Wharram Builders and Friends

A Photo & Discussion Forum for Wharram Design Enthusiasts

Hi all, here's WHY NOT? b4 paint.....

vaka is done, and now to the ama.......

as a proa he is different to a cat, but his sole too belongs in the pacific.


all d best.


Views: 339

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Rael, your work on plywood craft with bi-lateral asymmetry (or proas) is noteworthy.

Most people who have dabbled with this type of craft, have dropped out and have gone the conventional multihull route.

I suppose we (you and I) have a thing in common here, in that we keep on at it. Our difference in choices being that I have moved on to double hulls, while you seem to be sticking to the smaller ama that represents the outrigger float of a traditional outrigger canoe.

James wharram has had no success with the outrigger type ama, probably because  he tried the double ama configuration tacker, without increasing ama size as much as the trimaran designers have done, while His shunter (proa experiment) might have suffered as much from a low volume ama

  Thanx for the very supporting point of view Jeremy.

Sometimes I wonder my self what am I doing, is this path I chose to walk down the correct one for me??? Or is it taking me to a dead end... You know it I'm sure, failure, sorrow, looking at it all and wondering what's better, a gallon of diesel and a match or a sledge hammer???

  Well, I looked you up, nice site! you've got amazing creations under your belt. ITI too has a character!! He's very modern/traditional in his own way.... So you know, giving up is easy, but we don't play by the rules... When the laws of physics don't agree with my ideas, I don't "make it work" I change the whole concept, I start over.... It's probably a stubbornness that you are ether born with or not.... You know very well that it has it's ups and downs and at times, it aint no bed of roses.....

  Shunting out riggers, That was the topic if I'm not mistaken...

Well, they amaze me. Crystal Clear is the best boat I sailed. When she behaved herself that is.... Because she has her moments too... She can be  real bitch at times. I did fail there, a 3 year build, all the funds I could come up with, and what I got??? a boat in storage that costs a monthly fee. She is very difficult to shunt, her schooner rig is just a collection of two CE's that run back and forth over a confused CLR, resulting in finishing most shunts back winded. Unless you take care, plan your shunt and make sure your crew is on the ball and working with you in perfect sinchrone, then she will shunt. But that's not my cup of tea.... If I want to sail Shunters, they need to shunt single handed with relative eas and minimum risk of getting caught aback.

  WHY NOT? he does just that, so I decided to focus on a small micro cruiser with a single crab claw and get the basics right, then go from there. Crystal Clear is a good base for a small cruiser but I need to learn the basics before going back to her. WHY NOT? will teach me.

So why Proas?

Their hulls are easy to design, put your CLR in the middle and go from there.... Rig? on top of that.... Bow? Stern?? make what ever.... then make it the same at the other end......

Small amas have advantages. But.... You said it, not too small. They are easy to build, cost less and follow the seas without stressing the akas too much. Now with almost no stress on akas, they too become cheap and simple....

Bottom line, small is good, Throw it on your car and go....

It's the simplicity and the potential, that really ignite my imagination.

All d best Jeremy.



“shunting outrigger canoes” are pretty much where it all started and I guess if the world had preferred to keep things clear and simple, that  an outrigger ama kept to windward would basically describe a proa.

A log ama is again the basic or fundamental component that we could all agree on as the design standard, since it is arguably the type(Melanesian andMicronesian proas) on which we base our understanding,  but people beg to differ and I’m happy to go along with any shape or density of ama that is kept to windward by means of shunting and in which case the dynamics of windward ama outrigger sailing craft apply to some degree or other.

For instance, I don’t see why any two double ended hulls should not be joined with connecting beams, and be able to sail as a shunter. As long as the bigger one is kept to lee and the windward one  has a DL ratio that does not cause massive weather helm, then it should sail OK.

You might even be able to salvage Crystal Clear in this way by turning him into an ama. For a bigger and heavier vaka.

The ability to handle sail single handedly when shunting, sure is a major consideration and is probably the most meaningful thing I have learned in all the time I’ve spent on shunters.


Your effort to get running rigging to work in shifting the CE could also go towards achieving  better control: if you were to modify things a bit and concentrate on having one sail that shifts ends, rather than two that have to be synchronized.

Getting one sail to shunt is probably the main thing that differentriates traditional Oceanic canoes in terms of handling and performance.

This is illustrated in the drua class of sailing canoe being considered (by some academic “experts”) to be the pinnacle of Oceanic canoe development.


Your experience (with Crystal Clear and Why Not) is an example of the lesson to be learned  in sailing shunting craft with either one or two masts. 

Reply to Discussion


© 2024   Created by Budget Boater.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service