How To Build A Boat Bench Seat

How To Build A Boat Bench Seat

Building boats has been a popular pastime for many patient souls for many long centuries. It is a trade that has seen plenty of golden years. Today, it continues to exist thanks to modern sporting. If you are a regular boat building enthusiast, feel free to visit the My Boat Plans website for a detailed, expansive introduction to boat building. Now, let’s talk about how to build a boat bench seat.

There you will find several boat building projects that include many ideas for what we will be tackling today. We are going to look at how to build a boat bench seat.

Building a Bench Seat for your Boat

Seating is one of the prime fundamentals of building a boat. A boat, canoe, kayak, or even a raft without seating is simply impractical. Yes, it might float, but staying atop the boat will be difficult. Impractical seating can take the fun out of water sporting or create difficult conditions to fish in. Benches are perhaps the simplest and most common seating that you would find on modern boats.

Simply, it is because these seats are more practical. The benches are sturdy and can accommodate more seating space. Other seating forms in the way of single chairs and stools are optional if you are a lone boatman. However, on specific kinds of boats, only benches would do.

There are so many bench building ideas out there. You will certainly find a bench design that will answer your every need. Ideas can range in a variety of practical designs. Some will allow for more storage space, better comfort, and better security.

For fishermen, a swivel bench design would be a curious addition. Repairing and replacing the seating of a boat can become a mandatory chore. However, you don’t have the skills for this. It is advisable to visit the above-mentioned site for expert initiation. If you do know how to change your seating, then it will be an easy and simple chore for you.


When building or replacing a boat’s seating, there are many factors to keep in consideration. This is not only for practical purposes, but to adhere to safety laws implied by national coast guards. It is these simple yet influential factors that you should not ignore.

The first consideration is having a clear idea of the boat. What is the maximum weight capacity of the boat? This is slightly more complicated than you would expect. You’ll need to calculate the weight of the seat with all the weight brought onto the boat. This includes passengers, stores, fuel, and every additional thing that can add to the total weight. Keeping the seating too light, though, will make it weak, unless you use materials more suitable.

Secondly, you should consider the ergonomics of your boat, ensuring that the seat is both the right size and is proportionately correct. The bench should not be an obstacle. If you want to install a foldable bench or one that is removable, then you should always keep in mind the weight. This is just as important as the size.

If you are installing additions, the extra weight will be a factor that may reduce the amount of gear. You could also reduce the goods to be on board. The third factor is the amount of seating that you want to provide. Of course, based on the number of passengers you let on board.

Keep in mind that all boats and sea vessels have a maximum capacity of passengers. Consider this for your safety. Do not provide more seating than allowable; the extra weight will only be a drag.

Last but not least, you should consider a smart seating plan. If you want the most efficient and practical seating on a boat, consider everything. You should consider placing the weight evenly across the span of the boat. This will provide the keenest and safest balance on the water. Doing it precisely will take knowledge and practice, all of which you will find here on the My Boat Plans website.

Basic Idea

Your basic idea will incorporate the correct sizes for the boat you intend to fit, according to the base provided. If the boat has no seating base, it should be installed separately or with the seating you want to build.

The basic idea will be nothing more than to board surfaces fastened together by angles or brackets, or even a solid frame. These two boards will provide the seat and back support of the bench. Alternatively, you can have a metal frame built and fitted with upholstery. Either option is a good enough basic plan.

However, there are minute factors to consider other than the look and design of the bench and the base, as well.

How to Build A Boat Bench Seat

Other Factors

The basic principle is you can make a comfortable bench out of nearly everything. But, to make one for a boat is slightly more complicated. Keeping to the greatest risk factor, the weight capacity of the boat, you should use materials that are light yet rigid and durable.

For the two panels of the seat and back support, it is best recommended to make use of Coosa board or something similar. This material is a very dense polyurethane foam reinforced with fiberglass that is especially used for naval manufacturing. It is solid, tough, rigid, and best of all, it is unaffected by water or insect infestations and is incredibly light.

If you use any kind of metal on a boat. If it is to connect the two panels with angles or brackets before calling me in. For decoration, keep in mind that most metals are not corrosion or rustproof. Use metals like aluminum, chrome, or strong brass. These will not rust in wet or salty air conditions.

Once more, the materials used for the upholstery should be considered for its water-repelling qualities. If the seat gets wet and soaks the water, it will not be a comfortable trip. You are free to experiment with as many ideas as you want, so long as you keep to the most basic guidelines on how to build a boat bench seat.


As an alternative to making your bench seat, you can buy pre-made casts or completed chairs from internet stores. Local watersports shop even sell them.

You would simply have to fit it to your boat. But remember, you must ensure it is the right size. If seating is a minor problem on your boat, think of using island rafts. Island rafts are inflatable floating rafts made to drag along sitting passengers.

There are plenty of varieties to search for that can be attached and dragged alongside or behind the boat. The only difficulty of using an island raft is the limitation in speed, as most are not designed for adventurous use. For a fishing trip with plenty of company, it would be ideal.

For more boat building tips, check out Boat Diaries’ blog section.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Special offer for our visitors

Get your Boat Building Free Guide

We will never send you spam. By signing up for this you agree with our privacy policy and to receive regular updates via email in regards to industry news and promotions