We varied from the plans in only a few ways. We hinged the front windows at the top, so they could be opened at the bottom. Looks great with windows open, but also lets air in while cruising the lake. We also closed in the dash area to hide the pulleys, cables, and steering mechanism. Bottom of the dash panel was cut with a curve to match the curve in the framing for the cabin roof. We added a few pieces of clear finished trim where they seemed appropriate. The back corner seats are sealed water tight as is the bow, but we hinged the lids of the center seats, so they could be used for storage. We also added a second bulkhead in the bow, to allow for another storage area.

We centered the steering wheel. This seems to make the cabin more comfortable, since it moves the wheel forward just a little. It also makes it possible to pilot boat from either seat. The wheel was a real challenge. We wanted something made from wood (not stainless or plastic) similar to an actual ships wheel. It needed to be small and properly scaled. We couldn't find just what we wanted, so we made it from two layers of 5/8" thick walnut. Each layer was made of four quarter circle pieces, so that one layer half lapped the pieces of the second layer (Joints staggered). The pieces were glued and pegged together. We made the spokes from hardwood dowels, drilled through the walnut wheel and into a wooded shaft.

This boat got a tremendous amount of attention at the first boat show we entered. My wife said so many parents asked if their kids could sit in it for a picture, of course she said yes. My son and I were participating in our second wooden boat building challenge that day, so I didn't get to see the kid's or their parents during the show, but the photographs she took clearly showed how much everyone enjoyed this project. We hope to enter it in other shows this summer. we have two or three in mind at this point.

This started as my 14 year old son's boat. Unfortunately, he'll soon out grow it. I guess that means we have to start another, bigger boat (he, as well as my oldest daughter are already looking at plans). Fortunately, we have two younger daughters and many young family members who'll get years of enjoyment from Tubby.