My first Boat Building Project – Lean I

My first Boat Building Project   Lean I

Finished boat on water

I am a young student of electrical engineering, living, working and studying in Slovenija, Europe. It’s a small country at the foothills of the Alps, near Italy and Austria. We own about 50 km of sea coast and a floatable river or two My first Boat Building Project   Lean I Although we only have about 2000000 citizens, we have quite developed boating scene. A lot of people own their own boats and also a lot are building their own.

As for me, I have been a boat fan since I was a child, but my familiy never could afford owning a boat. So when I started to make my own money I decided to make my dream come trough and bought myself an inflatable boat with fiberglass V (Vee) bottom. It was only 3,5 meters long and could carry a motor of 25 horse power max. I was on a tight budget so I could not afford expensive inflatable boat consoles, seats and other expensive gear, so I decided to build my own boat accessories. On this blog I will try to give some advice on diy boat building an some great tutorials for you to make some nice improvements for your boat.

My first Boat Building Project   Lean I

Inflatable boat steering console - front view

My first Boat Building Project   Lean I

Inflatable boat steering console

I browsed the internet a little and a lot of information about working with fiberglass, building molds out of wood, construction tecniques, painting, etc… I started thinking what I would like to build for my boat. I decided to build a steering console, a pilot seat and a bow seat for my dear girlfriend Andreja. I measured my boat carefully and then draw sketches of steering console, pilot seat and bow seat using a boat design software.

I calculated the approximate ammount of material that I needed and went out to find the best price for it. I went in to multiple stores tha are selling wood in Slovenija, and at the end I found the best price was in a store in Kranj.  I bought a 1 cm thick and 2500×1500 wide marine graded plywood and about 5 kg of poliester resin and 3kg of fiberglass matte.

I drew all the parts for the back seat and the console on the plywood and then I used a very small table saw to cut it. The table saw is really very small. Kind of funny small.  But it did the job. I then screwed the pieces together and made two boxes. One for my steering console and the other for my back seat.

Then I applied three layers of poliester resin over the two boxes and let it harden. Then the rough part came. I bought approximatly 5 kg of poliester putty and stardted to putty my two boxes. The it came the grinding. I spent a week grinding both boxes to perfection. I was pretty hard work for a first timer. But I managed to grind it to perfection.

My first Boat Building Project   Lean I

Inflatable boat steering console - rear view

I then bought white Hempel epoxy based paint and painted the console and the seat. Along the way, when I was waiting for everything to dry I also build a bow seat and painted it along with the console and the back seat.

I then went on eBay in ordered console equipment for a very resonable price form UK. I bought steering mechanism, navigation ligths, switch panel, wires, fuse box, couple of hatches, copule yards of skay, some zippers, etc…

I mounted every thing on my console and connected all the wires. I than went trough local classified ads on marine outboard engines and found a 1980 Tomos 18. Tomos was a very succesful motor company from Slovenija while we were still under Yugoslav republic. Engines are 30 years old and still run great. So I bought a used Tomos 18 engine and mounted in on my boat. I also got remote opertaing commands along with the engine and it even had electric starter. So I renewed the engine a little and there I had it. A perectly custom made boat, fitted to my needs. All the costs were about 1400 EUR all together with all the materias and everything.

I love diy boat building and everything about boats, and specialy designing new stuff for my boats. It is the best hobby ever.

My first Boat Building Project   Lean I

Finished boat - rear view

My first Boat Building Project   Lean I

The boat capatain is very satisified

My first Boat Building Project   Lean I

Beautiful Croatian coast and my boat

My first Boat Building Project   Lean I

And the other boat captain

My first Boat Building Project   Lean I

My dream boat

My first Boat Building Project   Lean I

Finished boat on water

We have had a lot of fun spending our holiday in Murter, Croatia whit our little boat. It was worth spending so much time fixinig and building it.

This year I bought a cabin cruiser that needs restoring. But that I will write in my next post.

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