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Adrian Dascalu

Another European Marissa (#74)

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I'm joining this great community of builders with very little knowledge (for now) but determined to have my boat built well. The model I chose to build is arguably not the most suited for a first time builder however I wanted something that will give me pleasure to use.


I'm faced with the first obstacle: marine plywood is NOT readily available in my country (Romania).  I could get it on special order, import it myself from Germany, France or Holland but that would make the budget for the hull quite unreasonable. Most local builders that use plywood would use exterior grade construction plywood and take special care sealing it with epoxy inside and out. Birch or poplar wood mostly, birch being quite a bit heavier and stronger than the okoume / poplar e bit lighter and only slightly softer.  The blueprints call for 9mm okoume plywood. My provisional plan is to go with 6+4mm poplar instead by laminating the sheets before cutting for anything that doesn't need to be bended and laminating in place for the bottom and the sides. What do you guys think of this?


The finished boats presented here on this forum are an inspiration. I hope I will be able to follow through with another successful build of this awesome design!

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Hey Adrian, and welcome


The Baltic Birch plywood available in the US from your neighborhood is great stuff.  I have used it for cabinets and the frames of SOF kayaks (see Kudzu section of forums)  It is really heavy compared to Okoume.  I have never really tried to torture it into the shapes needed for B&B boats, but I bet it is hard to do, if possible.  Our Poplar core Birch faced cabinet plywood I would never use for a boat.  I know nothing about your local Poplar or the plywood it is made into.  Yours, if made like the Baltic Birch,  could be very fine stuff.


All that being said, B&B boats are designed to be built with BS 1088 plywood.  Also, there have been some very clever people building some great boats making due with what they have.  So I surely don't want to discourage you.  Your opening sentence sounds like a determined person would say, and determination along with this forum has produced many a fine boats.

I will say that your non-BS1088 plywoods are far superior to most available in the US.  You will get some more replies, some may have specific experiences that may help you.  Good luck and have fun.

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I've been away from my workshop (i still am) but i was able to arrange remotely for the purchase and delivery of the plywood for my boat. I went for poplar, found some good quality 10mm ply with uniform thickness veneers that a local experienced boat builder swears by. Can't wait to get home and start working on the build.

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