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Author Topic: Any information on Southcoast Explorer sailboat  (Read 22579 times)
sonosail
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« Reply #15 on: March 28, 2011, 09:52:53 am »

Oh, I see; you are looking at the X 21 on the sail. Yes, that would suggest a length of 21' but I measured the boat again and it is almost exactly 20' from bow to stern. I can't see how you could get 21' unless you counted the projecting bow roller for the anchor line.

The main and jib sails were made by Ratsey and Lapthorn in NY so that doesn't really help in terms of location. The main is pretty well worn. However, the jib is in much better shape. It doesn't look 30 years old and it has the same sailmaker's label as the main. There are battens all the way down the leech on the main. The jib appears to have been either repaired or upgraded with a steel cable inside the jib luff. The cable is heavy enough to use as a forestay. I'm quite certain the steel cable and thimble attachments were not made by Ratsey and Lapthorn. The main uses all leather whereas the rub areas on the jib use a heavy synthetic material. I might think this was for racing except there is no wear on the spinnaker bail.

Yes, I keep wondering about its being a copy because 50 units wouldn't seem like enough to warrant a new design and creating brand new molds. But, if it is a copy then shouldn't the unit volume be high enough to make it more easily recognizable?

Yes, I'll have a look at boatdesigns.net. And, thanks for everyone's help.

The way a manfacturer actually measures the overall length can vary widely. I've seen at least one of these advertised as a Seacraft Explorer 21.
The cable within the luff tape is common, especially if the sail is made of light dacron or nylon. The jib may have been from another boat and simply shortened. This is also common.
A production run of 50 isn't all that bad for a 20 foot boat. They may have planned to make more than 50.
But there was severe recession during this period.  People stopped buying 'luxuy items'. The price of resins skyrocketed, a luxury tax was imposed. All kinds of stuff. You only need to look at the number of boat manufacturers and the like, that went out of business during the 1980's.
Also, as one company auctioned off it's assets, (inluding tooling), another would pick them up. The company that built this boat may well have used a hull mold that was purchased from another, created a different deck mold etc. All kinds of possibilies that were standard for the time. The hull molds for the  COLUMBIA 23T were cycled around to build at least 8 other boats of varying lengths, for at least 4 different companys.
Like you, I am very interested in discovering the origins of this boat. But, so far, we can only speculate. Even though we may never know, there must be someone, still living, who was, in some way, involved with the manufacture of this boat, that knows the story.

rb
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brehm62
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Boat Type: Southcoast Explorer

« Reply #16 on: March 28, 2011, 02:14:16 pm »

I think I might have found it. No, I was just wrong. You can ignore this post.

There was a company that used concrete ballast and had swinging centerboard models. This company had good backing and was able to hire designers to create their boat models. The company started in 1974 and they were located just 14 miles from the Southcoast Oldsmar location. They have a model that is about the same size at 19' but a little heavier and to my eye looks remarkably similar.

It has almost identical lines from stern to bow with a similar upsweep of the forward deck. That shoal draft keel looks very similar as well.

The stern seems to be quite similar in shape and has the same lack of sheer. The cockpit drain is the same size but shifted to one side to avoid the gudgeons. The main difference in the stern is that the boarding ladder and stern light are on the starboard side instead of the port side. The motor mount is similarly on the port side instead of the starboard side.

It has the same cockpit coaming with winches mounted on them right where mine are. It has the same jib tracks mounted on the side decks.

The shrouds have one anchor per side but they are mounted on the hull side instead of the cabin side. Apparently they decided in favor of leverage versus easier movement past the shrouds. I might think that it was because their model is heavier with more sail area but it is the same in their smaller model.

The cockpit seats, cabin door and hatch look very similar. For example, they have a bridge deck forward and a lifting storage area in the rear of the cockpit.

The biggest differences are the interior layout and the fact that the cabin roof is blunt in the front instead of sloping. However, that makes sense because with my layout you would need the extra room of the slope.



If indeed this is the origin then my boat would be derived from their earlier model which is a bit smaller at 16'. This is an example:

« Last Edit: October 10, 2013, 11:28:37 am by brehm62 » Logged
brehm62
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« Reply #17 on: March 29, 2011, 07:26:47 am »

I'm becoming more convinced that my boat is a derivative. This was a false lead; there is no connection at all. For example, on the Compac 16 and 19 the under seat storage makes perfect sense because the bunks are far enough forward that the storage area is behind them. My boat has one of these storage doors on the starboard side cockpit seat. However, because of the sink and cooktop, the bunks are pushed rearward far enough that the storage area is on top of the starboard quarter berth. That's exactly the kind of detail that you get right when you create your own design but get tripped up on when you have an adaptation.

Given the timeframe, my Explorer would have to have been derived from the CP-16. Interestingly, it looks like sales fell off when the similar sized CP-19 was released. So, now I'm wondering if the Explorer was authorized or unauthorized. I suppose someone could have bought a CP-16 and scaled it up to create the Explorer. However, that would seem to be kind of stupid considering that these two companies were only 14 miles apart; that would seem to be begging for a lawsuit.

Also, why then does the CP-19 which came after the Explorer look so similar? For example, the CP-16 has no backstay but mine and the CP-19 do. The CP-16 has no winches on the coaming but on the CP-19 there are in the same place as mine. Another curiosity is the bow. The bow of both the CP-16 and CP-23 have a pronounced curve, yet, the bow of the CP-19 is much straighter like it is on my boat. It's almost like the Explorer was a prototype or a pre-production version of the CP-19. Yet, if that were the case, why would Hutchins Yacht have collaborated with Southcoast? On the other hand, Southcoast's being only 14 miles away and starting the year after Hutchins Yacht seems like an awfully big coincidence.
« Last Edit: October 10, 2013, 11:30:10 am by brehm62 » Logged
brehm62
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« Reply #18 on: March 29, 2011, 07:43:41 am »

Well, I just got the official word from Gerry Hutchins. There was no authorized collaboration.

So, my guess is that the Explorer was an unauthorized, scaled version of the CP-16. Again, there are too many similarities to me to think that the Explorer was not derivative. Also, a derivative design would explain how they were able to create it so quickly and why they went out of business. For awhile, they had a market in between the CP-16 and CP-23 but then lost this market when the CP-19 was released. Then the company went out of business three years later presumably because they were not able to do further development. Obviously if this is the case, no one from Southcoast would admit to ripping off Hutchins.

I believe we could conclude that the Explorer is a Compac 16 inspired design. Thoughts? Yes, I was embarrassingly wrong when I suggested this. There was no connection to Compac.
« Last Edit: October 10, 2013, 11:31:44 am by brehm62 » Logged
sunbird10201
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« Reply #19 on: December 29, 2011, 05:37:49 pm »

The cabin lines look like an old HELSON 22, but the sheerline doesn't match that boat. I have pictures of a boat called a "SEA HORSE 21" (aka Scott 21-22) and the hull matches (as far as I can tell) but the deck is different (the pics of Sea Horse 21s look like the deck was "splashed" off a CAL 21). The Sea Horse 21 had an inboard rudder that kicked up like the rudder on an old Chrysler 20, 22 or 26. That might explain the pipe in the cockpit sole? Original rudder was lost or broke and an outboard rudder substituted? I also remember seeing a design called the Sea Horse 24, that was a larger version of this 21, but the boat in question appears to be the 21. Maybe they splashed this deck off a Helsen?
I found a design called an "X-21", but that is a racing boat, kind of looks like a miniature IOR design (was built in CT in the mid 1970s, and later Westport ,MA in the 1980s). Definitely a different boat, however that does not mean that the boat in question was not sold as an X 21, just that it was a different X21.
« Last Edit: December 29, 2011, 05:48:27 pm by sunbird10201 » Logged
sonosail
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« Reply #20 on: March 28, 2012, 07:07:10 am »

I think Sunbird is right for the most part. This looks nearly identical to a boat sold as  the International 21, designed by Helsen and built by International Marine in FL. So it's possible that another company aquired the molds. But the hull, deck and coach roof look nearly identical to me.
I have a drawing of one somewhere and I will post it after I clean it up a little.   Then you can see what you think. I'm not sure how close I can come with the dates.

rb
sailboatdata.com 

 
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sonosail
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« Reply #21 on: March 28, 2012, 07:59:27 am »

International 21 drawing

LOA:    21.5
LWL: 17.33
Beam: 7.33
Draft (max.) 4   
Draft (min.) 1.16   
SA: 175
Displacement: 1750   
Ballast: 400
« Last Edit: March 28, 2012, 08:09:15 am by sonosail » Logged
brehm62
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Boat Type: Southcoast Explorer

« Reply #22 on: March 28, 2012, 03:46:00 pm »

If I look at this picture:



There are two windows and they are the right shape. The chain-plate is attached in the same location between the windows. The forward cabin roof slopes the same way down to the forward deck and it shows the same cabin hatch on this sloped section. It shows the same masthead rig with back-stay. It looks roughly correct. However, I can't read the dimensions to see if those match.

This image shows the interior:



The solid vee berth and quarter berths are correct. The two burner cooktop on the starboard side and small sink on the port side are correct. The narrow transom with folding seat is correct. The single cockpit locker on the starboard side is correct. The location of the head storage is correct. The notch in front of the sink for the raised section of the port quarter berth is correct.

Some of the phrases though are laughable: "world of room and comfort", "spacious lounge", "all berths are large", "spacious and private", "uncramped walk around space", "ample room", and "her roominess allows you to use her as a camper".

400 lbs of ballast could be correct.
the minimum draft could be correct. the maximum draft would be about right.
7' cockpit would match.
7'4" beam would match.
175 sq ft total sail area is problematic. Mine is perhaps 145. When I try to calculate the maximum area I get about 173.5 sq ft. I can't check this without being able to read their dimensions.
The empty weight of 1,750 lbs would not be correct. My trailer holds a maximum of 1,650 lbs.

The LOA doesn't quite match. I measure mine at 20' 1". I don't know where you would get another 5" unless they count the rudder.
LWL at 17' 4" is close but a few inches shorter than I would estimate.
Cabin headroom is definitely not 4' 3". The most generous measurement from floor to hatch would be 4'. The actual height would be less since you would be sitting on a berth.
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sonosail
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« Reply #23 on: March 29, 2012, 08:18:34 am »

Yes but it's another builder. So changes in some the details could have been made.
To me, it seem likely that the same tooling was used to built the boat you have.

rb
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brehm62
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« Reply #24 on: March 29, 2012, 10:23:08 am »

I don't know what the keel looks like on the International 21. However, in looking over the Helsen II 20, the keel looks similar. The Helsen II 20 is 20' 1" long which seems to match mine. The width is the same and the interior layout looks the same so I wouldn't be surprised if they used the same deck liner and interior for both the 21 and the 20. However, the topsides on mine look like the 21 and I'm quite certain that mine doesn't have 500 lbs of ballast. So, I would say that these molds were used to make the boat although there was possibly some small modification.

This makes sense to me because I couldn't understand how a company that only made canoes, kayaks, and john boats could suddenly start making a sailboat without getting a design from someone else.
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NEPASailor
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Boat Type: South Coast Explorer 21

« Reply #25 on: April 08, 2012, 01:41:00 pm »

I have a South Coast Explorer 21. I too thought out was made by south coast seacraft. I believe that there is info available. I have so me pics on south coast owners association. Some things are simlar, but the windows are diferent, the interior is different.

The mast amd boom wete made from a company in FL, but they are out of biz. Do you have an owners manual?

Im restoring it back to its original condition. Its getting there.
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brehm62
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« Reply #26 on: April 09, 2012, 02:16:20 am »

I have a South Coast Explorer 21.

Where did you get the name? The placard on the starboard side of the cabin bulkhead on mine only says Explorer.




Quote
I too thought out was made by south coast seacraft.

What is your Hull Identification number? Mine begins with TSA which is the Manufacturer's ID for Southcoast Boats (like the placard says). South Coast Seacraft is SCS.

Quote
I believe that there is info available.

From where?

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I have so me pics on south coast owners association.

You would have to post a link. I did a search but couldn't find anything.

Quote
Some things are simlar, but the windows are diferent, the interior is different.

Here I can't tell if you mean different on your boat from mine or from an SCS boat.

Quote
The mast amd boom wete made from a company in FL, but they are out of biz.

This is the label on my boom. I couldn't find one on the mast.



Quote
Do you have an owners manual?

No, I don't have any information on it.

Quote
Im restoring it back to its original condition. Its getting there.

How do you know what the original condition was?

And then I have the sailmaker (but that may not be original) and the trailer manufacturer which I assume is original.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2012, 02:28:32 am by brehm62 » Logged
Hardtop
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Boat Type: Explorer21

« Reply #27 on: August 04, 2012, 10:30:14 pm »

Looks like mine is #39 (E0039) manufactured 02/81. It is also a TSA. Title list the length as 20' 6" but I have not measured it. No books came with it which is how I found you folks. I was research the boat before purchasing.

I am attaching several photos. Some of these were photos as I found it in the salvage yard. Others are as we are cleaning and checking the rigging.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2012, 12:07:56 am by Hardtop » Logged
Hardtop
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« Reply #28 on: August 04, 2012, 10:45:34 pm »

Under the sail my previous post of the photo of the cabin is a small sink with a hand pump. The cabinets in mine are pressed board with laminate finish. Over all it was dirty but ready to sail. After I cleaned the outside, I started on the inside and found the original sails. The genoa and main you see in the first photo group where made in Maryland. The sails in the photo laid out on the grass are the originals. The original jib is just a standard size. I have not compared the new main sheet to the original to see what the difference is.

The photo in the water was our first time out. It did not sink so that was a good sign. I was concerned that I could not see below the cabin deck to the keel area. I was afraid it might leak where I had know access. Comparing my photos to the others in this thread, it looks like next to the latter on the stern is a bilge pump discharge. Mine does not have a bilge pump or discharge hole (yet).

If you look closely at the rigging you will notice I did not check to be sure the stay was in the spreader correctly. No harm done, it was a light wind day (first time out on this boat so I did not want 15 knot winds). As soon as I saw it I dropped sails and ran the motor to test it out.
 
« Last Edit: August 04, 2012, 10:53:14 pm by Hardtop » Logged
brehm62
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Boat Type: Southcoast Explorer

« Reply #29 on: August 06, 2012, 02:55:16 am »

Looks like mine is #39 (E0039) manufactured 02/81. It is also a TSA.
My #34 was manufactured 04/80. So 10 months to build 5 more would be one every two months or six a year. The company went out of business May 31, 1983. So, perhaps only 52 of these boats were ever built. You have only the fourth such unit that I know to still exist.

I have found some more information since the last time I posted here. Another boat owner with a Helsen sailboat described his centerboard and it was quite similar to mine. You can read about that here:
http://www.sailnet.com/forums/gear-maintenance/3663-build-swing-keel-scratch-74-helsen-20-sloop.html

So, now I'm certain the the centerboard is consistent with at least some other Helsen models. The only item I have not confirmed is the concrete ballast in the centerboard trunk. I really don't know if any Helsen models used concrete. Incidentally, the bottom of my ballast/centerboard trunk had a flaw in the fiberglass. I had to remove the filler material and repair the glass. The centerboard itself was cracked at the tip because the flimsy stainless strap allowed the stress to concentrate at the tip. I had to sand off the glass and the underlying polyester resin down to the strap. It was attached with screws to lead plate (which is what gives the centerboard its extra weight). I replaced the stainless strap with 1/4" x 1" aluminum bar stock. You can see pictures of that on the second page of the above link.

Quote
Title list the length as 20' 6" but I have not measured it.
I measured mine this evening. I put a 4x4 post parallel with the transom to give me something solid to measure from. I used my 50' tape measure because the tape is only 3/8" wide so not nearly as heavy as a standard 25' tape measure. That way I could pull the tape tight with almost no sag. I used a plumb at the bow and ended up with 20' 2" counting the rub strips on the bow and stern. So probably 20' 1" which is the same as the Helsen II 20. I know the interior liner on the International 21 and Helsen II 20 are the same. So the length matches a Helsen II 20 while the upper deck matches an International 21. The cockpit apparently didn't change much since even the older boats have a 7' cockpit. Here is an ad for a Helsen II 20.



Quote
No books came with it which is how I found you folks. I was research the boat before purchasing.
Right, I don't have any manuals either.

Quote
I am attaching several photos. Some of these were photos as I found it in the salvage yard. Others are as we are cleaning and checking the rigging.
I see yours was covered with lichens too. How did you clean the lichens off? Even when I used a pressure washer they were not all removed. I eventually used a stiff brush with detergent and a fair amount of bleach.
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