Your Thoughts on a Junk Rigged St Pierre Dory

by George L
(San Diego CA)

Am strongly leaning toward building a +/- 30' St Pierre dory, junk rigged yawl for live aboard...coastal and some blue water cruising.

To be built in plywood with aux outboard motor in well.

Anyone out there with any experience with such a critter?

Thank you,



Thoughts on a Junk Rigged
St Pierre Dory

by: Mike

Hi George,

My own Junk rigged boat isn’t a dory but I have no hesitation recommending the rig.

And if I were to suggest the ideal hull shape for a Junk Rigged boat it would have to be the Dory.

The dory is after all just about as near to the hull shape of a sampan (three plank) as you can get.

And like the Sampan the Dory is a simple boat that has changed very little in centuries because it is such a tried and true design.

The infinite adjustments that a junk rig allows make it ideal for getting the sails right on a dory.

There have been plenty of junk-rigged
dories built.

Perhaps the most famous was the “Liberdade” which Joshua Slocum built to get himself and his family back home from South America.

Another is the Jay Benford designed Badger built and sailed by Annie Hill and her then husband Pete.

Badger was a plywood 34 foot double ended dory with a two masted schooner style junk rig.

The dory hull is a very buoyant by nature and will carry an impressive load which makes them ideal for cruising and living aboard.

The only deviation from the standard ‘double ended’ dory that I would suggest is to make the transom a bit wider.

My own boat is a double ender, she sails fine but a bit more width at the transom would allow more room for the main sheet traveller.

And it would allow a bit more room
for your outboard well.


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Junk Masts
by: Mike

So much depends on the sail plan.

Is it going to have a high or low aspect ratio?

Is it going to be a sloop rig?

But just as a rough idea, a sloop of 30ft/9meters, length overall, would want a sail area of let’s say 40 to 45sq. metres or roughly 450sq foot.

So, a main sail of 30sq. metres or roughly 320sq foot and a fore sail of 15 sq. meres or roughly 130sq foot.

For that you would want a main mast of about 9 or 10 meters or roughly 30ft above the partners/deck.

And a fore mast of 7 or 8 metres or roughly 24ft above the partners/deck.

These are just rough guesses as so much depends on the sail plan and shape and how and where the masts are to be positioned.

Thankyou for your advice
by: George

Thank you how big should the masts be for a double masted junk rig?

I'm thinking of using solid spruce or balsam trees for the masts.

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