Building the TotalBoat Sport Dory: Episode 3

In Episode 3, Lou is getting into the math and measurements that will determine the shape and size of the TotalBoat Sport Dory. By using and transferring measurements from the table of offsets that he created, he is able to loft the dory at full size right on his temporary table, so he won’t have to crawl around on the floor.

Lou takes a fairly involved and complicated process and explains it so that it’s much easier to understand and undertake, should you be building your own boat or Dory alongside Lou.  By transposing the dory widths and heights from his table of offsets to his full sized working drawings, Lou is making his next tasks of building the stations much easier. Follow along with Lou and his math and explanations so you can use this information on your own boat building projects. And as usual, post your questions and comments for Lou below, and he will answer them in a full episode of Q&A where you’ll get your answers and much more!

Watch all the episodes on our TotalBoat Sport Dory playlist!



20 responses to “Building the TotalBoat Sport Dory: Episode 3

  1. I am a very big fan, but…..
    For the first time ever, this video was very difficult to follow because I could not see any of the drawing lines.
    Also unclear was how you are doing ‘full sized drawings on a small table?
    I assume you are doing it in sections, but you didn’t say that.
    I was very much looking forward to learning how you went from scale to full size, so I was a bit frustrated.
    I have a calibrated display and even when I tried dimming it further I could not see any of the drawing.

  2. I have enjoyed Lou’s past videos and found them to be educational and entertaining. However, I too was confused with Episode #3.
    I have built small boats from full size plans, but never had to scale-up the sections. I think that Lou could have edited the video (or reshot it) to eliminate the issue of “Is this plank #1 or #4 or “Is this station #2 or #4”.
    But, then again perhaps seeing that even a professional can sometimes have a difficulty is a worthwhile experience.

  3. I am going to have faith that Lou’s clear communication and deep knowledge will get Episode 3 to make sense in Episode 4 or 5.

  4. I get what you are doing transferring measurements. Was hard to see your work though. I’m 46 and want to be your apprentice please!!! The videos can’t come fast enough.

  5. Howard Chapelle explains this same technique in ‘Boat Building’. Learning lofting requires a bit of study, not casual watching. Once you see it in your minds eye, this all makes sense.

  6. Lofting made simple!

    Lou’s common sense approach was most appreciated. Good for a first timer dealing with demintion transfers.

  7. I recommend a book by Foger Kopanycia entitled Lofting a Boat: A Step-by-step Manual. I have read this book several times as the lofting process, especially if you have never done it before or are unfamiliar with the process and terminology, can be mystifying.

  8. I have done this before when building boats, but that drawing could have been a blank sheet of paper as far as the presentation went.
    I could not see any of his lines.

  9. I agree that the lines are hard to see, but still visible on my laptop (surface pro 3). They are only pencil lines now and to be inked later. His presentation seemed clear to me , maybe because of my engineering, drafting and home building background. I think the key is organize your takeoff and recording steps first, and be very methodical and follow a system. This is an exercise in creating a 3 dimensional object from 2 dimensional drawings. Beginning with a top and side view Lou is creating the frontal view at each station/frame.

  10. For those of you confused about what Lou is doing go to Sam Devlin’s web site and order his Wooden Boatbuilding video. This video has the simplest and easiest to understand lesson on lofting and how it is used in building a boat.

  11. He was “lofting” the plans from the small ones. The drawing he was doing would have been cross sections of the boat at the different stations. This helps you make the frames to exact size and you can also pull dimensions off the drawing if needed.

  12. As someone who has done this a number of times to practice
    How refreshing to find that Lou can make the same mistakes I have done so many times
    Wow I am not as stupid as I thought
    I believe this exercise is important to help me to investigate the boat and know the boat
    Bet it is not the last mistake ” a craftsman still makes mistakes just far fewer than the rest of us and he can still make it work”
    Thanks Lou another lesson in humility from the master

  13. Always appreciate the content, the editing, staging and especially Lou himself who is a wealth of actual experience. I’d have to watch the video a couple times but I believe the basics are there and if there’s confusion it’s because it’s not a simple task.

  14. Lofting is not like riding a bike – took a lofting course at Lowell Boat Shop in Amesbury Mass years ago and right after that, ordered Walt Simmons lines for his 17′ cedar lapstrake canoe. Using his lines, etc, laid it out full size and built the canoe. Had I waited any length of time, it would have been a disaster. Hard to retain all that process if you don’t use it.

  15. I loved watching these segments, I trained as a Naval Architect at the University of Michigan just at the end of the drawing board era and was there for the start of Cad-Cam. Watching the process which I so laboriously learned is great. I still have my big board, and Post tools, we called the lead weights “ducks” by the way. I love the new 5 axis routers that can cut all the planks into a big kit, and they are efficient, but the old ways have great charm. Also if you don’t have three hundred grand to buy a 5 axis live table, this is the only way to build a boat from wood, or steel or aluminum.

  16. I wish I’d seen this thirty years ago. I asked around about offsets and no one I knew could help. This helps understand what offsets are pretty clearly. And yeah, he’s lofting a section, a frame of the boat to be. He’s not getting the shape of the planks off this, just the shape of the frames. It’s a really good exercise for your brain to think in three dimensions like this. It’sa type of thinking that we tend not to value as a culture, but it’s a tyupe of thinking and Lou is showing us how to do it. Cool.

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