I read somewhere you need the courage to start and the determination to finish.
I have thought long and hard about whether I possess either…but I’m in love with this little micro-cruiser and in the words of REO Speedwagon…I can’t fight this feeling anymore.
I believe in order to enjoy building your own sailboat, you have to love building as much or more than sailing. Hour for hour, I’ll probably never spend as much time sailing as I do building. But that’s almost too much honesty…let’s romance this a bit more. I want to sail mine to Catalina Island off the California coast. I also want to sail in the San Juan Islands. If all that fails, how about the Rigby Lake, which is 1/2 mile from my house. Hence, the Scamp fits my micro-adventure philosophy perfectly. If you’ve got 2 hours, you can go.
With this as a backdrop, I called Josh at Small Craft Advisor and ordered the plans. After reviewing the plans for several days, I’ve decided that with my skills (or lack thereof), I would be best suited to purchase the kit. I admire those who move forward with plans only, but my best chance for success is to order the kit.
I wanted to tackle this project in stages. I have identified 6 distinct build stages to this boat.
- Building the spars (mast, yard, boom)
- Building the foils (rudder w/ 2 lb. weight and centerboard w/ 22 lb. weight)
- Building the boat (probably the longest stage)
- Finishing the boats (glassing, painting and varnishing)
- Rigging the boat
- Buying trailer and outboard motor for the boat
My thoughts are to start simple and move to complex. Hence, with $100 in my pocket, I purchase the wood to build the bird’s mouth mast. Once that was complete, I bought another $100 worth of wood and built the boom and yard (with some solid stock left over which I’ll use later to extend the cockpit seats). With this first stage complete, I ordered the foils kit and enough glass/epoxy to build the entire kit. Once I have this stage complete, I’ll consider myself worthy to purchase the boat kit and move to stage 3. With this slow beginning, I had a bail out plan if all went South. It just felt right to me to proceed in this step wise fashion. I have also built confidence with the coming build with these simple yet critical stages behind me.