I’ve started 7 boat builds. I finished 4. Will I finish this boat? I am pretty sure I will, but this morning I was thinking back. What went wrong with the other three?
For my first attempt, a Bolger Sneakeasy, my fantasy surpassed my skills and after a while, it became clear I was making a mess. The plans were minimal, as were my skills. It became clear I’d need to cut my losses and run.
Twice I started building a Walter Mitty-esque 8 foot, then 10 foot Micro boat from Selway-Fisher. Great dream, but my work and home life made it clear this trip wasn’t going to happen. There were better ways to find my thrills.
What did I learn? I guess it is this. Don’t be afraid to start things… and know when to stop. The difference can be tough to tell sometimes. This boat starts with a solid dream for the future. This boat isn’t crazy. I have the skills. I just need to be sure to push through short term challenges.
There are no directions included with these plans, per se, as they were designed for a professional boat shop, but there is enough information. Sometimes it is in French! For example, today I semi-translated something on the PDF plans and came up with this:
- Sole 2-cpm 9mm-strat glass600gm2
- Hull: cpm9mm-strat glass 300g/m2
- Bridge: cpm9mm-strat glass 200g/m2
Sole is the bottom of the boat, with two sheets of 9mm ply and 600gm2 fiberglass cloth. The hull is 9mm ply with 300g/m2 cloth. The bridge is the cabin, with one sheet of 9mm ply and 200g/m2 fiberglass cloth. The others, I am not sure. I’ll research how this translates to something like 6 ounce cloth, the way fiberglass is sold in the US.
Today I added a small piece of ply onto the front backbone, as the sheet of plywood was just a few inches too short. The epoxy for that has been drying all day. I also laid out and cut frame number 5, above. I marked out frame 7, the bow piece. So far, to make those two frames and all three backbones, I’ve used two sheets of plywood. I have one full sheet and a few useable scraps left in the garage. I’ve really tried to use the plywood very efficiently.
Reminder: Guiclémanac’h is the name of the design. Sukha is the name of this particular boat. Sukha is easier/possible to say, so I’ll mostly write Sukha.
The original plans call for the boat to be 4.5 meters. Yann Quenet, the designer, also drew up a set with a total length of 5 meters, which is what I am building. 5 meters is 16.4 feet. Follow the YANN link to see the plans page. Reminder, the plan details assume you are a professional builder on this design so no detail is given on things like hatches, windows and joinery.
The first build was done by Alexandre Badri. Thanks to Bateaux (check this link for a story about this boat) for the use of their images. I’ll always try to link to their article. Let’s give them some traffic as a thank you. And Alexandre, wow, you do nice work!