Finding the right wood boat plans

wood boat

There are a lot of beautiful wooden boats that can be constructed if you possess the plans. Whether you are concerned about building a small-scale wood boat like a canoe, or dream of building a large sailboat, the boat plans you start from will be essential to your success.

When deciding between the numerous wood boat plans you can find online and in bookshops, you need to bear in mind a few criteria to make certain your buy is worth your spending.

The first important element is that the designs must have been tested. It is important that the wood boat plans you are buying or using are demonstrated boat plans made by competent boat designers. Otherwise, you could end up wasting away your money and time, in addition to a lot of raw material.

Another point to consider is the readibility and usability of the boat plans you are considering for purchase. No matter your skills, easy and exhaustive instructions are preferred. They are particularly essential for beginners. Wood boat plans difficult to read or understand, or which neglect essential details will generate frustration, and in the end you may just surrender your project.

Last but not least, your boat plans should be affordable, and carry a money-back guarantee in the case you find them unfitted to your needs. Unfortunately, most boat plans are sold as single plans, which means that if you ultimately find the design or the level of difficulty not suitable to you, you will have to check other boat plans, provided you can get your money back on the first one. So, what is the best solution?

Luckily, after some research, I could find an excellent product which compiles hundreds of different boat plans. What was unexpected, though, is that they are offered for the usual price of a single plan! And this is not at the expense of quality. The author, Daniel Holden, lives in Denmark and has an extensive experience of more than 20 years in boat building. He is a true boat building enthusiast, and clearly knows what he's talking about. Let him introduce himself:

"Generations upon generations of boat building knowledge is the legacy that was passed to me by my ancestors. I have actual insight in the boat design that was used to grace the waters of Denmark with wooden boats for centuries. (...)

Imagine the awesome feeling of riding on the water on a sunny afternoon in the beautiful boat you built and people crane their necks just so they can get a good look at your boat."

If you would like to turn your dream of building you own wood boat into reality, Daniel's plans may very well be the best way to start your journey. Check Daniel's offer now on his website!

Photo by Simon Howden

Monday, June 28, 2010

Dory Boat Building in Video

This is a nice video by a guy in Toronto, who has built a 26' Dory - not a small project. The interesting fact is that he had no prior experience in boat building! He spent 4 months working on it. As you can see, even beginners can build a relatively large wood boat in a reasonable amount of time.

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Monday, June 21, 2010

Wood Boat Designs: the Dory Boat

dory boatThe dory boat is a classic type of wood boat with a flat bottom. It is a great boat for fishing or just rowing quietly on the waters, as it is usually fitted with oars. This is typically the kind of wood boat you can build at home from plans, with a moderate amount of time and effort. It is a very good boat for beginners, because the dory has a really simple design and a small size. Of course, you may encounter some difficulties during the construction process, but the advantage of this simple design is that you should not have too much difficulty solving them.

In case you decide to start a project, especially if you do not have any prior experience, you should be careful to the organization of your workspace and study the plans in deep details before starting the construction. Carefully store all the needed materials and tooling before starting your work. There is nothing more frustrating than realizing that something is missing during the course of the construction. Usually, you won't be able to get it right now - store closed, delays... - and if you are anything like me, you will find this quite irritating! Building a boat requires some patience and flexibility, so try to avoid creating further difficulties in the first place.

Dory wooden boats - some also exist in aluminium or fiberglass - can be built using various types of wood, such as spruce or oaks, but also the simple plywood. This last one is obviously the better choice for the beginner, and also the cheapest. You also have the choice to power it with an engine, or to fit it with oars. As you can see, this is a quite flexible design, which allows you to customize many aspects.

Once you have a clear idea of your needs, it's time to find the right plans. Many resources exist online, but one of my favorites has been created by Daniel Holden, a Danish boat building professional. He has compiled more than 250 different boat plans among which some beautiful dory boats. This allows you to find the right design for you without wasting your money or time. If you would like to get a better idea of his offer, you can click here to check his website. Once you have your boat plans, study them carefully and take action. Your boat can become a reality sooner than you think!

Photo from Glory Rumours

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A nice wood boat to build: the Classic Moth

This is a very interesting video where you can see the main steps in building a wood strip Classic Moth. The result is really nice! This is not the easiest design or boat building technique, but it is still really feasible at home with a little space and tooling.

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Friday, June 18, 2010

Choosing the Right Bottom Paint For Your Boat

With all the different bottom paints out there, its hard to know which to choose. It seems like every manufacturer has something which in their opinion makes them better than the other guys. Not only that, but even different product lines by the same manufacturer can seem to contradict each other, each one claiming to be the best for your boat.

Truth is, the perfect paint for each boat differs depending on many factors. Type of water the boat will be used in, type of hull, how fast the boat will be going and a host of other factors enter into the equation making a definitive guide on which paint is best all but impossible. So why am I writing this, you ask? To tell you the process under which you can find the perfect paint for your boat and budget.

First choice to be made is brand of paint. Sometimes cost will determine this, but make sure you ask around. Everyone has their own opinion as to which brand is best, so ask people whose opinion you trust. Interlux and Pettit are two of the most popular, but there are plenty more. Once you have chosen the brand you want to use, check out the manufacturer's web site for helpful information on what the best paint is for your application.

If they get too technical, take notes and either ask someone who knows such things(marinas and boat mechanics, if you are friendly with any), or call the customer support line for the brand you are looking at. Manufacturer's web sites can be helpful after you have chosen your paint as well. They usually list important information like how many coats to use and which thinner they recommend.

Once you have processed all the information, you should have a pretty good idea about what paint you want to use. You may want do a Google search and get some reviews on that particular line, just to make sure you have all the facts. Just remember, don't be scared by a couple bad reviews, as long as there are an abundant amount of good ones.

Choosing the right bottom paint can seem overwhelming given all the different choices, but if you follow these simple steps you can make an informed decision on the perfect paint for your boat. Until next time, see you on the water!

For discount boat parts, electronics or gear, head over to Great White Parts.

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Boat building for Beginners: the stitch-and-glue method

wood boatIf you are a beginner in boat building, you should probably start with a small wood boat. This is the easiest type of boat to start with, and it will allow you to build up your boat building experience. Most boatbuilding methods require complicated tooling, but in the case of wooden boats, there exists a much simpler technique which is ideal for beginners: the so-called stitch-and-glue method. This method usually does not require that you build a frame, and no complicated, fancy tool is needed. All in all, this is probably the most rewarding way for a beginner to start its journey in the world of boat building.

Many different designs and types of wooden boats can be built using this method, from dinghies to kayaks, from johnboats to row boats. You should also think about the amount of work you are ready to accomplish and the amount of time you have.

If you prefer to avoid too much woodworking for your first project and get faster results, boat kits are a great way to get started. All pieces are already cut out at the right shapes and dimensions, and your main task will be basically to stitch together the various pieces using wire, and apply layers of fiberglass and epoxy to glue everything together. This is a very fast method, and your first boat can be ready in a matter of weeks or even days!

You can also choose to make the woodworking yourself, which is actually not difficult but requires the right tools. The big advantage is that you will have a large choice of boat plans and boat designs to build. This will allow you to build a more personal boat, with a design that won’t be found everywhere. And imagine the satisfaction of building your wood boat entirely by yourself!

For a large choice of wood boat plans, including many stitch-and-glue designs for beginners, you may want to consider this package of more than 250 different boat plans. This is probably the largest choice of boat designs you will be able to find in one place! Click here to learn more about this package.

Photo by Tom Curtis

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