Draft 4.5 ft.
The folkboat sailed off the design table in the early 1940's as the product of a design competition in Sweden. The resulting "volkboat", or people's boat, was a combination of the four entries. To its credit, or despite it, this design by committee process produced a boat that has endured the tests of time as a favorite among wooden-boat owners.
The idea behind the folkboat was to build a relatively inexpensive, tough little boat for small families. When Swedish designer Tord Sunden offered his modified folkboat, King's Cruiser, its popularity brought it national prominence as one of the most popular one-design auxillary class racer-cruisers in the United States.
Debuting in 1955 at New York Motor Boat Show, it cost $8,190. To many sailing enthusiasts attending the show, it was the best new entry. By the mid 1960's some 250 of the 300 Swedish built King's Cruisers were exported to the United States. Fleets grew across the country from Long Island Sound and Chesapeake Bay to San Fransisco Bay. In the Great Lakes the boat became popular, in part, for its seaworthy reputation. By 1968 chicago enjoyed a fleet in excess of 30 boats.
European builders made about 1,000 folkboats in all. It was said that many shipwrights of the day broke in ther first set of tools building a folkboat.
As a testament to the reliability of these little boats, in 1960, aboard the 26-foot modified folkboat, Jester, Colonel "Blondie" Hassier sailed alone from Plymouth, England to Newport, R.I. in the first trans-Atlantic, single-handed race.
African mahogany over oak frames; built: Sweden