My son and I built this simple one sheet plywood boat following the plans and sage advice provided in the following link  http://blog.makezine.com/archive/2011/07/the-blue-crab-one-sheet-plywood-boat-tiny-yellow-house.html.  We saw this in a recent eNews from Make Magazine.  This is Not our design but I wanted to share what we learned.  This was a simple and fun project to build and cost us a grand total of $59 dollars and about 6 hours (not counting Beer and Juice Boxes).

Step 1: Shopping for Material

We went to our local hardware store and purchased the following supplies:

1 Sheet of 4x8 15/32 Plywood Sheet
Gorilla Glue
Silicone Sealant
Latex Paint
Sand Paper

Depending on the size of your workshop and the tools available to you, you may decide to have the store cut the 4x8 sheet of plywood for you (as we did) - just make sure they cut it right (as we did not) - it will save you trimming and increase you freeboard later on.

Tools Used:

Jig Saw
Caulk Gun
Screw Gun
Paint Brush

<p>cool, i plan on making one for a school project. do you think you could add a sail?</p>
<p>A sailboat would need a rudder too. To be strong and safe a center board and rudder are more complicated than this hull. The sail can get you out in the offing and you can sink like theTitanic if the whole contraption isn't made well = take it easy :-)</p>
<p>I am not sure how big of a sail you could put on this. You would need to add a real keel I would think. Maybe a small square rigged sail would work.</p>
I live in an area of the UK with fairly rough seas, and need a way to increase stability without a large keel (as I need to get it up a boat ramp)
<p>I would really love to see a picture of it. What about outriggers hanging off each side? Build up two thinner but slightly longer &quot;boxes&quot; and seal them well so they are buoyant...</p><p>Love the tea idea too, nice relaxing way to spend the day.</p>
Btw I made it 5 metres long and 1.5 metres wide. With a 5hp mower engine
A butane stove for making tea and a parfin lamp for lighting
I will be adding a sail in 2 weeks...waiting for paycheck
I sealed it with silicone between sheets...on the wood first Thomsons water seal...then varnish...now I'm putting fiberglass just to seal....I'm in FL in area where there is sharks so I'm beefing it up some...I put runners on bottom to help reduce tipping and make it stronger.
3 pieces of 3/4 in plywood 10 1/2 feet long 4 feet wide...this is the second I've made in the last 3 years...only took 6 hours
David - Love it! This year I plan to scale up as well and am playing with a new design with some built in flotation. What are you sealing your boat with?
<p>you could try to attach a centerboard so it's harder to flip</p>
this instructable <br>is awsome I use it to go up and down are streams and river
Would you need to register this for use in public waters?<br>
<p>that depends on the size on the engine you put on it</p>
In most states a row boat does not need to be registered. But if you attach a motor, then both the boat and motor have to be registered. Check with you fish and game office.
You will need to check your local regulations but I think for NJ, you only need to register boats larger than 13 feet or as soon as you put the motor on. That is why the Motor test was in my pool.
Just so you know in some states adding a trolling motor means that the boat needs registered. People should check their local laws first if they plan on using this on public property.
yeah, but not in Australia! LOL!
<p>Im a big guy, This could easily be scaled up to support more weight. I calculated 120cm 4ft wide, 195cm 6.5long + the boom would displace about 800kg of water. 2 adults of any size could fit in it and although it would be heavier it could still be moved around with little ease. Perfect for your local creek or farm dam.<br><br>bigger = more space for the esky, sunshade, comfy chair and maybe even a battery drill trolling motor</p>
Agreed - this could definitely be scaled up, just adding in a second sheet of plywood to the materials list would give you much more to work with. If you work it out, send me some pictures. I like the sunshade idea...
I wont build it for a good 18months but I will be sure to update you. The sunshade and a comfy seat allows me to head out to the dam on an afternoon with esky in hand and have a snooze for a couple of hours.
i just found this project yesterday and im about half way done its actually really simple <br> <br>
Is this the exact same boat as deek made? Like with the dimentions and all? <br>
As close as I could make it from the video. I added a few things but mostly this is his boat.
how much did it cost all together? =D
It's been a while since I put it together but it was not too much. A single sheet of plywood and depending on what you already have, nails, silicon and paint. I think I was under $50 for the project.
Sweet! Thanks Alot!!!!!!!!!!!!!
$59 I just looked at my material list again.
if i just make the length measurement longer when buying supplies say '3-4' feet more could i mount a sail on it. a small one but able to speed me up.
I think you would need to also add a real keel if you area adding a sail. This boat is not very stable and a sail might be the tipping point but I would love to see what it would look like. Post a picture if you build it. <br> <br>Good luck
I built one! <br>I don't have any pics handy, though. It was a fun build and my first boat. I'm hooked. I'm fast running out of boating/building time as it is getting really close to winter. (Alaskan) <br> <br>I flubbed my measurements, and the boat ended up being about 2 feet shorter than I had planned. But it Floats! It doesn't leak! Some water did slop over the side since it only has about 3 inches of freeboard. <br> <br>Oh well, build and learn. <br>Thanks for the great instructable.
I am glad it worked out for you. I am planning a two sheet build to see if I can make a more realistic (functioning) boat next spring. <br> <br>Hope your winter does not get too bad this year.
you are awesome
Would an outrigger help to stabilize the boat, so it isn't so wobbly?
It might but the design of the boat itself is limiting. This was my first try and I have since seen other versions that look to be much more stable. I might try one of those first. This was a great fun project but did not produce much more than a pool toy or tiny pond boat.
how wide is the inside?
Prime (oil-based exterior primer) &quot;finish cut&quot; boards first. Then paint two coats of finish paint color. Then assemble and caulk with Silicone sealer or, better yet DuPont 5200 (comes in white only as far as I know). Sealer will adhere to paint, paint does not adhere readily to most silicone sealers. <br><br>Seal exterior of seams first and foremost - sealer is to keep water out. Sealing interior joints can't hurt, of course. <br><br>If you add sealer (esp DuPont 5200) to joints before assembling (use as a &quot;glue&quot; as well as a sealer, you will seal exterior and interior simultaneously.
Those were very good suggestions except that there seems to be no such thing as Dupont 5200. If I do a search on it, all I come up with is stone counter sealers, which don't seem like the right kind needed here.
That's because 5200 is made by 3M. It's used a lot in the marine industry and can be used under the waterline. It's an extremely tenacious sealer/adhesive that should only be used on things that you would rather throw away that have to take apart.
It's also very expensive, About $20 a tube. PL Premium would be a better choice than even silcone. I saw Deek's video on building this boat and I wondered why he would use silicone. Then I remembered, He is a Tiny house builder. <br> <br>Silicone is for doors and windows, Not boats. It's a sealer, not an adhesive. <br>Wooden Boat magazine used to sponsor an annual family boat building event where the contestants (A parent/ child team) had to take a bunch of precut pieces and build a boat then put it in the water and hopefully not sink. <br> <br>They were not allowed any fasteners. Only PL Premium. <br> <br>It's available at the Big Orange Place for less than 5 bucks a tube. But read the labels and test for your self since there are different formulations. I'm pretty sure this is the one I used to glue the skin to the frame of my Hollow Wooden Surfboard (Instructable coming soon.) <br> <br>http://tinyurl.com/7rqgzbh <br> <br>Ok. It's less than 6 bucks a tube.
what angle do you cut the bow side of the sideboards at? <br>
It's about 80 inches long
It's about a 45 degree angle. It is easy to use one of those plastic orange angle square to prop it up then draw your lines. Post pictures when you done please.
what is the overall length, bow to stern? <br>
I had a buddy who built boats for a living. He made his hulls out of thin strips of wood, nailed and glued to the spars. After sanding, and before covering the boat with fiberglass, he would rub the entire hull down with a mixture of flour and sawdust, making sure to work it into any cracks or defects. He explained that if there was any moisture at all in the wood or leaking through the fiberglass coating, the bits of flour and sawdust would soak it up and swell to keep the boat from leaking. Not sure how much value that would add to a plywood joint, but it's worth considering
I appreciate the idea - I will try that next time. Mine is still holding but this sounds a bit more stable
When you attach the bow isnt there a gap between where the bow and the bottom meet how did you fill it in, or did you cut on an angle???
I did not cut at an angle but I did fill the gap completely with lots of the Silicone. I did this from both sides (as with all the Silicone I used). I completely filled one side (started with the bottom) until the Silicone was coming out. I let it cure the full time recommended on the tube and then flipped the boat over and did the same from the other side.<br><br>Cutting your bow on an angle would give you a much better fit and cleaner look so that is the way I would go next time I think.<br><br>Thanks
Silicone in a deep pocket that is air tight can take weeks to cure and is risky at best. The surface feels completely cured in a day but deep within it remains quite raw and weak.<br> There are marine, paintable, adhesive sealants that last and are very hardy and grip with much more secure force. You won't even believe what salt water can do to common silicone, household products.

About This Instructable



Bio: I am happily married with one son. I like to camp, hunt & fish, and garden. Anything new appeals to me which is why I love ... More »
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