Lapstrake is a method of attaching
planks to a boat where the plank edges overlap each other.
Overlapping planks are then fastened to each other and then to the
This age old method of
planking, sometimes referred to as
clinker planking, has been in use for hundreds of years.
Much of the longitudinal
strength of the hull is provided
by the double thickness of the planking where it overlaps.
It is this partial overlapping
of successive planks along
the length of the boat which gives it its characteristic shape.
These boats are lightweight,
very strong, stable and
allows for the
use of thinner planking than would normally be used on a carvel planked
The lower cost of materials makes
an ideal building method that the average handyman could afford.
Plywood, because of its
multidirectional strength makes
it an excellent material for this construction method.
The usual method of fastening
the planks on small boats
is with clinch (clout) nails, where the nail is driven through and "clinched"
rivets and roves are also a common fastening method though
not quite as
easy to fasten as clinching.
On a light construction the
extra hammering needed to
form the rivet over the rove is best avoided.
possible to use wood screws, however these should not
be used when fastening to steam bent frames.
of the problems inherent
to the maintenance of
lapstrake is caused by ridges and gaps which collect moisture and
With stitch and glue lapstrake
most of these gaps will be
filled with thickened epoxy.
This makes for not
only a stronger boat but a relatively maintenance free one as well.
The lightness of construction
combined with strength
makes for superb boats for cruising and general knocking about.
This makes it a good style for
small boats and canoes,
not just for their maneuverability but also because they are easy to
Lapstrake / Clinker Books