I looked at a few options, the idea of building a Sunfish-type knockoff, like the Moonfish 14 is attractive, both from the "high performance" and "bombproof" standpoint, and plans for the Stevenson Projects Mini-Cup are on-line, but that form-factor is also a committed and wet experience. And that top deck also adds a little bit of weight, along with the strength.
So something a little dryer, a little more sedate. A friend described the Marsh Cat as "a picnic on the water", and it's gorgeous, but I also want a fast simple build that's small enough and light enough to store behind the workshop and toss on top of the car. The Simplicity Boats — Summer Breeze fits that bill.
- Simplicity Boat's simplified build notes has the bottom sheet layout.
- Duckworks Magazine — Summer Breeze
- Flickr set of jerrycashmanoz's Summer Breeze build, with a centerboard and a decked bow.
- Woodenboat.com thread with lots of good stuff
We have yet to paint her name on the stern, but we've decided to call her "Ella".
Notes and changes we've made from the various plans and build notes on the web:
- We used cheap luan plywood, with redwood for the additional parts. Redwood is great for things like the chine logs, which want to be easy to plane and mill, but we should have gone for something harder for the gunwales.
- We used internal chine logs. Didn't seem like it was any more difficult than external chine logs, and looks better.
- We built the rib to be left in place, and doubled the ¼" ply for about 16" behind the rib, for additional bottom stiffness.
- We built the transom up from ¼" skin with bracing, for weight.
So far we're happy with all of those changes. We have a couple of things we still need to fix, and a couple of things to do differently next time:
- A harder wood for the gunwales would be really really nice.
- I think the lines of the sides put the point for the lee board a little bit too far aft. Next time I'd move it a bit forward.
- We may better brace the mast step region.
- Medium weight tarp is a bit heavy material for the sail, it's hard to read, doesn't move very well.
Since then we've cleaned up the sail a little bit, now we just need to go enjoy the water more.
And plot the next boat... This is addictive!