How to Build a Small Fishing Boat

How to Build a Small Fishing Boat

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Wouldn't it be nice if you could pull up to your favorite fishing spot and unload a fishing boat off the top of your car rather than fishing from the bank? Stop dreaming and start building. In two weekends you can take some easily purchased materials and build a small wood fishing boat that can be taken anywhere on the top of your car.

Items you will need

  • Boat plans

  • Pencil

  • Two sheets marine plywood

  • Two saw horses

  • Jig saw

  • Drill

  • 1 gallon epoxy glue

  • 1 bag sawdust

  • Paintbrushes

  • Plastic ties

  • Sandpaper

  • Varnish or paint

  • Hardware and cleats

Cut and prepare the parts

Take a sheet of plywood and put it on top of the two sawhorses for support. Transfer the plans to the plywood using the pencil. Finish transferring the plans using the second sheet of plywood.

Use the jig saw to cut the sides, stern, bottom and bow pieces of the boat from the plywood. There will be five pieces.

Mix one cup of epoxy according to the manufacturer's instructions. Use a paintbrush to apply the epoxy to the wood parts like applying paint. Let dry for at least two hours.

Build the boat

Drill small holes along each of the sides of the wood pieces. The holes should be 1 inch from the edge of the wood spaced 4 inches apart.

Similar boat showing plastic ties protruding

Use the plastic ties to stitch the the sides, bow and stern to the bottom. The pieces of wood will now have the appearance of a boat with plastic ties sticking out.

Mix one quart of epoxy with enough sawdust to form a glue with the consistency of peanut butter. Apply the wood/epoxy glue to all the seams on the inside of the boat with a spatula. The glue should be about 2 inches wide and 1/2 inch deep along the center of each seam.

Apply a strip of fiberglass fabric along each seam. Lay the fabric along the seam and apply epoxy to the fabric until it is wet through. Let dry for eight hours. Remove the plastic ties.

Sand the boat until smooth inside and outside. Paint or varnish as desired. Launch and check for any leaks. Leaks can be repaired with epoxy/wood glue.


  • The more care taken sanding the boat smooth before painting the better the boat will look.
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