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what is the difference between trad and semi boats

Please excuse my ignorance but what is the difference between a trad and semi trad narrow boat is it the age or style? As a complete novice to the narrowboating world I find it all a bit confusing.

Asked by: angie bates  | 5.47pm, Saturday 3 July

WW says:

Hi Angie, The name has little to do with age but quite a bit to do with style. A few years ago steel boats based on the design of former working boats came in two main styles.- Traditional, which had a rear deck about 3 feet long and giving just enough room for the steerer to stand at the tiller, and cruiser style with a rear deck about 8 feet long,allowing others to join the steerer,giving a more sociable feel to the job. The cruiser style having about 5 foot less cabin space than the trad style for any given boat length.
The semi trad is a method of giving the appearance of the full length tradional style cabin sides while retaining the advantages of a larger rear deck by extending the deck into the cabin space and forming a hollow inside the superstructure.
The semi trad rear deck still uses up potential cabin space but gives a different appearance to the cruiser style. A stroll along the towpath should see you finding examples of all three main types and a number of other solutions to the "lonesome steerer" problem. I hope this has helped rather than adding to your confusion!

Mike Jordan  | 8.44AM, Sunday 4 July

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