Whether you’re building a boat out of necessity, as a hobby or as a “one day” dream escape, you know the job is more than a simple weekend project. Part of the pride of building your own boat is the dedication and time you put into it. While anyone can easily follow boat plans, the ones who build the best boats are those who learn from the experience of others.
When asked what my 5 best tips for boat builders are, I almost always say the same things. The simplest steps can save lots of time. Likewise, the simplest errors can cause major headaches. Using these tricks and techniques will help you stay on track.
1. Always Measure Twice
How does the old saying go? “Measure twice: Cut once.” It’s true! You would be wise to check the lofting and other work that involves measuring. Few things are as annoying as wasting wood because of measuring mistakes.
2. Step Back and Look At Your Work
Working at such a close proximity to your boat is just the nature of the job. However, it’s always a good idea to step back and look at your work from a distance once in awhile. This is especially important when lofting and assembling. Inaccuracies and errors that are not noticeable at close range can become obvious when you look at the big picture. Taking time periodically to view your boat from several feet back will help you identify – and correct – mistakes before you get too far along in the process.
To be continued…
Happy boat building,
Morten Olesen, Naval Architect