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Boat Kits and Boat Plans

 

Boat Kits vs. Boat Plans

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Thousands of Pygmy Paddlers...
All over the U.S. and Canada, advanced paddlers, grandmothers, Native Alaskan youth at the Arctic Circle, college students on a budget, professional boat builders, novice paddlers, and hot shot surfers, have all built from Pygmy boat kits. Some of these rugged, elegant craft are also available as plans. Due to the interest of folks who enjoy doing "the whole process", we began selling plan sets in 1996. Read the comparison below to help determine whether building a Pygmy boat from a kit or plans best suits you. Also look at our Kit Construction Process page for further details.

Who Buys Plans?
Folks who want to save time and effort buy a kit. Some people want to build from plans. They own power tools and enjoy woodworking. They don't want short cuts. They want to do the entire process themselves. For these people, Pygmy Boats is now offering full construction boat plans, available directly from us. (Look at our "Kits Vs. Plans" comparison, below, for help deciding which process will best suit you.)

Plan Sets Include:
Two--36" x 24" sheets displaying lines and plate expansions, 1--25 page, fully illustrated construction manual, full parts and materials lists, a list of necessary tools and equipment, hatch and bulkhead instructions, and rudder installation instructions.

Materials:
You can buy all the materials for construction from us. We sell BS-1088, the highest quality marine grade mahogany plywood--4mm, 3 ply.  We recommend you build the hull and deck from 4mm. Some folks ask about trying to save weight by using thinner plywood on the deck or skimping on fiberglass. Don't. You want a rugged boat that can hit rocks, land in surf, come to shore on a stone beach, etc. Build according to our specs and you'll have a light, tough boat.

Prices:
The Queen Charlotte-Std, GoldenEye-Standard and the GoldenEye-Hi plans are now available for $59.00. The Osprey Double and Triple are available for $75.

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Boat Kits   Boat Plans  

ADVANTAGES
Saves Time. Finish your kayak or boat kit faster (kayaks take around 80 hours). Begin building when your boxes arrive. All the materials are included. Many hours quicker than building from plans.
Accuracy. Parts pre-cut to .004 inch precision. Can't beat this tolerance!
Saves Money? Our kits can be cheaper than buying materials in your locale. Price out all the components, plus shipping. Find the cost effective route for you.
Quality. Kits include highest quality marine mahogany BS-1088. We've researched the best materials at the best prices available.
Easy! Boat building does not get easier than this. Absolute novices build these kits all the time.

 

DISADVANTAGES
No Woodworking. If you like to use power tools and cut the parts yourself--get plans.
No Drawing or Cutting. It's all been done by John's software.

 

ADVANTAGES
Drawing. Always wanted to learn the process of taking blueprints to full scale, or already have the technical skill? Go for it. We provide excellent offsets and extremely accurate lines drawings.
Enjoy "the Process". Like to do it all yourself? Enjoy using power tools and perform meticulous measuring and cutting.
Save Money?* Depending on the quality of materials used and your locale, you may be able to save some money by buying locally available materials. Many folks cost it out, and find our kits can save them some money over building from plans.

 

DISADVANTAGES
Costs Time.* You'll spend lots of hours--before you begin building--assembling materials, drawing out the full size panels from offsets, and cutting. It's extra effort.
Less Precise. You simply can't match the accuracy of our kits' NC computer generated plate shapes.

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*To date many individuals have completed Pygmy boats from plans. In the "Kits-Vs-Plans" section above, we have intentionally left question marks next to "Saves Money?" because this truly depends on the availability of materials in your given area. It has also been difficult to estimate the time required to complete a boat from plans, due in part to the variance in acquisition time required for all of the supplies needed. Plywood and all other supplies that come in our kits can be purchased directly from us. The total cost for a plan set and all of the materials, purchased from us, for a GoldenEye Hi Volume is $724.95. This figure does not include shipping and handling. Shipping 8'x4' sheets of plywood costs more than shipping an entire kit across the continent.


Cost/Time Comparison:
If you buy a set of plans for a GoldenEye Hi. And all the materials from us, it will cost you $59 for the plans, $665.95 for the plywood and other materials that come in the kit, or $724.95. The GoldenEye Hi kit can be purchased for $960. You may save approximately $235.05, but the task of gluing, plotting, cutting, and fairing your hull panels if you build from plans will take you about 30 hours longer to do. The ease and four thousands of a inch accuracy of the pre-cut panels in a kit is hard to beat.
Another example of a cost/time comparison comes from a customer in Portland, Oregon. He purchased plans for the GoldenEye-Standard and bought all of his building materials locally. At the completion of his kayak, he had spent $50 more than the full kit would have cost and put in 180 hours on the project. He is happy with his boat, and plans to build another Pygmy, this time from a kit!
Unless you have access to all materials at competitive prices, building from plans may not save you any money. And it will definitely take you more time. The pre-cut parts that come in our kits are cut to .004" accuracy; that's hard to beat. We heartily recommend that you investigate actual costs during your decision making process.


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