Frustrating experience so far...

It's been my dream for years to save up enough money to buy a passagemaker take-apart gunter sloop kit. I just began my PMD take apart build and it's been a pretty frustrating experience so far to say the least. I'm wondering if anyone has had similar challenges.

#1 - The manual has already had several mistakes around what the take apart bulkhead is and whether or not the doublers are glued to that bulkhead or the forward bulkhead that has tabs and fits into the bottom hull piece. pgs 19, 45, 46, and 59 all seemingly contradict each other on this. 

#2 - I had several hull panels that came damaged, splitting, rotted etc. (CLC fortunately did send replacements for these at no cost). Several parts were just straight up missing, and the puzzle joints on several of the panels were so inconsistent and misaligned causing there to be gaps after gluing. The two big bottom panels were so bad that it because literally impossible to align them flat during gluing. I put over 100lbs on this joint during the curing process and it still didn't lay flat. After the epoxy had cured, I had no choice but to sand them farther down so as to be smooth resulting in low/black spots in the veneer. I sent a hail mary request into CLC to see if they would replace those panels as well, but they refused to own up to misaligned puzzle joints and blamed me for just sanding too far. (even though i didn't see what else I could've done.) They just sent me a quote for $500+ to buy new bottom panels.

#3 - My hull panels came labeled incorrectly. In the manual they're labeled 1-9, but only came with stickers 1-4 port and strbd. Also my #4 panels were labeled #1 and my number #1 panels were labeled #4. 

For having spent nearly $4k on this kit, it's been a pretty frustrating process so far to say the least. I sure hope I'm able to finish without having to buy replacement parts. 

If by some miracle I actually finish this boat, it will for sure be named "Persistance." 

3 replies:

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RE: Frustrating experience so far...

Fairly positive update on this. Terry and Ed in customer support are some good dudes. They actually did confirm with me that the manual was incorrect and that they would be printing an update. The hull panels were actually numbered correctly, but just that the numbers don't match those on the inventory page, but they do in the instructions. 

One step at a time I guess. Persistance. 

RE: Frustrating experience so far...

   Juuuuuuuuust in case you don't catch it, and then get even more frustrated with your first time build, don't name your boat "PersistAnce." Go for "PersistEnce" instead! Just an fyi, there are a lot of forum responses that talk about the issues you've had here, along with ways to solve them fairly easily. Using that search bar will open up some great sources of help. Puzzle joint issues in particular have quite a few solutions builders have shared. Good luck!

RE: Frustrating experience so far...

Hey Jonny,

I'm really sorry to hear about your experience so far.  I know it doesn't help, but your experience with the kit so far is definitely not a common occurrence.  I just built a non-take-apart (because I'm a coward) Passagemaker with the gunter-sloop rig a couple of years ago named "TOY YOT".  Once CLC gets all the customer service stuff cleared up, you'll be on your way to build an amazing boat.  I was going to do the Salish 100 in mine until work got in the way.  If you need any free advice (you get what you pay for), please feel free to reach out, although there are several PM builders on this forum that provide great advice.  I'm at infoATmidnight-makerDOTcom.  Check out my build video at

Good luck with the rest of your build,



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