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The following are some useful comments from Gavin Malenfant regarding the history of BI40s. His comments were submitted to blockisland40s@gmail.com on June 19, 2011.  Gavin and his wife, Janet, are the proud owners of the BI40 named, Schnickelfritz.


"Gavin Malenfant here, husband of Janet Malenfant, enjoying a lazy fathers day morning after a full day of tinkering with Schnickelfritz on Saturday.
Janet pointed me towards the BI40 page and while looking around noticed the listing in the Owners Registry.  I see that you have the builder as a private build, I'm sure you concluded this as William Schmidt finished the boat in his yard, Ram Point Marina in Wakefield RI.

Probably more useful to the membership and others interested, to list the boat builder as MetalMast Marine of Putnam CT, out of business since 2001....I think.

The BI40's built by MetalMast are sometimes referred to as Series II boats.
I need to triple check this but Series I boats were built in Greenwich and are represented by such boats as Seal, Rhubarb, etc.  These boats have full length shoal keels, like yours, have an incredibly deep interior with a very large centerboard trunk.  The trunk is very large because the boards are triangular in shape vs the blade shape used today.  I suspect that most if not all were yawl rigged

Series II boats do not have a full length keel.  The deepest part of the hull is the skeg hung rudder.  The centerboard trunk does not intrude into the interior as the centerboard is more blade like as I mentioned above.  Janet's Grandfather bought two hulls from MetalMast in the mid 70's and finished them off, Schnickelfritz and Shatzie.
Both of these boats are sloop rigged with Schnickelfritz being rigged with a fixed inner stay for a working or club footed staysail.  [Not really a cutter as the inner stay is ~ 1/3 the way back from the bow.]  I suspect that the rigs on series II boats are highly variable.  [Charlie of New England Yacht Rigging in Greenwich helped MetalMast Marine set up the fiberglass building shop to build the BI40's and other fiberglass boats]

Series III boats were, built by Migrator.  Migrator brought back the full length shoal keel, kept the blade centerboard and fitted the higher performance rudder.  Migrator also widened the house as well as carried the height of the house all the way forward.  Houses on series I and II boats steps down just before the mast.  As for the rig I have yet to see a series III boat rigged any other way than a yawl.

Years ago, a year or three after Migrator started building, a similar effort was launched with good results in that ~ ten boats of all three series met up in New Harbor Block Island.  I will see if I can find the newsletters and you can determine if there is any useful content."