Building the TotalBoat Works Skiff: Fitting the Final Planks & Bottom Painting


Here is the perfect pre-Thanksgiving activity for those of you who will need some time to check out from the politics, the football, and the turkey and just give thanks for Louis Sauzedde! Here, at TotalBoat, we are very thankful for Louis and his seemingly empirical woodworking and boat building knowledge, for his multitude of helpful tips and for his easy, well-spoken manner of teaching.  As we present episode 20 to you today, a few days early as a little Thanksgiving “gift,” it seems like a good time to recap how far we have come with the work skiff by giving you the whole playlist of videos to binge watch on your days off. You’re welcome! 

Things are about to really speed up with the skiff project as the bottom gets its initial coat of TotalBoat Spartan Multi-Season Ablative Bottom Paint in this episode. Lou trims and fits the final planks fore and aft with another clever technique for getting the perfect angle for these important boards that complete the skiff’s bottom planking. And with the first coat on the bottom planks, and the screw holes filled and sanded – the boat is ready for a few more touches on the bottom. Lou will add some runners which will also be painted with Spartan and then it’s time to flip the boat and get to work on the interior.

Spartan is a great choice for a wooden boat’s bottom paint. With no primer needed on the bottom (as you might expect and is required with fiberglass boats), the first coat soaks right into the planks and will add a nice antifouling finish for the skiff. Check out our TotalBoat Bottom Paint survey to see the live mapped results of Spartan’s performance in your local harbor or area.  Complete the Bottom Paint Survey for your own bottom paint performance to place your own boat and bottom paint on the map.

Thanks for being a TotalBoat blog follower. We appreciate your readership, your time on our YouTube channel and your comments, sharing and love for Lou. It matters to us, Lou eats it up and for all of this, we are thankful.  Enjoy episode 20 and your long holiday weekend! Happy Thanksgiving!




23 responses to “Building the TotalBoat Works Skiff: Fitting the Final Planks & Bottom Painting

  1. Absolutely wonderful series for all of us who are aspiring boat builders. My only regret is that I didn’t have the opportunity to study with Lou 20 years earlier. Your production of the 20 videos has been a great inspiration. Thank you for sharing.

  2. Love the series, I could watch, listen and learn all day long from Lou, love the guy. Should we chip in and get him a belt for Xmass

  3. Lou is such a hoot his knowledge and love of tools shows in the quality of the work. I have learned a lot of tips to use. Plus I love his belt.
    Thanks Lou.

  4. Lou has taken a very simple boat and built it to a precision product. I’ve enjoyed the series and also listening to his accent

  5. As a carpenter for the last 38 years I love watching Lou’s use of hand tools. I got my passion for woodworking from living with my grandfather who was a Cooper in before WWII and when I would hang out with him in his basement shop in the 60’s all he had was hand tools. While I have a fully equipped shop with a full array of power tools, I enjoy working with sharp chisels and hand planes far more. I’m in the middle of my first wooden boat project now that the kids have left the nest and Lou has been a pleasure to watch. I look forward to each weeks video addition and have watched the other Tips from a shipwright videos. Also the crew from Jamestown Supply have been very help to this first time shipwright\finish carpenter. Keep up the great work.

    PS: I love Lou’s belt, a very practical man.

  6. Love the series and wonder if when were all done with them is their anywhere we can go back and watch them all from the beginning. KC

    1. Here is a playlist of every single TotalBoat Skiff building video so far. We add them each time a new episode is added.

  7. For some years now, I have restored both fiberglass and wooden boats for members of our small sailing association here in West Virginia. The work has been the best I and the students could do, but honestly I’m humbled by this man’s talents not only as builder/wood worker, but as a great teacher. Like so many others, we truly look forward to ALL his videos.

    1. Thank you, I have just been looking for information about this subject for ages and yours is the best I’ve discovered so far. But, what about the conclusion? Are you sure about the source?

  8. I also really enjoy watching Lou and learning from him. Am I the only viewer who saw him put an applicator knife with one of the parts of faring compound into a can with the other part of the 2-part compound? Only a small amount was transferred but I am afraid to take such chances, myself.

    1. YES! Please use different applicators in the hardener and resin. YES they would be contaminated with cross use. Thanks for the comment.

  9. Why wasn’t the piece at the stem place before the the second bottom piece? As a straight piece on both edges, if would have been much easier to install the #2 temporarily, measure the nose piece, fit it, remove #2 and seat #1, then re-install #2.

  10. This series has been so so interesting. Never in my craziest dreams would I consider building a project like this, but the various skill he demonstrates and how he teaches has been terrific. I look forward to the each episode and stop everything to watch. I have also tune a friend in to this series and he loves it as well. I hope there are followups to this series once he finishes the Skiff,

  11. We should chip in and buy him a belt! I love the videos by the way and it has helped me in the restoration of my 15 wooden boat fleet as well as the 18′ Brockway skiff I’m building now with my stepfather. We are on our second one now. Total Boat products rule!

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