Atkin “Flipper” Dinghy

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Type: Row
Price: TBD
Construction: Wood


Atkin Flipper Skiff 2Contemporary - Instructor Bruce Blatchley's section - John Atkin-designed Flipper dinghy in marine plywood

FLIPPER was designed by John Atkin, based on an earlier design for a similiar boat, called MABEL, by his father, William Atkin.

Flipper is a dinghy, or "dink", designed to be a safe boat to use as a tender to a larger boat or, when rigged with mast and sail, as a safe boat in which kids can learn to sail without expensive hiking equipment and so forth.

Her designer writes: "In The Book of Boats, I wrote that Mabel is a famous little vessel. Her plans have been published the world over. They were first shown in MotorBoat magazine -- affectionately known by many as "the old green sheet" when Billy Atkin was doing a series of designs for that publication some 60 years ago! Later the design was presented in the Atkin Flipper Skiff 4well-loved magazine Fore An' Aft in an article by the late Weston Farmer. Still later, Mabel showed up in a 1937 book entitled Motor Boats, which was written by my father. He designed this little dinghy at Huntington, New York, in 1924."

"Fairly recently, I revised the design of Mabel, after having built one of these boats in my Dinghy Shed. Based on my observations, I increased her freeboard and renamed her Flipper: The increased freeboard made a considerably more burdensome boat. Her principal dimensions are: 10 feet 1/2 inch overall by 3 feet 11 inches beam and 3 1/2 inches draft."

The class of 2014 built three of these little dinghies. Two were built traditionally, and one was built of marine plywood.

The Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding is located in Port Hadlock WA and is an accredited, non-profit vocational school. You can find us on the web at .

Our mission is to teach and preserve the fine art of wooden boatbuilding and traditional maritime crafts.

We build both commissioned and speculative boats while teaching students boatbuilding the skills they need to work in the marine trades. We sell our boats to help support the School. Give us a call should you like to discuss our building a boat for you.

You can reach us via e-mail at or by calling us at 360-385-4948.

Further Contact Information:

Chief Instructor Sean Koomen

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