How much experience do I need?

Every one of our projects has been built and sailed by complete novices. We keep the first-time builder in mind when designing our projects so the frustration level stays reasonably low. If you are at all handy (shelves, the proverbial birdhouse or two, etc.), you should be able to build our projects. The 3 1/2 hour how-to videotape for the Weekender does help with other projects—particularly the Vacationer and Pocket Cruiser, but builders of smaller boats can benefit too. You can get a good idea of what's involved in building a Weekender by watching our ProjectCam.

We've had builders who have never built anything in their lives complete our projects successfully. Without trying to beat this subject into the ground, we want to stress that these are projects you can build. Besides, we want company out on the water, not to have people stuck in the shop!

Building a boat is a fairly big job, and although some builders make it seem pretty easy, you should be prepared to slog through some rough parts of your project. Everyone reaches a point in their project where it starts to bog down or they just can't figure out some step. Keep in mind that the most powerful tool you can ever have is your brain: It has the ability to make or break your project. A determined attitude, perseverance, and the ability to look at problems from different perspectives will be the most important assets you can bring to the boatbuilding process.

And don't forget: there are a lot of resources to help you get "unstuck" if you need them: You can contact us, try asking your question on one or both of the builder forums, and get in touch with a local Builder Contact person. The links to all of these resources are grouped conveniently on one page.