Ultra-Simple Boat Building

Ultra-Simple Boat Building

by Gavin Atkin


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Ultra-Simple Boat Building by Gavin Atkin

The first complete how-to guide for building the latest generation of quick and easy boats

In Ultrasimple Boatbuilding, renowned designer Gavin Atkin shows you how to create elegant, seaworthy plywood boats with a minimum of time, experience, and expense. Using clearly written and illustrated step-by-step instructions, Atkin explains the basics of stitch-and-glue construction, tools, materials, shop safety, and more, as he helps you choose and build the simple boat of your dreams.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780071477925
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional Publishing
Publication date: 10/19/2007
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 636,163
Product dimensions: 8.60(w) x 10.90(h) x 0.40(d)

About the Author

Gavin Atkin is known around the world for his minimalist boat designs. His award-winning creations,
including the celebrated Mouse, have been built by countless boat enthusiasts.

Table of Contents


Introduction: The Virtues of Small and Simple Boats

 Part 1 How We'll Build Them

1. Three Simple Ways to Build Ultrasimple Boats

The Simplified Chine Log Method


Polyurethane Stitch and Glue

Epoxy Stitch and Glue

Your Choice

2. Materials and Tools


Buying Plywood


Buying Lumber



Polyurethane Glues

Paint and Varnish


3. Basic Skills

Working with Lumber



Working with Saws

Joining Lengths of Lumber

Working with Plywood panels

Marking out using coordinates

Cutting the panels

Making Butt Joints

Using Fasteners

Pre-drilling holes

Working with hand drills

Using hammers and driving nails

Using screwdrivers and driving screws(sidebar: Working with Chisels)

Working with Glues

Using polyurethane glue(sidebar: PL Hints from Bryant Owen)

Using Epoxy

4. Building the Hull

Building with the Simplified Chine Log Method

Cleats for bulkheads and frames

Cleats for the transoms

Assembling the Bulkheads, Transoms, and Sides

Adding Chine logs

Building Stitch-and-Glue Style

Bulkheads and Frames

Initial Assembly

Taping versus "Stitching"

Making Fillets with polyurethane

Making Fillets with epoxy

Covering the hull

Adding a Skeg

Inwales, gunwales, breasthooks and quarter knees(sidebar: Home Made Clamps)

5. Finishing Your Boat


Painting with water-based paint

Painting with oil-based paint


6. Fitting out and Rigging


Paddling and rowing gear (sidebar: A Rowing Rant)

Sailing Gear

Daggerboards, leeboards, and rudders



Rigging(sidebar: Knots)

Preventing rot

7. Model making

Part 2 Let's Build Some Boats

8. Minimouse and Micromouse: two tiny, flat-bottom double-paddle prams




Les Brown's Micromouse

9. Lilypad: a stone-simple punt

10. Mouse and Rowing Mouse: a V-bottomed messabout pram for double-paddle or oars

11. Cruising Mouse: a two-person rowing or paddling pram with carrying capacity

12. PoorBoy: a small outboard skiff

13. Dogsbody: a larger outboard boat

14. Jiggity: an "ultrasimplified" Auray punt

15. Aurette: a small sailing Auray punt

16. Piragua: a pirogue

17. Cinderella: a double-paddle canoe with a "roundish" bottom

18. Flying Mouse: a child's sailing pramString Sailing

19. Eek!: a larger, sportier sailing pram for more experienced kids and small adults

20. Puddle Duck Racer: the world's simplest racing class?

21. Summer Breeze: a versatile rowing/sailing skiff

Using the Simplified Chine Log Method

Stem and transom


Assembling the Sides

Installing the Bottom

Using stitch and glue

Finishing the Hull

Rowing Accoutrements

Sailing Rig

22. Doris the Dory: a rowing and sailing expedition boat

 Part 3: What Shall We Build Next?

23. A gallery of appealing designs

Phil Bolger


His 'n' Hers Schooners


Jim Michalak





Murray Isles

Swallowdale 15

Swan Bay

Pepper Gal

John Welsford


Tread Lightly


Jacques Mertens-Goosens

CK 17

Otter 16

Indian River Skiff

Conrad Natzio



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