Penobscot 17

Length over all: 17 0 || Waterline length: 15 8 || Beam: 5 4
Draft, board up: 0 9 || Draft, board down: 3 0|| Weight: 260 300 pounds
Sail areas. Gunter rig: 132 sq. ft. || Ketch: 118 sq. ft. || Schooner: 139 sq. ft.

Penobscot 17
Built by Dan Spencer

This design was inspired by the many enquiries I have had from builders who admire the lines of the Penobscot 14, but need a bigger boat.

The Penobscot 17 features the same glued lapstrake construction, with marine plywood planking laid on fore and aft stringers, that has proven very suitable for the amateur builder. Although the two boats may fairly be described as sisters, with similar shapely, sea-kindly lines, the Penobscot 17 is not just a scaled-up Penobscot 14. She is a completely new design. As you would expect in a bigger boat, she has a little less beam and freeboard in proportion to her length; she has a longer, leaner look, without compromising stability.

Penobscot 17
Built by Jonathon Tremblay

For those who would like to do some more extended cruising, the Penobscot 17 provides an extra reserve of buoyancy and stability. Like the Penobscot 14, she has flotation compartments at bow and stern; in addition, the plans show four inch thick slabs of styrofoam flotation under the side seats which run the full length of the boat. The styrofoam is tucked away out of sight, but the plans show how to make it easy to remove for maintenance.


The plans include full size patterns of the stem, transom, bulkheads, centerboard and trunk, rudder, and other parts. These are printed on two large sheet of Mylar, carefully laid out for clarity and ease of use. The construction drawings show the boat at different stages of construction, with full size details, three sail plans, and spar plans. The 84 page building manual is illustrated with drawings and photographs, and takes you step by step through the building process. It includes lists of materials, sources for marine plywood and hardware, and much additional information.

Penobscot 17


Although a bigger project than the 14, the Penobscot 17 is no more challenging to the builder with some woodworking experience. With the easier curves of a longer boat, bending stringers and planking gives little trouble.

The Penobscot 17 is planked with 6 mm (1/4") marine plywood. The bulkheads are 3/4" marine plywood; the seats and other parts use 3/8" and 1/2" plywood. I recommend okoume or meranti plywood. Suitable lumber is available in most areas from a good lumber yard. Other materials include epoxy resin (an epoxy kit is available), and stainless steel screws. Call if you have questions about wood or other materials, or problems locating supplies.

The cost to build a Penobscot 17 should be about $1,200 - $1,500 without a sailing rig. Sails, spars and rigging will add $1,000 to $1,200, depending on the rig.

How long will it take to build your Penobscot 17? This is the biggest variable, depending on how many hours you put in each week, how quick you are, how fussy you are about paint and varnish. Be prepared to spend as much as a year on your project - as always, remember that the satisfaction you get from your boat will be in proportion to the effort you put into it.

Penobscot 17 Penobscot 17
Built by Gilroy Built by Gregg Blackburn

WHAT YOU CAN ORDER: (Click on Boat Design and Prices Page and Order Form || Shipping costs are given on the Order Form)

    This includes covers all three Penobscot designs, 13, 14 and 17. There are 24" x 36" blueline drawings for each design, showing the lines of the boat, construction sections, interior layout, and sail plans, and a booklet containing detailed descriptions of the boats, their development and construction, and numerous photographs and drawings. $15.00 + P&H. Shipping costs are given on the Order Form

  • PLANS:
    Full size patterns, construction drawings, and building manual. $245.00 + P&H. Shipping costs are given on the Order Form

    The epoxy kit comes from System Three Resins, and provides you with all the resin, hardener, additives, measuring pumps, fiberglass cloth, brushes, gloves, and other items, that you will need. The System Three Epoxy Book, which gives detailed information on mixing and using epoxy, is included. (Epoxy solvent is not included, due to shipping restrictions. Hardware stores carry acetone or denatured alcohol, for use in cleaning up uncured epoxy.) Please call for shipping and handling.

    Includes a set of the six bulkheads that give the boat her shape, with the transom, and two-part stem, beveled and ready to set up on the building jig. is $1,158.00 meranti/$1,200.00 okoume, including plans and Penobscot 14 DVD. Please call for shipping and handling.

    Plywood packages include all the plywood listed in the building manual. They come from World Panel Products, Inc., Riviera Beach, Florida. Three types of plywood are available; meranti, okoume, and sapele. All are high quality, marine grade plywood. Please call for details.

    Sails, rigging kits, masts, spars, and other items. Call for details.

To view detailed boat plans description and spec pages, select a link below
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