PuddleDucks: How Long Does it Take?

How long does it take to build a boat?

That’s not unlike asking, “How good is that beer?”  It depends on the day, your state of mind, how often you’ve done it before (built boats or tasted beers!), and what phase the moon is in Tuva.  There are many variables.

My Puddle Duck, Scow 244, was started in early September of 2016.  Then, I worked another few hours in October, then some aspects of my life got mighty complicated.  I then picked it up again in early June.

But how many hours?   Oh, god, I don’t know.  But here are some guesses:

  • Gather wood and other supplies, not including dreaming – 2 hours
  • Layout and cut the two sides – 2 hours
  • Build the frames – I didn;t build them all first, but I’d say you could do them all in two days of a weekend – 6 hours
  • Assemble hull, without bottom – 3 hours
  • Add bottom plywood – Over two days – 6 hours
  • Measure and cut all other panels such as decking and interior pieces – 6 hours
  • Fillet all joints – optional – 4 hours

And since I haven’t quite done all of the above, I’ll stop there for now.  I am using a mast left over from another project and may use a sideboard and rudder from the same long gone boat, which will save considerable time.

Today I finished attaching the bottom to the bow and stern, which took some work with wedges made from cutoffs from the boat.

Also, I didn’t quite notice the plans called for the plywood sides to go beyond the bottom sheet, so I have so fillet work to do later.

I also cut the inner panels for the side flotation chambers and will do all that work, plus the decking, tomorrow.  Weather allowing.

Update:  I just remembered I’d put an old Folbot sprit rig under my house almost 30 years ago.   I figured some rats had eaten it… but… it looks OK.  I also have a mast in 3 pieces, a rudder and a centerboard/leeboard.

A website about Shantyboats and affordable living on the water. More than 800 stories to date, and growing.