If you’re like most people, you’ve often dreamed of building your own boat. Nothing elaborate mind you – just something sturdy, attractive and, of course, seaworthy. Weekend trips with the family, fishing excursions with your buddies or as a simple stress-reducing activity for yourself, building a boat with your own hands is enormously satisfying. But where do you start? Which boat would be the right one for you to build?
Size Things Up
Size often plays a major role is choosing a boat to build. Chances are, if you’re building your first boat, you don’t have a great deal of space allotted for the project. It will be easier to fit a small, 13-foot boat into your garage than to try and create makeshift workspace for a 40′ monster.
Decide what area you want to use as your workshop. If the area is a pre-existing space (a garage, a barn, etc.), make sure the finished boat will fit into the room you have. If you’re going to build a temporary workshop, allow yourself enough space to comfortably walk around all sides. A good rule of thumb is to add two to three feet to the measurements outlined in the boat plans.
Generally speaking, if you are building your first boat, you’ll want to begin with a simple design. After all, it doesn’t make sense to try to run before you can walk. If you’ve built one or two boats in the past, you may be ready to graduate to more complex vessels.
Canoes, rowboats, skiffs and dinghies are all highly functional boats with simplistic construction.
And there is more to choosing the right boar than this… In the last part of this series I will give you the last tips you need for choosing the right boat.
Happy boat building,
Morten Olesen, Naval Architect