For aquatic activities enthusiasts, boats are a wonderful thing to have. Whether you love fishing, skiing, canoeing, kayaking or just cruising, having your own boat puts you in charge of where and when you have fun on the water. The problem is, of course, that boats can be very expensive. However, if you have some carpentry skills, some free time and love working with your hands, you can save money by building a boat yourself!
The Internet is a great resource for boat plans. Thousands can be found on the Internet and many of them are free. Whether you are interested in building a canoe, motorboat, sail boat or a small boat, free designs for them can be found on the Internet. There are even plans that can show you how to build a rowboat in eight hours!
Along with boat-building plans, the Internet is also a great resource for learning all other aspects of boat building, including which glues to use and which materials work best for which boats. You can even find a sail calculator, which finds dimensions for the sailing rigs of small boats, and videos of people building boats so you can see for yourself exactly how they’ve done it, step by step.
As for what to use, there is a variety of materials you may construct your boat from. Plywood is very popular; even experienced boat builders often construct their boats out of plywood, since it is the cheapest material for building boats with. Several other materials--everything from plywood to PVC pipe and scrap wood—may also be used. The development of new resin systems with various resin curing times and ability to be used as fillers or glue have also made it easier to build boats. Carbon fiber and other high-end cloths have easy handling characteristics, which also lends to easier boat-building.
You can learn about all of these aspects of boat building on the Internet. Naturally, you can also order books on the subject from the Internet. Even if you’ve never tried building a boat of any kind before, there are books out there for beginners. So, there you have it. If you would rather try challenging yourself and experiencing the pride and satisfaction of taking to the water in a boat you made with your own hands, some quality time spent surfing the ‘net can get you well on your way!