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Carolina Dory


Drawing of a dory boat

High Speed Carolina Dory Boats

Dory boats have been used by fishermen for over 100 years, but they are still thriving in the 21st century because they are sturdy, fast, flexible, and inexpensive to build. The high speed Carolina dory boat is a derivative of the Grand Banks dory that was first used off the coast of Newfoundland for fishing in the 1850s. The original dory boats had a built-in rocker on the bottom. This worked very well if the dory boat was going at a slow speed when powered by oars or sails. However, once engines started being used in boats, builders realized that the built-in rocker was not functional anymore. They straightened out the bottom of the Grand Banks dory boat but otherwise retained the overall dory look and the Carolina dory boat was born.

Click here to get the plans tobuild your very own Dory Boat

The Carolina dory boats, some that can move at high speeds, were favored by commercial fishermen in the Mid-Atlantic States, especially the Carolinas. The high speed Carolina dory boats are unlike other modern power boats in that they can move quickly without a lot of power. With moderate power the Carolina dory boats can speed right along while still handling the rough stuff easily. A 9.9 horsepower motor on a Carolina dory boat will make it move well. About the most powerful motor a fisherman or sportsman would want to use in a high speed Carolina dory boat would be 30 horsepower.

Like other version of the dory boat, the high speed Carolina dory boat is relatively inexpensive to make. However, they still perform well and are safe to use in choppy conditions. Kits to build your own Carolina dory boat can be purchased for between $50 and $200, depending on the desired size. The length of the dory can range from 15 feet to 24 feet. This versatile dory can even be made with cuddy cabins for overnight accommodations. A high speed Carolina dory boat makes a great, inexpensive boat for fishing, gunk holing (cruising shallow water), or just for the family to take out for a swim. It can easily be beached and transported on a flat bottom trailer.

Dory Photo