How To Build A Model Sailboat?

Constructing a replica of anything can be fun, this is actually a hobby that is done by many people who find the pastime satisfying. You may construct a model sail boat as part of a bigger set or you may construct it simply to see it work in real life conditions, either at a lake or in fact in a more controlled set up like a swimming pool. Whatever the reason is for building a model sail boat the one thing that is most probable is that you can get very inventive with the design and its appearance. This particular design is fairly simple and will not require a great deal of skill, however, if you are naturally good with your hands then this will be to your benefit.

Required Materials

Staple gun
Box cutter
Hand saw
Drill with 1/4-inch drill bit

Required Tools

Balsa wood (2 by 4), 8 inches in length
Waterproof glue
Wood dowel, approximately 1/4-inch diameter
Canvas, cotton sheeting or paper which will be used to build the sail.


1)To begin you will need to make your hull. To do this shave your wood to create the shape of the hull, this will be done by utilizing your box cutter to mould the piece of wood, letting form a point at the end of the wood. You should focus on the sides of the wood also, this will after all be the base of your sail boat. Basically you should construct an angled shape when you are done.

2)To give your hull a nice smooth appearance you will need to sand it properly. This will give it more definition. To get rid of the excessively angled shape you created before you will have to use the sand paper to give it a more rounded edge, this will enhance the realistic boat look that you may desire.

3)You will now need to drill a hole in your hull, this will be used to install the support mast for the sail. This hole should be in the centre in the hull and should be drilled to a depth of about 1/2 inch. This will reinforce its structural integrity, though it is a model boat you will like it to sail as close as possible to the real thing. In addition, it will look better with a well positioned sail.

4)Construct your dowel by cutting it to a length of 6 inches using a hand saw. This should be an accurate cut that is both straight and even. Hence be patient and take the time to get it near perfect.

5)Sand this newly formed dowel ensuring that the edges do not have any splinters all over it, this may be a nuisance when the boat is being used.

6)You can now install your mast. This will be done by putting your wood glue in the hole you previously created within the hull and then inserting the dowel mast into it. You may realize that the glue will spew out while you are affixing the dowel into the hull however, you may just wipe and then allow the parts to dry. Depending on the glue it may take as little as 20 minutes and as much as the whole day to dry. During this period you can go ahead and create your sail.

7)When creating the sail you will need to cut your chosen material (paper, canvas or cotton sheeting) into a 4 inch equilateral triangle using scissors therefore it should be totally symmetrical. To increase the symmetry use stencils or accurate measurements. When the sail has been cut out you can add any additional decorative elements to it especially if your glue has not yet set.

8)You can then affix your sail to the dowel mast when it has entirely dried. Wrap the sail around the dowel mast in such a way that the edges of the material cannot be seen.

9)You can then create the rigging for your boat. You will achieve this by affixing the string to the position where the sail is glued to the mast, for the other end the staple gun is all you need to secure rigging to the hull.

Tips and Warnings

You can add a keel to give the boat some more realism. You may do this by using a bit of balsa wood cut in the shape of a thin triangle that you may glue to the bottom area of your boat.

Do not let children use the drills, jigsaw or staple gun even if you are doing this as a family project.

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