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On the slope

Why do narrow boat sides slope in ? Is it structural or cosmetic.

Asked by: Mr Vernon Whitehair  | 2.44pm, Sunday 31 March


WW says:

It is part practical and part cosmetic. If the sides were vertical, there would be a much greater chance of hitting the top corner of the cabin on low-arched bridges.
Also, having sloping sides makes it easier to walk down the gunwales without having to lean out too far.
Sides that slope inwards look a lot better too - a slope of about 1 in 7 is reckoned to be a good compromise. Any steeper and they start to restrict the space inside the boat. Any more vertical and the boat looks as if it is about to morph into a caravan.

Graham Booth  | 4.39PM, Sunday 31 March

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