A Botter is a flat-bottomed ship that is characterized by a round, wide and high-rising bow with a roof, and a low, open stern. Compared to the Lemsteraak, the Botter has the characteristic of a very large volume in the bow and a small volume in the stern. A lower stern makes it easier to handle the nets, but this can be at the expense of seaworthiness, especially in lagging seas. That is why the botter builder Joost Kok decided at one point to build the stern three inches higher. Botters that have been built or converted as yachts usually also have the stern slightly raised. For example, with the 'Houtrib' the difference with a normal fish butter is 15 centimeters. Normally the botter on the flat is half as wide as on the rubbing strake.

At the place where the bun is located, the strakes, shelves and frames are missing. Four heavy bulkheads, the blanket and six knees on the blanket of the bun provide the necessary reinforcement. When a botter is converted into a yacht and the bun is removed, special care must be taken to ensure that the structure does not weaken.

The botter uses a gaff rig with a jib, yankee and sometimes a mizzen sail, which is added if possible. The mizzen sail, also known as the breadwinner, bras, monkey or knapsack, is hoisted on the crane line, and the neck and clew are attached to a boom called the mizzen stutter. This boom rests in a hollowed-out cleat at the back of the bun, while the end, the cam, is operated with the mizzen sheet. In some cases, when the old sail used as mizzen did not fit snugly, the neck was attached not to the stutter mast, but to the aft gunwale. The term 'breadwinner' should really only be used for a rectangular sail with a top rake, similar to how it was passed through the quack on downwind racks, and which was raised by means of the jib halyard.

The sail configuration on a botter includes the wide, sturdy botter jib, which extends well behind the mast. This traditional rig is many, many years, maybe even centuries, older than the modern 'genua'. The botter jib has a significant splitting effect. In addition to a good ship design and an optimal daggerboard, an optimally working sail area is also essential to sail a heavy ship with a relatively small sail area.

The botter continued to evolve as a sailing ship until it was phased out. The Huizer botter got a slightly higher bow, a slightly more elegant line and a slightly lower stern. The botters built as yachts all show compromise. They are generally smaller and sometimes therefore less attractive.

DOEVE Brokers and Valuers is your dedicated yacht broker for Botters. For further information about the sale of your Botter or if you wish to purchase a Botter, please contact us.

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