Vessels Designed by Roger Long

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22 Foot Yawldory

My first traditional wooden boat design in over 20 years was a personal project for an old friend and was built by the Paul Rollins Boatshop.

The full story and drawings of the boat are here.

You can see the construction here.

Sailing photos here.

Willard Beach Dory

Barbara has wanted a light rowboat that she can wheel down to the beach on a dolly by herself so I drew up this 12 foot stitch and glue dory skiff.

The builder, Clint Chase, decided that he would like to add it to his line of stitch and glue kit boats so kits as well as finished boats will soon be available from CNC Boat Kits .

Looking Back

This is a retrospective of the high (and some of the low) spots of my varied career. Plans for most of these boats are available. Many of these designs are the romantic product of an impractical and misguided youth but still fun to look at and dream about. I don't have any regular plan sales or prices. If you think you would like to build something you see here, get in touch with me and we'll work something out. This is only a sample. I may add other boats from time to time as I find suitable pictures so check back occasionally.

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SSV Corwith Cramer

(Click Picture for More)

This vessel was designed while I was Vice President of Woodin and Marean and has both an educational and research mission. It was my involvement with the Sea Education Association that began my interest in oceanography and set me on the path to the main part of my career. From the time I determined to design this vessel until I began drawing the plans was 11 years so patience is sometimes rewarded. Just about every career and physical move during that period was part of my plot to be in the right place at the right time and design this ship.

The project itself was difficult. S.E.A. tried hard for fund raising reasons to give the impression that ship committee chairman Rod Stevens was actually designing the boat and I was just the draftsman. Prominent yachtsmen each seemed to have a pet idea that wasn't consistent with the ship's mission. I learned a lot that has stood me in good stead over the years working with committees in academic environments.

Years later, the marine superintendent called up to see if I would be interested in being considered for designing the next ship. I said that one ship in a lifetime for S.E.A. might be enough. "Well, you weren't a very strong candidate anyway.", he said.

"Oh?", I asked.

"You have a reputation for being a tempermental artist that has to have everything exactly your way. Besides, there are a lot of things about the 'Cramer" that we don't like."

"And what might those be?"

He went on to list all of the features that I had fought so hard to prevent from being included in the vessel! To this day, I have never sailed on this ship.

Schooner Lettie G. Howard

(Click Pictures for Larger Versions)

It�s not well known I but drew the lines and sail plan for South Street Seaport�s Lettie G. Howard. The source was a very detailed lines take off of the badly hogged and heavily modified hulk. I un-hogged her on paper and reconstructed the original appearance with the help of a committee that included Erik Ronberg, known to many of you as the foremost expert on the Gloucester schooners.

I also drew a sail plan, based on the practices of the time and a rough sailmaker�s sketch of the original vessel. Erik went over the details of this plan in great detail, even making sure that the block were exactly scale size. As a result, they look larger than you might expect from seeing yacht plans. The intent was to show the rig exactly as it would have been in service with the actual bend and rake typical of period practice. I did a lot of this from photographs of other schooners vetted by Erik and the committee. The result will look strange to many of you but, this is the way it was.

I�m planning on donating the original drawings to the Essex Shipbuilding Museum if anyone there ever gets back to me. That seems the most appropriate home for them. I just had them scanned and thought some of you would like to see these reductions.

The deckhouses and topping lifts are not shown because my part of the project came to a sudden end. The fellow they hired to head up the project was, well, �difficult�. There also got to be altogether too much historical nit-picking. After sitting in on long meetings where noted experts argued and disagreed about things like the exact shape of the ends of deck lodging knees, they just fired the whole lot of us and brought in a boat builder to finish her. South Street was more interested in having a plausible sail training vessel to operate than to recreate an historical record of every detail of internal structure. She�s a beautifully built vessel but I�m sure a lot inside is not exactly as Story built the original.

This sail plan used to be reproduced on a big piece of aluminum plate at the museum. I haven�t been there in decades so I don�t know if it�s still on display. These were among the very last pen on ink drawings I ever did so they are very precise and detailed. The reproduction process doesn�t do them justice.

52.77 Meter Barque

(Click Picture for Larger Version)

There are nearly 300 feet of hand inked drawings for this elegant sail training ship rolled up in my basement. She was designed for the marine program of a private school in Massachusetts. The drawings, right down to the arrangement of fittings on the yards, and all of the calculations were finished almost exactly on the day that the school fired its founder and canceled the project.

170 Foot Sail Training Ship

(Click Picture for Lines)

Another tall ship that didn't get built. This one was to be "America's Tall Ship". It was a very high profile project that gradually drifted, without any real intent, from building a ship to supporting itself. I lost a lot of money and received a subpoena from the IRS followed by an uncomfortable grilling. There was trial and punishment for people who had been my close friends and I turned my back on sail for many years.

Bufflehead Aluminum DUWK

2.21 meg Windows Media Movie of Bufflehead Launching

One of my more unusual projects was this amphibious tour boat designed for and built by Downeast Duck Adventures of Portland, Maine.

M/V Reliance

Designed for landing trucks and construction equipment on remote islands, this was the last vessel built at the Goudy and Stevens shipyard in East Boothbay, a distinction I would have been glad to pass up. She is now owned and operated by Rockland Marine.

M/V Island Transporter

Another design that shows that I am not addicted to grace of line. Designed for the same purpose as "Reliance" but with more capacity, she can also fit the state ferry docks for peak load relief. Operated by Rockland Marine.

New Hull for Dimillo's Restuarant

(Click Picture for Full Story)

This largest floating steel structure I ever designed that actually got launched.

Friendship Sloop Black Star ex. Rita

Black Star Website

Black Star Sailing Video

Designed for the commodore of the New York Yacht Club to replicate one of the first boats he owned and built by the Rockport Apprenticeshop. The owner had a lines plan that was taken off the original Wilbur Morse boat after she had sagged badly out of shape so the project started by mentally reversing the effects of age and gravity and drawing a new lines plan. Everything else had to be recreated from scratch. She was recently completely restored and renamed.

The following designs predate the formation of Roger Long Marine Architecture, Inc. and are owned by me personally.

Susan B. Merryman

This was the first large boat my sons ever sailed on which made it a rather special event. I designed this 39 foot, foam cored, fiberglass schooner in 1973 intending to start a boatyard with a friend. The oil crisis and recession sunk that idea and I later sold the plans through a small add in "Yachting". One person actually built the overly complex hull which has wooden decks and cabin. She passed on to his son who still sails her when he is not rebuilding her. She is fast for a heavy hull and has even won a schooner race. The photo below taken in the summer of 2009 when we met up at Peaks Island just before heading for shelter to ride out the fringes of a hurricane passing just offshore.

Skipjack Macumba

There was a time that the details of every boat were engraved on my mind but I find now that I can't remember who I designed this skipjack for or where she was built. The original design had a small diesel auxiliary which would have been a lot neater than the outboard hanging on the transom. If anyone has seen this boat, please let me know.

27 Foot Eastport Pinky Sloop

(Click picture for more)

This was the first set of plans that I drew completely in ink. I did them on tracing paper which still amazes me since erasing was virtually impossible. You could get small areas off by carefully scraping with a knife but, if you changed your mind on anything big, you started all over again. I wised up fast and never tried that again, converting quickly to the erasable mylar that I used until computers and CAD came along.

This boat was designed for a friend who never got around to building her. She has an interesting place in the history of the Internet however. In days when the web was just coming into widespread use, a friend set up a web site about boats. We put the full set of plans up so that we could claim it as the first boat that you could build by downloading the plans on your computer. This was before efficient search engines so we were never able to verify the claim but we didn't hear of any other boats or have the claim challenged. You can see and get the full plans by clicking the picture.

I didn't include the offsets this time because, in these modern and litigious times, I want to have a serious talk with anyone before they build a boat to these plans. Some construction details aside, this would be a peach of a boat to own and I'm pleased to have designed her even if no one ever built one.

23 Foot Cutter

(Click Picture for More)

This is another one that didn't get built until long after I had moved to commercial vessel design. I sold a bunch of plans for her over the years and maybe someone built one that I never heard about but I think she remained just a dream for many people. My rendering of her is reproduced from an old "National Fisherman" article. A modified fiberglass version was built in Norway. Years later, someone built a basterdized version which was then bought by a couple who rebuilt her to her intended configuration. That boat just became the cover girl and story in the 2023 January/February issue of "Wooden Boat".

21 Foot Sloop

(Click picture for more drawings)

After the beautiful but hopelessly impractical (at least from an economic standpoint) cutter, I decided to try my hand at something completely sensible. The result was this lapstrake sloop intended to be the simplest and least expensive boat of classic construction that two people could cruise in with a double berth. I still think it the best of my yacht designs and "Wooden Boat" did a nice article on it. I sold remarkably few plans for it in contrast to the cutter. The fact that few seemed to have an interest in such a boat had a lot to do with my turning to commercial design (a decision I've never regretted.)

One of the great moments in a boat designer's life is when a long lost boat turns up. The owner of this boat contacted me and wrote:

I own the 22' sloop Covey Island BoatWorks built in 1979, it was the 2nd boat they ever built...first year open. I bought it a year ago from a man who lived on it year round in Boston Harbor for a couple of years. I've been fixing it up and I have to say it sails great. Here are a couple of photos of the boat, and more to come in about a month when I finish this
years to-do's: Unfortunately the previous owner did not have a love for wood, so he painted over everything, so most of my work is some epoxy work here and there and paint stripping. I think I am the fifth owner and the boat has been mostly in this area (MA) but was tailored to FL and then sailed back at one point. The boat is now in Winthrop, MA getting ready for some more sailing. You designed a great boat, and it gets a lot of praise from other boaters.

This one example of the design was built strip planked with full self bailing cockpit. Pictures send by the owner showed that the keel leading edge is very crude and square. With the extra weight and less effecient keel, I'm surprised she sails as well as the reports I've received over the years. Built to the original plans, she ought to be a witch of a sailer.

16 Foot Whitehall Boat

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It's probably no accident that the 21 foot sloop looks a lot like an overgrown Whitehall boat as I had just finished this boat when I designed the sloop. While the nation was preparing for its bicentennial, I was an urban boatbuilder on Lewis Wharf in Boston. I worked in a loose cooperative of jewelers, carpenters, and wacko's and commuted from my home in Woods Hole. This is the same basic boat that Shew and Burnham in South Bristol have built a zillion of but with the lines slightly altered to suit my eye and the most ridiculously over fancy construction and detailing I could conceive of at that young and foolish age. There was brass and bronze everywhere. It was nuts and I built her for $3000, or to be more accurate, I got paid $3000. That supported me for nine months and included hiring Paul Rollins to finish the planking and build the spars and oars. That's the silly young builder at the helm. The boat was restored a few years ago by the now defunct Maine Coast Boathouse.

17 Foot Quoddy Boat

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My next, and final, attempt at being a professional boatbuilder was building this 17 foot camping cruiser for an equally silly price with a partner in Tenant's Harbor. We fought and fought. I left when she was about half planked and moved back to Woods Hole.

The fellow we built her for didn't keep her long and she went to the Maine Maritime Museum where she was a real favorite in their fleet until a skipjack man from the Chesapeake took over the boatbuilding and sailing program. He was used to wide, powerful boats and didn't understand her. The fact that she was a ballasted, open boat that would sink like a stone if capsized may have colored his thinking. I sailed her for a weekend and found her delightful.

She was then sold to someone in East Boothbay who had the mast moved aft through the cabin top for reasons I have never quite understood. He sold her in turn to Earle Barlow, the East Boothbay artist and ship model maker and one of my favorite people. This pleased me no end and he enjoyed her for several years before selling her to someone in Connecticut.

This boat was recently donated to the
Philadelphia Wooden Boat Factory. She will probably be for sale when restored so contact them if you are interested in a classic small daysailer.

Transatlantic Solo Racer

This was one of my few yacht projects that went he way it is supposed to. Someone I didn't know learned what a clever fellow I am, came to me and said, "Design me a boat to do this." I designed the boat, he gave me money, he built the boat.

This boat was designed for the singlehanded transatlantic race. The owner wanted to transit with the focus on comfort instead of winning but still arrive in time for the post race parties. He was late by several years due to the unexpected construction time and this cold molded 28 foot cutter ended up being launched, and I believe is still sailing, on Lake Michigan.

Not very graceful but a fast, solid, and interesting boat. The steel keel is a water tank with hollow keel bolts serving as the pipes.

Double Paddle Canoe

Unquestionably my most popular design and, for all it's simplicity, the boat I've had more fun in than any other I've been associated with. This stitch and glue boat follows the approximate form of the L. Francis Herreshoff cedar classic. I once had Paul Rollins build one of the Herreshoff boats for me and had a lot of fine cruises in it, including an accidental crossing of Buzzards Bay in the middle of the night.

This design was originally drawn up to build as a demonstration project at the Clearwater Folk Festival in Croton, New York. I sold dozens of plans over the years. They have been built in Manhattan apartments and lowered five stories on a rope and cruised fifty miles out to sea to the barrier islands of Belize. Every once in a while, I still see one on a car top going down the highway or in a driveway.

The boat has watertight flotation compartments in the ends and semi watertight compartments for storing camping gear. The design includes a mast step for a small sail to use downwind but I never got around to building it. It was great for holding a fishing pole as the photo shows.

I paddled one of these boats from Camden to Machiasport and found it to be one of the most comfortable boating experiences I ever had. Yes, comfortable. I was always warm and glowing because I was exercising. I slept incredibly well because of the exercise and not lying awake worrying about the anchor dragging. I always kept a five dollar bill in my shirt pocket and had lobster almost every day by paddling up to the lobster boats. The same five dollar bill worked for the whole trip.

This is a remarkably seaworthy boat. I crossed the notorious Petit Manan bar in 20 knot winds and heavy swell. It was a day when I would think twice about it even in the 32 foot boat we just bought. I paddled happily along watching a couple of large sailboats nearby getting thoroughly beat up as I went up and down the waves like a duck.

This was just before the sea kayaking craze hit. Whenever anyone encountered me camped on their beach, they were interested and enthusiastic about what I was doing. Today, you would probably be the third or fourth kayak they kicked off that week. Times have changed. You now have to make reservations for camping spots on the Island Trail and my enthusiasm for this kind of cruising in Maine has passed along with those innocent days.

Canoe Yawl

(Click Picture for More)

I designed this daysailer for a friend's short lived midlife crisis boatshop. The design fee was one of my double paddle canoes so we would have a second one for my wife. The boat has a good size inboard engine and is an interesting concept for a day boat.

Beach Cruising Dory

(Click Picture for Article)

See Plans Here

This boat was intended primarily to be a beach cruiser but with just enough room in the bottom that one person could stretch out and sleep if a suitable beach couldn't be found and anchoring was necessary. She has rounded sides like a Swampscott dory and would be a very able little craft. I drew up the design thinking I might build one. Instead, a woman I loved very much took on the project. She had only been working on the boat for a couple weeks when she went rowing in another dory and was never seen again. The dory washed up on the shores of Martha's Vineyard. This unbuilt boat has always had a very strange place in my heart.

7 Foot Catboat Little Boat

(Click picture for more)

This wasn't really a design but is the boat that started it all. She was professionally built (as a sloop if you can believe a seven foot sloop) around the time of the great war. My grandmother bought her and designing the rig to convert her into a catboat was the first boat designing project of my life. She last sailed in 1996 and is now awaiting restoration by my brother.

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