About Me

sept2013 063Hi – my name is Barnaby Scott, and I live in Oxfordshire, UK. I am a furniture designer-maker (see Waywood), which means I am in the fortunate position of having access to a fully equipped woodworking workshop, complete with CNC machine – a boat-builder’s heaven you might say.

my_kind_of_sailingAs for sailing, I should admit that my enthusiasm far outstrips my ability – only my woodworking friends think I’m a good sailor (and my sailing friends think I’m a good woodworker). I currently sail a lovely little boat called a Shilling, made by Willow Bay Boats. Though I love the Shilling, we can’t all fit in her as a family, even for day sailing, and as for overnight – let’s just say it would suit a young couple, preferably very much in love. Perhaps the best way to replicate the experience of spending the night aboard is to try sleeping in the cupboard under your kitchen sink. I might have enjoyed such an adventure at one time, but I’m afraid that era has passed. The sailing is fun and the boat is adorable, but I feel it’s time to move on.

The idea of building a boat first arose some years ago – I forget exactly how many – when my youngest son asked in all innocence if I could make one for him. I don’t think either of us had the slightest idea how long boats took to make or how expensive an undertaking it was, but I regret to say that as soon as I looked into it, the idea had to be shelved. However, I think a deadly seed had been sown! Though time never seems to be easier to find, I feel I really am in a position to go for it now – I know the sort of boat that would suit us and am confident that however long it takes to build it, I will enjoy the process.

Chest of drawers 001Perhaps I am deluding myself, but I am hoping that my experience making furniture, and above all the equipment available, will make this a really quick build. Certainly I am trying to plan it like a military operation, and will not start making sawdust until every last stick is modelled precisely in 3D CAD. From there I can do a great deal of the difficult, accurate and time-consuming work on the CNC machine. The only magic wand I don’t have is the one that does hours of sanding, painting and varnishing, so I can only hope some momentum can get me through those phases when they come.

20130731_131835A huge inspiration not only to take the plunge and build this boat, but to document it as I go along, comes from a boat-building blog that I really enjoyed reading, following it avidly all the way through the process. That blog was by Mike Randall from Australia, in which he documented the building of a Francois Vivier Stir Ven, a boat that I very seriously considered building (one day, who knows…). Well worth a read, and a hugely impressive build. He also seems to have a great taste in dogs!

6 thoughts on “About Me

  1. Hi Barney

    Looking good and alot harder to do than a rowing scull! Hope to see her progress a few times in the flesh over the coming months.

    regards matt

  2. Brilliant, enjoyable and fascinating build blog! I love the apparent juxtaposition between bespoke furniture and CAD/CAM for a 21st century home build, a most impressive SCM flat bed router. Looking forward to more blog entries.

    If its OK I appreciate a comment on the design tools you’re using. I note from the blog screen captures that you’re using Rhino to model your boat, so am I right to think that you use RhinoNEST to provide a cutting file to the SCM router??
    Also how did you handle the naval architecture aspects of the design process, e.g. hydrostatics, displacement, cg etc. Did you use Orca3D or delftship for example?
    keep up the inspiring blog
    Best regards

    • Thanks for your comments Niall

      As you say, I am using Rhino for the modelling, but I don’t have RhinoNEST. All that really does is to lay out parts in a way that is optimised for a particular sheet size. What you need is CAM software to generate the toolpaths, for which I use RhinoCAM. Thereafter the toolpaths are re-written by a post-processor so that the SCM machine understands them. (For reasons that no doubt make sense to them, SCM run their machines on a flavour of ‘g-code’ quite unlike anyone else’s, so I use a highly customised post-processor that I wrote myself. It also includes all sorts of safety and sanity checks as well as translating tool files etc – all in all is is quite a beast!)

      As for the naval architecture aspect – I haven’t done a thing! I have relied entirely on Iain Oughtred’s design and am trying to resist the temptation to tamper with it in any way. I don’t think he makes much use of computers, but seems to have produced a great number of beautiful and functional designs using traditional techniques. Heaven only knows how you derive even the centre of gravity without a computer, let alone stability calculations etc, but of course these things have been done by skilled practitioners for generations.



  3. Dear Mr Scott, We have received today a cheque for £65.50p from Bromsgrove Boaters as a result of a talk you gave to the Club recently. We would just like to thank you very much for suggesting that this donation was made to MCS. It is a very welcome addition to our funds.
    Thank you again.
    Best wishes,
    Ann (Ann Hunt – Marine Conservation Society Enquiries Officer)

  4. How goes the build?

    I am ready to downsize from my Cornish Pilot to something that can live on a trailer and I can sail solo. I am pondering a number of designs with Haiku being the largest, Romilly being my favorite and the Trailer Sailor 24 being the most reasonable.

    • Hi Ben

      My life seems to have become one long string of apologies for things I haven’t quite got around to, and this blog is one of those! The truth is that the boat is basically finished – I am now just messing about with bits of rope, but otherwise it’s all there, waiting for the weather. Why no fanfare? Just TIME! I really do hope to finish this blog one day – I have loads of notes and photos – and then I might toot my horn and show her off to the world.

      As for your choice: I can see the common thread, and like the lines you are on. My guess is that even though the Romilly is the smallest of these boats, she might take the longest to make. Haiku is basically pretty simple, but there is a lot of her – not to be underestimated! I don’t know the Trailer Sailer 24, but she could be the simplest build. Good looking too (except that I’m not a fan of leeboards, purely from an aesthetic point of view – they’re brilliant functionally).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *