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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 10-05-2008
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Building a small plywood work boat

Well this isnt too sailing related, except for the fact that it would be for me to shuttle supplies to my boat wile this in water rebuild goes on.

My skiff is done for and and ive had it with the jon boat ive got. So its time to either buy or build a new boat. I cant afford to buy a boat, so im building from plywood and epoxy. Since i know my boat building skills are crappy, im going for a simple little barge to use. I figure 14' long and 5' wide with 30'' high sides. It will be a work boat plain and simple. I can keep my generator aboard it and probley put a tool box on it.

Now i need some tips on how to go about doing this. I figure ill make ribs to go inside out of 3/4'' plywood and then skin it with door skin and fibreglass. Ill make a piece of plywood for the transom by glueing 2 sheets of 3/4'' together. It will have to be self propelled by my 3hp Johnson. I need some tips and ideas here.
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Old 10-06-2008
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So I know a couple of folks who have built these fun little boats from plywood, screws and glue called the "PD Racer". I don't have enough posts for link posting yet (yes, I know, visit the song thread), but search for "pdracer" and you'll find a number of sites with plans and construction details.

It isn't exactly what you're after, but maybe it will help on your basic design and construction concepts. Note that these guys usually don't glass anything--they seal the screw holes and go for broke. Of course, they usually aren't out in a ton of water with expensive tools and/or equipment on board.

jonathan
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Old 10-06-2008
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I wouldn't use plywood for the "ribs".. plywood doesn't take screws well into the edges. Use some decent 1x2, assemble the frames with plywood gussets and skin the result as planned.

Glen-L offers a line of plans that might suit your needs. Even if you don't want to spend on plans and patterns, there will be some ideas for you here.

Check out their site:

Boat plans, boat building kits for amateur boat builders
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Old 10-06-2008
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I dont know mate

What are you planning on using it for other then working on your boat?

If it were me I'd just find somthing like this and strap on a trolling bracket and put your outboard and be done with it...unless you really just want another project.

Give it away for free when your done.

1980 bayliner with trailer

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If i wanted to i could just stick the sailmaster on the back of my old Starcraft ski boat, but id rather have a decent little work barge. I figure i can get it build this week. Ive got most of the door skin already and some of the plywood to build it.
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Old 10-06-2008
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Don't use plywood as Faster has said... solid wood framing would be better.

Don't forget to round the edges and fillet the joints so that the glass will layup nicely. Door skin may be a bit weak for the skin on a boat the size of the one you're describing, and 1/4" ply might be a better skin material.
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Old 10-06-2008
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Nice little 14' skiff can be found in Faster's link.
Looks to be exactly what you are looking for.
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Old 10-06-2008
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Plywood is probably ok for a simple skiff but I'm not sure how much weight you could carry in a plywood boat.

Have a loot at look at Devlin Designing Boat Builders - Design Catalog

Samuel Devlin also has a book about Stitch and Glue boat building.

On the other hand, as Stillraining mentioned, it might just be better to find a cheap boat on ebay or something and just rug up a trolling motor ot small outboard or something. Rip out what you don't need then just sell/give it away when you're done.
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Old 10-06-2008
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Sounds like you need to get a copy of this book "Delvin's Boat Building" It shows how to built boats using the Stitch and glue method. Very simple and straight forward method for building boats using plywood reinforced with fiberglass.
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OOps I was beat to the punch, should have read that last post first
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