© Mouth of the Tweed 2016
The traditional, clinker-
The coble’s flat bottom enables it to be launched from a beach and the long rudder acts as a keel. Cobles were equipped with a dipping lug sail, requiring great skill in handling at sea. Many were later fitted with engines. The sea-
Keel boats differed from cobles because, as the name suggests, they had a deep keel. Keel boats were usually from 40 to 70 feet long. Different designs were favoured by particular regions.
The most popular design on the East Coast was the ‘fifie’, a two-
Other types of keel boats included the ‘skaffie’, which was popular in the area around the Moray Firth, and the ‘zulu’, which first appeared in 1879 (the year of the Zulu War in Africa) and combined the best features of the fifie and the skaffie.