venetian style gondola

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by lokahi, Aug 7, 2013.

  1. Petros
    Joined: Oct 2007
    Posts: 2,936
    Likes: 148, Points: 63, Legacy Rep: 1593
    Location: Arlington, WA-USA

    Petros Senior Member

    Sounds like a fun project.

    I am not sure I followed your description completely, but you do not need, nor want that much rocker in the bottom of the boat (if i understood you correctly).

    I would suggest not only limiting the rocker to about 4 to 6" but also put a skeg in the back (like your surf board but smaller), this will track better and be more stable. You can achieve the appearance of the large amount of up-turn of the hull all above the water line.

    Also, if the boat is a bit too wobbly, add some sand bags low in the hull, just 40 to 60 lbs of sand bags in the bottom will make it much more solid feeling for getting in and out of it.

    Also, if you are only making this for just this play, I would not bother fiber-glassing the outside. Seal the seams with adhesive caulk as you build the hull, and than sand and paint the outside, 5 to 7 coast of paint should seal the wood good enough, and save about half your building cost. the fiberglass and resin make it more durable, but do not add as much strength as one might think. No reason to spend a lot of money messing with toxic compounds if it is not intended last more than a few seasons. I personally hate messing with fiber-glass and never use if it if I do not have to.
  2. El_Guero

    El_Guero Previous Member

    I hope you know more about wood than some of these guys.

    Sounds like a 4' by 8' bottom with sides made to look more like a gondola.

    If you want straight tracking, run the side pieces down about 4 inches.

    I wouldn't paint more than two coats with a good water proof paint. This is a prop.

    I would control the ropes from off set. Use fishing line, I think you can get strong enough without reflecting light .... use braided fishing line
  3. theo brown
    Joined: Nov 2021
    Posts: 1
    Likes: 0, Points: 1
    Location: London

    theo brown New Member

    Hoy there

    I know this is a very old thread

    But I am wondering If you ever managed to make your gondola and did you find some plans to follow ?

    I am in a similar position of having to construct one for a film set.....

    Many thanks

    i am trying to build a venetian style gondola with a slight twist. this gondola is to be used as a prop in a dance theatre set.

    It must float, be able to carry 2 adults and a gondolier and be able to travel at least 40' in a 4' deep swimming pool.

    the gondolier will stand using a double ended pole to push off the bottom of the pool kind of kayak style. i can rig some sort of guidance system if needed to the bottom so the boat will travel from "dock to dock". current thinking is is ropes through tubes/pipes attached to bottom.

    preferred length is 14'-16'. construction to be .25" marine ply w/ west system epoxies. the simpler the better.

    i hope that someone can find this as challenging as i have and can provide some insight on design/construction.

    my skill level is high as i have been a woodworker for the last 45 years however, could sure use some design help on this project.


  4. Dolfiman
    Joined: Aug 2017
    Posts: 1,417
    Likes: 605, Points: 113
    Location: France

    Dolfiman Senior Member

    Flotation likes this.

  5. Mr Efficiency
    Joined: Oct 2010
    Posts: 10,401
    Likes: 1,026, Points: 113, Legacy Rep: 702
    Location: Australia

    Mr Efficiency Senior Member

    I thought polystyrene foam was the material for stage props, this could be the one and only time good old polystyrene could come to the fore as a boat building material ! :D
Forum posts represent the experience, opinion, and view of individual users. Boat Design Net does not necessarily endorse nor share the view of each individual post.
When making potentially dangerous or financial decisions, always employ and consult appropriate professionals. Your circumstances or experience may be different.