You should be able to find all the wood boat building supplies that you’ll need at a well-stocked marine supply store in your area. If local stores are dedicated to boats made from fiberglass, try shopping online. The Internet is a great resource for wood boat building supplies, plans and information. You may also find lower prices and a wider product selection by shopping online (just don’t forget to factor in the cost of shipping).
These are the essential wood boat building supplies that you’ll need:
Rather than pay high shipping costs for lumber, shop around at local lumberyards for marine lumber. Boat lumber should be dry, free of sapwood and with a minimum number of knots. If you don’t have a good source for lumber, try to find out where local boat builders buy their lumber. As a last resort, check marine supply companies online.
Most of the tools used for wood boat building are general-purpose woodworking tools such as a table saw, band saw, sander, router and power drill. If your boat plans call for specialized boat building tools, check with your local marine supply store or on the Internet.
Plywood that’s used for boats is available in different grades and price points. If you buy cheap marine plywood, you’ll need to take the extra step of sealing it with epoxy resin. Buy the highest grade you can afford to avoid the time and expense of sealing cheap plywood.
- Wood Boat Fasteners
All of the nails, screws, nuts and washers on a wood boat should be marine-grade and corrosion resistant. Silicone bronze fasteners are your best bet for below the waterline, while brass, copper and stainless steel will be fine for other parts of the boat.
- Sailboat Hardware
If you’re building a wood sailboat you’ll need some special supplies and hardware such as blocks, cleats, chocks, winches and shackles. Your sailboat plans should include a complete list of sailing hardware.
- Resin, Epoxy and Glue
Wood boat building supplies include a variety of fiberglass resins, epoxies and glues, each with its own special purpose. Your boat plans should explain what type of epoxy or glue system should be used for each part of the boat. When buying resin, glue or epoxy, don’t forget application supplies such as rollers, brushes, gloves, mixing pots and applicators.
If your boat has carvel planking, you’ll need to apply caulk between the planks to ensure that your boat is watertight. You’ll need to decide between traditional caulking cotton and more modern caulking compounds.
- Marine Sealant
Marine sealant is needed to create a watertight seal around deck lights, hardware and any other items that are inserted in the deck.
- Finishing Supplies
One of the final wood boat building supplies you’ll need is paint and varnish. In order to protect your wood from water and sun damage, it should be sealed with marine paint or varnish. You’ll also need all the usual painting supplies including tack cloth, sandpaper, brushes, rollers and paint buckets.