Another possible rig for the barge

by Vermont Rice

The T32 with a gaff sloop rig, as an alternative

While the traditional Chinese junk rig is still our main contender for ease of handling and jibing when running before the wind on inland rivers, the traditional rig for these waters is another possibility.  When I was at the Rockport Apprenticeshop (a school of wooden boatbuilding) as a volunteer in 1991, I remember sailing for a few days in a Friendship sloop built by the school that sported a similar rig.  It’s a pretty suspensful climb to the topmast when out on the open ocean–that memory has sure stayed with me.  And there is something incredibly gratifying about the Friendship sloop’s lines and rig.

This rig gives the cargo boat a much more traditional “American” look, but the handling considerations may rule it out in in favor of the more user-friendly junk rig.  I haven’t ruled anything out at this point.  Being a workboat, practical considerations will probably trump aesthetic ones.

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