LOA - 35'2"
Beam - 8'9"
Draft - 5'6"
Displacement - 14,500Lbs
Keel Weight - 5,650 Lbs
CCA Rating 21.9
Main 475 sq ft
Jib 175 sq ft
Genoa 275 sq ft
Hull - Teak
Frames - Ipol
Stempost & Keel - Yacal
US Price $13,950 (1960)
submitted by Jim Kearney
Click for Interior Line Drawing
The Lion was designed by Arthur Robb. It was 35 feet overall, 8' 9" beam, drew 5'
8", displacing 14,500 pounds and was about 24' on the waterline. The resulting 11' of
overhangs gave her astonishing reserve buoyancy as well as graceful good looks.
I have heard that some were made in glass, but have never seen any other than teak
planking on ipol frames with mostly wood floors, though near the mast there were some
galvanized floors as well. They were fastened with copper rivets (that never seem to go
bad), with bronze screws in the hood ends.
The horn timber was a huge, single piece of teak that probably could not be bought today
for any price.
Teak decks were common, but the teak was laid on 1/4" plywood. Chinese plywood of
that era was notoriously lousy, so all of the Lions I ran into had massive
delimitation problems (as did mine).
The companionway was open to the cockpit floor, something I find rather dangerous for
offshore work, so on Amber I built a bridge deck out of teak.
The keel was external, iron, and about 6000 pounds.
The Lion's single 50 foot mast was Sitka spruce, hollow in a box section with two sets of
spreaders. Some (including mine) were rigged as double headsail sloops with a self tending
staysail on a boom.
All of the ones I know of used a tiller for steering, which could be quite a handful on a
boat this size. I cut a hollow roach in the main and changed the 3 bladed prop to 2
blades, which got rid of most of the weather helm and made her a joy to singlehand.
Sailing under main and staysail I'd often (singlehanded) tack around inside marinas to the
great consternation of dock committees, but she handled so well there was never a problem.
The Lion's plans, as well as most of Robb's designs, were donated by his widow to Mystic
Seaport Museum. You can buy copies from them; I purchased a complete set years ago for (as
I recall) about $50.
Keep up the good work with your site!
Thanks Jack for the input and for publishing your stories for us to enjoy, james