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A Skipper from Scratch
Erik Lund
March 27, 1961
Marblehead's Ted Hood, known as a sailmaker, now not only races his boats but builds them, too
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March 27, 1961

A Skipper From Scratch

Marblehead's Ted Hood, known as a sailmaker, now not only races his boats but builds them, too

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Four Japanese "Robins"

Then Ted sold Robin and busied himself with new designs. Last summer he came up with not one, but four Robin-type boats, built for him in Japan. "Couldn't afford to waste the money on testing models," said Hood when asked why he wanted four. Translated, this meant he wanted to try various rigs, decide which was best and sell the others.

He put a yawl rig on one, named it Robin after his first design, and the week it was launched it took a first and a second in the Edgartown Regatta off Martha's Vineyard, and three firsts including the 1960 Astor Cup in the New York Yacht Club races. Back in Marblehead again, Robin finished first three more times. It almost made a chatterbox of Ted. "I was pleased to see her go so well," he said.

He is reticent about plans to market more Robin-type hulls and sails to go with them, meeting all questions with, "I guess I could..." and "I might if I sell these..."

Marbleheaders are betting that by the time his four boats are gone there will be others on the way and Hood will be solidly established as a boat designer. Their only question is whether he will want his own forest for wood, and his own sawmill.

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