Herald of the Morning
An 18′ Weekend Shanty Boat
By William & John Atkin
The design this month shows a tidy shanty or houseboat arranged for the comfort of a party of
two. It is not intended for all the year around living but rather for weekending and summer
vacation time pleasure. In arrangement it is quite all right for occasional living; but for month in
and month out one needs more space for hanging clothes, stowing supplies, more comfortable
seating, a bureau of some kind with drawers and with mirror, a fixed place for eating, and shelves
for books, a clock, a lamp, and other various useful items. This latest of the family of MoToR
BoatinG’s useful and practical boats provides at a very reasonable figure a comfortable summer
The over all length of our week-end shanty boat is 18 feet, the breadth is 9 feet and the draft 8
inches. The plan view shows a forward deck 5 feet long, a cabin house 10 feet long and an after
deck 3 feet long, all of these extending the full width of the hull, or 9 feet. Both decks are provided
with suitable planked up railings. The deck house stands 4 feet 9 inches above the top of the
deck. Full 6 feet 2 inches of headroom is gotten by lowering the cabin floor to the level of the fore
and after bottom stringers; both decks, however, are at the level of the top of the deck. The depth
from the deck to the bottom is 2 feet 2 1/2 inches which indicates that the hull is big for its
athwartship and fore and after dimensions. The deck beams extend straight across the hull
The interior of the cabin is laid out for the accommodation of two persons. Entrance from the
forward deck leads into the galley. This is 3 feet 6 inches long by 6 feet wide and is fitted with
sink, counter, ice box, and Skippy coal stove. The toilet room is located opposite the galley and is
2 feet 6 inches wide by 3 feet 6 inches long. It is fitted with the usual pump water closet and a
handy row of clothing hooks. If desired there is ample room here for a folding lavatory and some
shelves. Fresh water is carried in a galvanized iron tank installed beneath the forward deck; this
has a capacity of approximately 45 gallons. The space beneath both the forward and after decks
affords room for the stowage of wood, coal, and such items as suit cases, and canned goods.
The main cabin is 6 feet 6 inches long and spreads the breadth of the boat. It is furnished with
two built in berths 2 feet 6 inches wide and 6 feet 4 inches long. These should be fitted with
comfortable coil spring mattresses. The tops of the latter should be about 18 inches above the
floor boards; this will leave room below for drawers and usable stowage space. There is a broad
step up to the after deck as shown, and plenty of room under it to form a useful chest. The forward
step will be of similar character, but not so large. It would be a great convenience to have a small
fixed table with drop leaves and place this near the galley end of the starboard berth, leaving,
when the leaves were down, enough room to pass between the table and the berth.
For those who like power and movement I can see no objection to propelling Herald of the
Morning with two outboard motors. These would require suitable brackets enabling the
propellers to be well submerged and the motors should be of at least 6 h.p. each. In still water
and little wind these should urge the unwieldy hull at a speed of something in the neighborhood
of 4 to 4 1/2 miles an hour, remembering that a box-like hull of this form is not the easiest thing in
the world to put into anything but slow motion.
Plans for Herald of the Morning are $75
Study Plans are available for $15
(Refunded when full plans are purchased)
Atkin Boat Plans
P.O. Box 3005A
Noroton, CT 06820
Email Mrs. Pat Atkin if you have any questions:
Shantyboat Living Says:
Now this is a shantyboat. In my opinion, too much of one, and for no reason, at least when
compared to the Atkins Retreat.
Use RV windows on this little boat? You are kidding, right?
Now this is a shantyboat. Basic. Looks the part.
All the basics are here, almost.
Should be easy to build, at least for someone who has built before. This is a basic box.
There is standing headroom, by the standards of the day, in entire cabin.
You’d be the first to build one of these in ages. You’d be unique amongst the unique.
Easy to modify and make your own.
Could be made attractive and unique.
Designed by well known and respected designers.
Old school construction. While it is a “simple” box, the plans show you how to build using
Really not that much room for a boat of this size.
As drawn it is a bit too wide to trailer easily.
Originally posted 2012-06-11 20:23:38.