John Alden S Class and Stamford One-Design Sloops

Just when I think that I have seen every single sailboat on the Internet that even remotely looks like a Knockabout Sloop, I stumble onto John Aldens Stamford One-Design and S Class boat.

The following excerpt is from “John G. Alden and His Yacht Designs" by Robert W. Carrick & Richard Henderson.


One of the prettiest classes of knockabouts designed by Alden is the Stamford One-Design, produced for the Stamford (Connecticut) Yacht Club in 1916. Their ends are shapely but not overlong, and they have a bit more freeboard than many racing sloops of that time. Their cabin trunks seem especially well proportieioned. These boats were built to design number 67, and their dimensions turned out to be 26 feet 9 inches, by 19 feet by 7 feet 3 inches, by 4 feet 3 inches.

Eleven boats were built by the Rice Brothers of East Boothbay, Maine, and each was sailed single handed to Stamford around Cape Cod in May, frequently a stormy month. They did indeed encounter some heavy weather and were blown some distance offshore, but all arrived safely at their destination. Despite not having self-bailing cockpit wells, the boats proved decidedly able.

Sizable, deep, and fitted with benches, the cockpit is quite comfortable and the cabin is large enough for a couple of shelves for mattresses. The gaff sloop rig, carrying 342 square feet of sail, is conventional, but an offbeat feature for a racer is the club-footed jib on a traveler. Although it is common practice to rig a boomed jib’s sheet to a traveler, the arrangement doesn’t always work as well with a club-footed jib.

The records show that Alden designed only one S boat (boats rated under 17 feet by the Universal Rule), but he claimed that with minor modifications the Stamford One-Design could be made to fit into the S class. He predicted she would do well in that class. However, it seems that no than a dozen Stamford One-Designs were built, and they were not an active racing class in the Yacht Racing Association of Long Island Sound. As with many of the small one-designs in those days, they were used exclusively for intraclub racing, and the class was not long lived.


S Class - Nassau











Stamford One Design