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Thread: Homemade Skiff?

  1. #1
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    Default Homemade Skiff?

    Have any of you guys ever built a little 14ft Skiff/Dorey? I thought it would be cool to have somthing to tow behind the Shammy and put around the marsh with. I am thinking glass over wood and drop a 20hp on the back. I really like the idea of all glass, but cant find a mold to use. There are plenty of plans on the net. How do you tell the good from the bad.
    Thanks
    Good judgment comes from experience which comes from bad judgment.

    1991 22 Shamrock Warrior SUV (Sport Utility Vessel) (351 Indmar / 393 stroker)

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  2. #2
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    I've got a 14' Laser fiberglass skiff that I bought for some exercise and just dinking around. It's got a sliding seat and the big honking oars. Awesome boat but they're no longer made. I've given some thought to powering it w/ a small air cooled "straight inboard". Although it's rated for a small OB we all know about weight on the transom.

    Here's a thread on a "stitch & glue" dory style, a double ended dory would have to have a motor box for the ouboard.

    http://www.thehulltruth.com/forums/t...ighlightmode=1
    Steve in Madison, Wi.----STILL LOOKING!
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  3. #3
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    Fox...

    It's funny you should mention F/G over wood.

    The other day, on the Sci Chan or Discovery Chan, I saw an episode of "How It's Made" and they showed them building a F/G covered, wooden Old Town canoe. It was of Cedar strip construction over Ash (?) ribs. After they finished the conventional wooden hull, they overlayed it with, I think, one layer of F/G cloth and a couple coats of epoxy (they weren't too clear on just how many). It kind of cracked me up when the narrator pronounced "gunwale", "gun hail".

    I was amazed at how transparent that layup was after it was doped with epoxy and how nicely the wood grain was highlighted and enhanced.

    If you're interested, it looks like the episode will be on Discovery Chan again tonight at 11:30 EDT (CDT???) along with how they make Segways and electric guitars. They kind of gloss over stuff but the canoe was interesting.
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  4. #4
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    yaha I saw part of that show about the canoe. Pretty cool
    Good judgment comes from experience which comes from bad judgment.

    1991 22 Shamrock Warrior SUV (Sport Utility Vessel) (351 Indmar / 393 stroker)

    Joshua 24:15
    As for me and my house, We will serve the Lord



  5. #5
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    If I were to buy a 14' skiff, I would highly consider welded aluminum. That is the the most popular construction materal here in South Central Alaska. Maintenance is minimual, they are light when pulling off the mud, and they are more resistance to abrasion by rocks. I had a couple fiberglass patrol boats that I wore out the bows beaching them. I also demolished a fiberglass canoe on rocks in a river. If you like wood, Wooden Boat magazine usually has advertisements for plans.

  6. #6
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    My Dad made a couple of pram-type rowboats when I was a little kid. Those boats took a beating like you wouldn't believe for years. "Stitch-and-glue" is probably the easiest way to go. Unles you wanna go for the full monty, I would avoid any plan that requires lofting...it's worth the extra $ to get a "pre-lofted" plan, or a plan that doesn't require lofting per se.

  7. #7
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    I've built my share of skiffs from plywood and glass. If you are remotely thinking about dabbling in this field, I strongly suggest looking over Harold 'Dynamite' H. Payson's designs. You get the most out of every sheet of plywood and end up with a handsome, sea-kindly skiff. I also have a few sets of free plans for 12-20' flat bottom plywood skiffs for shoal draft shell fishing and light duty hauling of pots and gear. If you plan to tow the skiff and step out of the Shamrock into this smaller skiff (using the skiff as a tender), don't build a true dory. They lack static stability and are tipsy for this kind of work. Instead, stick to flat bottom skiffs, prams, punts, or semi-dories.

    Let me know if you have any design questions or get stuck in your endevour!

    One note on stitch-and-glue. You will need significantly more epoxy to fillet the entire boat and you will have to make damn sure your panels are cut accurately to make a fair-shaped boat. If you don't like using epoxy, stick with plywood plank on frame construction. If you want quick and dirty, you don't even have to epoxy the plywood.
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  8. #8
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    There are several very nice skiffs in Edwin Monk's book How to Build Wooden Boats. But it was published in 1934 so the plans are for plank construction with a table of offsets.

    For the 15' boat that I built I used the offset table to frame up a back bone out of cheap plywood. Then I laid cheap luan plywood on the back bone and cut out patterns for plywood construction.

    For a 15' boat I ended up getting all the wood I needed for the hull from 4 sheets of 3/8 marine plywood and 2 sheets of 3/4 ACX for framing. Glass over wood makes for a seriously stout (and heavy) little boat.

  9. #9
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    Check out all the great plans on this site: http://www.bateau.com/

    I've been eyeing up a number of these plans. Would love to do the same that you are talking about.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Stewart View Post
    If I were to buy a 14' skiff, I would highly consider welded aluminum.
    Thanks Dan. Aluminum is the material of choice for our local crawfish skiffs. These are built 16-20ft but fairly narrow so they can run between the trees in the flooded woods. In the spring, The woods in the swamp will flood with 2-8 feet of water and that's where they craw-fish. It is funny to be deer hunting in the winter and see orange flagging way up in the trees and a crawfish trap hanging in the tree. Then in the spring drive your boat down a trap run and see a deer stand sticking up in 6 feet of water. Those skiffs take a hell of a beating and keep on going. You might even find a prop and a set of destroyed O/B gears laying in the woods while deer hunting.
    Good judgment comes from experience which comes from bad judgment.

    1991 22 Shamrock Warrior SUV (Sport Utility Vessel) (351 Indmar / 393 stroker)

    Joshua 24:15
    As for me and my house, We will serve the Lord



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