Building fuel tanks is a delicate matter, especially for boats, where safety must be your very first concern. Usually boat fuel tanks are built out of stainless steel and/or diferent plastic materials. You can find all sorts of fuel tanks on the market, from special fuel resistant PVC to a fiberglass and epoxy build fuel tanks and steel tanks. For a small boat, the best and cheapest thing to go with is a simple plastic fuel tank. They come in variety of sizes and shapes so you can find one that fits your boat best.
I usually preform some modifications on my boat before summer and this year I decided that I will try to gain some extra space under the back seat of my boat, and decided to modify the double bottom of my boat and install a custom made boat fuel tank inside the double floor. Of course my boat wasn’t designed for this kind of fuel tank so I will naturally have to modify everything. By this I mean, that I will need a little extra strength to be added to the original bottom and make some kind of fuel tank brackets that will hold the tank in place. I will also need a custom made fuel tank.
By now you know that to achieve anything in life you need to put a lot of effort in it. It doesn’t matter what it is, but if you want to succed you need effort and a great desire to learn new things. If you have enough will to learn new stuff you surely will rise to the top instantly.
How It All Begins
This is the basic guide line for designing your own plans for a wooden boat and eventually build one. Wooden boat are very flexible and nobody said that wooden boats should have the same shape and size as all other boats you are seeing at harbours, marinas and yacht clubs? When you are thinking about desigining your own boat, let me just tell you to be sure to include you tase in the proscess. This will bring a lot of satisfaction into the process and the final product – your brand new wooden boat. Noah made his own boat; did God design it for him? The answer is no. So don’t be afraid!
To start creating your wooden boat blueprint you will need some material like wood, ply, glue, nails, mechanical pencils and erasers, a ruler, a T-shaped square and some cartridge paper. Beside that, your skills and your effort to work on the project will play a major part in this stage of the proces. You can make your job a lot easier by using a professional 3D Boat Design Software which will do a lot of the work for you.
You may think why a pencil has been chosen instead of a normal pen. When you are a beginner at boat building you surely would have to make many attempts at drawing the shape and the curves before you come up with the right one. Every begginner goes trough this and you are no exception. So if you use a pencil to draw your boat blueprint it can be easialy erased and drawn once again accurately without making too many markings that would confuse you when you start cutting and building parts.
Most of today’s boats are built using fiberglass as the main material and molding as the method of building. Usualy there is a huge negative mold for every boat part that used when the boat is put together and this negative mold is used to make positive molds. Boat is then assembled form a bunch of parts that are made from molds. Molds are also made from fiberglass and are covered with a perfect layer of molding gelcoat. Boat builder than applies some molding wax over the glecoat and polishes it so it will later on be easier to remove the part form the mold. Molds are usualy build on a large scale part that is sanded and polished to perfection. Parts are usualy made out of foam or wood. Boat hulls are typically made from plywood or some other wood.
You may also want to read the Fiberglass Guide before you start working on your mold or find an appropriate boat plan to build mold form.
Be sure to check the Boat Building Supply Shop for all you need for boatbuilding.
Along the past decades, more and more people have learned how to use hand and power tools for their diy wood working projects and a lot has been done lately in the diy boat building area. Many of those projects often turn out very creditable jobs.
A lot of these people are turned off by the thought of making something that is not all square corners. Boat building process usually involves bending wood or other flat material to form curved shapes and that discourages people. When they look into boatbuilding plans and see that it usually starts with a lines plan and the attendant table of offsets that dimensions the curves they usually don’t move from there.
Constructing the first boat, doesn’t matter how small it is, is an experience not to be soon forgotten. Watching a hull grow from flat paper drawings and flat material into a shapely form provides hours of fun and is super therapy after a stressful day. When the job is carefully done, the finished vessel is a source of great pride to the builder. And unlike a piece of furniture, which is often put in a corner and soon forgotten, a boat is used over and over for owner’s pleasure for quite some years.
I have just opened a brand new Boat Building Online Store so all of you will be able to find boat building and boating gear and accessories for your boats. Check out the boats store and let me know if anythng is missing so I can add it to the catalog. You will find all the importnat tools for building a boat, fiberglass materials, boat accessories and electronics, bolts and nails, boat covers, etc. The online store offers just the high qualitiy products that I also use in my projects.
If you are looking for marine electronics you must check out the Boat electronics section of the store and if there are any doubts about it check the 10 Things You Must Have On Your Boat guide. If you are in an early stage of the building process check out the Boat Building Tools and Boat Maintenance and Repair section. If you are still hasetating about building a boat check the Boat Plans for Boat Builders article to select an appropriate boat plan that suits your needs and start building. You can also look at my boat building projects Lean I and Lean II to get some basic idea of the process, work and tools that are involved in it.
Working with fiberglass is not so difficult as many people think and it if usually very fun to do. A lot of people has asked me how to do it and where I have learned all the stuff I do with fiberglass and where an individual can find these information in order to learn to work with it. Every time someone asks me about my work I take some time to explain to them how the whole process looks like.
Usually I get asked where I have learned all this stuff but there is no simple answer to that. I can tell you about many online tutorials that I have used to learn how to work with fiberglass but at the end you must try it on your own skin to learn how to master the technique. I read a simple fiberglass guide written by Drew Wilson at Explorer Forum. It gives you all the basics that you need to know when you decide to work with fiberglass.
After I read this great fiberglass tutorial I bought a very cheap fiberglass kit which included some fiberglass resin and mat. It was enough to try to start building a inflatable boat steering console for my first boat Lean I. I had no knowledge on the topic despite reading an article about it.
Since the fiberglass kit was cheap I decided that I can waste some money to try something new and so I read the instructions on the fiberglass kit box and started working. I build a wooden mold for my console which I then coated with one layer of fiberglass mat. The kit I bought was just enough to cover my console with one layer.
After my first layer dried I went back to the supply shop and bought some more materials, that is about 5 kg of fiberglass resin and about 3 kg of mat. I then applied another 5 layers over the first layer and let it to dry. When it dried I removed my wooden mold and what was left was my custom made fiberglass mold for inflatable boat steering console.
I then used some molding wax to wax my console mold form the inside and when it dried I applied white boat epoxy paint. I then fiberglassed the inside of the mold with fiberglass. You should apply about five layers of fiberglass to get a strong steering console. I also fiberglassed in a piece of plywood that was later used as a mounting for steering mechanism and steering wheel. And that was it. I had a brand new custom made inflatable boat steering console and it was a lot cheaper than if I had bought it. Read more…