At the start, after a magnificient sloop project, but then “ring, ring’ the till was swallowing up big money for the all the deck hardware, because you can’t buy a 12mm shackle when a 16mm is needed. Ruined even before setting sail – by the deck hardware! We also wished to use a modern building method which would be within the reach of the amateur builder.
We needed a sailboat without the deck hardware!
… A Junk!
Also, definitely no ersatz, let’s respect what we admired in the traditional sailing junks, but with a lighter displacement etc., and a hull/rig particularly adapted to each other.
In our search for an economic vessel, we hope to have made this rig better understood and hope that it will no longer be neglected. Our work has given birth to a leisure boat we can trust for circumnavigation (for a different lifestyle, to see new horizons); and the result is what Annie Van de Wiele called “a companionable boat”.
Shallow draught, hull stability …
The Jonque de Plaisance retain the principal characteristics of traditional sailing junks: low draught, rudder/centreboard, excellent hull and route stability, rear castle elegantly replacing the cockpit, giving an appreciable volume below deck for the living spaces; and a spacious quarter-deck allowing for six or seven people to stretch out on the thwarts or protected from the wind on the deck.
The flexible unstayed masts leave room for circulation on the catwalks and this rig represents a substantial economy in deck hardware.
My sailing junks have an identical displacement to that proposed by large shipyards for cruising vessels equivalent to the 38, 40, 47 and 54 feet. This is made possible by the strip-planking building method which allows for an easy construction, without mould, light weight, very robust; and is well within the reach of the amateur builder.
Dimitri Le Forestier