Different Falcons

Here's a collection of materials on the Falcon hull design from McVay, Beetle Boats, and others.

Different Falcons

Postby TimGillespie » Wed Sep 02, 2009 2:10 pm

In searching for whatever I could find on these boats, I discovered that there are at least two versions of this boat. The original McVay Falcon had a shorter rig. On the Sailritesails.com website, which I found through this site (thank you Dave) they have sails for both the Falcon and the Falcon by McVay. According to them the hull on the McVay boat is a little smaller, and the sails are smaller. Assuming they know what they're talking about, I've got a Falcon, not the McVay version. The Beetle boat company in South Dartmouth, MA (right next door to me) built the Beetle Falcon in the 50's. I'm pretty sure that's what mine is. I've seen a video on Youtube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=REaUwbAhhBU) that shows a Beetle Falcon sailing around with the Beetle name right on the side of the cuddy. Looks just like my hull. The Beetle Boat company was sold years ago and now resides in Wareham, MA (http://beetlecat.com/store/scripts/default.asp). They don't have any of the archives of that period. They do have an old sales flyer that lists the Falcon as one of their line. Nobody at the Beetle shop knows anything about Falcons.

Thanks to the sailritesails site, I'll be getting the right sail for my boat to whip together this winter.
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Re: Different Falcons

Postby DaveD » Thu Sep 03, 2009 1:25 am

Now we are getting to the meat of why I started this little discussion site.

It seemed like all the records and plans vanished with the companies that used to build this boat.

It never made it as a "one-design" or a competition boat, but anyone who has sailed this boat knows that it can keep up with the best in it's comparable classes. I've kept up with Catalina 15's, O'Day Daysailer, and occasionally I beat them.

I actually want to build pages that describe the histories of the different companies.

I've seen quite a few of these boats still out there. Just need to get everyone in one place.
A bad day sailing is better than a good day at work...
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Re: Different Falcons

Postby TimGillespie » Thu Sep 03, 2009 11:30 am

I did some more digging and found out from the office person at Beetle Cat that the reference she was siting was from the book "Heart of Glass: Fiberglass Boats and the Men Who Built Them". You can buy a copy from Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/Heart-Glass-Fiber ... 0071579834). If you search the book on Amazon you can read the references from a 1959 Yachting magazine, which talks about the Beetle Boat company and The American Boat Building Company. This boat was born from the very early days of fiberglass boats. I haven't done an exhaustive search of my boat to find a hull number or any other identification. I took the previous owners word for it that there was nothing, but he may not have been as obsessive as I can be. I think it would be cool to try to consolidate everything that's out there on this boat just to get a clearer picture of its history. There certainly is a lot written about McVay, who seems to be credited with giving birth to the first incarnation.
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Re: Different Falcons

Postby DaveD » Sun Sep 06, 2009 12:03 pm

George McVay designed the falcon, minuet, victoria, and redid the bluenose in fiberglass. and a couple other hulls. This was one of the first fiberglass made.

I was informed that boats made before a certain date didn't have hull numbers. The hull numbers were actually on the sail only. SO if you didn't have the original sail, you are out of luck. (I think I'm out of luck too...)
A bad day sailing is better than a good day at work...
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Re: Different Falcons

Postby NODROG » Sun Jan 17, 2010 12:45 am

Tim, any pictures that you could post of your Falcon?
I'm just curious......since you sound like you're in Dartmouth and I just wonder whether you might have purchased my Dad's old boat. We had her in Wareham until 1969, and sold her thru Burr Brothers Boats i nMarion in hte Spring of 1970. Most likely she had several owners before you.... if this is the same boat (and considering that New Bedford was the home of BEETLE....)
That brings up a correction to your post, BEETLE Boats was a "cousin" of the BEETLE company that still builds the little Beetle Cat, Carl Beetle (who started BEETLE BOATS) was the son of John Beetle who built the Catboats originally. BEETLE BOATS (fiberglass) was located in New Bedford. Carl took a while to succeed at fiberglass boats, the public just wasn't ready for the big change from wood. He did eventually do OK, but soon sold out to Marscot Plastics which ultimately became American Boatbuilding (BEETLE + Marscot names were still used at times!). Carl Beetle eventually switched to molding other things (mostly chemical tanks) out of fiberglass and that "new" company used to be located at the entrance to the Fall River Industrial Park.

"HEART OF GLASS" has got to be one of the BEST books around!!
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Re: Different Falcons

Postby Alecc » Mon Mar 14, 2011 6:49 am

Growing up in Stonington, CT., and sailing with/for The Wadawanuck Yacht Club, I learned how and enjoyed racing the American Boatbuilding "hulls" originally built in East Greenwich, Rhode Island. We had one of the biggest fleets in New England with sail numbers from Number 1 all the way up to #35. We owned Number 32, bought from The Wimpfeimer Family (American Velvet Mill), but I did all of my "training on #25.."High Times" owned by Robert S. Jones (Robin)..the only Royal Blue falcon in the harbor. He also owned "Flying High"..a 22 ft. Pearson Ensign..also the same royal blue. Sadly, Robin passed away quite some time ago, but managed to "instill" all of his Falcon racing knowledge in me. You know..it's like riding a bike..once you know how...you "just do". This was years ago and now our fleet is but a remnant in Stonington, but my memories are all crystal clear. I also came up with a new process to "pull" the boom amidships (almost) while beating windward. I replaced the "triangle" of the main sheet by attaching a lanyard between the 2 "deck blocks" on the transom. Half-way on the lanyard, I tied-in a swivel block.making it look much like the fixed traveller on a Sunfish/Sailfish. Threaded the sheet directly down to the block on the lanyard and then back up to the second to last block on the boom, and then, down to the final block and into the cockpit. This arrangement never interfered with my boom vang (which I highly recommend), and I was able to beat windward everytime after my "stopwatch" start. Hope that this will help all of my fellow Falcon(ers). Great Sailing!! Alec Caldwell, warren, Michigan
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