Building a boat in a two bedroom apartment

Discussion in 'Boatbuilding' started by speedracer264, Oct 27, 2013.

  1. speedracer264
    Joined: May 2013
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    Location: South Florida

    speedracer264 Junior Member

    Hey Guys- I've been doing a lot of research and really want to get started with my first project. Only problem is, I dont have any money nor do I have any space, tools or experience.

    My question:
    Do you think it would be possible to build a "mock-up" boat in my second bedroom in my apartment (carpeted). Obviously I couldn't use wood or anything like that. I was wondering if cardboard and glue would work?

    I am a complete novice so please dont judge me if this is completely insane and would never work. I just want to get an idea of the actual start to finish process, without making the huge investment of tools/materials. This is obviously not something I would ever want to use, I just want to build it to prove to my wife that I can actually build the real thing in the long term.

    If its possible, would it teach me the fundamentals? Has anyone ever heard of doing such a thing? Am I insane?
  2. dskira

    dskira Previous Member

    You answered your question ;)
  3. michael pierzga
    Joined: Dec 2008
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    michael pierzga Senior Member

  4. speedracer264
    Joined: May 2013
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    Location: South Florida

    speedracer264 Junior Member

    Thanks Michael! That could be a good start for me. I appreciate the advice.
  5. El_Guero

    El_Guero Previous Member

    Knock out the walls, douse everything with glue, and burn down the house.

    I hope you realize I was kidding ....

    You can even build it with wood - lay down painter's drop, later when you have to clean up, just pick up the drop and throw it away ....

    If you do want to go with cheap cardboard instead of wood - use corrugated plastic board .... what you end up with is a usable model .... There are some designs out there intentionally in corrugated plastic board .....

    And of course, you can build SOF (Skin on Frame using painter's drop for the skin - not as strong as other skins, but looks very interesting).

  6. speedracer264
    Joined: May 2013
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    Location: South Florida

    speedracer264 Junior Member

    Great idea with the corrugated plastic board. Thanks El Guero!
  7. El_Guero

    El_Guero Previous Member

    And lay down painters drop no matter what you build. It keeps the clean up to the minimum.
  8. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Instead of corrugated materials, which tend to kink, use a solid stock, such as what is called "chip board", which is the material you'll find as the backer on a note pad. You can get it large sheets from a printer or in roll form. It comes in different weight, cuts easily with knife or scissors and will help with "proof of concept" stuff.

    You could use "door skin" material which is a wood like product, but cheap. Masonite is also another option.
  9. NavalSArtichoke
    Joined: Oct 2013
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    NavalSArtichoke Senior Member

    Maybe one day you'll be living in your own house and you can build a boat in your basement.
  10. El_Guero

    El_Guero Previous Member


    Great play on words.

  11. Petros
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: Arlington, WA-USA

    Petros Senior Member

    there are lots and lots of people that have built small boats in aparments, kitchens and bedrooms. the biggest issue is make sure there is a window or door/hallways, etc. are large enough to get the finished boat out of the room and out of the house.

    Many people build skin-on-frame kayaks and canoes this way. they usually do not use smelly epoxy or paints so it can be done in an apartment. As far as money goes, I have built small boats like kayaks, and even simple sailboats, for $50 to $100. If you can not afford that than there is no point in even starting. You salvage as much material you can from surplus supplies, junk piles, construction sites, etc. You will need to cut stringers with a table saw, but hopefully you can find someone to do that for you, or in someone else's borrowed shop. All of the assembly can be done with simple hand tools (purchased as second hand stores) that do not make any noise.

    what kind and size of boat were you thinking of building? You may have to rent or borrow a small one car garage to build a boat if it is too big to get out your window or door.
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