Skerrieskiff 15

Iain Oughtred


  • Length

    14' 10" - 4.53m

  • Beam

    4' 7" - 1.40m

  • Draft

    -

  • Weight (kg)

    65

  • Sail Area

    60 sq ft - 5.57 sq m

  • Time to build (estimate)

    120-170 hours

A skerry, in the North, is a half-tide rock or reef. But in parts of the east coast of England, around East Anglia, this Norse-sounding word referred to a small boat carrying two or three people.
The hull embodies some features of the dories and faerings. They are about as simple as they could be, with a flat bottom and two strakes the side. The sharper angle of the "chines" necessitates a wider than usual land, with the resulting gap on the outside filled with an epoxy fillet or a wedge-shaped strip of wood.
The sail area is moderate, as these really are rowing boat hulls, with the waterline beam of about 1 m. They are certainly fast and manoeuverable under oars, but like the dories and faerings, they slide along very easily with just a wee sail, responding instantly to trimming of the sheet and slight shifting of the live ballast.
Both boats have a simple dagger board for sailing, and a lifting rudder. They may be built as open hulls or with built-in buoyancy for and aft. The balanced lug rig was chosen as offering the best combination of simple safe handling and good performance. The boomless standing lug is also possible. This is a less useful sail, but gets the boom out of the boat.

Skerrieskiff 15