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Building Classic Small Craft: Complete Plans and Instructions for 47 Boats Hardcover – October 1, 1996
"Neverworld Wake" by Marisha Pessl
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"... worth your attention whether you seriously fancy to build boats yourself or just enjoy reading about them." -- Sailing
"If I wanted to build a small sailing or rowing boat and could have only one book, my choice would have to be this. It is a classic." -- The Log of Mystic Seaport
"John Gardner has engaged and inspired more individuals connected with traditional small boat craft than will ever be counted." -- WoodenBoat
"Poses clear and impassioned means to go from the armchair to the open water via your boatshop." -- Sea History
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Any beginner can appreciate this book, but it will take some research and effort to learn lofting and make use of the plans provided. I'm afraid most amateurs will probably be overwhelmed when they see the lofting charts. Don't be dissuaded, it looks more complicated than it really is. Tutorials and videos are all over the internet. Even if you don't plan on building any of these boats, the stories and information provided herein are equally valuable.
- there is a lot of valuable boatbuilding material inside, thou as it is contained within boat's construction notes, it's hard to extract. This book will not be a reference manual.
- Boat's construction methods are not so classic. There is a lot of plywood and epoxy.
- Selection of designs was rather unsatisfying for me. There are wonderful rowboat designs (peapods, whitehalls) but it lacks in sailboat area. If you are not sailboat maniac you will find interesting designs on all levels of difficulty, after all.
- The level of details vary from design to design. Some are very complete step by step guides, others only rough sketches.
- As the book is about small craft there is little information about heavier backbone member construction. But to tell the truth I haven't found any book that would be satisfying in this field.
- For me, notes at the end (boatbuilder's planes) were one of the most interesting and part of the whole volume (along with boat's and builder's histories).
Surely one of the all time classics. For those interested in small wooden boats, and boats of yesteryear (many of which still work exceptionally well now) this is a thoroughly fantasitc book. You will not regret buying this book. I would rate this book above almost any other book in the same genre, a must read