Small vintage wooden dinghy made in 2 parts.

by Warren
(South Alabama)

I was given a small vintage wooden dinghy made in 2 parts and needing restorations.

This dinghy, like I said, is made in 2 parts, and has a joint in the middle where the 2 pieces bolt together.

There's a seat that fits over the joint which hides it.

It has a mast step, a sail, but no mast.

keel-less design.

It has great lines and is probably from the 1940's 0r 50's, is made of plywood with solid wood trim and fine bronze fittings.

With a reinforced motor mount and a very cool looking vintage outboard motor that I believe is English (not sure).

Is there any way to find out about this boats design?

Or is it just an ordinary homemade job?

Anyone ever see a vintage dinghy built in 2 pieces?

Comments for Small vintage wooden dinghy made in 2 parts.

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Jan 29, 2011
by: Anonymous

Now you know why those Seagulls have such a great reputation.

Jan 28, 2011
The Seagull motor runs
by: Warren

It took me several days to clean all the parts, change the spark plug and get all the movable parts loosened, but today I wrapped a rope around the flywheel and it cranked up on the second pull.
The propeller wasn't engaged though and after closer inspection I found the main spring had a piece broken off.

Well, I can try to find a replacement while I work on the dinghy.

Good that it works.

I mentioned earlier that the marks on the dinghy didn't match with the motor mounts, but I forgot that there would be a rudder mounted somewhere there as well. Those marks might be from the rudder/tiller mechanism.

I got most of the paint sanded off of the bow piece and all the fiberglass off of the entire outside on the dinghy.

Taking the fiberglass off wasn't that difficult since it was only applied to the seems.
I got some of it loose with a heat gun, grabbed that with a pair of pliers and used a heat gun to pull the rest off like that.
It went quick but its a very small dinghy.

Jan 28, 2011
I guess it's a nesting dinghy
by: Warren

I accidentally found out this dinghy design is called a "nesting dinghy".

Here's a link to a Google image search showing photos of a lot of them, 1 in 3 parts and 1 even in 4 parts.

Jan 27, 2011
Luan Patch
by: timmynocky

I would say that if you are glassing her and the luan is almost as thick as the original and the patch small, just use one layer and fill the hollow with thickened epoxy.

As for the age of the dinghy it’s hard to say, the outboard could have been bought second hand.

Over here in the UK old used Seagulls are still coming on the market. .

Jan 26, 2011
I just have one more question
by: Warren

Thanks for the input so far, even though no one was able to tell me much about my dinghy, that fact by itself told me that it was probably just an innovative custom design and nothing well known which is kind of what I wanted to know.

I do think the dinghy is older than the motor 1967 because there are mounting marks on the back of the dinghy, where the original motor mounted, that doesn't match the Seagull that came with the dinghy.

None of which is a big deal really, I just wanted to know.

Now my question is.. I'm ready to sand the dinghy down, and do the hole patching, and other deteriorated wood replacements.

The Dinghy is made of thin mahogany faced plywood, a little thicker than luan, but not much.

Anyway, since the dinghy will be fiberglassed and painted and the patches will be relatively small, could I just double some luan plywood that I already have on hand and sand it back down to the match the thickness of the plywood on the dinghy?

Then Glass everything etc..??

Or should I find some that matches better?

Obviously, I'm very amateur at this, but I do a lot of woodworking in general.

Just not to sure of myself here.


Jan 25, 2011
Vintage Dingy
by: Julian

Saw a folding dinghy at the London Boat show.

Folded up to the size of a surf board.

I can only identify the seagul engine - I have one :)"

Jan 25, 2011
Seagull long shaft
by: Warren

I was able to identify the seagull motors date of manufacture by the numbers on the motor.

This Seagull had "FPL 317 K7" on it which I've learned means "Forty Plus Long Shaft" and was manufactured on October 7th in 1967.

I thought it was cool I could find out so much detail on the web.

I worked on it a little today, and the fuel was left in the tank for years and years, and smelled like turpentine, so I guess I will probably have to take everything apart and clean it, fun.

From what I've learned about Seagulls though, it might just crank up.

We'll see.

Jan 24, 2011
Seagull long shaft
by: Anonymous

Don’t know about the boat but that’s definitely a Seagull engine, a long shaft.

Why don’t they make them like that anymore?

Simple, sturdy, and made to last.

Jan 24, 2011
Mike I sent you an email with some photo's
by: Warren

let me know if you don't get them. Sometimes I have trouble with that.

Jan 24, 2011
by: mike

Hi Warren,

There have been numerous ingenious designs for this type of dinghy.

Could the outboard be a 'Seagull'?

'Seagulls' are iconic among UK boaters for their reliability and longevity.

If you have any photographs they might help to identify her, (and we would love to see her) you can if you wish email them to me as attachments to and I can add them to your post.

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