Shrinkwrap your boat – yourself

>>> Shrinkwrap your boat – yourself

I commonly see boats (new and otherwise) being transported and stored with the white shrinkwrap on them. Given I have spent time fighting tarps and the like covering mine, I have wished I could wrap mine.


Little did I know that you can "do-it-yourself". Dr. Shrink carries all the supplies you would need. Mad Marinerâ„¢ magazine recently published Honey, I Shrunk the Boat by Jan Mundy which details what’s required to successfully wrap a boat. Doesn’t sound too bad, with a little practice. Jan does stress not cheaping out on the supplies and tools, which is usually good advise in most DIY activities.

Note that you can shrink wrap all manner of things… doesn’t have to be a boat. Wonder how it would do on a boat-building shed… hmmm. Dr. Shrink’s page has a blog with further thoughts and ideas worth checking out.

Origamiboats: The Art of Frameless Steel Boatbuilding

>>> Origamiboats: The Art of Frameless Steel Boatbuilding

We’ve mentioned various Brent Swain "origami" boat designs over the years, but I don’t think we’ve ever really given pointers to finding his plans.

Mr. Swain doesn’t have a web site of his own, but sells his book and plans via email ([email protected]).

Alex Christie is a videographer who has been involved in boat building for some time, and worked with Brent Swain to video and document the hull assembly of a Swain sailboat. His web site has quite a few pictures and good information, along with a way to order his video if you are so inclined.

Designer-builder Brent Swain is a familiar figure in the Canadian west coast boating scene over the past several decades, with over 100 boats to his design sailing world-wide, ranging from 26′ to 40′ in length. He has cruised the South Pacific extensively for two decades aboard his own self-designed 31 foot twin-keeled sloop of origami frameless steel construction, and continues to live aboard. He is the author of the book, "Origami Metal Boatbuilding," detailing his building techniques and inspiringly simple "do-it-yourself" philosophy.


A couple of years ago (gee, has it been that long?) we pointed out Nick’s Canal Route Planner. A recent comment points out the new site, which I have enjoyed looking around.


Not only do they seem to have a detailed route planning tool, there is also an extensive gallery of British canal pictures, and (for the boat-builders/designers among us) a very neat, interactive narrowboat layout tool.

Narrowboats are great for an amateur doing interior design, since they are much more "house-like" than many boats. A constant width, fairly square cross section, and extensible to various lenghts, you have a lot of lee-way on interior layout. This tool let’s you drag and drop various common interior features together into your plan, then download the PDF of your masterpiece.

Welcome to a site that is dedicated to the canals and narrow boats in the United Kingdom. This is a new site offering access to a huge database of canal related information.

The canal planner alone uses more than 10,000 canal points digitised from the Google maps of our canal network; these are used to produce a personalized downloadable PDF document of your planned canal journey.

Fjord 40

>>> Fjord 40

Mad Marinerâ„¢ magazine hosts weekly photo slideshows of various craft. The Fjord 40 featured this week really caught my eye. I appreciate seeing a commercial boat that doesn’t look like all the others, and even "admits" that a boat can look a bit more boxy and still perform.


You see some alternative designs in the home built world (think Bolger), but not so much commercially. Check out the entire photo collection.

With its unusual, boxy profile and plumb bow, the German-designed Fjord 40 Cruiser dares to be different in a segment of the market crowded with conformity. Its looks might not suit everyone, but the sleekness of its fittings and accommodations – and its ability to perform offshore in a variety of conditions – are likely to quiet critics. And with Volvo Penta IPS engines as standard equipment, a premium is placed on safety, maneuverability and efficiency.

McGowan Marine Design – LeBlanc 24

>>> McGowan Marine Design – LeBlanc 24

LB24 Chunnel.jpg

Some time ago we had a link to a neat solar/electric concept design by McGowan Marine Design, the Sulis.

Laurie recently commented on that page pointing us to updates for the design, the addition of the Draketail, more hull information and this LeBlanc 24 prototype with a similar hull.

I’m so impressed to see a designer admit to some faults (and include the proposed fixes) on the LeBlanc design… that’s nice honesty!