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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Ply Boats
There was a delay in delivery of my copy of Ultrasimple Boatbuilding but when it arrived it was worth the wait. Here is a boatbuilding book written in the 21st centaury for a 21st centaury first time boat builder. Of the twenty or so boatbuilding books I own this is the only one that doesn't mention lofting. All the boats in the book are relatively short so they should be...
Published on 18 Feb 2008 by Claire

versus
1.0 out of 5 stars Good book, awful digital presentatiom
This is a very interesting and potentially useful book - in print. The boat plans involve tables of dimensions. In the digital version the typeface used for the dimensions is impossibly small and, because they are tables, the size cannot be increased using the normal type-size tool. Unless you have a huge monitor to read them on (which will naturally stretch the typeface...
Published 11 months ago by Mr K


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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Ply Boats, 18 Feb 2008
By 
Claire (Dunboyne, Ireland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Ultrasimple Boat Building: 17 Plywood Boats Anyone Can Build (Paperback)
There was a delay in delivery of my copy of Ultrasimple Boatbuilding but when it arrived it was worth the wait. Here is a boatbuilding book written in the 21st centaury for a 21st centaury first time boat builder. Of the twenty or so boatbuilding books I own this is the only one that doesn't mention lofting. All the boats in the book are relatively short so they should be possible to build in the average garage. Another pleasant surprise is the number of designs suitable for kids. Despite the simplicity of the construction of the different craft many of them turn out to be respectable looking and useful boats. Most of the plans are clear and simple with the Cinderella Canoe and Doris the Dory worth the price of the book on their own. Mr Atkin also pays attention to sails for his boats an area I have found lacking in other books. If you can hold a saw, turn a screw, pour some glue and order some ply then you can own your own boat. This was the inspiration to start construction of my own Puddle Duck Racer. All in all I would not be surprised if this was the book to launch a thousand, small but perfectly formed ships
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A flawed masterpiece, 6 Aug 2008
This review is from: Ultrasimple Boat Building: 17 Plywood Boats Anyone Can Build (Paperback)
The real test of a book like this is do you end up actually building a boat once you have read the book? I am typing this review with the paint on my hands from putting the finishing touches to my son's Micro-mouse. I don't think that I have ever felt so proud!

Not all of the designs are simple and I would very strongly recommend starting with one of the easier boats to learn the techniques and principles. But this is a book packed with usefull tips and ideas and is very clearly written.
The author's own boat plans are exceptionally user-friendly, with a layout plan showing you which part of the plywood sheet to take each panel from and simple x and y co-ordinates for uber-easy join the dots marking out.

The only down side is that Gavin Atkin includes plans for more complex boats from other designers and these use a differnt approach to describing the build and laying out the plans. It would be infinately better if all of the plans could be converted into the format used at the start of the book as otherwise it is like learning a new language each time you look at a boat from a different designer.
I really hope that the author produces a second edition of the same book with the plans re-worked in this way.

In spite of this it is a fantastic manual that inspires and explains. I am now moving on to my second boat which I am building for my elder son. He originaly said "yeah sure Dad, like you're really going to build a boat." Now he's seen his younger brother's boat take shape he's changed his tune. Worth every penny!
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ultrasimple, Ultragreat, 28 Feb 2008
By 
P. Harbord - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Ultrasimple Boat Building: 17 Plywood Boats Anyone Can Build (Paperback)
Explains clearly and in very readable fashion everything you need to get started in building simple (and not so simple) plywood boats using the stitch and glue method. Includes the fundamental techniques required with just enough boat jargon so you can talk to material suppliers in a meaningful way. If the boat building bug bites hard there is plenty to progress through as your confidence and skills grow.

The boat plans featured are innovative, elegant, and really work. The authors wit makes a refreshing change to other more snobbish approaches to the subject.

The author is even on hand to help you through the process, how good is that.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ultrasimple Boat Building, 26 Feb 2008
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J. V. Bos (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Ultrasimple Boat Building: 17 Plywood Boats Anyone Can Build (Paperback)
I found this book really easy to understand and great fun to read. Makes you want to go out to your local Homebase, buy some wood and get started. It is nice to know you don't have to be a great craftsman in order to make your own boat. Most of the stuff you read on boat building gets all elitist with the author involved in endless debates about marine design and using words that you have no idea what they mean.
This one definitely gets you started.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ultra Good Starting Point, 16 Jan 2012
This review is from: Ultrasimple Boat Building: 17 Plywood Boats Anyone Can Build (Paperback)
I've been very interested in building my own boat for some years now, and now that I finally have the space and the cashflow to do it I am extremely pleased I have invested in Gavin Atkin's guide to building very simple, functional boats - it's just what i needed to get me started.

The book follows a good logical path and explains the techniques before moving on to the designs. The designs could maybe have been laid out a little bit easier to understand in places, but as you read through the text it does all make sense and is easy to follow.

Two other negative points - the boat featured on the back (which really took my eye and I wanted to biold) is not actually featured in the book. You are shown where to go to find the design, but a little bit of a cheat having it's picture on this book. Lastly, there aren't enough photo's of the finished projects, or of the stages during construction - these are always very valuable and it's the reason for not giving the book a full 5 out of 5.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars easy boatbuilding, 21 Sep 2010
This review is from: Ultrasimple Boat Building: 17 Plywood Boats Anyone Can Build (Paperback)
This looks a really useful book,my partner is building it and he reckons the plans look really easy and very do-able. He does have a lot of tools and skills though so I dont know how suitable it would be for a complete novice. It does not seem to be very expensive to build these boats so you dont really have a lot to lose.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars UltraAddictive..., 21 Oct 2011
This review is from: Ultrasimple Boat Building: 17 Plywood Boats Anyone Can Build (Paperback)
Great book, very readable and inspirational, and supported by a great Yahoo group with frequent contribs from the author and others. I built a Mouseboat from the plans in the book - and it actually floats! Very satisfying, for me and my kids, who helped, and I'm now planning the next project. Using polyester resin and wbp ply, the boat cost me something like 70 quid - if you want to do something different, and have a few woodworking tools and a bit of space, give it a bash. You'll not regret it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good, Could be better, 16 Jun 2014
By 
P. Anderson "Paul Anderson" (West Midlands) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Ultrasimple Boat Building: 17 Plywood Boats Anyone Can Build (Paperback)
I'm nearing completion of one of the simplest boats - the lilypad punt. You really need to read every page - no skipping through to the cutting plans!
4 stars rather than 5 because I've found a couple of anomalies in the instructions which appear to be omissions or errors (it could be lack of understanding, but I'm usually pretty good at this kind of thing!).
If you buy this book, follow the inch measurements rather than mm - I usually work in mm but this book us definitely geared towards working in inches!
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4.0 out of 5 stars good book, 7 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Ultrasimple Boat Building: 17 Plywood Boats Anyone Can Build (Paperback)
Easy way to get started with some simple boat building, and some more advanced. I have allready bought some plywood and are ready to go.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Good book, awful digital presentatiom, 2 Jan 2014
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This is a very interesting and potentially useful book - in print. The boat plans involve tables of dimensions. In the digital version the typeface used for the dimensions is impossibly small and, because they are tables, the size cannot be increased using the normal type-size tool. Unless you have a huge monitor to read them on (which will naturally stretch the typeface and may make it readable), forget it. On a normal Kindle screen, no chance.
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Ultrasimple Boat Building: 17 Plywood Boats Anyone Can Build
Ultrasimple Boat Building: 17 Plywood Boats Anyone Can Build by Gavin Atkin (Paperback - 1 Nov 2007)
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