Latest forum posts




Stitch and Glue 101

- Stitch and Glue Basic Tutorial - This tutorial exist in French and Turkish, see our index.

1. Overview
5. Hull Assembly 9. Fairing and Sanding
2. Draw the Panels 6. Frames and Fiberglass 10. Paint
7. Seats and Rubrail 11. Final Details and Launch
4. Epoxy Glue 8. Outside Glass and Keel  

This new (2005) stitch and glue tutorial shows the building of a typical small boat, the FL12.
The FL12 is a new version of our succesful FL11.

A prototype was built to test the new assembly method. Pictures were taken and this new HowTo file shows every step of the construction, from reading the blueprints to the final coats of paint.

This tutorial is an excellent introduction to stitch and glue boat building, whatever the size of boat you intend to build. Almost all the techniques described below can be used for other designs including large sail and power boats.

Stitch and glue boat building:


A stitch and glue boat hull is made of plywood panels assembled with fiberglass tape. Contrary to traditional boat building in which molds define the hull shape, in stitch and glue, the hull panels define the shape.
This is important to remember: let the plywood panels take their natural fair shape. Another major difference with wooden boat building is that the framing of a stitch and glue boat is made of fiberglass. Just as in production fiberglass boat, in our designs, the chine, keel, bow etc. are made of fiberglass.

Building Method Outline:

This How To file is divided in sections and follows the steps taken to build the boat:

-Cut the plywood panels for the sides and bottom
-Assemble the panels with butt blocks
-Cut the frames and transom
-Assemble the hull: sides and bottom around frames and transom
-Build the fiberglass seams on putty fillets
-Install the seat tops
-Build the rubrail
-Fair the hull
-Install skeg (keel)
-Sand and paint

You may be familiar with the standard stitch and glue hull assembly method. The hull panels are bent around some frames. This is sometimes called the sharpie assembly method.

Step by Step

Let's review the building steps before we start:

1. Cut the side panels and assemble them with butt blocks:

2. Attach the side panels together at the bow and insert the transom panel at the other end:

3. Insert all the frames between the sides:

4. Flip the hull over and cover the sides with the bottom panel.

5. Flip the hull and fiberglass inside.

6. Cover the seats and foredeck, fiberglass edges, flip and fiberglass outside.

7. Finish by installing rubrail, optional breasthook etc.

Next Page->

If you did not find the answer to your question, please use our message board and we will respond within a few hours.
Or explore the HowTo files at our technical support web site