RB42, ROWBOAT, 18' X 45", 90 POUNDS
Herb McLeod lives in western Canada
and likes to tease the rest of us with photos like the
one above. Beautiful! Here is his RB42 out camping with
RB42 is a row boat for two! The prototype
was built by Herb McLeod of Edmonton, Alberta. Look closely
and you will see a lot of my Toto
canoe in RB42. I has the same long lean bow and multichines
for smoother going in rough water. The stern is wider
on top but the lines of these boats at the water always
sweep upward and taper to nothing. The stern has a buoyancy/storage
volume with a hatch. The bow has another buoyancy/storage
area with access through a deck plate in the bulkhead.
Here is another one of Herb's camping
photos. You can see some gear lashed to the aft deck and
no doubt there is a lot more stuff secured inside that
stern locker. The floor of the boat is about 10' long
and totally open so one person could sleep there right
in the boat. There are no built in seats or frames in
the way. A movable rowing seat is used. Here is Herb's
A thinly padded board is mounted to
a standard plastic toolbox. The seats shouldn't be too
high, I've usually made mine about 9" high but that
would vary by person and boat so some experiments are
needed on the trial runs. As I recall, Herb's seat has
a little trick to it - the seat is actually attached to
the bottom of the box. So if the box is turned over, the
top is available and it can be used then as a regular
Although designed to be rowed by two
people, this boat might be fine with a solo rower in many
conditions. The long waterline should give extra speed
over a shorter boat, although it's not all that simple.
Frictional area might be increased and windage drag should
increase over a shorter boat. But RB42 is a bit lower
and sleeker than my other designs so it's hard to tell.
Herb had to tinker a bit with the seating
and oarlock locations, something any rowboat builder will
likely have to do. In the end he moved the locks aft 1'
from what is shown in the first photo. Solo rowing is
fine from what is shown above as the original aft location.
Seating in almost all my rowboats is on movable boxes
that simply rest on the floor so no revisions of seating
structure was needed. In addition when the seat boxes
are removed, the boat is totally open between the bulkheads.
I got the idea a long time ago from reading Bolger, who
got the idea from Herreshoff.
RB42 is built with taped seams from
six sheets of 1/4" plywood. No lofting or building