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by an amateur) is taken out, the oars are run through the rowlocks, which in these boats are simply large holes in the gunwales, and a man on each side catching hold of an oar can run her up with ease.

For coast purposes, where the beach is sandy, no better boat could be used by the amateur. They draw very little water, and their buoyancy is extraordinary. They hold to windward very well, but they could be much improved in this respect by the addition of a centre-board. The rudder projects a little below the keel, but not to a great extent. We have given so many figures which seemed essential, that we have scarcely room to treat more at length of the Cromer crabboat, but if any of our readers desire further information upon them we shall be happy to give it. It is not always possible for the

FIG. 29. THE SPRIT-SAIL. amateur boat-sailer to choose his own type of boat. He has often to put up with those which alone he has the opportunity of sailing.

Therefore we must say a little about the old-fashioned sprit-sail rig. The sail in shape is exactly that of a cutter's mainsail, with greater peak and less length on the foot, but it has neither gaff nor boom. How, then, is it extended ? By a single spar, named a sprit, which crosses the sail diagonally from the tack to the peak (Fig. 29). This spar, which is necessarily long and heavy, is made small at each end, so that the one end slips into a loop at the peak of the sail, and the other into a loop on the mast, called a snotter. This snotter is a double loop of rope, one fixed to retain the end of the sprit boom, and the other more or less of a slip knot, so as to clip the mast and not slide down. In setting, partly hoist the sail, insert one end of the sprit into the peak eye, and the other into the snotter. Hoist the sail taut, and then push the snotter up

the mast as far as you can. If it shows any tendency to slip down, wetting it now and then will prevent it. Mind the snotter is strong enough not to break, for if it did, or the sprit slipped out of the eye, it might go through the bottom of the boat like a lance.

The one advantage of the sprit-sail is that the sail may be brailed up to the mast immediately by hauling on a line passing through a block on the mast and through the sheet clue of the sail, going quite round the sail. The keels or coal carrying barges on the Tyne are rigged in this manner. One of our early boats was a large man-of-war's sprit-sail boat. The mizen had been lost, so we did without the jib, and sailed under mainsail only, and she went fairly well. Still it is only a rig for the amateur to take up if he has no other at command.

A rig which was once very common on the rivers of Norfolk and Suffolk is the lateen rig. These boats have a fore and aft mizen and a lateen foresail, the wing-like shape of which will be familiar to all who have seen pictures of the East. The enormous yardsometimes twice the length of the boat-is hinged at its lower end to a short boom. The mast has no stays or shrouds, is very strong, and rakes forward. When the yard is hauled up there is a brail also to be hauled taut for the purpose of keeping the yard to the mast. The great yard was 80 difficult to handle, and the trouble of reefing so great, that the rig is now altogether out of fashion. We mention it here for the sake of giving a useful hint. In Norfolk and Suffolk there are many of these old boats still, fairly sound, with roomy cabins, and forming very comfortable cruisers. They may be had very cheap, and by just stepping the mast straight, instead of raking forward, and converting the lateen sail into a balance lug, a very handy and convenient little yacht will be the result. Racing with them would, of course, be out of the question, but for knocking about, fishing, or shooting, they would be just the thing.

A very safe and handy rig, especially for boys, is the Mudian rig. This is like a sloop without a gaff to her mainsail, which sail goes to a peak like a jib; the mast is long and raking, and the peak is hauled almost to the masthead. Only one halyard is, of course, necessary for the mainsail. For smooth-water sailing we prefer it to the much-lauded sliding gunter ; but for seawork, where, in case of having to reef, it is also best to reduce the weight aloft as much as possible, the latter is preferable.

The sliding gunter has many advocates, although, personally,

FIG. 30. THE SLIDING GUNTER. we do not like it much (Fig. 30). The principle of it is that a yard slides up and down the mainmast in a vertical direction, two irons or travellers forming the connection. The sail is laced to the yard. It seems to us to have no advantages over a gaffsail, and it has this disadvantage, that however well it does in going to windward it does badly in running before the wind, for jib-headed sails do not seem to hold so much wind as sails extended on a yard.

CHAPTER XI.

FORBES'S AMERICAN CAT-RIG.

ONE may

well imagine that our brethren across the water have not rested content with old-fashioned rigs, but have put all their inventive genius to work in the matter of boats and yachts as in other things. The success of the famous America opened the eyes of the British yachting public to many new principles affecting hulls and sails.

Since then, however, we flatter ourselves that we have produced better sea-boats than the Americans, but we may still look to them for a wrinkle or two with respect to boats designed for shallow or smooth waters.

One such wrinkle is now depicted and described. It is taken from the Scientific American, and appears to be an adaptation of the sliding gunter rig and Una rig. The inventor is a Mr. R. B. Forbes, who thus describes his rig:

I beg leave to hand you my new " cat-rig,” giving canvas equal to the usual sail. Any competent sailor of small craft will at once realise the advantage of taking in a deep reef without any disturbing movement of the crew.

All that will be necessary will be to slack down the main halyard and haul down the reefing boom to the main boom just as a Chinaman reefs by lowering one bamboo ; and in taking in the double reef, as there is no tack-lashing to fasten, the crew have only to top the boom, haul out the gearing, and tie the points, or to slack down the yard, without topping the boom, until the points are tied, and then top the boom and hoist the yard to suit the taste of the skipper.

Under full sail the upper halyard has no strain on it. In lowering the sail to reef, the upper halyard being belayed to the butt or lower end of the yard, it follows that the weight of the yard brings the strain upon the upper halyard and relieves the lower. In the usual cat-rig, having about one-third of the sail outside the stern, to reef while going along is a difficult operation seldom well done. Under ordinary circumstances, where there is plenty of sea room and no competition, it will be well to luff into the wind and haul down the reef-boom, which can be done without losing headway in less than one minute. In racing in squadron,

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BOOM

FIG. 31. FORBES'S CAT-RIG.

where one must keep on straight, the reef can be hauled down when close hauled by easing the sheet off for a minute, and if the second reef is to be taken in slack off the sheet and haul out the easing, thus practically reducing the sail without tying the points.

Every man fit to sail a small craft on rough waters will see at a glance that a boat rigged after this style must be much safer, and more likely to

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