Answers to some 'Frequently Asked Questions'

/....Is the shipping included....No... Air Post to anywhere in the world is shown next to the button. When you click on the Buy Now button the Air Postage is auto added and included in the total.

/....How do you send the plans and books to me....all goods are sent by Air-Post (standard Airmail).

/....What do I get in my 'Hartley' plan set....Scaled plans and details of construction. Full-size patterns for frames, stem & rim, deck & cabin beams. Main materials list. Full back-up advice service based on over 50 years in the business.

/....Do the 'Samson' plan sets have 'Full Size Frame Patterns', the 'Samson' plans have lines-drawings and offset-tables.

/....Why is it some designers do not provide 'Full Size Frame Patterns' costs much more to provide them.

/ I need to know how to 'loft out' lofting is required with 'Hartley' plans, whether a large or small boat. Full size patterns are provided for almost every design.

/....'Full Size Frame Patterns', or 'Lofting Out'....Why waste time/money and effort in learning how to loft out (with the possibility of expensive mistakes), when what you want to do is build a boat.

/....How accurate'Are Full Size Frame Patterns'....It's the most accurate way of laying up a boat. We have proved the point...after nearly 60 years of providing them and over 100,000 of our boats built. Even on a large 50ft boat, patterns of the frames in an unstable humid atmosphere have a rate of expansion of less than one eighth of an inch. There are no mistakes to discover later when you use 'Full Size Frame Patterns'.

/....What full size patterns are provided.....full size patterns are provided for the frames, stem, rim, deck and cabin beams.

/....Which designs are 'Samson' and which are 'Hartley'....all 'Samson' designs have a 'C-' in front of the name. 'C-Deuce' is an example of a 'Samson' design. All others are 'Hartley'.

/....Do you provide the same back-up service for the 'Samson' designs....yes, we provide a full back-up service for all the 'Samson' designs even though they were not designed originally 'inhouse'.

/....What are 'study plans' or 'study packs'....Outline drawings and accommodation layouts and sail plans, with a bulk listing of materials. Mainly of use to help decision making when considering building the larger boats.

/....Do I need the book 'Hartley's Guide To Boatbuilding'....All our plan sets have enough details in them to construct the boat, the books however are a great help with in-depth description and techniques, as well as a general coverage of boatbuilding for the amateur.

/....How do I order and what type of payment do you accept....Full details are given under the section Ordering.

/....Are the plans available in 'metric measurements'....All materials are listed in both 'Metric', as well as 'English', measurements. Detailed conversion lists are also given.

/....Can I build more than one boat from the plans I bought from you....You can build one boat from the plans. If you wish to build more, a royalty of 1/3rd the current retail cost of the plans must be paid to the designer for each extra boat. The royalty is payable at the moment construction starts on each extra boat. Full details can be found under the section Copyrights.

/....I have never built a boat before....That is not a problem with 'Hartley's Boat Plans', and has been proved by the fact that more than 95 percent of our customers have been first-time builders.

/....I really want a larger boat, should I build a smaller one first to practice....No, it is an unnecessary expense and time waste. You will learn as you go along the same, regardless of size. The bigger boats are not harder to build, they only take longer to build than the smaller ones.

/....The boat I like has a different cabin top/accommodation layout to what I want, can it be altered....Yes, we show the easiest type of cabin-top to construct on the drawings, but variations in taste are endless. We are happy to offer advice on any alterations you may consider. Accommodation needs vary, ask our advice if you want to make alterations.

/....How do I decide what material to build my boat out of....The methods of construction and their advantages are given under the section Construction Methods.

/....Where can I buy the materials or do I have to purchase a kit....All our boats are designed to be built from easily obtained materials in almost any country. Remember our boats have been built in almost every country in the world from Peru to Iceland.

 /....I have heard that some plywood boats are built with the 'stitch & glue method', do you recommend it.... the 'Stitch & Glue', method. was introduced around 30 years ago as a possible quicker way of putting together a plywood boat instead of using the traditional 'Screw & Glue'. Time has shown it to be only moderately successful in very small craft. With the now widespread proven easy use of epoxy-glues, longer lasting boats built in the tradional manner are able to be achieved by almost any 'first time amateur'. Any of the smaller 'Hartley' boats can be built by the 'Stitch & Glue' method if the builder wishes.

/....How long will a plywood boat last, and do I have to fibreglass sheath it....If you use a good marine grade plywood, and look after it properly there is no need to go to the added weight and expense of 'glassfibre sheathing'. There are many amateur-built Hartley plywood boats still in use after 30 years. I personally own a 'New Gadabout', which we regularly use for sea-fishing and was originally built in 1972. Apart from a road accident repair whilst being trailed, it is still original. I also own a TS16 that was built in 1973, is still in fine original condition and very competitive in competition. Check out the section under Construction Methods

 /....What is GRP and FRP....They are acronyms for 'Glass Reinforced Plastic', and 'Fibre Reinforced Plastic. The common term used is 'Fibreglass'.

/....Why are most production boats built in fibreglass....Once the original mould has been made (requiring considerable expertise and high cost), multiple hulls can be made on a production basis by relatively cheap unskilled labour. The contrary is of course the case for the amateur one-off. Check out the section under Construction Methods.

 /....It seems fairly easy to build a boat in steel why don't many amateurs use this method....Mainly because steel has a vey short life when mixed with water. It also requires considerable skill to achieve a finished product of any pleasing shape. It does however (as do all materials), have it's advantages especially in working craft. Check out the section under Construction Methods.

/....What is a 'ferroboat'....A boat constructed from 'Ferro-Cement'. An in-depth description from history to designs and achievements, can be found at the website 'The World Of Ferroboats', at

/....Why do I hear bad stories about ferroboats, and yet I see that hundreds of ocean voyages and world circumnavigations, have been made by amateurs in them for almost half a century.....Because ferroboats are labour intensive there are few businesses that have managed to build them successfully at a profit. Boatyards and commercial builders have therefore every reason to promote the demise of the ferroboat.

/....I have never built a boat before, would I still be able to build a large ferroboat as a first-time build....A ferroboat is the easiest and cheapest way an amateur can build a large boat.

/....Do I need to buy the book 'Ferro-cement Boats'....Although the plans are very comprehensive, the book will be a great advantage and a worthy addition to the project.