The Bilge-Board Canoe Foggy Dew.

(From Forest & Stream, February 3, 1900)

We are indebted for the accompanying lines to the kindness of Mr. H. Lansing Quick, of the Yonkers C. C., who at our request, took them from the canoe and made the drawings. Of all the canoes seen at the A.C.A. and Division meets of late years none is more generally or favorably known than Foggy Dew; in fact, she is the best representative now extant of the old-time type of all- around sailing canoe. Mr. Quick himself is an old racing man, the reputation of the Yonkers C. C. in its early days resting largely on the skill of himself and his partner Mr. Oxholm, two of the best sailors the Association has produced. An expert on the long slide and a master of the racing machine, Mr. Quick finally tired of it and took to the present boat, of good dimensions and displacement and with ample room below, in 1892. Since then she has been in constant use on the Hudson River, and has visited most of the meets, sailing in club and Association races.

Foggy Dew was designed and built by Capt. George Ruggles, at Charlotte, N. Y., in the winter of 1891, her dimensions being 15ft. 4in. by 31in., with a draft of from 4 to 5in. She is built after the caulked carvel system, introduced by Capt. Ruggles, with planking 2in. wide, and scant 1/4in. thick, there being nine white cedar planks to each side, with an upper strake of butternut. The seams are caulked with one fine strand of cotton run in with a roller. The keel is of oak, the stem and stern of apple, natural knees, and the frames of oak, 1/4 x 5/16 in., spaced 4in. The deck is of Spanish cedar, scant 1/4in. There are two bilge-board trunks, one in each bilge, with an outer solepiece of oak showing flush with the outside of planking, headledges of oak and sides of white pine stiffened by oak strips. The cockpit coaming is of oak. The floor is carried on light oak bearers about 3/8in. square, at such a height as to make a level floor of the full size of the cockpit.

There are two bulkheads, located as shown, with full space for sleeping in the center of the boat, there being sufficient breadth between the bilge board trunks. The bulkheads are of 3/8in. pine stiffened by oak braces. The sides of the well are stiffened by knees on each alternate beam, running well down the side, so that the deck is strong enough to walk on. Directly under the deck seat are two heavy oak knees well fastened, to take a movable cross beam through which pass the two holding- down bolts of the sliding seat.

The bedpiece of the seat is of oak, strongly made, and the slide, which is 5ft. long and 6in. wide, has a top of spruce with runners of oak.

The bilge boards are of brass, No. 14 guage, hung from the deck so as to lift out, with spring hook on after end. The rudder is of the ordinary brass drop pattern, with a solid stick connecting it to the tiller instead of the usual chains.

The mast tubes are each 2 3/8in. diameter at deck, tapering to 1 1/4in. at step. The forward step is of oak, 1 1/4in. thick, fitted to the inside of the planking and with a piece of sheet brass on top to prevent splitting. There is a deck hatch forward and one aft, the hatches being fitted with a taper. Inside the hatch coaming a round cord of rubber is fitted, inclosed in a strip of canvas, against which the hatch wedges.

A special feature of the canoe, in connection with the large open cockpit, is the watertight canvas bag, which makes a total capsize impossible without taking water below or impairing the stability of the boat. The cockpit is partly covered by movable hatches, the space between them being fitted with a watertight bag of canvas, with a handle sewn in the bottom, so that it can be easily turned inside out and emptied. The upper edges of the bag are fastened to oak strips, which in turn are secured to the coamings by thumb screws.

The sail plan and rigging of the canoe has been kept as simple as possible, the sails being of the ordinary one batten lowering type, known as the Vaux sail. They are hoisted by double halyards, running through deadeyes on the yard, masthead and deck and after hatch; the main halyards leading aft along the deck to cleats on the forward cockpit hatch and the mizzen forward to cleats on the after hatch. Each sail has a hand reefing gear led through pockets on the sail so that it will not foul on stakes or other obstructions, and leading to hand in the cockpit. The main sheet is endless and has no traveler, leading through a deadeye under the boom and then through a deadeye on each side of the cockpit and through a Butler cleat; the mizzen being rigged similarly. In this way the sheets may be, handled from either side, and both with one hand, as the Butler cleats hold automatically. In all cases deadeyes are used in preference to blocks.

Mr. Quick has also favored us with the following description of the canoe and also his opinions on this style of craft.

As you are publishing the lines of the Foggy Dew in this issue of FOREST AND STREAM, you will probably like to have my opinion of such a boat.

In 1891, when I decided to drop racing in a machine, as they are termed, I looked around for some kind of a good serviceable cruising canoe, out of which I could get a little speed if needed.

I had always liked Mr. Brokaw's bilge board canoe Brooklyn, so I decided to see what could be done in that line. Capt. Geo. W. Ruggles was consulted, and the result was the Foggy Dew, and I have never regretted the building of such a boat.

In the first place, Mr. Ruggles' method of construction has been all that could be desired. I told him to build a boat heavy and strong enough to stand 200ft. of sail and a 10ft. seat, if needed, and he did, for at the end of eight years' of hard sailing there is not a strained seam or joint in the boat, and to-day it is as good as the day it left his shop.

As to style of boat I think all depends on the uses it is to be put too. If a man has time for cruising in open water, I do not know of any kind of boat equal to the bilge board canoe such as Foggy Dew, but for the man who has very little time to give to the sport and has the ability to handle ii, the so-called machine is the boat; being simpler in fittings, etc., it requires less time to keep in shape, and it is certainly a very safe kind of boat, it being nothing more or less than a large air tank.

Today the question seems to be what style of boat will be the best for the A. C. A. to encourage so as to get more men in the sailing races and possibly some of the old-timers at it again.

The development of the machine certainly has cut the sailing fleet down, as it is hard to get more than six or eight in the races at the meets today. If the Association by encouraging a heavier cruising style of boat could get a fleet of twenty or more in the races, as of old, I have no doubt but that the men sailing the machines today would gladly give them up and go in for the cruising class even more enthusiastically than they do now for the machines, for there are none of them but would like to see a larger sailing fleet.

Considering all the years of trial of the machines and the result, would it not be well this next year to change the rules, debarring such boats from the races, trophy and all, and try a boat of the cruising style, and if such a change were made what better style could you get than a bilge board. If a rule be made to govern such boats it should be very positive as to weight, strength, etc., as the only object of making such a change would be to get a boat so steady that the average canoeist could sail it without being an athlete, as some claim you must be to sail a machine. I think the old cruising canoe rule a pretty good description of the boat wanted.

The changes I would make in Foggy Dew, were I to build such a boat again, are very few, and would deal more with the fittings than with the boat. The center boards should be the new form of hoisting dagger board, and the keel should project below the garboards so as to protect the boat more in pulling up on the float or dock.

I have always used a 5ft. deck seat for racing or cruising, having gotten to the time where I go only where the sails will take me, and when I do have to use the paddle I slip the top of the seat off and stow it on the deck forward.

The traveler for the dandy sheet I find very useful on a cruising boat to put the ends of the paddle under when sailing, for I always carry it on deck and not in the cockpit, on account of the cockpit bag.

I would never cruise again without the watertight canvas bag in the cockpit, for with it an upset means very little, as you do not get much water aboard, and there is no fear of losing any of your duffle.

The Norwegian steering gear I find a great advantage over the old chain, as it leaves the after-compartment hatch entirely free for storing away duffle.

For the rig I would recommend lowering sails of some kind, and in the rigging of them I would certainly have them reefable from the cockpit. The halyards should go through dead eyes or blocks on the deck instead of on the foot of mast, so that in case of an upset they will hold the sails in the boat.

The sail limit I think should be left just about what it now is, 130ft., as a heavy cruising boat would be able to easily carry that amount. I am using the same lowering rig on Foggy Dew today that I had made for Uno in 1890. I have also a standing rig of about 128ft. for racing. When the wind blows she holds her own pretty well with the racing boats.

She has always won the cruising races when she has been at the meets, where it has been held. She finished second in the Combined in '92. In '96 she was second to Mab in the Hotel Champlain cup. In June, '98, she was second at the special canoe race of the Atlantic Y.C., and at the '99 meet she was first in one of the Sailors' Union races, and second in another. In the race for the Gananoque banner she was fifth, so with boats of her Type the racing need not be so very slow even thought there are no machines.

In conclusion, do not think that I am against the machines, as I am not; for I have always favored everything that has tended to make them what they are, but I do favor making any change that will bring out a larger fleet, and if a heavy cruising canoe will do it, why I, for one, say lets have it.

Yonkers, Jan 23.
H. Lansing Quick