Senior building sailboat in his garage


Senior Sam Philips stands in front of the boat he constructed. “I feel hopeful and excited because it’s a really fun project to work on,” Philips said. “But also somewhat anxious that it won’t work, but I’m hopeful.”

By Zora Lotton-Barker, Staff Writer

Senior Sam Philips is building a sailboat in his spare time.

Philips was inspired to build the boat after traveling to a fishing community last summer.

“I went to Seattle and Canada in the summer of 2017, and it’s a big fishing community, and there were sailboats everywhere and thought they were super cool and I got inspired by them,” Philips said. “Throughout that entire year I kept thinking about it until the next spring when I went to the hardware store one day and said ‘I’m just gonna start.’”

Philips designed the boat using sketches and computer programs.

“I designed it myself for a couple weeks going into it,” Philips said. “I made sketches on paper and then used computer models to develop my idea and then used those drawings to help me build the frame.”

After around 100 hours of work across four months, Philips has the exterior completed.

“So, I have the entire outside done, I still need to test it in water, I am looking for a trailer right now, and then I’ll finish the inside construction after I test it,” Philips said.

Philips said he could not have done it without the help of friends and family.

“I think I’ve learned that once you get into a project it can be a lot more than you expect,” Philips said. “Having other people to work with is really critical for success.”

Senior Brayden Liakos, who helped Sam in the construction of the base of the boat, agreed.

“I learned that teamwork is very useful because there’s no way you can get get things done with just one person like that,” Liakos said.

Simon Wenger also helped Sam with construction.

We mostly worked on putting the boards together, he built the frame and then we nailed them to the frame and he had other people come over to help us put the boards on the side,” Wenger said. “We also put on the stuff that kept it waterproof.”

Simon was just happy that he got to help out.

“Me and Sam are pretty close friends so that’s a big factor, so like, helping a friend,” Wenger said. “Hopefully, if we built it right so we can take it out on the water someday.”