The Shenandoah was built to withstand 4 meter seas and Force 8 winds, so she is theoretically a coastal vessel too. I brought her out the Thames Estuary and across the English Channel, east up the coast of France to Nieupoort, Belgium, where I entered the inland waterways.
I would not do it again.
There is no longitudinal stability in a flat-bottomed boat with no keel. She is built that way because draft (or lack of draft) is very important. If a keel were designed into her hull, she would handle quite differently in a sea. As it is, on canals she has a tendency to "skid" around tight turns. I know about it and deal with it and it isn't a problem.
As for American boatbuilders, there probably are many who would tackle the job. All you would need would be the plans, the rest a good weldor / welder could accomplish.
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Thread: Steel Boatbuilding
04-29-2008, 06:19 AM #9
Plying the canals and rivers of France. Plunder, wenches, good wine...!