About this weblog

Welcome to intheboatshed.net, a weblog about wooden boat restoration projects, new boat construction projects based on old-style designs, and boating people and their culture, all operated by Gavin Atkin.

It’s a weblog for boat enthusiasts of a particular kind – those who like either old boats, or new boats that inherit something significant from older generations of craft. The kind of people who are fascinated by smacks and barges, old-fashioned racing yachts, elderly wooden sailing cruisers, vintage sailing canoes, classic small rowing and sailing boats, punts, beautifully crafted Thames pleasure boats, elegant motorboats, tough and simple luggers and all the other boats people once built and used when the materials, knowledge and craftsmanship required to build them were still abundant.

Nowadays, of course, all of these things are in much shorter supply as most people scrabble their tense and hurried way through careers that often lose their appeal as we gain experience of the wider world.

But none of this means that there are no interesting craft to find, or craftsmen to restore, build or design them, for they are still to be found in yards all round our coasts and along the banks of our waterways. Happily, there are also more than a few people with the commitment to keep our stock of traditional boats and boat-styles in being. And there are of course many more of us who appreciate any opportunity to read about these craft, or to see them on the water or during restoration work.

We would love to hear from you about the pages you know and would like to share with us. Mail us at gmatkin@gmail.com and we’ll get in contact as quickly as we can. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Gavin Atkin, freelance journalist, editor and medical writer


Materials presented on this site are for illustration and information only and must not be used for monetary gain without the permission of the originator or their estate.

16 thoughts on “About this weblog”

  1. Good one Gavin, this is sorely needed and deserves support. There are a huge number of people beavering away out there helping to save our maritime heritage from the depredations of rot and rust, and most have not the wherewithal to tell us what they are doing and how.

    Its great to have a single point of entry to the world of boat restoration, Thank you for your enthusiam and thought in providing a vehicle for publicising those who do so much for the old boats that are our history and our passion.


  2. Beautiful and very worthwhile site thank you. Although my new on-line venture is broader in scope, with your approval, I'd like to put in a link on http://www.handymariner.com.au to "inthe boatshed" as a source of encouragement to potential boat repairers and restorers.

    Cheers from Australia


  3. Many, many thanks for your encouragement Paul!

    Do please come back regularly, and tell your friends.

    And, of course, taking a moment from time to time to view any Google ads that catch your eye is another great way to support intheboatshed.net!


  4. Gav,

    Found your exciting new site while perusing current edition of WoodenBoat and will be watching & contributing where possible with great interest.

    The new owner of my Cinderella, which I built last year,emailed me recently to say how much he enjoys her,especially fishing out of her in shallow creeks where he lives.

    The rowing Cinders is interesting & will be quite fast as I do recall just how easily driven my Cinderella was & fast for a 12 footer.

    You may recall I was looking for a design of a very stable dinghy to use as a tender for my restored 23' oregon planked carvel cruiser, & suggested Forrest & Stream & your own Light Dinghy.I eventually settled on Sally-Anne, one of William & John Atkin's classic old flat bottomed 8'x4' dinghies & asked my mate Ross Lillistone, of Bayside Wooden Boats, to have a look & see if he could develop the lines for stich & glue construction,to get the weight down.

    Ross being Ross, said he'd go one better & combine the best features of the design with some of his own ideas that had been floating around in his head for some time.Well he fininsihed the design a few months ago & I have recently finished the prototype & pressed her into service as my tender.Named " Alby "( something to do with my initials I suspect) she looks sweet, is super stable & rows like a rocket.Ross is also doing a sail plan for her & I will convert her as soon as the drawings are finished.I'll try to attach a couple of pics on your chat room, but you can see her on Ross' beaut new site at:


    Look under Gallery & designs & you will see Alby pictured on Newcastle's beautiful Lake Macquarie.

    Al Burke

  5. Thanks for linking to my blog. Love what you are doing. While the Compass Rose Review takes a somewhat different tack than In the Boatshed, the general direction we are heading is more or less the same.

    Note that I have a column in each issue of Maine Boats, Homes & Harbors magazine with a title reminiscent of yours — "In the Lee of the Boathouse." Read it at http://maineboats.com/currentissue/inthelee.shtm

    I'll be linking to your site shortly.

    Peter Spectre

  6. What an outstanding site. When I look at what the sailing magazines do online what you are doing here, it is so clear that they are missing the mark and you've nailed on. Blog On Gavin

  7. Dear Gavin

    I have just come across your weblog and shall be spending some time trawling around in it.

    You may like to look at the two blogs I've set up recently, scottishislandsclass.blogspot.com and scottishboating.blogspot.com.

    The former has the specific purpose of getting enough material to complete a book I am trying to write about the Islanders, the latter I intend to be a home for general stuff. I'll put links to your blog on mine and will be delighted if you consider my efforts worth linking to.

    Best wishes

    Ewan Kennedy

  8. Hi all, I am considering purchasing a 1936 motor yacht, 37′, pitch pine on oak with teak decks, x 2 Perkins and suit of sails too! Before engaging a surveyor, on my first visit what should I be looking for? Many thanks in anticipation of replies. Don

  9. THEBOATSHED is one of the best sites/blogs about classic boats (in English- that I’VE seen).
    I have to restrict my visits just because it’s so good and I’d never leave.

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