Strip Built Construction

Strip planked kayak

Strip building is the craft of turning a pile of thin strips of wood into a high-performance, durable boat. This method, sometimes called "strip-planked" or "woodstrip" is a great way to make a boat.

You start with a form made of cross sectional stations. You bend thin strips of light weight wood such as cedar around these forms and edge glue the strips together. When the forms are completely covered, the wood is sanded smooth. A layer of fiberglass cloth set with epoxy is applied inside and out. This cloth is completely transparent, allowing you to see the beauty of the wood while providing a huge amount of strength and durability to the wood.

Watch my latest video series: Making Petrel Play

View Video of Strip Building a Petrel and two Bootleggers.
New: Making a Night Heron

It produces beautiful results that are also lightweight and strong. It may not be the quickest method to make a boat, but the individual steps are really not hard. It is a matter of shaping relatively small pieces of wood so they interlock tightly. The goal is to cover the boat with wood, and this simple idea permits a lot of room for creativity. Below are some pages that will describe and show some of what can be done.

View Our Catalog of Plans for Building Wood Strip Boats.