Category Archives: Designs and designers, boat plans,books of plans

Plans for boats, sailing yachts, motor yachts, rowing boats, sailing boats, dinghies, dories, canoes, skiffs, oars, sails – may be free or paid-for

Temptations part V: a dinghy so small, your family will hardly notice…

Chuck Merrell’s Apple Pie dinghy is so small and simple, she’s a real kitchen-table boat – that is, she’s small enough to be built on a kitchen table, and simple enough that you may well be able to finish her before anyone complains that they can’t do anything useful in the kitchen because there’s a boat in the way.

Seriously, it should be possible to build her in a very short space of time, and with very little in the way of materials. She’s also a clever and useful design and would make a great first boatbuilding project. Here’s the link for Chuck’s FREE BOAT PLANS:

If you do build one of these boats, we’d love to hear about it! Email me at

Dale Austin built one and has kindly allowed me to post a photo of the finished boat (below). Click on the picture for an enlargement.

He has also put up a photo log complete with instructions on his own site:

Apple Pie

Applie Pie photo

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Temptations part IV: a small classic to build and race

The International 12 Square Metre Sharpie class is founded on the winning design in a competition organised by the German Deutcher Segler Verband in 1931, and was quickly adopted first in Germany, and then Holland, England, Italy, Belgium, France and Portugal. International competition followed shortly after – and if my memory serves – for a brief period it was also an Olympic class.

Here in the UK 1931 the Sharpie was introduced by the Royal Corinthian Yacht Club, which sponsored a fleet of nine boats. Other clubs followed and the class spread throughout England. Within a few years it is said to have become the strongest class in the country. Those days may be long gone, but the Sharpie is still sailed and raced in the UK.

In the last few weeks, the British Sharpie Association has put up a set of FREE BOAT PLANS in pdf form for building a Sharpie, and there’s some very photographic and historical material, as well as all the activities you’d expect from a busy class association.

Sharpies racing at Adelade, 1960

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Tempting plans for the boat-dreaming season, part III

Well, I suppose it’s time for one of mine, finally. Here’s a two-sheet plywood dink I designed to be narrower and longer than the usual short and fat two-sheet flattie, with the intention that it would both look and row rather better without much more building work.

I had to make her a shade boxier forward than I’d hoped in order to work in a reasonable amount of displacement, but as well as carrying more crew and cargo overall, the extra shape will make her drier and more bouyant also.

I think she meets the design criteria pretty well.

If you’d like to build a little boat for your pond or as a tender to a larger boat, you might think of it as a Christmas present from me! If you do build it, do please let me know, as I’d love to hear about it.

Whoever you are, have a great Christmas holiday break, and I hope you’re looking forward to more in the coming year.

Download the files in the form of a zip file here: Light dinghy plans download

Light Dinghy

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