We’ve just learnt a bunch of boating lingo we thought we would share:

General Terms

  • Hull – the main body of a boat, not including the cabin.
  • Stern – back of a boat.
  • Bow – pointed front of the boat.
  • Port – the left side of the boat as the boat is going forward.
  • Starboard – The right hand side of the boat – going forward.
  • Beam –a boat’s width.
  • Transom– back of the boat, can attach outboard to this
  • Chines– Have slight downward angle, allow boats to plane easier
  • Draft – the depth of a boat / how deep it is under water.
  • Galley – a boat’s kitchen.
  • Rudder – used to steer the boat, it is attached to the back of a boat and into the water.
  • Free board– amount of the side of the boat that is out of the water
  • Skipper – the captain or person in charge of the
  • Water line– proposed line the boat sits in in the water (unloaded)

Types of hulls

Flat bottom Hull


  • Increased stability- more boat under surface
  • Displacing more water with a flat bottom hull
  • Used predominantly in calm waters- lakes.
  • Low speed but has the potential for high speed

Flat bottom Hull- Rounded Chines


  • Helps displace water
  • Better steering capability
  • Better maneuverability

V Hull


  • Softer ride
  • Less stability
  • Requires more water/power to get on ‘plane’

‘Planing’ referring to the boat moving on top of the water

A deeper V hull makes a smoother ride but with less stability.

Planing Stakes


  • Add surface area to help plane
  • They create lift

Multi/Double Hull


  • More stability
  • Less friction
  • Rougher ride- drags air under and doesn’t rock as no center point to tilt through

Rounded Hull


  • Displacement boat
  • Usually Ferrys etc
  • Not very fast (not over 10 knots)
  • sits in water- moves by pushing water

The trick is to find the balance between the different hull shapes to get the what we want to achieve. We cannot take one hull and apply it to everything.