Trades Association service directory.

You can contact;

the PORT of PT for a yard quote.

I want to thank those of you who took the time to answer my brief survey regarding your priorities when choosing a haul out yard.

AEB 😉

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beer and flowers and a happy rower

Inger Rankins (NW Sails & Canvas) succeeded in pulling off a jaw dropping race for an 11 ft dinghy in a crowd of much longer, sleek surf ski's, kayaks, racing SUPs and all manner of multi and single crewed craft.  I hope to put together a video about her race (See updates below) but for the moment, this little interview with her right after she came in, after 20 hours non stop rowing, mind you, gives an idea of the energy and spirit of Inger Rankins.

 

UPDATE: Video of Inger's Race taken by her husband as he caught up to her at different points in the race.

Bonus: Off Center Harbor Feature Video!

Also stay tuned to Small Craft Advisor Magazine and Pocket Yachters for 70/48 stories from the racers including Inger's own narrative.

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19 hours and 59 minutes non stop rowing 70 miles.
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Inger and Seans sailboat, Cito that brought them towing the PT 11 from Port Townsend to Tacoma for the race.

Our friend, Inger Rankins of NW Sails and Canvas, heard about the 70/48 human powered race from Tacoma to Port Townsend, and decided she had to participate. She signed up as back up crew aboard the 4 person, locally designed and built row boat, Salish Star. It looks like the first crew are all as determined to race as Inger is, so she entered the race on her own, drawing on her viking heritage to name her solo "team", Valhalla. To our surprise, she chose the PT 11 to do it in! At 11 feet, she cannot expect to be at the front of the fleet but the point of the 70/48, like the R2AK, is not to win, but to finish. (I did promise her favorite beer at the finish line) 😉

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Inger training in the PT 11 for the 70/48

Inger is one of the finest canvas workers in the area and quite an athlete as well. Along with her regular training on the waters between Point Wilson and Port Hadlock (before and after work), we took a day to do a capsize/overboard drill. I think the practice meant a lot not only to Inger but also to her husband, Sean. It is always good to know you can get back into the boat! It was a good opportunity for me to take some video to share.

We are very excited for Inger. We admire her bravery and will be tracking her closely, guessing that the combination of her personality and the PT 11 will be interesting to follow in more ways than one. The 70/48 starts June 11th in Tacoma at 5 PM. Look for Team Valhalla while you are checking out the other boats on the tracker. We hope all of the teams have safe and fun passages amidst the "whirly burlies" and commercial traffic of Puget Sound.

We are cheering for you already Inger!

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Inger heading for the water at the NW Maritime Center.

Sometimes things look right until you try to match the parts. For example, we check  puzzle joints on every kit before shipping. However, it is easy to assume that a really simple little part is right. This is what happened recently when a customer in Australia wrote saying, after everything else being so perfect in the kit, the mismatch of this one little part, the inwale doubler, had to be a mistake. Well, he was absolutely right and we really do not know how many kits went out with this little part that does not fit correctly.  I can only imagine that quite a few of these kits went out and quite a few builders just dealt with it quietly.

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The curve does not match and it should.

How did this happen? We used to cut this little doubler on the router table with the nesting notch that matches the notch in the transom inwale. Then we started having it CNC cut. I guess we never really checked.
So, we now have a stack of correctly cut inwale doublers. If you are not yet at this point of your build, please contact us to get the new piece. If you had to adjust or re-cut this little piece, please accept our apologies.

If you have a part that looks wrong or does not fit, we count on you letting us know. Thank you for choosing a PT 11 nesting dinghy kit!

AEB 😉

I am pleased to be the editor of a special book now available in full color print. Toti Bleu, dream of a gypsy wagon, is the journal of how a horse drawn gypsy wagon 'became'. It includes modern logic behind the design, material choices, gear selection, horse breed and care. It also includes the lack of logic involved in jumping into the unknown to realize a dream, the magic of friendships both human and quadruped, and the emotional ups and downs of a long term project.

What really makes this book so beautiful is the author, Suzanne, who strikes a balance between practical and poetic thought, and, the many photos taken on location in Se France. Yes, France.  I may be biased, since Suzanne happens to be my mother, but this project has allowed me to get to know her in a way few children get to know their parents. I initially thought her idea was a little nutty given the lack of money to do such a thing, but following as it evolved, I am now even more inspired by her.

See Toti Bleu on Amazon available worldwide.

This journal was originally a blog and the story continues. The book is edited from the blog format and the 2 venues compliment each other.

Be inspired to create your own 'land boat', dive into any seemingly impossible project, or simply connect more closely with flora and fauna, and especially horses. All proceeds from the book go to the author and continuing the Toti Bleu Project and message.

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front and back cover
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colorful happiness - Toti's front door.

 

What do you think of when you think of Port Townsend, WA? If you have ever been here, the first word in your head might very well be BOATS!

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Port Townsend Annual Wooden Boat Festival. Photo: Ashlyn Brown

Port Townsend has a unique maritime culture and when you crest the hill as you enter our town, you are struck by the view of our snow capped mountains, beautiful bay, sailboats, work boats, haul-out yards & marinas, Victorian architecture, pristine shorelines and more boats, boats, boats!

This amazing photo is borrowed from the internet, taken by Steve Mullensky
This amazing photo of Boat Haven and Port Townsend is borrowed from the internet, taken by Steve Mullensky
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Launching Cito. Photo: Ashlyn Brown

What we have is a real but also socially and environmentally conscientious working waterfront that specializes in the highest degree of craft in the marine trades. Wooden boat expertise is high on that list but certainly not exclusive to it as metal craft are built or repaired here too. Our local foundry and metal shops here produce top quality products for projects far and wide. Not surprisingly, many of our skilled workforce are graduates of the NW School of Wooden Boatbuilding, considered one of the very best in the country. In every big or little workshop, interesting things are being built, prototyped, repaired and restored.

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Sliver Project at the NW School of Wooden Boat Building. Photo: Ashlyn Brown

The energy is high and is unique in its collaborative spirit. These small businesses help each other, working across platforms and skill sets. When a boat project comes in, the owners can be sure that this little town offers a powerful spectrum of skilled labor and expertise, and customized quality that only small, family and individually owned businesses can offer.

Am I advertising the Marine trades of Port Townsend? Yep! Here is why.

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Sail maker Sean Rankins and team double check new sails. Our tradespeople are passionate about boats and about their craft. Photo: Ashlyn Brown

 

 

 

Like so many working waterfronts, our port faces some financial challenges for critical infrastructure projects. Government funding has dried up so our Port authority has posted some experimental yard rates in a misguided effort to pick up the slack revenue. However; the effects of these rate hikes are evidenced by an empty yard compared to previous years. Our Marine Trades businesses know that remaining competitive is critical to a town like ours.

I am reaching out to Pacific North West boat owners in particular. Perhaps quotes from the Port of PT for haul out and space rental would interest you. If the price does not work for you, please tell them, or tell us! Simply not responding to a quote will not educate an administrative office.  The Port Townsend marine trades businesses want your business. We know that price matters and our marine trades businesses want a project to fit your needs and your budget.

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Enjoying Port Townsend's exciting sailing season. Photo: Ashlyn Brown

Further, see our Marine Trades Association listings and find out how they can help to make a haul out here more attractive. Even if some other yards can offer lower prices, few if any, can offer the craftsmanship concentrated here.

Please help our Marine Trades keep Port Townsend’s Working Waterfront competitive.
You can also take this brief survey! Your information is never sold! This is for our local research only.
Thank you! May 2018 be a wonderful year in some special way.

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Additional resources regarding WA's maritime industry and strong towns movements;

WA to become the most sustainable maritime industry in the US by 2050

WA Dept. of Commerce Maritime industry defined

WA State economic impact study; Maritime Sector, update 2017

WA State strategic proposal for Maritime Sector 2017-2019

Strong Towns .org

Tour PT's Shipwright's Co-Op with Off Center Harbor