Wind & Wet

DIY pram dinghy

DIY pram dinghy

Introduction

This is a pram dinghy I built when I got tired of pumping up the inflatable every time I wanted to get aboard the sailing boat I used to own. Unfortunately, by the time the dinghy was completed I had sold the sailing boat, but it now get regular use in the summer on the local river.
The design is slightly larger than some of the plans available and took three sheets of 8x4 feet 6mm plywood. The length is the maximum that could be fitted in the sheet without having to scarf the planks together. The vital statistics are:
Length
2.35m
Beam
1.27m
Weigth
40kg
Instead of the more normal central thwart the dinghy has a longitudinal seat stretching between the front and rear buoyancy chambers. The person rowing sits astride the seat and can move to trim the boat if there is a passenger in the stern or just to get a comfortable rowing position. This also makes for a very strong central structure and bottom. The seat does, however, take up some luggage space and there is less support for the sides of the boat.
Pram dinghy on the waterPram dinghy with integral wheels
The other slightly unusual feature are the permanent wheels mounted in the twin skegs. These have been very successful as the boat can be picked up and pulled to the water without a trolley or a lot of carrying. This coupled with the aluminium runners on the bottom have allowed it to be easily launched down sharp concrete steps undamaged.
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