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Norman Fuller launches his Ella plywood skiff built to free plans – and it’s a success! Norman Fuller has launched his Ella skiff built using free boat plans from this website – and has pronounced it a success. From the pictures, I think the problem you had with the rowlocks is that they could be higher – the choice is between lowering the thwart and raising the rowlocks, or both. The Ella skiff is a lightweight general purpose stitch and glue flattie skiff for use in sheltered waters. So I raised the oarlocks (what you Brits call rowlocks) by putting on slightly taller bases or pads.
I filled in the gaps between the inwale and outwale with wood blocks glued in place, then attached the oarlock pads and oarlock bases to those blocks using PL Premium and long screws — although bolts with washers are MUCH more secure for this critical fastening. First I made the forward thwart pads from some VG Douglas Fir handrails, which I then could not match at any nearby wood source, hence the Ash used above. Have you got news for us?If what you're doing is like the things you read about here - please write and tell us what you're up to.
Classic Sailor is a new magazine about traditional and classic boats from ex-Classic Boat editor Dan Houston and colleagues that promises rather more coverage of the traditional craft around our coast. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.


Follow me on TwitterLooking for something?This is a busy weblog, and what you're looking for is probably still here - just a little way down the list now. Our Faversham-based friend Alan Thorne can help with boatbuilding projects - constructing to plans in very tidy stitch-and-glue or more traditional techniques.
Boat Building Academy students Luke Cooper, Casey Milburn and Seby Rubatto built this 14ft 9in by 4ft Whitehall rowing skiff made of glued plywood this summer.
Luke, who is from Devizes, was 18 years old when he joined the academy and had just completed A levels – the story goes that he met BBA graduate Ian Thomson at the Southampton Boat Show and  immediately decided to sign up for the long course. The boat itself was built from a Robert A Pittaway design obtained from the Mystic Seaport Museum in Connecticut, and appears in the book 87 Boat Designs – a Catalogue of Small Boat Plans from Mystic Seaport. The book Aak to Zumbra- a Dictionary of the World’s Watercraft states that a Whitehall skiff was originally used on the Columbia River in the mid-19th century. I gather Luke is pleased with the boat and plans to keep it as a rowing boat for himself and his family to use. Before relocating to Lyme, Casey lived in Antibes in south-eastern France, raced Optimists and Lasers, and from the age of 15 began spending his holidays teaching sailing at Club Nautique D’Antibes. He completed his Yachtmaster qualification at the age of 18, and then spent three years crewing on super yachts before attending at the BBA.
Casey has returned to France where he is working with friends developing a boat repairs and maintenance business. Seby came to the BBA from Trieste in Italy – it was his first visit to the UK, and so he spent his time both learning boat building and improving his English.
Information is provided to build a "cheapy" that will last until the kids grow up or a boat that can be handed down to the younger fry.


I set them in the gapped inwale following the line of the side of the boat, but they need to be more upright, so I think I will change them. It’s easy to do, you see it done very often, and when the block wears you can replace it. Try scrolling down, clicking on the 'older posts' button at the bottom of this page - or try the search gadget!
Seby has now returned to Italy and is looking forward to starting a career in boat building. Building is fun and watching the kids enjoy the results will make the adult "helper's" day….and many more to come. It is meant to be a simple and quick stitch and glue building job of a size that is convenient for building in domestic garages made to take a small to medium-sized car – which probably describes the building area available to most people.
Put one at each crank and watch the merry-go-round fun that is created when they don't synchronize the paddle wheel turning.
Of course helped and supervised by mom or pop, grandma or grandpa; even great grandparents.



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