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The unique Deal Island 50

Master boat builder Tim Phillips and his team of 22 are crafting a range of wooden boats like no other.

Deal Island 50

In Sorrento, along Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula, master boatbuilder Tim Phillips and his team of 22 are crafting a range of wooden boats under the Wooden Boat Shop brand.

Their latest project, the Deal Island 50, offers couples and small families a wide-beamed pleasure boat with two cabins and a generous amount of living space.

Tim describes the design brief as said the design brief was “a Down-East-type boat with a little bit more beam and more robust than previous models.”

He continues: “The idea is to allow more room onboard for families and couples to enjoy coastal cruising. The Deal Island 50 will cruise Victoria to Tassie with no problems.”

So far there have been two Deal Island 50s delivered, and production is about to begin on another. The building process takes around two years, requiring fitted timber composite frames that are glassed in, strip plank hull in hardwood below the waterline with cedar topsides, while the deck and cabin are made from sustainably sourced African teak.

They use ATL Composites for a range of finishes, and WEST SYSTEM epoxy products for laminating and high strength timber bonding applications.

As Mac Dalton, ATL Technical Sales Manager says: “The KINETIX R246TX Thixotropic Laminating Resin and H160 Medium Hardener was used to provide excellent cured mechanical properties for the main hull lamination. Then there’s the added benefit of extended working time for larger projects like this one.”

But it’s the timber that really sets these boats apart, as Tim explains: “Timber boats are handmade as opposed to a mass-produced fibreglass boat. They are not higher maintenance than production boats, but they take a lot more man-hours and I would say, creativity. Our customers seek us out when they’re looking for something special; a boat that embodies their memories of childhood and travel.” ¦