Any regular reader of this blog knows I have a real soft spot in my heart for the Puddle Duck Racer. Naturally it was only a matter of time before someone expanded on the concept and turned one into a minimalist cruising reality. Probably the first to do it was Jason Nabors, who built the Tenacious Turtle which he entered in the epic Texas 200. Not really a race but more of a “cruise” up through the semi-protected waters along the Texas coast.
A bit crude in its execution and jarring to the eyes of anyone who loves classic boat lines as I do, I still thought it was one of the neatest things I’d ever seen.
Of course the Aussies couldn’t leave the simple PDR well enough alone and came up with the OZ PDR which is a bit flashier than the original. Now,Perttu Korhonen, in collaboration with Michael Storer who came up with the OZ design, has come up with the Ocean Explorer. No offense, Jim, but this one really has a chance of taking off.
Plans for building this wonderful little boat are available at Duckworks for $40 US. The set which is downloadable in PDF form from the above link consist of around 95 pages of drawings, photos and text which should provide you snow-bound dreamers with plenty to ponder this winter and hopefully kick-start you to build one yourself. You can get more photos here: www.woodworkforums.com/f169/ultimate-cruising-pdr-120306/
Personally I think I’d want to use these plans as an inspiration for modifying the PDR Goose, the expanded 12′ version of the original 8-footer. It would allow you more room for supplies and, possibly, a companion.