Building a boat?

Discussion in 'Boat Tips' started by tehrealmccoy, Jul 30, 2006.

  1. tehrealmccoy

    tehrealmccoy New Member

    Messages:
    68
    State:
    Streator, Illin
    Hi all,
    I recently acquired on eBay an eBook on making your own jon boat quick and easily with wooden material. I was just wondering the plausibility of a wooden jon boat, and if anyone had any tips for me. :)

    Thanks
     
  2. AwShucks

    AwShucks New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    Guthrie, Oklaho
    I know it can be done as they used to be quite common in the 50's and 60's. The problem is, if you would look around, you can find quite a few fiberglass and aluminium boats made in the same time frame, but no wooden ones. Think you would be dollars ahead to get an old fiberglass and restore it. Lot of people will give them away when they get so bad they have to have extensive repairs. Put an ad in your newspaper that your willing to take on...you'll probably get a trailer and possibly a motor with it. Just a few hundred dollars over whatever time spann you have or want to work with and you have something. Wooden boat...maybe you will have it four or five years.
     

  3. swampthang_matt

    swampthang_matt New Member

    Messages:
    73
    State:
    georgia
    me and my friend jake tryed tobuild a boat it didn't work to good so jake got one from his grandad and we fish in it:0a23:
     
  4. Bigdan99

    Bigdan99 New Member

    Messages:
    102
    State:
    Illinois
    `I was going to fix me up a boat but my wife wants me just to buy a new jon boat because she wants a boat for me to go fishing then she also wants it to go tubin and want something that will withstand the river and the beating it would take during tubing plus I will be pulling it behind a Chevy Venture minivan and the money to be put into it is limited.
     
  5. Bobpaul

    Bobpaul New Member

    Messages:
    3,039
    State:
    Supply NC
    Yes it's very plausable to build your own boat. Today the quality of resins is far superior to what was in the past.

    Mark Johnson might chime in on this and give you some tips and other sites to visit for more information on the plans and how to's of wooden boat building.

    You'd have a good boat with a sense of accomplishment. Might lead to bigger and better boats in the future.
     
  6. tehrealmccoy

    tehrealmccoy New Member

    Messages:
    68
    State:
    Streator, Illin
    Thanks everybody. I'm not so much worried about the strength of the boat, or how many years it will last (if it floats it will be a major accomplishment!!) as apposed to the wood rotting, the wood getting water logged, or it taking on water and sinking.

    The more I read and research and plan, the more excited I get!
     
  7. PeZ

    PeZ New Member

    Messages:
    757
    State:
    Oklahoma
    of course you can built a boat from wood and a really nice on too just takes alot of time space and money good luck
     
  8. gadzooks

    gadzooks New Member

    Messages:
    1,532
    State:
    Kingwood, Tx (Houston)
    Don't let anyone tell you no. It can be done, it'll be as strong if not stonger than an aluminum boat, and, while it may be heavier, it will more than do the job. Additionally, its easier to customize a wooden boat than an aluminum one. Just add the rod holders, maybe a live well in the middle seat, and go to town. With proper resins applied to the boat, it essentially becomes a fiberglass boat with wood core. No additioan floatation necessary. There's a fancy magazine devoted to wood boat building...Wooden Boats. You should see some of the boats in that magazine. For a good book on the subject, look up Dynamite Payton.
     
  9. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    Bob is right, with todays epoxies, fiberglass weaves, and lightweight marine plywood the amateur boatbuilder can build a boat that will easily outlast himself.
    There are wooden boats and there are composite boats. I build composite.
    Meaning that the plywood is core material. The biaxial fiberglass skins laminated to the core make it stronger then aluminum , wooden, or fiberglass boats with less weight. With composite you can skin the bottom with kevlar or graphite coat it.
    Graphite is abrasion resistant and stands up well to even oyster beds.
    You can graphite the bottom of a hull with 10 dollars worth of graphite.
    Kevlar is a material that is used for puncture resistance just like in body armor. Its expensive and ideally requires vacuum bagging techniques to get a good lay.

    The most simple plans to build are stitch and glue, meaning there isnt a wood frame which the hull material is attached to. Wood framed boats require alot of frame fairing to get it right and square and alot of times lofting. (not for the beginner).
    Stitch and glue boats are a series of panels cut out of plywood that fit loosely together with tie wraps or wire in most cases. Once its assembled you make small "bandaids" from epoxy and fiberglass and tape inbetween the the wire ties. Once dry, you cut the wire ties or tie wraps out and proceed to follow the lamination schedule outlined by the designer. In short, these boats arent put together with nails or screws at all. Its all glass and epoxy.
    Most of these boats are simple enough for a first time boat builder and cost less then wood boats.

    The following website is by an Australian amateur builder who built the boat that is my next project. The OD18.
    He outlines his costs but keep in mind he is in Australia and he put more cost into the rigging of the boat then the hull cost him.
    I know exactly what this boat costs raw material wise because I've purchased it. You are looking at $1500.00 for an 18 foot boat , all premium materials. This 18 foot boat built to designer specs weighs in at around 600 pounds! That is light. That is also why you can plane it with a 40 HP motor or less. The bottm and sides of this boat are built from 1/4" marine ply skinned with 12 oz biax cloth. Its darn near bullet proof.

    I will say that if you arent willing to spend the money to use the right materials and follow exactly the designers plans for construction move on to the world of being stuck with what is offered in the world of mass produced boats. These boats are so simple to build everyone on this site would kick theirselves to death if they knew how much can be saved boat wise and economy wise with just a little sweat equity as an investment.
    The best part is the day it rolls out of the yard for the maiden voyage its paid for lock stock and barrel and I will guarantee you wont find the strength, quality, and weight savings anywhere else.
    Stitch and glue is the way to go on any boat under 26 feet IMHO.


    http://www.jgfitzpatrick.com/Rybka Photos.htm
     
  10. ShilohRed

    ShilohRed New Member

    Messages:
    4,339
    State:
    West Tn
    Fished out of them for years. And even helped build a few. They were 14ft long and 4ft wide in the bottom.
    And stable as my 20ft that is 6ft in the floor. Ran out good. And for years ours stayed at the dock was never taken out of the water.
    Then later on we started using a trailer.
    Yes they can be build. And will last a lot of years. I know were one is that was built in 1972. Its still solid.
    Pete
     
  11. beeheck

    beeheck New Member

    Messages:
    631
    State:
    Iowa / Missouri
    Check out this web site. I don't want to talk you out of a wooden boat but they take a lot of tools, time and the money can add up fast. This shows how to build a light weight, tough boat for not much money. I was going to build a canoe for a pond we found that you have to hike into but after fishing it from shore and talking to another guy who was fishing it the quality of fish just didn't warrant me doing this project.

    http://gaboats.com/boats/
     
  12. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    To build a stitch and glue boat the tools required are a drill, skilsaw or sabersaw, and an orbital sander. Tools most any home owner already has.
    Like I said, Alot of people would be kicking their hind end.
    It aint rocket science by no means.
    When you got people building these things and doing a professional job that had never even picked up a skilsaw much less built a boat in their life, its pretty straightforward. Being a "woodworker" is not at all required. Being able to read and follow a blueprint is a must.
    When you get the thing all put together and rigged you've learned a whole lot about the mechanics of any boat and have installed every item or system in your boat meaning you now know how to work on it too.
    Be warned, you'll never build just one, its an addiction.
     
  13. metalfisher

    metalfisher New Member

    Messages:
    188
    State:
    Arkansas
    Mark is right!

    Once you build a boat, you will want to build another. I have built 6 small one man boats and enjoy it very much.

    I can build one with a drimel tool, a hand saw and a pair of plyers. So don't let the idea you must have a shop full of tools stop you from trying. If you have access to a table saw, it would be easier but not necessary.

    Robert
     

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  14. Bobpaul

    Bobpaul New Member

    Messages:
    3,039
    State:
    Supply NC
    See, I told ya so:smile2:

    You talk wooden boat and MarkJ shows up.

    Good to see others experienced in it also.
     
  15. Mountain Cur

    Mountain Cur New Member

    Messages:
    171
    State:
    Missouri, Warsaw
    Sam Devlin's boat building web site will link you to about any information you might want. ""Boatbuilderstitchandglueconstruction.org"" "I think." Regardless, if that doesn't work type ""Devlin's stitch and glue boat construction.""

    System Three or West System Epoxy have very good instructional material on line and in hard copy that will get you through ANY glassing project you might undertake. RAKAH also has good information.

    Never let anyone tell you building your own boat isn't a worth while project. Expensive, but worthwhile......Good luck with the project and let us know how it's coming along. Post a pic once in awhile so we can see the progress. :big_smile:
     
  16. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    Devlin's books are some of the best and a good investment.
    But one thing to keep in mind. The way Sam Devlin does his stitch and glue may not be the way somone else does theirs.
    You have to build by the designer's play book in all cases because that piece of plywood here and that piece of glass there is engineered by himself.

    Cost wise, a 41 one dollar sheet of plywood sounds expensive and that 3/4" plywood that sells for 120 a sheet sounds real expensive.
    Like I said in the above post, I have 1500 invested in materials to construct an 18 foot hull. That is with PREMIUM grade material. That 1500 will get me a hull, a center console, the bottom of the boat coated with 4 coats of graphite, and get it glassed.

    1500 dollars is a shabby down payment for a new 18 footer sitting on a lot.
    I expect to spend around 4500-5000 on this boat but The majority of that is going into the rigging with things like a washdown pump, T-top, and some additional bells and whistles. I am fortunate I have the motor to go on it bought and paid for.

    Even if you had to finance a motor its alot better then financing an entire rig.
    Have an old bass boat like I did? Strip anything usuable off of it like hardware and rigging, screws, and junk the rest. You wind up with a trailer out of the bargain that you may have to make some adjustments to.

    There is alot of amateur boat builders that have taken the plunge. Some buy only new and the best rigging, others Ebay shop until they drop.
    You can go any budget you want.
    I've seen some guys that spent 3 years building a 16 footer because they could only buy materials in small doses because they have 4 kids.
    Their boats are still paid for the day it leaves the yard and they saved a ton in financing not to mention the method of building doesnt require you to hang a 15,000 dollar motor on an 18 footer or even a 23 foot lobster boat.
    With the increasing costs of fuel and oil it makes even more sense to build these boats.
    I've seen heads when they were dropped in the water at the size of the motor hanging on them. When the headshakers see them run they change their tune and want to ask a 1000 questions.:big_smile:

    As in anything else there is boat plans and then there is boat plans.
    You have amateur designer/ engineers and you have professional designer / engineers. Stick with the professionals and you will be pleased with the results.

    I would go so far as to say you would be better off building stitch and glue boats of any size without any woodworking skills as opposed to having them.
    What is norm for the woodworker like precise cuts isnt the case with stitch and glue. 1/4" gaps are good. That is what you want.