My wife Laura's 16' trimaran with 84 sq.

ft. sail on a homemade unstayed mast.


Welcome to...



A Web Site For Do-It-Yourself 

Small, Homemade Trimarans


Presented by "Dr. Frank" Smoot, and

dedicated to DIY boatbuilders everywhere!


My 16' trimaran No Commotion with its

optional 124 sq. ft. rig from a Laser II.



Florida's "Sunshine Coast"

is small boat heaven!



What's On This Site:

1. Why I have come to believe that small trimarans are the only way to go. [click here]


2. A Brief History of the 15 or so homemade boats and rigs I have build over the past two years [click here]


3. Our first "trimarans"- made from kayaks (includes construction photos). click here


4. Building our first "real" trimaran: the tandem rig (includes construction photos).  click here


5. Building the first lightweight, single-seater trimaran, "No Commotion" click here


6. Building Laura's 65-lb "ultralight" trimaran - see 50 construction photos! click here


7. The Amazing "Planing Amas"- see 40 photos! click here


8. No Commotion Gets A Slick New "Sliding Aka" System! click here


2. A Brief History: The past two years

and our 15 (or so) homemade boats...


1. May-June, 2009 - Starting with what we had...

What we had: Two Pungo 140 kayaks

"Catamaran" #1: Two kayaks in harness 


2. May-June, 2009: Still messing with our kayaks...

Replacing nasty wood frame with PVC

Patio chair makes it a single-seater catamaran!


3. August, 2009 - Our first real DIY boat: "The Red, While & Blue" catamaran

Really didn't understand sailboats yet...


It looked OK, but it was WAY overbuilt!


With tiny 53 sq ft sail, also WAY underpowered.

Finally a decent sail - 85 sq ft.


4. September, 2009 - Kayak catamaran #2

"Laura's Rig" - Two Potomac 10s

It actually sailed OK!


5. Oct-Nov 2009 - The "Flat Cat" catamaran 

This is really not a very good sail...

It was much quicker with 75 sq ft Sunfish sail


6. Jan-March, 2010 - The "Gray Cat" catamaran 

Trying to copy the "Hobie Bravo" hull design.

Some assembly required.


Fins added to prevent lateral slip

It was fairly quick with 75 sq ft Sunfish sail


7. February, 2010 - The "Kiddie Cat" one-piece catamaran 

Sitting on its stabilizer / anti-slip fins.

Homebrew tiller & kick-up rudder


Good execution, not-so-good of a design...

Not enough flotation or sail power...


8. April-May, 2010- Kayak "trimarans" 

First "tri" and first homemade sail (ugh)

Upgrading to a "sloop" rig.


OK, that looks  much better...

...and it also goes much better!


9. June, 2010 -The "Red & White" boat (AKA "SailYak") -- a one-piece catamaran 

A cute lady in a cute boat.

It's a sailing kayak catamaran - really!


Once again, not enough sail power.

But it actually paddled pretty well!


Upgraded to 40 sf homebrew lateen

Now it's a really fun and quick little boat!


10. May-June, 2010 - The "V-Cat" catamaran 

My first sleek & quick hulls!

With 85 sq ft sail & (cumbersome) sprit boom


Replaced sprit boom with better "foot" boom.

Really a pretty quick little cat - often 10+ mph.


With 118 sf sail from Hobie 14 & stayed mast.

Boat just wasn't strong enough for stayed mast.


11. June, 2010 - First "decent" trimaran (Pungo 140 w/ bigger amas) 


Test-fitting the new amas on my Pungo 140.


First sail, using homemade 40 sq ft lateen rig.



Finally managed to get them painted...


About 40 sq ft of sail in a "sloop" rig


12. June-July, 2010 - The "Waterbug" catamaran


4' x 12' - it fits in my van assembled!


But it's too tippy for even this small 40 sq ft sail.



OK, now the beam is 8', with Sunfish sail.


But the sail actually works better like this!



...and even better if I mount the sail to the mast!


55 sf windsurf rig looks nice, but is too slow.


13. August-Sept, 2010 -  The 16' "tandem" (two-seater) trimaran. Although the main

hull (vaka) was new, the amas were recycled from the "V-Cat" (item #10, above).



My first effort to build a "vaka" (main hull).


Looks kinda cool with "amas" from my V-Cat!



Bow-on shot with 85 sf sail.


Stepping off to the side a bit...



Now I add a 22 sq ft homemade jib.


It's pretty quick -- and very stable!


14. Oct-Nov, 2011 - My first 16' single-seat trimaran, "No Commotion" 


First assembly, in our front yard.


First outing was a "no leeboard" test..



Twin leeboards -- a big improvement!


Adding the jib furler -- another big help!


[Home page has a YouTube video of NoCommotion going about 12 mph.]



15. Jan-Feb, 2011 - Laura's 16" ultralight" single-seat trimaran. 



Laura finally has her own trimaran to rig & sail.


Standing proudly beside it, raring to go!



But she lets me take the first test drive...


Quick, nimble, and 30 lbs lighter than my tri!


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