Comments by the designer, Richard Woods
Please see this page for an introduction to the Skoota Power Cats family. The file contains study plans drawings and pictures. There is also a downloadable sample of the Skoota 28 plans here.
The Skoota 28 is a 28 ft demountable coastal cruiser for a couple. Ideal for the European canals, the PNW or the Great Loop. It will demount for transport on a flat bed lorry/truck or could even be towed by a large car but should not be considered "trailable". When disassembled it does not need a "wide load permit" for transport.
We launched the first Skoota in March 2013 for us to use as a coastal cruiser in British Columbia. As with my other powercat designs the Skoota 28 is designed as an economic cruiser with a cruising speed of 10-12 knots. Our Skoota is fitted with twin 20hp outboards yet still does over 16 knots flat out. Twin 60hp are the maximum recommended for speeds in the mid 20's
Apart from being comfortable, fast and economic underway, the Skoota is also a very safe boat.
For a start it has twin engines, which, even though modern outboards are very reliable, has to be better than relying just on one.
Next, each hull is divided into seven different watertight compartments so even if holed neither hull will flood. And even if they did, the central cabin would keep the boat afloat. Not only that, but there are no seacocks or skin fittings in the hulls to leak or break off. There are no bilges, so no need for bilge pumps.
Finally, a boat is essentially immune to capsize in waves until the wave height exceeds the beam of the boat. Only after that does the boat become at risk from capsize. With a 14ft beam the Skoota is much more stable than most monohull powerboats.
Like all the Skoota designs, the Skoota 28 is a lightweight boat, and is based on the experience gained from over 35 years of sailing multihull designs. It isn't a twin hulled trawler! So even a completely decked hull can be easily carried by six men. Two hulls can be taken on a regular flat bed trailer and together are under 2.5m, 8ft wide.
The central cabin can travel on its aft bulkhead, so it is 6ft wide, 10ft high and 12ft long. Thus both hulls and cabin will fit on a 40ft trailer without needing a permit. If you have a wide load permit then the cabin will fit on sideways, as it is 9ft10in wide (just under 3m) which obviously makes it much easier to load onto the trailer.
The Skoota was built 40 miles from the launch site and the shed door it was built in was 10ft wide. Once built the boat was disassembled and man/woman handled outside and onto a truck. Driven 40 miles down a busy highway and reassembled ready for launching. No wide load permit or escort used.
Galley with double sink, 2 burner stove, large fridge and plenty of stowage. Opening hatches in aft bulkhead and another in the roof. Full headroom throughout.
The saloon seats 6 comfortably .
Double bunk is almost queen sized, it could be wider at the expense of the forward lockers
In a separate bathroom, we are using a composting toilet from C-Head. It looks the part and not at all plasticky as other similar toilets are. A generous shower room, plus vanity with sink.
In early May we motored to Vancouver (see the Latest News for May 2013). Getting there was a 'windward bash" but on our return trip the wind had dropped. We motored 38 miles in 3 hrs 20 minutes, so averaged over 11 knots, and used just 5gal of fuel (over 7mpg). That is an accurate amount because we are still using the 3gal tanks that came with the engines. When I got back to Saturna I refilled those tanks with a 5gal can and still had a bit left over
I was initially worried about the engine noise from the exposed outboards. So I used a Db meter to check the sound levels. This is what I recorded: At tickover 55db, at cruise 75 at WOT 81. In comparison when driving our Toyota Tacoma pickup I recorded: at idle 46, at full throttle 76, at 70 mph cruise 66db. So louder than the inside of a car, but not too bad.
I did design some removable sound deadening engine cowls but found that the noise canceling headphones that I bought for flying made a huge difference to the noise level. So I am using those instead for now.
There are not many cruising powerboats that you can easily drive up onto a beach and dry out for a BBQ or bottom scrub.
The photo shows the wide hull spacing and good bridgedeck clearance - on many powercats you cannot see under the bridgedeck when at rest. Slamming in a seaway (when you tend to slow down) must be horrible on those boats.
Building method This boat is built in plywood-epoxy. The method is slightly different from the Mertens-Goossens designs which use the plywood as the core of a sandwich. For this boat, the plywood panels are assembled over a light wooden frame made from small section battens. The framing is made from bulkheads and frames notched to receive the longitudinal battens. The panels are epoxy glued to the framing. Long panels are joined by butt blocks. The assembly could be called a monocoque structure in which all parts contribute to the strength. The smaller Skootas are built using conventional plywood-stringer-frame construction with all surfaces glass/epoxy sheathed. Because the boats are modular much can be built in an ordinary garage (lengthened as necessary to build the hulls).
Building in sections also has a psychological advantage, especially important for amateur builders, which is that it is quick to build each section, thus progress appears to be fast. Furthermore there is little fairing to do, just smoothing the glass joints.Skill level
Not everyone can build complex shapes, but everyone can build in flat panels. The building method is not difficult. Thanks to the gap filling properties of epoxy, building in plywood-epoxy is does not require special wood working tools or skills. Some beveling is required: chine logs, stem, frames and bulkheads framing but since epoxy is gap filling, extreme precision or special tools are not required. Quite the opposite, epoxy needs a small gap. Experienced wood workers must keep that in mind: epoxy needs a small gap.Options
All plywood to be best quality Marine grade Gaboon ply (Okoume). Sheet sizes are 8' x 4', 2440x1220
All timber to be at least "Joinery Quality". Unles noted otherwise all timber is softwood, eg Douglas Fir, Sitka Spruce, Yellow Cedar or similar. All timber is "PAR", or "Planed all Round". Thus sizes given are nominal, ie 2" x 1" has a finished planed size of approx 45mm x 20mm. (Note: It is usually cheaper to buy wider planks, eg buy 2" x 1" and cut it in half to create 1" x 1").
This BOM covers the hull ready to paint
You can download a basic study plan pack HERE. It contains scaled drawings of all Skootas.Plans packing list More information There will be a download link on our thank you page. If you need to re-download the plans, you will also receive a link in the confirmation of your order, accessible for five days. If you need access to the file after that time, please contact us, and we will send you the plans by e-mail.
click this link for further info.
Plans are available in metric Units only.