6 Year Sailboat Project, Still Unfinish, w/pics

What’s up!

The title is kind of misleading. Anyway, below are the picture of my sailboat. The name is Bandit, M class, 50/800. I built this boat from the scratch. if you are professional sailboat builder, you know this boat is built by someone who knows nothing about sailboat.

I spent two years building this boat at my high school wood-shop during my Junior and Senior years. after high school, the boat just being sitting in the closet. Now, I am a Senior almost done with college. I want to finish this before my graduation.

The boat is planked with 1/8" cherry, the deck is made from mahogany. as you can see the boat is about 70% done, except for the rigging part. I am also going to refinish the hull.

As you can see I built the boat from a blueprint. Now I am stuck with what to do next.

Do you guys know where I can get a good rigging plan for the marblehead class sailboat? I flip through the amya website, and still hadn’t find it.

I find a rigging plan at gbmy.com, but they one sell it with the fitting combo, I don’t want to buy it because I already have most of the fitting.

would you guys recommend a sail winch for this boat, cheapest one possible, so I am extremely tight with my budget. or if you have a used one laying around, please sell it to me.

In regard to sails, should I make it myself? or should I buy one already made? I saw on ebay a sail making kit, sound goods.

by the way, the white stuff you see on the boat, it’s dust.

any help is appreciated.

welcome jay!

Nice looking piece of wood work!!! I wish I had the patients to do a nice looking plank job!!! Just CF work for me. sighhhhhhhhhhhhh

Anyhow, back to your questions.

  1. No good marblehead guides out there, but I would encourage you to look up the US one meter construction guide. There is ALOT you can apply from that guide in completing your marblehead.

  2. If its an actual rig diagram you are looking for to help you place the sail plan in reference to the foils, hopefully Roy L can help you. If not. . . I think I can get you pretty darn close. but we will wait to see if Roy posts first.

  3. Sail control unit. . . you could use a large scale arm winch, or a drum winch. There are several drum winches that would work. . . the cheapest would be the hitec 815 (Is that right) drum winch that can be had for about $40.00. Its the winch I started with when I was in your shoes. I still think I have it laying around. If I stumble across it. . . I can shoot it to you in the mail as long as your promise it will get used and not just collect dust (where are you located?).

  4. Sails. . . . if you are looking to race, buy some sails from someone who knows what they are doing. If you are just looking to sail for fun and occasionally race, make em. There is an all wood M at one of the locations I sail at (John Storrow’s) that he has sailed for quite a while using non panelled sails. Sailed much better than I expected!!!

Hope that helps. Ill see if I can find that winch next week sometime.

Good Luck!


My homebuilt baby can be seen at:

Hello Jay, Your going pretty good. Nice boat!

It may look daunting with all the bits you have there but realistically it is not very much to do. A lot of the stuff on the floor is for mast and booms and I would suggest certain things at this point. Firstly you may stop worrying about the time of the project. Perhaps start to do your booms,this will decrease the pile of stuff on the floor. Now is there a local club near you where ever you are? A club that actually builds model yachts?

What you have done so far looks really good. You possibly need a mentor and I would suggest Dale Wenniger in Swampscott,(You can get his phone number off the VMYG) for this is his field. No it is NOT going to cost you any money. But I is worth contacting him. Now if you are not in his area , he may suggest somebody in your area(where ever that is). Failing all that, if you email me I will help you step by step. Im in Australia but I will do what I can to help you. I do these types of boats too. Regards SC

And Jay, being a student , if your pushed for time and want to finish the model quickly you devote 1 hour a day to it. By doing one hour you can spend the day planning what you are actually going to do in that hour. You will find your boat coming together in no time.

I bought the Sail making kit for R/C Sailboats from ebay. I am very happy with the kit.
It is high quality, and the instructions are easy to follow. I found the sail maker?s block easy to use. I highly recommend this kit if you want to make your own sails.

If It Don’t Float Add More Foam

what sail making kit are you talking about??

I know GBMY are selling a sailblock and more…


_/ if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it! _


Do a search on ebay for sail making kit in the RC Sailboats adds.

If It Don’t Float Add More Foam

ok thx for the link…

I’ll stay with the sailblock from GBMY and sailcut


_/ if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it! _


Are you looking for a sail plan or a rig construction diagram or simply where to place the rig? The answers are all different.

As to where to place the rig, that’s probably the easiest. Generally a good starting point for mast placement is one third back from the leading edge of the fin. Depending on hull balance you can move forward and back from there.

As to rig construction, it looks like you have a collection of AJ Fisher brass parts that fit in well with the vintage character of of your boat. I assume also that you are planning to use a wooden mast. Accordingly, the best place for info on how to make this rig would be the Vintage Marblehead Group, I’m sure they can either find so rigging diagrams or talk you through placement.

Finally, if you asking about a sail plan for your boat, that’s probably the hardest question of all. The M class is open in shape of sail plan so long as it fits within the 800 square inch formula. From your photos it looks like the plans you used also contained drawings for the sails, if so, they should be the sails you either order or make. If there are no sail plans, again, try the Vintage M group or post here with the name of the design, maybe someone remembers. Last choice is to contact one of the r/c sailmakers who have been around for a while (Carr Sails comes to mind) and see if they know anything about the design you are building and have made sails in the past.

Good luck.

Thank you all for the help! I guest the reason this project was put away for 4 years was lack of information and help. But seeing all these helpful inputs and you all??s enthusiasms to help. I am very grateful.

Thanks for the offer of the sail winch. I too have a sail winch, it??s a Artronics Sail Winch Servo 94581, but something wrong with the gear, if I can??t find the part to fix to it, I hope you can find your servo, and I will put it to good use. I found the US one meter construction guide, it??s very helpful. There are a lot of techniques I can relate to building my boat.

Steve Crewes:
Thanks for the advice Steve, I looked up AMYA for the club listing in my area, there is sailboat club near my area, I will trying to call them up, to see where they will be sailing and stuff. By the way, I located in Central New Jersey, US.

What kind of instructions are included in the sail making kit, Do it include instruction to make an M class sails?

I went to GBMY, I found the sailblock, but can??t found the sailcut, what is it? Where can I find it?

Roy L:
I am looking for a sail plan and a rig construction diagram. As for rigging, I had read the US one meter construction plan, I had understood more about the rigging. For an amateur like me, I guest the big challenge in building this boat is to install the fittings. A lot of information I found on the web or should I said a lot of detail sailboat pictures I found on the web are using the GBMY??s fitting which are base on aluminum mass and jib booms. Here what I am trying to build is a sailboat that using fittings base on wooden mast and jib boom, which they are made by AJ fisher as you guys mention. The worse thing is that I did not order the entire fitting kit. I order the fittings just before AJ fisher Inc out of business, some of the items I order was out of stock, which GBMY does not carry. It??s a pity AJ fisher went out of business. They offer great products at a very reasonable price.

If you guys find a webpage or detail pictures that have AJ fisher??s fitting on the boat, please post here or email it to me. I will be thankful.

As far as for the sail plan, I had scanned the sail drawing from the plan, besides telling me the dimensions of the sail, it does not provide me detail that is good enough to make the sail myself. I am not sure what to do at this point. It seen I am stuck with three option, made it myself, order the sail making kit, or pay a pro to do it for me.

As of this point, I am still collecting information on how to install the AJ fisher fitting.

Any help is appreciated

SAilcut is a very small soft for making sails, it can be found here:



_/ if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it! _


Q1-What kind of instructions are included in the sail making kit.
Q2- Does it include instruction to make an M class sails?

1- The instructions are general for making panel sail?s.
2- No, you have to have your plan or design.
I used my old flat sail?s for patterns and made panel sail?s.
The materials in the kit are very good quality and cost less than just the cloth
on the net ($15.00 to $20.00 a yard).

If It Don’t Float Add More Foam

Well Jay it looks like your set like a jelly , with all the offers of help. If you get a chance call into the ‘Marbleheader of Spring Lake’ and say Hi from Me. Let me see the boat when its finished Shipmate.


In regards to AJ Fisher, that was actually Bob Irwin in Royal Oak MI. He is a super nice guy, and just had enough. He had been making those fittings for… wow… 30 years? I visited him at his shop 6 months before he pulled the pin, and he had been trying desperately to find someone to buy him out and take over the business.

He made me an incredible offer in price and assistance to help me get relocated and started, but I was playing airline pilot and didn’t want to take time off from skiing in the Alps and having lunch in Barbados to make brass fittings.

I think personally that Bob should be in AMYA Hall of Fame for hanging in there and making life easy for so many model boat builders for so many decades. When the IRS audited him for a $500.00 discrepency, and spent 5 days there in his shop counting every single screw, nut and fitting (and he mentioned with no small amount of pleasure that he ran off a couple of 1000 teeny tiny screws for the occaision) it just took it out of him, and when they found out that the error was actually 800.00 and in Bob’s favor, and the would not pay him back… well… it was time to call it a day and move on to something else. I don’t know where he ended up, but everyone out there today whether they ever used his work or not, owes him… because of all the people that DID use the fittings, made the hobby bigger better and stronger because of it. You are correct in missing his product because it was solid, a good value, and you knew what you were getting long before it showed up at the mailbox.[:-angel]