A 12-foot by 42-inch double-ended skiff comprising two rectangular side panels and a bottom, and very little else.
I built my Teal in the spring of my thirty-second year, 1982. I knew that my anxiety about tackling the most complex woodworking project of my life would be a factor, so I decided to apply some external motivation by telling everyone I knew that I was going to build a boat. One afternoon a friend leaned across a table and asked, “So when are we going to see the boat you’re building?” I then upped the ante by starting to buy all the materials I needed for the build, piling them up in the breezeway of the house were living in. Finally, when there was nothing else left to buy, I marked out the dimensions of the sides and cut them out. I got her finished for about $500, including a sail from Bohndell’s in the, to me, mythical state of Maine. I still have her, All these years later.
My son and i built a Teal many years ago to serve as a rowing boat to teach young campers how to row. It is made from meranti ply (super luan). Inside chines, Gunter rig with a Turnabout sail, pivoting, weighted rudder and leeboard. push pull tiller, that i haven't tried yet. the boat does row well and my son ran it down the Saco river in Maine with a friend. I recently made an 18 inch long model, painted exactly like his for my two year old granddaughter. She calls it Daddy's boat. It stays outside year round ready for use.
John, just working on CLC's Team Dory with kids tonight at our volunteer shop. So fun to see how your love of good designs is strongly rooted.
Nice Article....Nice Boat!!...As usual, I want one....so little time/ so many wonderful boats!!
Great article! I built the sawed off version of Teal - the Elegant Punt. I was working in Gloucester in the early 80's and needed a tender. I found a signed copy of Bolger Boats (I still have it) which combines "Small Boats" and "The Folding Schooner" in a local Gloucester book store. I built Elegant Punt from the drawings in the book. I probably should have purchased plans from Harold Payson who commissioned them but I didn't know better then. At that time, the local lumber yards stocked marine plywood and hardware stores had bronze fastenings and oars. I took inspiration on my commute from Haverill, going past the famous Story boatyard where Bolger's Resolution sat in the Essex River and Brad Story had just built the first Bolger Chebacco. It was heady times for a wooden boat enthusiast! In his description of the Elegant Punt Bolger states "These boats row and tow about as you'd expect. They sail much better than you might expect..." That dinghy wouldn't drift in a straight line between oar strokes but it sure sailed nice. I built the rig cheaply using two diameters of closet rods for spars and 60/40 cloth for a sail. I tried to use an oar as a rudder with a transom-mounted oarlock which turned out to be a bad idea so I eventually built a rudder. The leeboard worked fine on either tack but it could be dicey sailing out to where it was deep enough to drop it.
Great article, and I'm glad to see you here again. I pulled out my copy of "Instant Boats" by Payson and lo & behold, there in chapter 9 is building Teal, step by step. Time to reread it!
I also built my Teal in my 32nd year, lol. At the time I was a full on Bolger afficionado and even made the trip to Dynamite Payson's shop when out to Maine to visit the Wooden Boat School. I named it "pocket change" in tribute to its low cost. I cut out and "dry" assembled my Teal without glue in my first home's basement during a cold Canadian winter. Then unassembled it all in the spring to get it outside and glue/screwed it together in the driveway. I never got to the sail rig. It got hours and hours of use by kids, nieces and nephews as a row boat in the 90's. I still have it. It's in need of attention. I've recently become enamoured with a video showing a Teal in Europe running with Storer's outriggers. Nice mix of two inspirational designer's work. Time for a restoration and a set of outriggers! The kids, niece's and nephews are all parents now and wanting it ready for their kids to use. A simple boat that keeps on giving!
Phil could do so much with a couple of sheets of plywood. I built a Yellow Leaf out of two $18 sheets of ACX a long time ago in my mom and dad's spare bedroom and slid her out over the porch roof. Built a cart with some old golf cart wheels and would roll her down to the river for a paddle. I also added chine logs. I also cut the sides out in our living room using the coffee table as a saw horse and of course nicked the table. My new wife was less than impressed.