Trimming out a Squirt

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Project by vipond33 posted 11-23-2011 06:52 AM 9022 views 46 times favorited 34 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This may bring a smile from the experienced boat builders here, for this my quite beginners work, but this post is more for the LJ’s that might think of building a little runabout with their son or daughter someday. A long term winter project that comfortably ends in summer bliss. And just $50 buck’s for the fully detailed and customizable pattern!

These are fun little boats. Powered by a 9.9 hp motor, it’ll top 25mph with a real shallow draft and a real low trail your hand in the water kinda thing for fun. (Please excuse me if I screw up any nautical terms).

How this happened is that an award winning Canadian architect that we do a great deal of work for, built the hull out of marine plywood and laminated ribs in his garage with his 11 year old son (pictured) over last winter. It then came into our shop where I helped him out.

Working with mahogany and eastern white pine we thin planked it out with brass screws and plugs for the most part, adding custom stainless trim everywhere and finding out too, just what it’s like to work without a right angle in sight. This was a difficult job for me, partly because I had no experience with boats and party because the hull as given was flawed. If things aren’t symmetrical, if the curves aren’t fair, if the balance is off then the work is harder and the result less pleasing.

The combing at the front and rear was especially difficult, for 4 separate corner patterns, templates and molds had to be made to create a perfectly matching laminated curve in each case, with only one shot at the miter angles. I spent some hours at this.
(As an interesting side note, all the mahogany used on this trim was reclaimed from a bed my boss made when he was very young).

So the moral is easy here, build your foundation true.

In spite of my complaining, it was a real pleasant exercise in problem solving with a new appreciation of the craft practiced by those that excel in this discipline.


A few links of other builds and the plans. Some real beauties.

Action shots:

Cutting a curve

-- [email protected] : dovetail free since '53, critiques always welcome.

34 comments so far

View Richard's profile


11307 posts in 3576 days

#1 posted 11-23-2011 07:10 AM


THAT is a BEAUTY!! Maybe I could size it up for 250Lbs. 6’-2”??

Great Narrative Also!

Thanks for posting!


-- Richard (Ontario, CANADA)

View vipond33's profile


1405 posts in 3041 days

#2 posted 11-23-2011 07:29 AM

@ Rick: sure, easy to do, but bump up the hp if you want real thrills.

-- [email protected] : dovetail free since '53, critiques always welcome.

View DaveGlx's profile


365 posts in 2988 days

#3 posted 11-23-2011 09:21 AM

I agree! she’s a beauty!

-- Dave -

View SkolVikes's profile


39 posts in 3320 days

#4 posted 11-23-2011 09:37 AM

Yep, I’m gonna need one of those.

View peteg's profile


4435 posts in 3366 days

#5 posted 11-23-2011 09:52 AM

For one who has only ever worked on Arm + Leg power in the water I think this would be a great step up.
This is a realy nice looking unit Gene, what’s more you look like you uys are actually havin fun ::: )))))
Boys own stuff Mate

-- Pete G: If you always do what you always did you'll always get what you always got

View Woodbutcher3's profile


461 posts in 3430 days

#6 posted 11-23-2011 12:59 PM

Over ther top, buddy. That is a fantastic project in all ways! What kid (and Dad) isn’t gonna remember that as a life long memory! Absolutely gorgious!

-- Rod ~ There's never enough time to finish a project, but there's always time to start another one.

View mtenterprises's profile


933 posts in 3236 days

#7 posted 11-23-2011 01:12 PM

Now thats the way a boat should look!!!!!! Not a pile of colored fiberglass resin. Really makes me want to build another kayak or canoe.

-- See pictures on Flickr -[email protected]/ And visit my Facebook page -

View Karson's profile


35207 posts in 4944 days

#8 posted 11-23-2011 02:54 PM

Very nice. Great build.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected]

View SPalm's profile


5334 posts in 4425 days

#9 posted 11-23-2011 03:03 PM

That is SWEET!
My gosh, I can just imagine the problem solving that had to go into that.

Very nice,

-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View KnotCurser's profile


2033 posts in 3612 days

#10 posted 11-23-2011 03:30 PM

Great work Gene!

When you take on a project of this scale, I think the best reward is the second you finish it and take a step back and just admire your own work! Payment of any kind takes second place to your sense of accomplishment.

Ya done good!!!!


-- Robert Rhoades WoodWorks / Email: [email protected] /

View planeBill's profile


506 posts in 2952 days

#11 posted 11-23-2011 03:45 PM

Cool little boats they are. I know what you mean about that type of woodworking being so different from what goes on here. It’s all curves and no, well, very few right angles. It is a challenge, but a fun one and you did well.
What type of SS did you use?

-- I was born at a very young age, as I grew up, I got older.

View Moron's profile


5035 posts in 4437 days

#12 posted 11-23-2011 03:57 PM

Stunningly beautiful, even if i cant see the flaws.

Looks like her maiden voyage was Georgian Bay

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View rance's profile


4271 posts in 3704 days

#13 posted 11-23-2011 04:14 PM

Now that looks like fun to build and funn-er to take out for a spin. I can just see some folks going overboard on engine size.

-- Backer boards, stop blocks, build oversized, and never buy a hand plane--

View dbhost's profile


5772 posts in 3775 days

#14 posted 11-23-2011 04:54 PM

My fat backside would swamp that thing, but it sure is a cute little boat! Nice work…

-- Please like and subscribe to my YouTube Channel

View Bluepine38's profile


3387 posts in 3629 days

#15 posted 11-23-2011 05:03 PM

Great looking boat, and a very proud and happy pair of operators, and I am sure the son is going to graduate
to something bigger some day, but this boat will always be with him.

-- As ever, Gus-the 80 yr young apprentice carpenter

showing 1 through 15 of 34 comments

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