Category Archives: Modern boatbuilding

Modern and plywood boatbuilding and plans

The Westsail story – how a William Atkin design became a popular GRP cruiser

A trailer for a new film about the popular and handsome Westsail GRP cruising boat based on a William Atkin double-ender (Thistle, I gather), which was itself derived from a Colin Archer type.

Like some other early GRP boats based on previous designs for wood, it has that look.

The film makers are appealing via the Westsail Owners Association for a few bob to help finish the film.

A small boat adventure

Actually, these photographs come from a small trip down Faversham Creek in just about the smallest imaginable boat that could be used by an adult with a pocket camera – a Mouseboat.

I think it also shows clearly why the Creek must be defended, and how much is has been affected by housing development. Surely, it’s time for the town to take a new, maritime activity-friendly approach. I so hope it does…

Mouseboats built and launched at Faversham

Folks on a training course at the Faversham Creek Trust’s Purifier Building led by local boatbuilder and repairman Alan Thorne have been building Mouseboats to my free plans – and yesterday they launched four of them on a pond at the head of the Creek.

A good crowd turned out to cheer and witness the event, and even the local press arrived with their cameras!

A fifth Mouseboat also turned up to be launched – this one was built by Terry Croucher, who has been working as an assistant to Alan.

Plans for the Mouseboats are available free from the Yahoogroup Mouseboats. To obtain them you have to sign up to join the  Yahoo (and the  Yahoogroup). Alternatively, some folks prefer to buy my book published some years ago – it is available from Amazon, but be warned that the new prices is a lot less than some folks are charging for second-hand copies!

The 8ft Mouseboats cost very little to make and are typically very light – they can be carried in one hand, yet can allow folks to go on the water very conveniently. Hundreds have been built around the world.

The boats built by Alan’s group are the Minimouse model with an easy to build flat bottom, but other similarly easy to build types for different purposes are available from the Yahoogroup.