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Buehler's Backyard Boatbuilding Paperback – Jan 5 1991

4.9 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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Paperback, Jan 5 1991
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: International Marine/Ragged Mountain Press; 1 edition (Jan. 5 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071583807
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071583800
  • Product Dimensions: 18.8 x 2.5 x 23.4 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 721 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #250,833 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


``A rowdy, detailed, informative, sometimes profane and immensely practical compendium of boatbuilding techniques, comments and philosophy. Buehler's thumbnail descriptions. . .are as clear and concise as you will get. But best of all, Buehler believes you can have as much fun building your boat as you intend to have sailing it.'' (Sailing)

``How to build wodden boats the Buehler way; which is to say, inexpensively, yet like the proverbial brick outhouse.'' (WoodenBoat)

``With an eye to economy and ease, Buehler has modernized wooden boatbuilding processes just enough to allow even the unskilled (and underfunded) to succeed.'' (Boatbuilder)

``George Buehler is a throwback to an earlier, more self-reliant time. His theme is that it isn't necessary to build `approved' style yachts in an `approved' fashion, it is more important to get on with building and using boats!'' (American Sailor)

About the Author

George Buehler was born in Oregon in 1948, and has been messing around with boats ever since his Sainted Mother gave him a copy of Scuppers the Sailor Dog. Buehler resides with his wife and two dogs on Whidbey Island, Washington, where he is known for the sterling qualities of his friends, his kindness to stray dogs and abandoned boats, and his collection of bad habits. He's a fair shot with a pistol, and a Croquet Ace.

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Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
George Buehler builds boats based on northwest workboats. This book is not about building with fiberglass or steel or aluminum, it's about building with wood. A workboat from the northwest has two qualities that animate all of Buehler techniques and designs: they are made out of wood and, being from a part of the country where there are many forests, use lots of it and they are simple.
The designs presented in the book and most of the techniques are all based on chine-designed hulls. There is not much here about building carvel planked, round bottomed boats, nor anything about multi-chine designs, only hard chine very heavy craft that will be very tough for a very long time. Performance is not in the author's vocabulary.
This approach allows the author to use less than optimum quality materials and, accordingly, save a great deal of money. However, if you happen to reside in a part of the country where wood is less plentiful, you are going to have a hard time following the design principles that Buehler lays out and you are not going to recognize the same savings. Also, this book was published in 1991. A great deal has happened to the availability of timber since then.
What Buehler is very good at is debunking the myth that you need to spend top dollar on things that the industry says you have to have (e.g. galvanized stays work just as well as stainless steel stays for about a third of the cost). His emphasis is getting the builder safely into the water and there is a lot to be said for that. It's unfortunate though, that an acceptance of more modern and lighter weight building techniques that achieve the same level of safety could not be more explored. But then, that would be a different book.
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Format: Paperback
Some hobbies can grow into overwhelmingly large projects. After a while, it could become drudgery and you start to wonder why you started doing something like this. Building or renovating a boat is one such project. Look in the classifieds of boating magazines and count the "partially renovated" boats. Or listen to the endless stories of failed attempts and dollars poured into large structures that never saw the water.
If you are lucky, you have found this book before you have started building your boat. If you are not, this book will still give you some perspective on why you are working on that huge contraption in your garage every weekend. This book tells you what can be done, what costs can be cut and what you can shoot for when you do not need to impress well-heeled shoppers at a boat show or build a boat that will look good on the cover of "Yachting World" with a bikini-clad beauty at the helm. You cannot and should not shoot for the cover of "Yachting World" when you are building your own boat. This book will tell you what you should do. And how to do it.
This book is best read alongside the catalogue of George Buehler's designs. His simple, yet practical boats are not the stuff for glossy magazines, but will no doubt offer just as much sailing pleasure - and safety - for less money. That, according to Buehler, is the advantage of building your own boat. You can cut the costs that go into making the boat "marketable" and concentrate your expenditures on the beef.
Even when you are not building to one of Buehler's designs, you will learn what NOT to do when you boatbuilding project begins to seem like a daunting task. If you are not building to one of his designs, you should own other books on boatbuilding as well.
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By A Customer on Oct. 9 2002
Format: Paperback
I have had this book for over a year. I have read it several times and pick it up quite often just to dream and laugh. He is really funny and right to the point. I have lots of other boatbuilding books, but this is certainly my favorite. I only like power boats, so that's my view point.
If you want to build a boat-- this is really the only book you need. It covers everything and has plans for quite a few boats you can build. I think the 34 ft Alaska is great project. I already own a 35' wood power boat, but it is not constructed half way as sturdy as George's designs. He definetly uses really really heavy frames, which is a good thing! His views on Chine vs Round hulls are right on. His lofting chapter makes it so easy, and he's right, it is. The whole book is really an inspiration! He lets YOU know that YOU can do it. Kudos to George, I really think he has enabled people to achieve their dreams of cruising.
He will save you a bunch of money too. Avoid Marine products unless you really need too use them.
What else can I say. It's worth every penny.
His Troller Book is great too, but this is the best.
Check out his webpage and his diesel duck boats.
George rules!
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Format: Paperback
Mr. Buehler's shop manual (that's what it is) is a wonderful reference for those of us interested in building our own boats. It starts at the very beginning, and walks you through the entire process (sometimes in excruciating detail, but I'm certain it will be appreciated while in the middle of construction). My only complaints (and they're minor) are a certain assumption about the reader's level of boating & boatbuilding knowledge (i.e., taking for granted that I understand the difference between a "floor" and the "sole"), and the lack of a glossary of terms (sailing terms, in particular, are totally foreign to me, as I have absolutely no interest whatsoever in sailing). Again, these are minor complaints, and I am sure that as I build my reference library for this project, other works will provide the answers. Also, in several cases throughout the book, a question I had was answered a few pages later. Like I said, very minor stuff.
Overall, this book, when taken with Mr. Buehler's excellent "The Troller Yacht Book," make wonderful additions to your boating library. Highly recommended, both of them.
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