Building "Mr. Moon":

an 18' outboard cruising skiff built to Jim Michalak's AF4 design



Jim Michalak designed AF4 for himself as a low powered cuddy cruiser that is just perfect for messing around with the family.

As one who has always looked down upon  powerboats and power boaters as decadent, obnoxious, and wasteful, the decision to build one for myself did not come easily. Experiencing Jim's own AF4 showed me what a great concept it was. It uses a minimum of materials and power to create the most boat for the money. It also fits better into my family's idea of the best way to recreate on the water. They are happiest when they can spend all day swimming off the boat while at anchor in a secluded cove. Realizing that a sailboat was at odds with their needs, I decided to build a boat that would make our outings more enjoyable for everyone.


  Mr. Moon's Launch Day

Purchase AF4 Plans online

My AF4, nearly complete 

I started building my own version of AF4 in late March 2001. It is constructed out of 3/8" and 1/2" MDO plywood, framed with Douglas fir, fastened with stainless steel ring nails, bronze screws, 3M 5200, and epoxy. 

"Mr. Moon" is now complete launched for the first time in early October 2001.

The boat is everything I wanted and more. It is the perfect vehicle for all of our adventures. Even the ordinary ones are quite remarkable...

Mr. Moon now has a 15 HP 4-stroke outboard, which has proven to be the perfect combination for this boat. She'll run a smidge over 20 mph at full throttle, and all day at 10-12 mph at half throttle. We only carry a 3 gallon gas tank, and it's good for nearly 50 miles of running at moderate speeds. A very economical boat indeed!

A lot can get accomplished in two months work...

Read more about Jim Michalak's AF4 Prototype:

Two years with AF4
Messin' with motors (on AF4)


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Copyright 2002 - John Bell
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