Building Outrigger Sailing Canoes: Modern Construction Methods for Three Fast, Beautiful Boats Paperback – Sep 5 2007
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About the Author
Gary Dierking has been designing and building boats for more than 40 years. Raised in northern Wisconsin, he served in the US Coast Guard, then built a 37' trimaran and logged 20,000 nautical miles throughout the Pacific. His interest in outrigger canoes and other multihulls continued in the 1980s, when he worked as head builder and assistant designer for Rudy Choy Boatworks in Honolulu, building a series of high tech offshore catamarans for racing and the tourist industry. Since 1991, he has run his own boat shop in Coromandel, New Zealand. He designs, builds, repairs, and modifies a wide variety of working and recreational vessels, especially multihulls, up to 50 feet in length. He series-manufactures his Ulua outrigger canoe design in molded fiberglass.
Top Customer Reviews
The book is highly recommended
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
First, my background... I am a sailor. I have owned a wooden catamaran for about 15 years. I have learned working with wood and epoxy while maintaining my boat. Early in my life, I have received formal training on engineering and on how to read blueprints.
This book offers three very attractive plans for outrigger canoes and describes how to build and sail them. These plans offer a lot of flexibility.
It was clearly written by a very experienced builder who happens to know how to write well. It has all the information that I need to build any of these boats. The explanation looked very clear to me but required that I study the plans.
Yet, I have found this book really entertaining. It is feeding my dreams. I can just imagine myself going down the St-Lawrence in my wa`apa hmmm ... :)
If you want to build and sail an outrigger canoe, or if you just want to dream about it, then I highly recommend this book.
Thank you Gary.
The book also details the construction of amas, akas, spars, and foils; everything is covered. If you are inclined to purchase plans from Dierking, this book would be the perfect primer. Actually, it's a great primer to anyone interested in building a small sailing craft.
My personal experience aside, I will say that this an exceptional DIY book with many clear and well-composed illustrations and diagrams. The author goes into detail with his instructions but remains accessible throughout. In a couple of instances, he suggests some alternatives to techniques and materials for construction. This is not an overly technical read or a jargon-ridden manual. All the measurements are given in English and Metric units. There are no tricky formulas or maths to confuse the manual process.
Building Outrigger Sailing Canoes is approachable to the first time builder that might have a little experience with power tools. If you've cut lumber with a tablesaw, built models with glue, and used a sabersaw to cut out basic wood shapes, then you have the skills necessary to build any one of the canoes in this book. You have the option of purchasing the full-size plans at a reasonable price from the author if you have doubts or no previous experience creating lofts from offsets.
Building Outrigger Sailing Canoes is not meant to be a historical survey of Pacific outrigger canoes, nor is it meant to be a complete guide on how to sail, paddle or cruise with them. The book is exactly what the title implies.
The only areas for improvement I can find are possibly in the technique sections. A few more pages could be spent on detailing the strip planking and sail rigging, but there are several excellent books written on the subject. In my opinion, the author would be re-inventing the wheel if he did so. I'd suggest Ted Moore's "Canoecraft", "Sailmaker's Apprentice" by Emiliano Marino andr Nick Schade's "Building Strip Planked Boats" for further reading. Gary mentions a couple of these in the book's resources appendix, along with several valuable internet sites and forums specifically on outrigger sailing, culture and construction.