The goal of the class was to both build the boats, introducing students to the tools and techniques of Japanese boatbuilding, but also talk about apprentice learning as it is practiced in Japan, with its roots in Zen Buddhist training. My students said they were interested in working with their hands, trying something non-academic, and getting exposure to Japanese culture.
One boat was a five meter version of the six meter ayubune I built last spring in Kameoka, Japan (see 2014 blog posts). While in Kameoka last spring I found an original boat and measured it; this class then built a faithful replica. Our other boat was designed from lines I received from a class at Wakayama University in Japan that found them on a volunteer trip to Tohoku.
Students wrote papers on different facets of the project, and its my hope to bring this work together into the beginnings of a manuscript on how to build these boats. One student also produced CAD drawings of the two boats.