Why no digital packraft plans?

Many people ask me if I can send a digital set of packraft plans to save them the cost of shipping, and I say no for two reasons.

The first reason is that the cost of printing at your local print shop will be higher than the cost of shipping (feel free to check the cost of printing a 150 cm/60″ wide drawing 3-4 metres (8-14′) long – most print shops do not even have a printer that will print the width of the plans. On a home printer, the plans fit on more than 100 sheets of paper. The cost of printing at home will be low, but the printer will not print all the way to the edge of the paper, so you would have to cut out every single piece separately and then join them with tape or glue, being very careful to keep everything lined up perfectly to avoid distorting the shapes. All of this cutting, taping, and measuring takes at least four hours for the smallest packraft plans (believe me – I tried it), so even if your time is worth only $5 per hour, it is still worthwhile to pay for shipping. Additionally, If your printer does not pull paper through perfectly straight, or you do a less than perfect job lining up the sheets, small imperfections in shape that you do not notice on one sheet of paper become magnified x 100 in the plans, leading to an incorrect shape.

The second reason I don’t distribute digital plans is that I have spent literally hundreds of hours developing them, making multiple prototypes, improving the plans, making more prototypes, improving the plans again, and so on. I give away almost all of my knowledge for free in the form of videos and written instructions, and I keep the cost low because I want the plans to be affordable for everyone, but every time I get a few dollars in my account it motivates me to innovate more, make more videos, write more posts, and help you out.

I hope this gives you some insight into my reasoning, and that you will choose to support the DIY Packraft project.

Thanks for your understanding, and happy packrafting!