Boat building first steps: Plz help

Discussion in 'Boatbuilding' started by ipolic, Nov 10, 2008.

  1. ipolic
    Joined: Nov 2008
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    Location: Croatia

    ipolic New Member

    First of all thnx for at least opening this thread :)

    So basically my situation is quite bad, we live in Croatia, we can't import boats from USA because of birocracy and honestly it's impossible to buy what I like I'm THINKING about maybe building my boat. I understand it's long project but I am young, I have time, patience and skills for learning.

    Boat which I really like(fisherman) is Carolina Express
    (www carolinaclassicboats com/models/model.cfm?modID=2) sport fisherman....I found this link with hull model I really like(you can notice it's ray hunt design type,please add dot's in url because I'm new member and I can't write url's in my posts):

    www nbcboatworks com/uc29.html

    U can notice how (excuse my bad english but I don't know yet correct terminology) back part of the boat is much lower then front part of the boat...and when U look it from side I LOVE this curve and air holes!

    Here are couple questions I would like to ask and I would be really thankful if U can help me out in any of them!

    1) Is it possible to get blueprints(free or paid) of Carolina (custom) 26 feet to 29 feet long and is it just hull or entire boat with cabin, seating's, toilet etc etc?

    2) Are there maybe any good tutorials on this forum or somewhere online with boat building techniques like c-flex and how to actually build a boat with articles, tutorials etc?

    3) Is there any good boat accessories and materials online store where I can buy all things I need for both building and equipping my boat?

    4) feel free to include any other points or comments or links or whatever what can be helpful :)

    I repeat, I AM A NEWBIE....but I can invest A LOT OF TIME in this boat...because I LOVE IT :)

    Thank you in advance. I really can't wait to hear some answers here!
  2. Stumble
    Joined: Oct 2008
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    Location: New Orleans

    Stumble Senior Member

    The largest boat I have built is about 5 meters, so I don't think I can really address the complexities of building something this large for your first try. However, I am curious if the import restriction is on bringing in something from the US, or something made in the US. If it is only on something from the US it may be possible to buy the boat from a non-US broker as a used vessel and ease the import restrictions some.
  3. KnottyBuoyz
    Joined: Jul 2006
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    Location: Iroquois, Ontario

    KnottyBuoyz Provocateur & Raconteur

    There are a few plans available from for Carolina style sportfishing boats. Here's one...

    These plans are designed for amateur builders in Stitch & Glue building methods using common marine plywood and epoxy. Plenty of European builders have built bateau boats from these plans.

    They have a great support group online and you'll find a few Carolina sportfish style boat builds documented there.
  4. rasorinc
    Joined: Nov 2007
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    Location: OREGON

    rasorinc Senior Member

    new boat builder

    These people have been around over 50 years and their plans are the easist to work with. They have many builders from europe. including your country.
  5. thudpucker
    Joined: Jul 2007
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    Location: Al.

    thudpucker Senior Member

    Wouldnt you be better off building the Dingy, a jon boat, or a rowing skiff for your first boat?
    That's a long project with a steep learning curve and sometimes even your best efforts come out skewed if your experience level isn't up to task.

    I worked with a guy building McKenzie river drift boats (a knockoff version) and this guy had experience enough that we built them assembly line style and the end result was good. Each boat took only a few hours that way.

    If you did it one at a time it would take about two days.
    Getting the boat straight is a lot harder than you think and all the tools you need and do not have are among the terminal surprises you'll run into.

    Later you could use it as the Capitans Gig for your big boat.
  6. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Not that a 29' boat couldn't be completed as your first build, but it is an ambitious project for a first attempt. Many just starting out, believe they can do their "ideal" yacht on the first crack, but frankly, the great vast majority that try this, end with an incomplete boat taking up space in the yard or shop.

    The level of complexity on a vessel of this size can easily overwhelm a novice builder. Heed Thudpucker's advice and start off with a small boat, maybe the dinghy to the larger boat, so you can get a feel for the skills, tools, materials and techniques used in building.
  7. Kazulin
    Joined: Jan 2003
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    Location: British Colombia Canada

    Kazulin Junior Member

    Where is Croatia are you located?
    My father-in-law retired to the Island of Brac and could offer you a lot of advice.
    Drop me an e-mail
  8. dc52
    Joined: Mar 2009
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    Location: ireland

    dc52 New Member

    hello all,
    this is my first time on this forum.
    I wish this thing was around when I got the bug! I built a 30' steel cruiser. I had no boating or boat building experience at all, but steel was my business. I had the hull built, finished painted in 14 months and I thought that was the hard bit!! I reckoned I'd finish it in another year. It took another 8 years!! Lots of other life got in the way, but when I launched 5 years ago and she sat perfectly in the river it was an incredible experience.
    So ipolic, I hope you keep at it and good luck.
  9. TeddyDiver
    Joined: Dec 2007
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    Location: Finland/Norway

    TeddyDiver Gollywobbler all things..

  10. Parks
    Joined: Apr 2009
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    Location: Virginia Beach, VA

    Parks New Member

    Custom Carolina Express

    I have just found your November post. I am the builder of the Carolina Express and am glad that you can appreciate such a boat. It is my pride and joy. If you email me, I will tell you where to get the c-flex and the designs for a similar Carolina Boat. The designer is from Lousiana and he also sells the materials. My email address is I would love to help you with your projects if I can. Parks
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