Through special arrangement, you can now order a custom-built Belle daysailer from Hylan & Brown – Boatbuilders in Brooklin, Maine.
Hylan & Brown are no strangers to Belle, since I built the original in their shops a few years ago. They are the ideal builder to put together a quality sistership, not only for their fine craftsmanship but also their familiarity with the design. Having worked there in the past, I eagerly approached them with the idea of offering the Belle design.
In addition, they offer maintenance and storage services not currently offered by Belle Boats. This might be of particular interest if you have a place on the New England coast and are looking for a full-service yard–specializing in wooden boats–to build, store, and maintain a Belle daysailer.
Their website discusses Belle at the following page:
–Daniel Gonneau, Designer/Builder, Belle Boats
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Belle Boats has released new sketches and information on the proposed 20’6″ gaff sloop Belle 20.5:
Simply put, Belle 20.5 is a 20’6″ centerboard cruising sailboat incorporating many elements from the 16ft Belle daysailer. Like Belle, she’s a shallow centerboarder for the pleasure of gunkholing and ease of trailering. Her epoxy-lapstrake hull should be pleasing to look at and, using epoxy glues, quite lightweight and leakproof. Inspired by Belle, the Belle 20.5’s simple gaff sloop rig should be easy to handle and offer a good turn of speed in most conditions. Angled varnished coamings and wide slatted seats make for a comfortable cockpit. The seats are quite wide and over 7ft long, excellent for snoozing or fair-weather sleeping. Boom tent optional. A 2-5hp outboard (gas or electric) can be stored in the aft well or under a seat.
Belle 20.5 is the first of two designs inspired by the original Belle daysailer. I’m foreseeing a three-boat range of Belle designs:
- 16ft daysailer (Belle)
The original. Pure daysailer.
- 18'9" daysailer/cruiser (Belle 19)
Daysailer with cuddy. Just enough room for a small V-bunk.
- 20'6" cruiser (Belle 20.5)
Lavish cruising accomodations for two!
See the link above for sketches and more information. Of course, just contact me with any questions.
—Daniel Gonneau, Designer/Builder
The Belle Boats Facebook page is now available! We’ll be posting the latest news, photos, and events, so it’s a good way to keep on what’s happening at Belle Boats. We hope you’ll “Like” or “Follow” us at the following link:
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SHELTER ISLAND HEIGHTS, New York (November 6, 2017) – Daniel Gonneau announced today that he has started Belle Boats to design and build custom wood daysailers and cruisers. See full Press Release for details:
11/6/2017 Press Release (PDF)
BELLE’s owner took her to the 2017 Mid-Atlantic Small Craft Festival in Maryland. In addition to an award, BELLE was also written up, with a few nice photos, by Anne Bryant of Small Boats Monthly:
“I also happened by the relaunching and re-christening of BELLE, a Herreshoff 12 1/2-inspired small sailing boat designed and built by Daniel Gonneau. With her more open layout inboard and with no internal ballast, she’s quite different from the design of her keelboat cousin, but no less gorgeous.” — Anne Bryant, Small Boats Monthly
Many thanks for the comments and photos!
Sights from the Mid-Atlantic Small Craft Festival XXXIV
BELLE won a First Place Award at the Mid-Atlantic Small Boats Festival, held in October at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in Maryland. BELLE won in the “traditional design, contemporary construction” category. With over 100 boats in attendance, the Festival is of the largest small-boat gatherings in the United States.
In 2015, BELLE was featured in the Calendar of Wooden Boats. It was indeed an honor to have been selected for the Calendar, and you can see Benjamin Mendlowitz’s photo on the home page of this site. Many thanks to him.
You can also see the photo at their Facebook page.