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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions about boat plans and boat building)

What is lofting?

When you receive the plans you will find that the different elements you will have to cut out of the plywood have dimensions that describes their physical shape. Lofting is the process where you take these dimensions and draw them on the plywood sheet so you're the elements can be cut in real size.

When you get started with the lofting the process is quite simple, and if you are a first time builder our Boat building Master Course will show you every step in the process in details. For a limited time you will receive a free copy of our Master Course together with your order for one of our boat plans.
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How do I stitch and glue plywood?

The stitch and glue building method is a quite popular building method for boats. The reason for that is that the method is easy to use and it makes the construction process fast.

When you build a plywood boat the hull side and bottom meets at the chine. At this chine seam small holes are drilled and the side and bottom is stitched together with either metal wire or cable ties.

After the stitching the chine seam is glued with epoxy thickened with wood floor or another suitable filler. After the gluing it's normal to apply some fiberglass tape over the seam to reinforce the joint between the side and bottom.
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What is strip plank?

Strip plank is a building method normally used for canoes and kayaks. When building with strip plans canoe you glue together long slender wooden strips over a skeletal or template that has the desired hull shape.

Once all the strips are assembled the hull is faired and covered outside and inside with fiberglass fabric and epoxy resin.
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I have never worked with epoxy and fiberglass before What do I do?

Working with epoxy is not difficult but like many other things in life its gets easier the more you have tried it. Normally most epoxy suppliers have some lecture of their product and how it's used.

If you do not have any experience with epoxy and fiberglass we recommend that you start out with a design where you only need to use fiberglass tape. It's much easier to work with fiberglass tape compared to fabric and it's easier to get a good-looking result with the tape.

You can check out the material that has to be used for the different designs by using our free tool Material cost calculator that you will find for each design.

Our Boat building Master Course also describes in details the process of laminating with epoxy and fiberglass. For a limited time you will receive a free copy of our Master Course together with your order for one of our boat plans.
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What types of fiberglass tape and fabric do I need?

Our free tool Material cost calculator will give you the type of materials together with the quantity. Generally ordinary fiberglass tape is all there is needed but for some high performance designs special requirements to the fiberglass tape and fabric can be specified.

For further details about the building materials please have a look at the Building materials section...
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What type of plywood do I need?

We always recommend using Marine or Exterior grade plywood. However many of you builders has used other types of plywood with good results. One thing to look after when choosing plywood is that for boat building it's important that the plywood is water and boiling proof (WBP). Plywood that is only waterproof is simply not good enough.

For further details about the building materials please have a look at the Building materials section...
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Where do I get the building materials?

You can get boat-building materials in every part of the world. Plywood is used everywhere and widely available in many qualities. If you are not sure what quality to choose please see our detailed description at the Building materials section.

Fiberglass and epoxy is also widely available and the best thing you can do is asking your local boat builder where he gets the materials. Sometimes it is also possible to buy the materials from him at a reasonable price. If you don't have a local boat builder near by surf the Internet to find some suppliers near by.

If you run into problems finding the building materials you are also welcome to ask us, either in out custom support forum or by email.
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What tools do I need?

You can buy all the tools you need to build your boat at your local hardware store. Most likely you will have the tools already since the tools needed are normally included in most peoples toolbox.

Our Boat building Master Course also describes in details the tools you will need to build your boat. For a limited time you will receive a free copy of our Master Course together with your order for one of our boat plans.
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What is Downloadable plans?

To say it simple: You download the plans - you print the plans - you build your own boat.

Our boat plans are not just a collection of drawings and measurements that only a professional boat builder can understand. They include step-by-step instructions with pictures and drawings that clearly represent each stage of the boat building process.

Our downloadable boat plans are specially developed for this distribution method. They are not just scaled versions of large plot plans but every precaution is taken to make the plans really suit this format and that you get maximum quality.

We invented the downloadable boat plans and the way we see it the downloadable boat plans has many advantages.

First of all you will receive your new boat plans right away. No need for waiting until the boat plans are shipped and the postman arrives to your address. It's simply a matter of minutes before you are ready to study your new boat plans.

Second you will always be sure to have all the plans you need in your workshop. Can you imagine how easy it's by accident to damage your boat plans in your workshop? They can get torn up or spilled on by accident. With the downloadable boat plans it's no problem. Go back to your computer and print a new one. Simple isn't it?

Read more of our boat plans in The boat plans section...
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Does the boat plans work on my MAC?

The short answer is YES :-)

Everything will work on your MAC computer. All the boat plans, building instruction and boat building master course. Even the 3D model will work seamlessly with your MAC computer.
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How do I print the downloadable plans?

The downloadable plans are delivered to your computer as pdf files. This way you will be sure always to be able to print the plans. The only software you need is 'Adobe Reader' and our guess will be that you already have the software on your computer, and if you don't you can get it for free.

You don't need any special hardware to print the boat plans. A standard printer printing letter or A4 will do the job. Remember the boat plans are specially developed for this paper size so you will get quality boat plans printed on your own printer.

Read more of our boat plans in The boat plans section...
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How will I receive my plans?

You will receive your downloadable boat plans right away. After your purchase you will receive an email with a download link. After using the link you will be able to download the boat plans. So not only do you receive your plans right away, you will also save the shipping costs.

Since the fill-scale plans are plot it is necessary to ship the plans. The plans are shipped in tubes so they will arrive to you with absolutely no creases. This will make it easier for you handle the plans on the plywood. Normally you should expect 2-6 days before your full-scale plans arrive. You will receive an email when your plans are shipped.
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What payment types do you accept?

We accept credit cards and PayPal. All orders are processed over our secure server, held in queue until it is verified, and then finally released. The end result is a safe and secure transaction that protects your information at all times. It is absolutely secure and we don't see any of your credit card details. We NEVER sell, share, or distribute in any way your private/financial information.

Read more in Order information section...
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This is my first project What should I consider?

For your first project you should consider finding a design that is not too complicated. It is no secret that building boats involves parts that needs to be assembled and maritime terms that you need to know. Therefore you should consider choosing one of the smaller designs.

Not that it is more difficult to build a larger design compared to a smaller one, but it requires more work and therefore more time, and it is easy to get to a stage where you feel you are not doing any progress.

Boat building is like many other things in life; it is easier when you have tried it before. So as a first time builder it is better to choose a small project that succeed and then move on to a larger design next time than choosing a large project that fails.
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It's difficult to choose my first project What do I do?

If you have followed the advices above and still have difficulties choosing the right design the best thing to do is write us an email asking for advise. Include a few details about where you would like to sail and what you will like to use the boat for. We will then be glad to guide you into finding the right project.

To contact us please see the Contact us section...
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Is it difficult to build one of your designs?

Building one of our designs is not difficult. It will take some patience and attention to detail to build a boat, that is no secret. But our boat designs are designed with the target in mind that they should be easy to build, also for first time builders.

Building stitch and glue boats require less time and fewer skills than more traditional boat building. Therefore you will always be able to succeed with your project when you choose one of our designs. Not only are our designs easy to build but also our Master Course describes in details all processes of building your new boat. For a limited time you will receive a free copy of our Boat building Master Course together with your order for one of our boat plans.
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If I run into problems How do I get help?

We take every precaution to make our boat plans so easy for you to understand as possible. Our Boat building Master Course is also a part of our effort and we know for sure it has been a great help to many of our builders.

Of course we can't guarantee you won't run into problems. But we can guarantee that there'll always be someone available either on our customer service forum or via email to provide you with extra support and encouragement should you need it.

Read more in the Technical support section and about our Customer Service Forum...
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