Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Okay, so what do you think?

Now, living here a couple of months in, we're starting to compile our notes, drawings, sources, rants, pictures, and discards to create a new file for the construction of a Shantyboat like Floating Empire, distilling what we learned in this build and while living aboard. We're are getting ready to post a streamlined set of plans online so you can do this yourselves.
No, this isn't us, but I did want SOME kind of picture, after all.

But we're wanting a little feedback on what would be most useful.  So much of this boat was done by seat-of-the-pants revisions during construction that we're now having to go back and recreate a rational series of steps to completion so you wind up with something resembling a boat, as opposed to, say, a llama. Most of our initial drawings were on graph paper, then translated to computer. Would you prefer line drawings, Google Sketchup files, PDF files, architectural drawings done in cheeze whiz on a pizza, what?  What would be the most useful form?  Would you guys like a basic version you can customize, or would you like several versions to choose from?  Do we need to publish a version for American wood sizes and European ones? Would a workshop on construction, perhaps made available on the web as a meetup, be useful?  Would online Q and A sessions be useful?  We intend to make this free, but if this stuff gets pricy, would you be willing to donate a few bucks to get it?

Inquiring minds wanna know.

So please, if you've been following this blog and have an interest in these things, leave us your ideas in the comments section.  What can we do that is of the greatest use to you guys?  If you need to contact us, just drop a note there and we promise to get back to you.

We really look forward to hearing from you.


PS .we're also planning to post a collected Q and A about the boat, the build, and life aboard, so if you have any questions, please post em in the comments and well add them to the list.


  1. I'm not sure about the plans. Personally I want something much lower. No loft. Too much windage, especially with the low power.

    I found the blog and have been progressing from day one. You kept me up way past my bedtime last night, actually this morning. I think the pictures were pretty self explanatory, but here are some things I'd like to know more about:

    Wiring up your electric service.
    Much more about the paddlewheel. That's an interesting power idea and I like it. If I had the wherewithal I'd probably go for a scow type of boat with sail and leeboards.

    1. Richard we used heavy outdoor power cables for the wiring, me being paranoid about water. The paddlewheel worked well, but our design on the drive train was faulty and it failed early on (the pins holding the main shaft to the wheel weren't buff enough). We made our early transition from Sue Creek on a 55 LB trolling motor. I think the paddlewheel would work, and well. They're efficient, don't entrain weeds, and can work in extremely shallow water. If I rebuilt the thing anytime soon, I would you a hub motor from an electric motorbike (available on the web for around $150) and build the wheel on it. They're strong, waterproof, and designed for exposure.