Boat Name:  DRUMBEAT

Model Name:  SPRAY  

Designer: BRUCE ROBERTS (early '70 design)

Type:  Ketch

Launched:  1987

Hull Material:  Fiberglass

Hull Color:  White with Black

Overall Length:  52 ft

Length on Deck:  42.5 ft

Waterline Length:  38 ft

Beam:  14.5 ft

Draft: 4 ft 7"

Tonnage:  14 Tons

Ballast:  6 Tons





Manufacturer:   Ford Lyman

Model:  4D220

Type:  4 cyl. OHV

Number of Engines:  One

Horsepower:  65 hp

Fuel Type:  Diesel

Cruising Speed:  5 Knots 1600 rpm

Gals/Hr @ Cruising Speed:  2/3 gals (approx)

Fuel Tanks (gal):  2x50 gals

Water Tanks (gal):  2x100 gals plus 60 gals (forward)

Transmission:  BORG WARNER "Velvet Drive"




Hull: Outer layer:  3/8 in (min) fiberglass

        Core layer:  3/4 in. closed cell reinforcing

        Inner layer:  3/16 in. (min) fiberglass

        NOTE: (shown is min thickness at non stress areas)

Deck:  Outer layer:  3/16 in. fiberglass

        Core layer:  3/4 in. Balsa end grain cell blocks separated by fiberglass walls

        Inner layer:  3/16 in. fiberglass

        Inner decorative layer:  3/16 in. Marine plywood with dressed finished

Cabin Sides:  Outer layer: 5/16 in. fiberglass

        Core layer: 5/8 in. Marine plywood

        Inner layer:  1/4 in. fiberglass 

        Decorative layer:  3/16 in. Marine plywood with dressed finish




Battery Bank (House):  2x6 V (176 Amp Hour)

                       (Cranking):  1x12 V (124 AH)

Volt Meter:  Yes

Amp Meter:  Yes

Battery Isolator Switch:  Yes

Battery Charger:  Auto/Manual 15 Amp

Electrical System (DC):  12 V

                               (AC): 110/220 V (thru multi-value Transformer)

Ship, Shore, Generator, Solar Selection:  Yes

Wiring Diagram: Yes (for whole boat)

Alternator:  30 Amp (extra spare)

Solar Panel: 85 Watt (4.8 Amp)

Wind Charger:  No




Windless:  LOFRAN'S "TIGRES" Manual/Electric (needs motor)

Chain: 100 ft

Anchor No. 1:  CQR 65 lb

                 2:  CQR 45 lb

                 3:  Fortress 45 lb

                 4:  Fisherman 100 lb

Bow Sprit:  Yes (with hand carved figure head)

Bow Pulpit:  No (has net under Bow Sprit)

Deck Wash down System:  Saltwater (needs pump)

Stanchion/lifelines:  No (has wooden handrails with turned stanchions & hand carved end posts)

Covers:   Full Foredeck, Full Amidships, Individual Hatches and Full Handrail  (new 2011)

Hard Top:    Custom light wt. wood and fiberglass. Supported forward with built in lights for control of wind and rain.

Stern Pulpit:  Wooden with turned Spindles and Carved Posts




Seating:  Teak "Park Bench" seats over built-in water tight fiberglass Storage Boxes

Binnacle:  8sided wooden with Wheel, Compass, Motor Controls and Jib Wench

Soul:  Slatted wood floor cover in 5 parts

Winches:  (Note: All sheet and sail controls pass thru "Rope Clutches")
         Jib Sheet Winch:
 1- 32 cm 2-speed BARLOW self tailing center mounted to Binnacle with 4 in. LEWMAR Turning Blocks at each side of deck.

         Main Sheet Winch:  24 cm 2-speed BARLOW self tailing mounted on starboard Pilot House

Main Halyards, Reefing lines (3), Downhauls (3) and Toping Lift:  2-25 cm BARLOW self tailing mounted port Pilot House

Note No. 1: all lines are made up blow the above winches and a pin rail on each side of the Wheel House

Spinnaker Control Lines:  2-25 cm BARLOW self tailing winches starboard and port of Splash Boards extensions to Pilot House.
Roller Furling and Staysail Control Lines:  2- LEWMAR 45 3- speed mouted Starb. and Port on After Hard Top Support.  With pin rail above for making up lines.
Mizzen Halyards and Control Lines:  2- 5 in. Antique Bronze (low profile) winches with pin rail below.
Note No. 2:  It is easy and comfortable to set, lower and reef all working sails from the cockpit of this boat.  Thus it can be sailed in most conditions single handed with ease.
Note No. 3:  The Main Sail can be set or lowered from the cockpit but there are 2 2-speed LEWMAR 40 Winches mounted on the main mast with pin rail below and on the shrouds for making up lines.


Type of Rig:  Ketch rigged with working Sails of a Jib (clew cut high, a "Fishermen".  Is shortened by rolling with the furling), a Staysail (club footed/self tending.  Is shorten by changing to hank-on smaller sails), Main Sail (full battened with 3-reefs) and Mizzen Sail (full battened with 1-reef).  Mizzen Sail is not overtly large and functions more as a balancing sail).
Sail Inventory:  2 Jibs, 3 Staysails, 1 Asymmetrical Cruising Spinnaker, plus Storm Jib and Main.
Sail Material:  Dacron (tending to be heavy as appropriate to cruising Sails).
Sail Condition:  All good, some never used. The Jib has new sacrificial cloth but stitching failed after 2 months.  Working Staysail needs new sacrificial cloth added.
Main Mast:  53 ft. extruded 9 1/2 in. x 5 in. Aluminum with two spreader levels.
Mizzen Mast:  Approx 40 ft. 6 in. x 4 1/2 in. Aluminum with 1 spreader level.
Running Rigging:  All Blocks and Rope Clutches are in good order.  Lines are from "still serviceable" to new.  Some extra lines.
Standing Rigging:  All 3/8 in. (10 mm) stainless 1x19 - AISI 316 wire.  With appropriate Sta-Lok fittings and chromed bronze bodied turnbuckles with stainless shafts.
Standing Rigging Inventory: 

Fore Stay:  PRO-FURL Roller Furling on 3/8 in. wire.
Staysail Stay:  Has "Hank-on" Furling System  on 3/8 in. wire with releasable base for running with Spinnaker.
Back Stay:
 Mast Head--2 fixed back stays fixed at bottom to Mizzen chain plates.
Running Backs--2 mounted to upper Spreaders.  Wire down to a fixed block.  Line from fixed end through block and down to 3 to 1 ratio block and tackle and then led back to cockpit clutch at deck level.


Note:  The following is a description of the interior starting from the main hatch in the After Deck (cockpit).

WHEEL HOUSE:  (size: 7 ft. - 6 in. W x 8 ft. - 0 in. L x 6 ft. x 6 in. H)  The Companion ladder drops 6 steps down to the wheel house floor which is a 2 piece wooden grating with a fiberglass pan under to catch water from wet clothes.  This whole floor and steps are removable for accessing the engine compartment and fuel and water tanks.  The Wheel House has 3 large lights of 12mm plastic on 3 sides with 2 of the forward 3 lights open for good ventilation.  Although the Wheel House is low, it has good visibility and with lots of light makes for a very different feel than the interior of the boat. 

TO STARBOARD: is a hanging locker for wet clothes with shelf above. Above this is the RAY 54 VHF Radio with good access from the After Deck.  More to Starboard and below deck level is a Quarter Berth (2 ft. - 3 in. W x 1 ft. - 6 in. H x 6 ft. - 3 in. L) (used mostly for sail storage).  At deck level there is a small hinged pull up table.  Moving forward is a swivel Pilot Chair with folding arm rests.  (This Chair can be removed and placed on the Aft Deck for comfortable steerage of the boat).  Starboard at the deck level is the AC / DC Switching Panels and Battery controls.  Forward of this is the Interior Wheel and Engine Control Panel.  Above this seat is a large Hatch and to port of the hatch is the ICOM SSB Radio / Receiver.  (much of the inner decorative paneling has been damaged when the old windows failed.   This occurred before I bought the boat and has not yet been repaired.  This is not structural nor a large undertaking and could be done locally.  At this time labor is about $15 a hr. and "baby" Teak is about $1.25 a board ft.). 
TO PORT:  Below deck level is the Portside Quarter Berth (same size as Starboard).  In front of this berth is a Sofa the length of the full length of the cabin.  The back of the Sofa is hinged and can be hung to form 2 bunks.  The top bunk makes a very large (6 ft. -5 in. W x 2 ft. - 9 in. D) Chart Table with very good lighting and visibility in all directions and close at hand to all boat and engine controls.  Below the Sofa is a large Storage area with access to AC refrigeration unit, Water heater (plumbed but not of use is the tropics) and access to Fuel and Water Tanks.  Below the Companion Way Ladder is access to area under the After Deck where the Steering Hydraulics, Self Steering electrics and pump, Stuffing Box, Bilge Pump and Float Switch and Large storage area.

MAIN SALOON AND GALLEY:  Size:  14 ft. - 3 in. W x 10 ft. - 0 in. L x 7 ft. - o in. H.
Note:  Whole interior of the boat is very " woody" with decorative mahogany plywood used on most flat surfaces contrasted with other woods.  Flat surfaces are in matt varnish while trim and doors are in semi-gloss varnish.  All locker and cabinet doors panels are in Cane "Wicker Weave".  There is storage and book shelves everywhere.  The Galley and Head are set in contrast with "egg shell" colored vertical panels and wood everywhere else.  All floors are Teak with white fill.   Head room is 7 ft. throughout giving the feel of a much larger boat.  Upper deck Hatches are large and positioned to give maximum light and ventilation.

TO STARBOARD:  Down 4 steps to Saloon and Galley open plan.  To Starboard is a 7 ft. - 9 in. L x 6 ft. - 0 in. W area with seating around a 2 ft. -8 in. L x 3 ft. -6 in. W fold up and drop down Table.  The Whole makes into a very large bed.  Could sleep 3 or 4 adults.  I have had 6 children and the dog in it.  Storage below seating and book shelves above. 
Forward is a 3 ft. - 6 in. L x 4 ft. -8 in. W x 5 ft. - 0 in. H Standing Locker with a 60 gal. Water Tank at the back/bottom.  TV, DVD,Stereo, etc. on top.  (there is some damage to ceiling above this area from a handrail leak.  The leak has been fixed but not the damage).

TO PORT:  GALLEY:  Size: 6 ft. -10 in. L x 6 tf. -0 in. W.  To port storage cabinets with doors over 3 ft. -6 in. W x 6 ft. -0 in. L x2 ft. - 6 in. H Refrigerator and Freezer (2-seperate compartments top loaded). (AC working/motor driven unit plumbed in but little used.  3 spare compressors onboard).  Against port hull a 3 burner and Oven Stainless Steel Kerosene Stove (works well).  Aft another counter with double Stainless Sink with storage below and glass ware above.  Floor and roof in this area have some water damage from failure of old hatch above. 

WORKSPACE:  This area back of sink in Galley and has a very large Locker with doors above and below.  Book shelves and a DICKINSON "Chesapeake" Stainless Diesel Heater (the desk for this area is missing).  This area would make a good bar if desired.

MASTER STATEROOM:  Size: 8 ft. - 6 in.W x 6 ft. - 10 in. L.  Enter through off center (to starboard) arched door way. 

TO STARBOARD:  Through second arched door is the
 HEAD:  Size:  4 ft.  - 5 in. L x 3 ft. - 6 in. W.  Smallish with "egg shell" Formica walls and Counter/Cabinets below and side.  Floor is Wooden Grate with water tight Sump with Pump and Float Switch.  Head is reproduction of Old Style hand pumped head (works good).

TO PORT:  Size:  5 ft. - 0 in. W x 6 ft. - 3 in. L.  Built-in Bunk with storage under and Cabinets with doors below and Double Hanging Locker or Book Shelves on 3 sides.  To Starboard and foreword of the Head is a large Hanging Locker with Foot Locker below.

FOC´S´LE:  Made up as a Workshop with large Work Bench/Bunk to Port with Large Hatch in the Center.  Large Hatch has easy access to foredeck for sail changes.  Storage everywhere including large area under Bunk/Bench for sails or whatever.  Lockers for easy access to Anchor Roads.


Dingy:  WALKER BAY 8 ft. with Tubs added for flotation. Non-sinkable and doubles as life raft.
Outboard:  No. 1  5 hp Nissan
                  No. 2  2 hp Honda
Life Jackets:  6
Foul Weather
 Gear:  Some
Barometer:  BACKWATER 8 IN.
Fishing Poles and Gear: 
Tools Electric:  Various
Tools Hand: 
Spare Parts:  Many of various descriptions
Paints and varnishes:  Some
Lines:  Yes
Tapes:  "
Oils:      "
Filters:  "
Additives:  "
Screws:  "
nails:      "
etc.:       "


The DRUMBEAT is an interpretation by Bruce Roberts, not a copy of the original Spray, although it is clear that when Roberts designed these early Sprays, he was following thing pretty closely.  If you are at all interested or know nothing about these boats, you would enjoy Captain JOSHUA SLOCUM´S "Sailing Alone Around the World ".  This book was originally published in 1900 and it is still going strong.  The original Spray was built around 1800 and it carries the North and Baltic Seas concept of how to get home in continuous bad weather.  The man who built the DRUMBEAT, Al Ferguson, carried these concepts over into fiberglass with great success.

"Big Al" built the DRUMBEAT in Ohio.  He was an Engineer by training and was in a position to build his dream boat.  He under took this in Ohio USA and spent some 17 years in building it "the right way" as the story goes.  The boat was launched in 1987 and by the mid-nineties he and his wife set off.  By the time the boat reached the Rio Dulce in Guatemala it had been around the Windward Islands and up the Coast of Central America.  In the Rio Dulce Al built a house boat for his wife which is still on the river and recently sold for $35,000 USD.  He then had a house built for her in Antigua Guatemala and the DRUMBEAT was left far behind.  I bought the DRUMBEAT in 2005 and have spent 5 years restoring the ravishing effects of 10 years tropical sun and rain.  I then spent until know getting to know Belize and The Bay Islands.

My contributions to this great boat have been to replace the masts, rigging, hatches, wheel house exterior, bow sprit, samson posts, all lights, refinish and paint the entire exterior top and bottom.  In addition I have tried to style it more in keeping with its period.  But, where the Spray was a working fishing boat, the DRUMBEAT is a modern yacht.  Being a sculptor I couldn't resist adding nine carvings representing the styles of well known sea cultures throughout the world.   I have also re-rigged the boat so that if someone wanted to visit these different cultures, they could do it alone as JOSHUA SLOCUM first did.

P.S. The boat was last out of the water at Pto. Cortes,
Honduras, March of 2011.