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Building your own boat with Wharram Designs is the easiest and most cost effective way to fulfil your sailing dreams. Wharram Self-build boat plans start from only £100.
We recommended you follow the tried and trusted Wharram process to ensure the boat you build is both the right type of boat for your needs and also one that will match your building skills and expenditure.
Wharram Design Book 1. Read the Wharram Design Book and familiarise yourself with the various designs and their unique qualities.
Wharram Study Plans 2. Order one or more sets of our Boat Building Study Plans and immerse yourself into the boat builder's mindset; evaluate the costs; the amount of time required to build your boat; where you will build it and where you will eventually launch it.
Wharram Building Plans 3. Once you have decided on the boat that is right for YOU to build, order the Boat Builder's Plans and become a real life member of the Wharram Boat Builder Community.

Storm Tactics on Wharram Catamarans

Wharram Cat on stormy seas
Wharram catamarans are well known for their seaworthiness and hundreds have been cruising the oceans of the World for nearly 50 years.

As can be expected, many encountered storms during their voyaging, some were unlucky enough to encounter very severe ones and even cyclones and hurricanes.

Don Brazier, Wharram agent in New Zealand and owner/builder of a beautiful 41 foot Narai Mk IV, has been collecting accounts from many Wharram sailors who have experienced severe weather at sea. He himself has made a number of voyages in the Pacific and encountered severe weather, in which he deployed drogue and parachute.

Don’s collection of severe weather experiences on Wharram Catamarans is now available to read online. It is a work in progress and more anecdotes will be added over time. Go and read it now, and come back in the future to see what’s new.

If you have experienced severe weather on a Wharram Catamaran, we would like to hear your story. Please contact us.

Spirit of Gaia renovation, 20 years after her launching (Part 5)

Gliding along the Ionian Sea aboard Pahi 65 Largyalo
Gliding along the Ionian Sea aboard Pahi 65 'Largyalo'
I am writing this while quietly gliding along the Ionian Sea somewhere midway between Greece and Sicily. We are sailing aboard Largyalo, sister ship of Spirit of Gaia. See

Largyalo spent the winter with Gaia in Messolonghi marina. Petra and Bertie, her owners, worked many weeks this Spring getting her painted and doing many other jobs to get her ready for another Season's sailing. She was relaunched on 9th May and ready to sail on the 16th, the day after James's birthday.

Digital Study Plans Launched!

Digital Download Study Plans Wharram Study Plans provide more detail than is available in our Design Book, and are intended to help you decide if a particular boat design is right for you. As well as continuing our traditional printed format, we are proud to announce the release of our digitised range of Wharram Study Plans. Within seconds of purchase, your study plan will be available for instant download. This also has the benefit of removing costly postage charges for International customers. To buy, simply select 'Digital Version' before adding the study plan to the cart.

Browse Our Study Plans

We hope you enjoy the added flexibility and cost effectiveness this feature will bring you!

- The James Wharram Designs team

Hui Wharram 2014 - Event Report

The 2014 Hui Wharram Provided a Sampling of Sizes and Styles

The 2014 Spring Hui Wharram (Hui is Hawaiian for “Gathering”) held in Islamorada Florida at the famous Lorelei Cabana Bar ( was a success again this year. Nearly 70 people attended during the weekend and spent quite some time crawling all over and sailing the six Wharram catamarans that made it to the event. More than fifty of these visitors attended our Dutch treat dinner on Saturday evening and many were pleased to win one of the door prizes.

The Fabulous Florida Keys provided plenty of sunshine but lots of wind, unfortunately a little too much and from exactly the wrong direction for some to get here. Quite a bit of chop and some very heavy seas beyond the reef in the Florida Straits toward the Bahamas dissuaded even some of our usual stalwarts. Isn’t that often the case??? Mother nature and Poseidon are a powerful team, especially when they are a little annoyed with each other!

Brandon Gamble Photo of Attendees on Pahi 31 at 2014 Hui Wharram
Brandon Gamble Photo of Attendees on Pahi 31 at 2014 Hui Wharram

These are quite simple outline sketch drawings used to build our own trailer and are also suitable for the Tiki 26 & Tiki 30 with minor alterations. Tiki 21 Trailer


Ruth has gone to join the navigators in the sky

Ruth as navigator on her voyage across the Tasman sea aboard  Tangaroa Mk I 'KM' in 1975I'm very sad to announce that Ruth Wharram (nee Merseburger) has departed this life in the early morning of 4th September, at the age of 92, at home in Devoran. Her health had been failing over the last two years after a stroke the day after a fantastic 90th Birthday party.

Ruth has been a great strength in our lives; ever since she met James in 1951 she has guided and supported him in his life's efforts. I first met Ruth in 1967 and have shared my life with James and her since 1973. She has been a great friend to me and close ally in all the work, travelling and sailing we have done together.


The dream of building and sailing your own boat...

Over 72 pages showing details of all currently available self-build boat designs and the Wharram boat building philosophy.

This is THE starting place for satisfying your dream of building and owning your self-build catamaran. It contains all the basic information about all currently available self-build Wharram designs, with much basic building and historical development detail. There are photos and basic layout diagrams of the designs.

We would always suggest you buy the Design Book first, as it gives the opportunity to "browse" all designs to see what may really suit your needs before investing in either Study Plans, which contain more detail of each specific design, or the full set of Building Plans.


  • 2 x A2 Plan Sheets
  • Materials List
  • 1 x A3 Colour photo sheet
  • Competition article
  • Information page
Amatasi Study Plan
Building Method: Ply/Glass/Epoxy/Laminate
Length Overall: 27' 7"
8.4 m
Beam Overall: 13' 10"
4.2 m
Waterline length: 23' 4" 7.1 m
Draft (Max): 1' 2" 0.36 m
Weight (Approx): 990lbs 450 kg
Loading capacity: 1540lbs 700 kg
Sail area: 242 sqft 22 sqm
Building Time Estimate:
650 hrs
Double Canoe designed for Eco fishing, youth groups and Coastal Trekking.

Winner of Classic Boat Design Competition 2010.
Photos of Amatasi
Building Plans coming soon!

See All Photos
Building Method: Ply/Glass/Epoxy Stitch and Glue
Length Overall: 30' 9.15 m
Beam Overall: 16' 4"
5.00 m
Waterline length: 25' 5" 7.75 m
Draft (incl. LAR keel): 2' 1" 0.65 m
Weight: 2200 lbs 1000 kg
Loading capacity: 2200 lbs 1000 kg
Sail area: 385 sqft 35.8 sqm
Building Time Estimate: 900 hrs

The ideal low budget self build ocean cruiser.

With a sleeping capacity of 6 (two doubles in the hulls) and spacious level deck area, TIKI 30 makes an excellent low cost charter boat.

It is our largest self-build boat design that is capable of being towed behind a vehicle. This means keeping the build weight down, and simple but adequate accommodation. This is not a high cost, luxury boat, but an elegant, versatile, 'double canoe' sailing boat, providing basic comfort for 'Living on the Sea'.


See All Photos
Building Method: Ply/Glass/Epoxy Stitch and Glue
Length Overall: 21' 6.40 m
Beam Overall: 12' 3.66 m
Waterline length: 18'6" 5.64 m
Draft: 1'2" 0.35 m
Weight: 790 lbs 360 kg
Loading capacity: 1000 lbs 460 kg
Sail area: 208 sqft 19.25 sqm
Building Time Estimate: 400 hrs

The Tiki 21 was designed in 1981 as an easy to build Coastal Trek catamaran, using new epoxy/glass stitch & glue techniques. In 1982 the new and then quite radical Tiki 21 was given first prize by Cruising World magazine (USA) in their design competition for a ‘Trailable Gunkholer’. Since then, 925 Tiki 21 Plans have been sold (June 2010).

In 1991-97 Rory McDougall sailed his self-built Tiki 21 'Cooking Fat' around the world, sometimes alone, sometimes with a companion. She was, and still is, the smallest catamaran to have circumnavigated. In 2010 Rory entered 'Cooking Fat' in the Jester Challenge (single handed 'race' across the Atlantic for small boats - under 30ft) and came into Newport, Rhode Island a close second after 34 days.

The Tiki 21 has stayed popular as a simple, easy to trail Coastal Trekker all over the world. Her unique soft Wharram Wingsail Rig has been used on all subsequent Tiki and other Wharram designs (30ft - 65ft) and is very popular with the owners of these boats.

Winner of the Cruising World Design Competition - Read full article here..

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