Will ash plume lead to resurgence of Commuter boats?

With this weeks ongoing flying ban over most of Europe I was wondering if people were beginning to contemplate having their own means of travelling from Ireland and Britain to mainland Europe. Something along the lines of the commuter yachts that were used in the USA at the turn of the twentieth century. Something along the lines of the boat below.

Just the thing for popping across to France of England for business and if you’re worried about getting a touch of Mal de mer there are no gyroscopic stabilisers available which greatly reduced roll and pitching.

The boat above is“Rosamund” designed by John Alden in 1926 is the quintessential commuter yacht. These yachts were moderately fast motor boats that were quite spartan to begin with but later developed into luxurious yachts. Seven months a year wealthy New York industrialists were able to leave for work in their dressing gowns and have breakfast and dress on the way. With today’s communications technology it would be quite possible to work while underway turning your luxurious yacht into a mobile office. Built to the highest standards by Roeboats there is no reason why a modern or classic commuter yacht wouldn’t make the perfect antidote to air travel which will become more and more expensive and which has proven to be vulnerable to disruptions, think of 9/11 and now volcanic ash.

M/Y Vidar a C. G. Petersson design

Or how about a Swedish commuter yacht, this one M/Y Vidar was designed by C. G. Petersson the famed Swedish naval architect, who I’m currently researching. His boats are drop dead gorgeous and of course seaworthy and fuel efficient.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:roeboats@ymail.com


Birthday for Roeboats

Starting a business in the middle of a recession is not easy but people will still want to enjoy the unique unparalleled freedom offered by being captain of your own boat. Yes it has been difficult but I’ve wanted to be a boat builder since I was thirteen when I started maintaining and repairing racing dinghies. After nearly 25 years of learning and honing the skills needed I finally decided to start Roeboats and follow that dream. So far I have been successful and I’m hoping that clients will recognise the value and beauty of the boats that Roeboats build. I’m building boats that were designed during the golden age of yachting and building them using eco-friendly and low maintenance techniques so clients can have beautiful classic boats without the headaches of traditional construction and benefit from their sea-kindly and fuel efficient hull forms.” It all started with the building of an optimist dinghy with my father see the picture below.

wooden optimist dinghy

Mo Bháidín (My little boat) 1983

To celebrate Roeboats first anniversary in business I’m offering a free tender with every boat ordered over 20’ before the end of April 2010. Launched with the commencement of the building of hull number one a John Atkin designed 22’ eco-friendly fuel efficient powerboat Roeboats have not only survived the recent economic maelstrom but are implementing plans to grow the business in the coming years. I’m currently discussing custom built boat projects, both power and sail, with prospective owners both here in Ireland and abroad. We’ve teamed up with two boat dealerships in Ireland, I’ll be announcing details soon, and I’m also beginning to target the UK and northern Europe. Initial contacts with specialist brokers have been very positive.
Official celebrations are being postponed slightly to coincide with the Baltimore Wooden Boat Festival at the end of May where Roeboats first boat will be making it’s debut where clients can get a chance to see the fine craftsmanship and excellent sea keeping of the Ninigret. So if you’d like to have a look at what Roeboats are up to why not head to Baltimore for the 28-30th. of May

The most beautiful boat in the world?

Dark Harbor 17 classic gentleman's gaff rigged wooden one design day boat designed by B. B. Crowninshield

If I could build one boat for myself I would build a Dark Harbor 17. Twenty-five feet overall with a 17.5′ waterline, this gaff rigged beauty is the quintessential gentleman’s day boat. Those graceful overhangs and fine hull shape combined with her long keel and simple cuddy all combine into something incredibly beautiful. You couldn’t name this boat after your wife or husband; they could get very jealous. You could very easily start to spend all your free time out sailing in the best looking boat in the bay. Designed in 1910 by B.B. Crowninshield for the members of the Manchester Yacht Club as a one design racer, they are still being built to this day, a real example of how style never goes out of fashion. It doesn’t look like my wife will let me build one of these for myself, I already spend too much time in the workshop. So if you would like your own Dark Harbor 17 there is no better time to order yours now. I’m offering a free classic tender with each of these boats so hurry before the offer is over. I was thinking of building a new version strip planking and epoxy sheathing for low maintenance and durability. This would result in a lightweight and low maintenance classic wooden gentleman’s day sailor that will give many many years of enjoyable and reliable service.

Wooden boat magazine did a feature article on this beauty in issue 196 May/June 2007 which has some good photos and information about the designer.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:roeboats@ymail.com


5 Reasons to order your Ninigret 22 now

Classic 22' wooden power boat at speed, custom built in Cork Ireland by Roeboats

The Roeboats Ninigret 22 :

  1. exudes all the style and elegance that you could wish for
  2. is affordable and ready to go for only €29,500 including 30 hp engine and rollercoaster trailer (22,500 boat only)
  3. has Low maintenance costs due to fuel efficiency and durable, eco-friendly construction
  4. is comfortable with its sea kindly hull form and large deep cockpit with seating for 6 .
  5. and Worldwide Shipping can be arranged.

Order now by calling Tiernan Roe on +353 (0)86 158 69 37 or by using the contact form below.

For more information on why wood is the best boat building material look here

For more photos of the finished boat see hereClassic 22' 2 berth powerboat aft view, custom built in Cork Ireland, For Sale

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:roeboats@ymail.com


RTE radio covers Roeboats

Quick post to let you know that Roeboats was mentioned on Seascapes Irelands national adio programme covering all thing marine related. You can listen here it’s about 15 minutes into the programme. Hopefully there will be more to follow.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:roeboats@ymail.com


Finished Lofting!

Finally finished lofting Ninigret. I had to spend some time finishing up outstanding jobs that I had on as well. With the lofting complete, I now have all the frame and stem bevels, and transom projected so it will be full steam ahead making from now on hopefully. Here’s something of interest, I came across this at Woodenboat; it was their boat of the week. It really appealed to my conceptual sensibilities, I have always been a fan of people like composer John Cage and the Fluxus group. Anyway here’s a picture of an unmanned boat that can “sail” directly into the wind. Quite a technological feat really. I think it looks fantastic maybe we should all be building boats like this.



Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:roeboats@ymail.com


Lofting Ninigret 22′ Dayboat

Well I’ve spent the last few days lofting the lines and construction plan for Ninigret; the 22′ fuel efficient day boat I’m building. It’s been a long time since I did a lot of hand drafting; makes you appreciate the convenience of computer modelling. I would do it on the computer but the old girl isn’t up to running up to date software. Anyway the lofting is going pretty well. I decided to loft to a one quarter scale as it was big enough for details and I could store the finished drawing easily for future reference. I’ll have to loft the stem and body plan full size but that won’t be too difficult either. Here are some photos of work in progress.


As you can see I’ve used different colours to make the drawing easier to read. Once the frames and stem are lofted I’ll start lifting the bevels and making up the frames. I’ve decided to use Resorcinol glue for the Oak frames as epoxy doesn’t like tanin that much and the dark glue lines won’t be noticed.


Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:roeboats@ymail.com


Ningret 22′ Eco friendly motor boat.

You can see Roeboats finished Ninigret here

Roeboats have just been commissioned to build a Ninigret 22′ motor boat designed by John Atkin. I am really looking forward to building this great looking boat. John Atkin really knew his stuff; I’ve been going through the plans and and there is nothing on this boat that that is superfluous; yet it still boasts a large cockpit, two berths and a sea toilet (head). Primarily what attracted me and my client to this boat were its good looks; but it has many other great features. One of these was the fact that the motor is housed in a covered well thus reducing noise and protecting the cockpit from following seas.

Profile drawing from www.atkinboatplans.com

Profile drawing from http://www.atkinboatplans.com

Ninigret rides flat and with her fine entry should have no trouble slicing through choppy waves ensuring a dry and comfortable ride. The 25 to 45 horse power outboard under the hatch at the aft end of the large cockpit drives the boat to speeds from 15 to 25 knots which is plenty fast for heading to your favorite fishing spot or beach. The fact that this boat not only has a large cockpit but two berths and a head is really amazing and a credit to the designers ingenuity and creativity. Being a designer myself I can appreciate the hours and hours of thought and sketching that must have been done to produce such a classic. I’ll be documenting the construction of Ninigret here in the future. Here’s a photo of John Atkin in his own Ninigret built in the 80′

Roeboats are offering Ninigret for a special limited offer of €24,900 boat and engine contact Tiernan Roe on +353 (0)28 38973 to discuss your own Ninigret. We are now delivering worldwide also. So don’t delay order now to guarantee delivery for summer 2015

Why use wood to build boats?


Photo by rick rowland via Flickr Creative Commons

Where lightweight and strength are needed wood is the best material to use.

Wood is stronger than than steel, most fiberglass and aluminium pound for pound.

Wood is stiffer than all fiberglass, kevlar and steel.

Wood absorbs vibrations and this includes sound, so wooden boats are quieter.

Wood does not fatigue with repeated loading,

Wood is a renewable resource and the growing of wood removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

Wood is eco friendly in that it can be recycled, fiberglass cannot.

Wood looks good.

Wood allows economical, in both materials and cost, custom production of boats.

Wooden boats require similar maintenance to fiberglass boats. Gel coat is not the wonder material it was thought to be

So why are most boats for sale today made of fiberglass?

There is one reason most boats are built from fiberglass; that is cheap labour.

It requires skilled craftspeople to build a wooden boat, whereas semi-skilled and unskilled operatives with proper supervision can manufacture a fiberglass boat.

Fiberglass is not renewable and non-recyclable,

Fiberglass requires similar maintenance to a wooden boat. Gel coat is not the wonder material it was thought to be.

Update: 2-May-2010

I came across this article by Lawence W. Cheek in the Seattle Times today and he says exactly what I want to, but better.

“We willingly pour the considerable labor and love into building, maintaining and restoring wooden boats because they lead us to participating in something greater than ourselves. I have nothing against fiberglass, but a boat made of synthetic material simply reflects human culture back at us. It is purely a product of technology. A wooden boat is a partnership. It’s not literally a living thing, not quite, but it evinces respect for the life that exists outside the clubby circle of human intelligence.”

Photo by Botheredbybees

Photo by Botheredbybees via Flickr Creative Commons

Tús maith, leath na h-oibre

A good start is half the work. Well let’s hope this old saying or seanfhocail holds true. I thought I might start at the beginning and show you some views of where Roeboats is located. We’re located just off the N71 in the leam a mhádra (dog’s leap) valley overlooking Roaringwater bay and the Fastnet_Rock. I’ve been living in this area for almost ten years and as you can see it’s an easy place to stay in.sunnyhouse1

I moved to West cork to build boats but got a little sidetracked and have been making fine wooden funiture for the last ten years instead. Check out my furniture at Tiernan Roe Fine Woodworking, as you can see I’m a big fan of blogs. However I aim to update this blog a lot more frequently.sunnydrive1

Previous to moving to West Cork I worked in Berlin and Dublin as a special effects model maker making tings like rubber armour and 9metre 35′ statues of liberty for the top of Checkpoint Charlie on the old Berlin wall. Which was very interesting and used a lot of the skills needed in boatbuilding like mold making, fibreglass fabrication and some complex wood work; one project recreated the art nouveau interior of Maxim’s restaurant in Paris.

Roeboats, Ballydehob, Co. Cork, t:+353 (0)28 38973 m: +353 (0)86 158 69 37 e:roeboats@ymail.com