By Markku Valkama - Laukaa - Finland

Some years ago I had to repair my glider and while I was in the internet searching for information of epoxy glue I did find Hannu Vartiala's web site of free boat plans. After looking for a while I thought that it would be fun to try to build a Portuguese style dinghy.

The beginning, Portuguese style dinghy.

After a search in garage was I standing in my yard with two sheets off plywood and some old epoxy and a bit of this and that. And, of course, a mind stupid enough to start the work. The dinghy was easy to build and worked as expected.

It made me think about building a sailboat. Would it not be nice to use air movements, not only for soaring, but for sailing too? As it happens, I live near Lake Lievestuore, which is connected by a small river and a couple of small lakes to Keitele-päijänne canal. The canal is a part of Kymi river water system. Big enough to allow a lifetime of boating without a change of having time to see it all.

I started to search internet for a plan worth of building and finally I decided that Michalak's Viola 26 is what I want. However, after rethinking and revaluating my skills, resources and real needs , I did order plans for AF3.

A boat looking like Viola but smaller and thereby hopefully cheaper and easier to build. Nowadays I do own a set of plans for a Viola too, hopefully I'll build her someday.

AF3 parts first together.
Snow is nearly gone and boat waits for paint and few details.
Inside painted. Notice the dolly.
Finally ready for first trip.
Sunshine and clear, fresh water, that’s it.
Sometime it’s calm.
Then it is time for a river trip.
With help of faithful trolling motor and a pair of 100ah batteries.
Just when you think the river ends….
Behind the corner you´ll find a nice pond.
Sometimes you need to be humble; concrete is harder than your head.
Can it be more relaxing?
Winter is no problem for a true boater.
Although the water might be a little hard.
And the fish are not so hungry either.
A self made boat is never really ready; you need to modify it regularly.



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