Mill Creek - No Exp

Posted by Danielle on Jan 31, 2008

Hi everyone! I have been wanting to build a boat for a while now and have Sam Devlin's book. I have a (Florida - read retention) lake out back of my house and would love to have a craft that I could use there as well as take on small trips with my SO (normally an outdoor wimp and trying to make an effort for my sake) to include camping, I hope. To further complicate matters, I would like to build as much of this as possible, so would prefer to even cut the panels out myself.

Based on wanting a boat that I can take out by myself or that two of us can enjoy, I think I have settled on the Mill Creek 16.5. It looks cool, and seems to be able to handle 2 people fine. My only question is when they mention paddler weight, they give a range. If I am paddling by myself, I am under the lower limit (Thank goodness!) - is that an issue?

The second sticking point is that I have no carpentry experience, although I am an engineer and have good "direction following" skills. Is this a good boat to try? Should I buy the unmentionable cheap plywood and build a practice hull?

My final question is, since money is overall tight (I am in real estate with my family, I think that is enough said ;-) can I get by with buying the manual and using the tiny blue prints from the book? I presume I should buy the zen of kayak building dvd - especially since I have not done this scale of project before. Not getting the plans would help justify the dvd. I guess an acceptable answer is that I am insane to do anything but buy the kit and just save my pennies until I can, but that would take away some of what I am trying to accomplish.

Thanks everyone!! Danielle