I am looking for plans to build a small RC sailboat. I rather not buy a kit and make the entire thing myself. This will be something I can work on with my kids.

Does anyone have any good links?

-D (link to plans at bottom of page).

This may not be at all what you are looking for, but you might find the “how-to” article useful in any event:

That website also has links for downloading design info for some 20 US One Meter designs. None of the “plans” contain construction details, I think, so you’d be on your own there.

Depending on kids’ ages, general activity in the area, etc., I’d probably be thinking in terms of a fleet of Footys. I think there are some plans for these somewhere here on this site.

Mike Biggs

Depending on what your idea of “small is,” I’d suggest you build a Footy (12 inches long) the plans are free, and it’s inexpensive and easy to build.

You can start by reading this web page:

If you’re interested in a traditional boat, check out:

We have some new 36 inch LOA plans of boats from the 1920’s and 30’s as well. PM me if that’s of interest.



Dan - built one of these for my grandson and now my son is thinking he “needs” one too - so maybe two on tap ----since I’ll need one as well!

Nice design, sails well, and is small enough to make an easy building project, but big enough for a pondside “Wow” factor. Take a look - plans can be downloaded.


EDIT - ADDED: Whoops Muzza - I missed your link above - sorry for the duplication, but it is a very easy to build, easy to sail boat. Down the road, if there are a few around, it can offer enough “tweaking” for even a hard-core racer.

i to suggest the footy, im building a simple free flaoting half footy right now, as a test model, but free plans, and very easy, alot of options on the rigs as well, heres my schooner idea.

Interesting. Do you have a sketch of your idea when finished?

not as of yet, i will try to work something up, heres the expected sail plan tho

I’m curious that people are recommending the Footy. We had a discussion at our club recently on whether the Footy might be a good class to encourage beginners. Opinions were split (only one of our club members has actually built a Footy, and he wasn’t present for the discussion).

My opinion, for what its worth, was and is that a larger boat provides a better vehicle for beginners, including kids, learning to sail. Don’t get me wrong - I think the Footy is cool, and will build one myself at some stage - but the best boat to build with kids? Not sure.

The beauty of the designs linked by me and Dick above, are that they are a little big bigger and less twitchy to sail (in making that comment, I’d appreciate input from those that actually have Footies on the water, rather than just under construction). But - they are still simple to build, small enough to transport, store, and easy for a child to carry. They would still be low cost and without the need for very expensive servos.

The first model sailboat I built as a kid about 30 years ago was 25 inches long. It was scratch built from balsa to a plan I bought, It was a simple, single-chine design. We built 4 of them, without any input from adults whatsoever. The 4 kids involved were aged between 12 and 14 at the time. They sailed really well, and I still have two of them in my basement in need of restoration.

My own kids have so much fun sailing my Victoria that I’m seriously thinking of building them each a boat, as a project that they can help me with, along the lines of the Wee Nip. But they want a jib (like Dad’s boats). My IOM is actually easier to sail than the Victoria (just a function of size and weight) but to build them each a boat of that size (even if just to a simple hard chine design) means expensive servos etc. Other designs worth considering for such a project are the Basic Jolle and the RG 65 (I can link these, but a Google search will find them).

Assuming that the kids actually want to be involved in bulding the hull (rather than just finishing a commercial hull) my own preference would be a hard chine design to the same size and displacement as the Victoria. Big enough to sail well - small enough to fit two or three of them in the car (especially if you adopt a simple drop in rig concept as used on some of the designs mentioned - and of course on the Footy).

RG65 plans, and building guide, can be found here: (in spanish) an here: (in german…).

I have to agree with Muzza on this one, having build both a Footy and an RG65, if it’s a “father and son” project I would go with the RG6.


plans here i built the luna last year nice boat i modified mine a bit for my own uses but its a great boat to sail.