Bayou Belle Houseboat - Scow hull, trailerable, plywood, wood frame

by Burnsy

The building of a trailerable Bayou Belle houseboat.

The building of a trailerable Bayou Belle houseboat.

The Bayou Belle houseboat with a scow hull, is trailerable, built with plywood and wood frame. I have had the plans of the Bayou Belle for 40 years, but never had a place to build the craft. But now I have my home and newly built garage, so voila!

I have it closed up for the winter months, and will finish it this spring when the weather gets warmer. I'm looking for a 40hp outboard for power.

Over the years I have built and rebuilt the craft in my head, and after many drawings have made modifications in the original plans to make it even easier, and stronger to build.

The plywood hull took about two weeks to build, and the cabin structure three days. I should have the houseboat ready for the water in another month, when the warmer weather hits our province.

Looking at the technical details, she is 22 feet in length, and 39 inch sides, with 6ft 3 inches in the cabin structure, and a 96 inch beam. This should make her a very trailerable houseboat.

The windows will be installed in the spring. I salvaged them from an older 22ft RV trailer, as well as the window frames, and I got other parts from the RV.

Regards, Burnsy.

Reply - Answer
Well Burnsy, congratulations on your progress, and thank you for submitting the picture.

I can see that you are well prepared, you have found an old RV to salvage for windows and other parts, since that will greatly reduce the overall cost.

We are all looking forward to a picture of when you launch her. Do keep us up to date :)

Lastly, hopefully some of our readers will share and post comments about their own Bayou Belle houseboat experiences. Feel free to use the "Click here to post comments." link found near the bottom of this page.

Thanks again for sharing, IAN - from

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Comments for Bayou Belle Houseboat - Scow hull, trailerable, plywood, wood frame

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Houseboat scow design
by: Anonymous

Been thinking about designing a 45' loa x 8' beam x 4' sheer
scow in three 15' sections, and must be trailerable.

I'm figuring frames of 2x6 fir on 2' centers, 3/4" plywood, fore and aft open decks with a 15' centered cabin.

Power I hope, will be my 50hp 4 stroke.

Your thoughts, JV

Too bad you waited so long.
by: roger

Hey Burnsby, I to have mulled over building a houseboat ever since I was a kid in 1959 when I first read a Popular Mechanics magazine.

The magazine had plans to build a Popular Mechanics houseboat and it was a 24 ft and looks a lot like the bayou bell.

I live in northern Ontario with lots of lakes but only a few camping spots. So I to am building a boat as I am 61 years young and just retired.

I am going with a modified P.M.\bayou bell houseboat. This has been a life dream. I will start in December but my problem is that the boat was in 2 different issues!

I have the first one which was printed in Dec 1959 and I need to know what was in the Jan 1980 issue?

Any help would be greatly appreciated, and if anyone needs the first issue I can give you a copy.


Building a Bayou Belle houseboat
by: albert in st louis

Hi, I am thinking about building this Bayou Belle houseboat. I am wondering whether or not it will sit level in the water when moored with a large outboard motor and two 10 gallon gas tanks in the rear.

Thank you, Albert

Any more pic's?
by: gillbillyy

Please post more pic's, I would love to see more on how you mounted your motor and fuel tanks.

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