Northeast Dory Stem

George, Great work with the stem. As I looked at your final picture of the completed NE Dory I began to wondering. Bear with me. All examples of the NE Dory with Sail options have the captain at the tiller seated at the 2 widest thwarts. Do you think that seats could be placed along the starboard and port sides and overlap  the 2 existing seats They could be attached with Star Knobs and removed if the Dory was going to be used for rowing. Technically is that possible or would balance be compromised?

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RE: Northeast Dory

Side seats wouldn't work.  The boat's too light.  If the wind was up, sure, but even then, the moment there's a lull or you let the sails luff, the boat will heel sharply to windward.  

Side bench seats are wonderful ergonomically, and I get a lot of questions about adding them to the Northeaster Dory, Skerry, Passagemaker, and other light, cartoppable boats.

Mathematically it doesn't work until the host vessel has an empty weight of around 800 pounds.  Starting around that weight, boats are likely to have enough form stability to allow adult-sized crew to sit outboard without risking a wet bottom. (PocketShip is heavy enough, for example.)

Of course, many racing-oriented small sailboats weigh less than 800 pounds and have side bench seating, but the exception proves the rule:  such boats require athletic crews who can shift their weight instantly to maintain balance.  

There are loads of comfortable seating positions in the light boats, blow high or blow low.  If you keep your weight low and towards the center in a Northeaster Dory, you can stay comfortably planted in one place no matter what the conditions.

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