Well, Paul (and wife Gerri) invited me and the missus over for a St. Paddie's day ham and cabbage dinner and I took a look at Paul's latest Craigslist freebie boat project. Paul told me over the phone that he had picked up a Skipper 14 for free. There are probably ten people in the U.S who know what a Skipper 14 is and I'm one of them. You see, my Auntie Doris knew of my love of sailing and sent me the English "Yachts and Yachting" magazine throughout my teenage years. As a result, I'm more knowledgeable about English dinghy classes than I am about American classes. And I've always felt the Skipper 14 was a superb multi-purpose dinghy design, though small by American tastes (we like our 19 foot Flying Scot's).
The Skipper 14 was designed by Peter Milne in the early 1970's (Peter Milne being the designer of the very popular Fireball dinghy) and was built in England by Richmond Marine. The Skipper 14 featured deep freeboard with a very complex deck molding for that period, lots of fancy molded wells and seats. Paul is currently hard at work on his Skipper 14 replacing various rotten plywood bits but I expect this one will get in the water sometime this summer. Hopefully I will have a sailing report later on.
Here is a photo of the fancy molded deck layout of the Skipper 14 which I've lifted from the Internet;
And here is Paul's project Skipper 14, safely ensconced in the garage, serving as a storage holder for a stuffed hammerhead shark!
Let's go to the videotape. This Skipper 14 is rigged like Paul's; a single gunter mainsail on a mast that slots into mast tube on the hull (there was a sloop version available for more power).........
Back in the 90's, I took a kayak tour on Elkhorn Slough, off Monterey Bay, California, and came across another Skipper 14 launching off a public launch ramp.... so I know now of at least two in the U.S.