Click Harry & Vickie’s Wooden 48 (shown above) to see step by step wood construction photos of this ship!

At this length the DUCK concept gives us a pretty spacious cruising home. While certainly a substantial boat, she’s also quite trim. She has the same beam as the 44, but the extra length has been spread out throughout the design. The owner’s cabin, engine room, and wheelhouse are a little longer than the other two. I made her entirely flush decked to give the maximum feeling of spaciousness inside, as well as making her even simpler to build. The flush deck drops down 16″ to the main sheer along each side of the wheelhouse and up in the very bow by the windlass, breaking up the deck line and making things more interesting to look at as well as giving more of a feeling of being in the boat than you get from standing on a normal flush deck. However, she has a heavy railing made of 1 1/2″ pipe welded to the deck so you’ll feel secure anywhere aboard.

Like all the DUCKS, she has a rugged and businesslike “air” to her. It’s a real strong look. As you head out of the jetty mouth you’ll engage the autopilot, then go out and climb the ladder to the flying bridge. Settling down into the bridge seat you’ll sip your drink and smell the salt air and hear the faint throb of the diesel dry stack, and as you survey the sea and the retreating coastline you’ll feel like seaman first class Wolf Stiener himself, piloting Der BISMARCK. Or maybe even Mother Foss, the foundress of the great Foss Tug & Barge Company!

In July 2002 I revised the drawings a little, calling the new version the “Evolution 48 Duck.” The reason was that the original floated low on the WL. This wasn’t an issue really, but, I added a bit of volume aft to increase the displacement about 3.5 tons. This will help support her heavy scantlings. I then added some changes that Seahorse Yachts did on the first one they built. They came up with a passageway beside the engine to the aft cabin, and a “staircase” down to the swim step, as well as an inboard rudder. Then, I raised the wheelhouse 7″ to make it easier to see over the bow. The possible downside to the change is that the sections aft near and including the transom underwater are a bit shallower “vee” than the original. In short chop, at anchor, if the stern for some reason is pointed into it (which can happen at a dock), you’ll possibly hear some wave slap. Everything’s a compromise. This shouldn’t happen often and heavy foam insulation against the plate under the bunk should really dampen it.
I like the original version fine but I also like the evolution version. So, you decide!

Original Version
LOD: 48′ LWL: 45′ 10″ Beam: 14′ 1″ Draft: 5′ 6″
Displ. at DWL: 70,000 lbs.

Evolution Version
LOD: 48′ LWL: 46′ 3″ Beam: 14′ 1″ Draft: 5′ 6″ Displ. at DWL: 72,000 lbs.

Power: 110 HP Deere or equal. Plans are available for wood construction also.

Computer projected speed/power requirements, calm and off-weather conditions for the wood original.

1.2 ………..8.12……..21.8

Here’s the new, or “EVOLUTION” version

Two house designs are given in the stock plans. I personally like the vertical front wall.

This is the original interior. I don’t like it now; the fwd. head area is way to large although there’s nothing wrong with storage. So, below is the new idea. This makes the main cabin far more comfortable and still has a big enough head up fwd.

I like this!

The new version has a slightly taller pilothouse, the passageway aft beside the engine, and the stairway to the swim platform. Here’s a look at the passageway, and, the transom with the “stairs”.

With all the talk about the “Evolution” version, I still like the original. She’s trimmer on the waterline. If I was building in wood or aluminum there’s no question that I’d choose her hull but I’d likely go with the new interior. But as I said, in steel, unless you lighten the scantlings, she’s going to float low. Here she is below; again, while there’s nothing wrong with THIS interior, there’s no reason you can’t use the new interior in her if you want to.

Here’s the first version of the 48. Note I gave her guest bunks in the bow, something other versions lost as I hate wasting space for company. They can sleep on a dropped down dinette or couch! However, as I keep saying, part of the appeal of building your own is to make whatever interior you want….

Here’s another version using the “Bubak” modification, a junk rig. This version also has a vertical transom.

Solar cells on the roof. These photos are of Rusty Duck, the first 48.

Renamed “Slow Dancing,” she’s headed south. This photo was sent to me from Cabo.

Click to see a Photo Essay of Harry and Vickie Building their Wooden 48!