THIS AUTHENTICALLY RIGGED
MODEL BOAT SAILS
ACROSS POOLS AND PONDS.
BY THOMAS MARTIN
When my son was 3 years old, I made a small bathtub boat with him, using scrap wood and a piece of dowel. It lasted much longer and got more
of his attention than any dollar-store bath toy, and about six years later we
decided to try building a larger boat for the pool and local ponds we fished.
Here’s the result of our experimentation: a simple and worthy pond sailer
that’s rigged and scaled like a real yacht. You can build it in a weekend using
readily available materials and tools.
Build Your Boat
Time: A Weekend Complexity: Easy
1. Prepare the sailcloth.
It’s hard to find waterproof fabric that’s easy to cut
and won’t fray. You can make your own by stretching
ripstop nylon loosely over a frame or 2 hangers,
and spraying it lightly (in a well-ventilated area)
with polyurethane. First spray up and down, and
then back and forth, until the fabric is well coated
but not saturated. Let dry overnight.
2. Mark and cut the parts.
Download the project plan at makezine.com/20/
woodenboat and print it at full size. Following the
plan, measure and mark the mast, jib boom, and
mainsail boom lengths on the ¼" dowel. Trace
the hull from the printed pattern onto the top and
2 ends of the cedar block; cut templates or use
carbon paper. Draw the keel and masthead crane
patterns on the brass strips, and draw the bowser
(rigging clip) pattern 8 times on the thin plastic.
Cut and drill all the parts. Any fine-tooth saw will
Photography by Thomas Martin
56 Make: Volume 20