The Wherry is a traditional looking clinker style rowing boat that offers thoroughbred performance. Her handsome hull shape reminds us of classic Thames wherries.
The boat is for my use just perfect, even on the river!
The Wherry has been turning heads since 1997, with hundreds and hundreds built all around the world. Observers have described her as “the most sophisticated stitch and glue kit available” and “the best looking boat kit ever”. She makes a splendid open water exercise shell and, at weekends, she will serve as an elegant picnic boat for rower and passenger.
Solid stability, sea kindly lines, excellent tracking, a buoyant bow and ample flare make the Wherry a natural choice for rowing in choppy conditions. The open design allows for plenty of sprawling and a picnic basket when beach cruising. Stability is high for a performance rowing boat: you can step into the boat from a quay and even stand up. However, the narrow waterline means that the Annapolis Wherry is as fast as many recreational shells, sprinting at 7 knots and cruising at 4-5 knots. At this speed you could cover 30 or 40 miles in a day. We hear of Wherries being used for camping and fishing expeditions.
The Wherry is designed for sliding-seat sculling with a drop-in rowing unit, such as the Big River frame. The Big River frame can be installed and removed in under a minute for transporting on a car roof rack. You will need sculling oars of about 9′6″ with this boat.
The Wherry can also be set up for fixed-seat rowing by mounting traditional rowlocks to the gunwales, but rowers taller than about 5′4″ (163 cm) may find that their knees get in the way of the oars, because of the boat's low freeboard. The rowlocks will need to be mounted on riser blocks fixed on top of the gunwales. For taller fixed-seat rowers, we recommend the Chester Yawl, which has more freeboard and also a greater maximum load.
When used with a sliding seat, the Wherry might be unsurpassed as a rowing trainer, exercise boat, long-distance cruiser or even for open water racing. She displays a rewarding speed while having enough stability for a novice oarsman.
Construction is of 6 mm okoume with mahogany gunwales and knees. The Lapstitch technique of construction means that no strongback or formers are required. This boat is built using CLC's patented LapStitch™ joints which means that the result is a remarkably stiff and strong hull that has the appearance of traditional lapstrake or clinker planking. The hull is simply wired together and glued. She is reinforced along her keel with fibre glass for abrasion protection. The building time is typically about 70 hours. The Wherry is built of 6mm okoume, epoxy encapsulated throughout. Fibreglass cloth is applied to the bottom panels inside and out for extra stiffness and to resist beach abrasion. 9mm okoume frames, thwarts, and flotation tanks ensure stiffness. The outwales, breasthook, and quarter knees are solid mahogany.
A Tandem Wherry which retains the essential qualities of the solo Wherry is also available. The Tandem Wherry can carry a greater load, which may make it more suitable for carrying a passenger and gear, or for two rowers with sliding seats.
The kit includes:
The Big River rowing frame and sculling oars are not included.
What is in a boat kit.
Broken inwales option
Broken inwales add elegance to any boat by mimicking the ends of the ribs in traditional frame-built boats. This option includes everything you need to install broken inwales in the Wherry:
- Pre-cut breasthook and quarter-knees
- Spacer block material
Some trimming and fitting will be necessary. Broken inwales take longer to install because each block has to be carefully positioned and glued in place. Sanding and varnishing are also made more complex. We recommend reading the installation instructions before deciding to install broken inwales.
Plans and manual
These include full-size plans for hull panels, bulkheads, thwarts and other parts for the Wherry. Bulkhead locations are marked on the panels and matching stitch holes are indicated. All dimensions are given in both metric and imperial units. The instruction manual covers the purchasing of materials, the cutting of the panels and the complete assembly of the boat.
The plans are for builders who will be building from scratch. Builders working from a kit do not need the plans.
This is intended for pre-build study or to help with the decision to purchase. Reading this manual will help you decide whether or not you can build the boat. It is the 45 page manual that accompanies the kits. It describes all the techniques that will be used during the building and also a step by step guide to construction. Scale drawings are used throughout as well as photographs of critical jobs.
If, later, you decide to purchase the kit the cost of this printed manual will be deducted from the kit price.
This manual does not contain the plans of the panels with the cutting instructions so it is not possible to build the boat from scratch using only this manual.
PDF study manual
The construction manual for the boat is also available as a PDF download. After credit card authorisation a download link will be sent to the email address put on the order form.
PDF study plans
These study plans are intended to give you an overview of the construction of the boat. They are in PDF format that can be viewed using Adobe Reader. There are four pages and they measure 279 × 216 mm (11″ × 8½″). They can be printed for carrying around.
After credit card authorisation the plans will be sent to the email address put on the order form.
When you have studied the plans, your next step might be to order the printed instruction manual, which will walk you through the project step-by-step.