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QUIDNON: A Tiny House That Floats — And Sails!

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This is QUIDNON: A tiny house that floats — and sails!

This is a design and prototype of Dmitry Orlov’s solution to finding a place to park your tiny house. Scroll to read his story and get all the details here on his website.

Please enjoy, read more and re-share below!

Related: Knot Home: Lake Union Tiny Houseboat Tour

QUIDNON: A Tiny House That Floats — And Sails!

Images via QUIDNON

Images via QUIDNON

Related: The Hobbit Houseboat in Seattle

From the Designer: 

Tiny houses are great, but there are a few problems. One is zoning: it’s hard to find places where you are allowed to put one, especially if it’s anywhere near the bigger cities where the good jobs are. Another is flooding: more and more places are subject to flooding everywhere. Yet another is various local regulations that restrict what and how you can build.

For two years now I have been working on a unique tiny house project—a houseboat, a sailboat, a beach house—that can be built out of a kit as a DIY project for not very much money. It is a tiny house that floats. And it also sails!

I am not a dreamer or an amateur: I am an engineer, and I have been living aboard a boat, with my family, for over 10 years now. Two other engineers have also been working on it for the past year, and it’s poised to really take off now.

You can keep this floating tiny house at a marina, at an anchorage, on an empty stretch of beach, or anywhere where you are allowed to store a boat next to a house (and that includes most suburbs). It is designed to spend 30 years in the water without any major maintenance.

The entire design process is described on this blog: quidnon.blogspot.com. We plan to build our first QUIDNON later next year. I hope that your readers join us on this adventure, and that some of them see the advantages of a tiny house that floats and join us.


Related: Adventurous Couple Living on a Sailboat Year-Round in Alaska

Our big thanks to Dmitry for sharing!

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Natalie C. McKee

Natalie C. McKee is a contributor for Tiny House Talk and the Tiny House Newsletter. She's a wife, and mama of three little kids. She and her family are homesteaders with sheep, goats, chickens, ducks and quail on their happy little acre.

Latest posts by Natalie C. McKee (see all)

{ 19 comments… add one }
  • jerry
    December 16, 2016, 1:48 pm

    Well I’d make it solar powered instead as not something you’d want to sail much.
    And supply power needs when not moving.
    Also too many beds. We are talking a home, not a barracks.
    And an 8′ wide version that could be used as a trailer and moved easily between water bodies.
    But water living is great as the last fairly free place for rivers, lakes and protected waters this could be a nice home.
    And not expensive to build.
    There are many houseboat plans available free too online if you need one smaller, etc.
    These were called Shanty boats is a place to start, modern versions at least.

    • Natalie
      December 19, 2016, 11:36 am

      Oh good to know! — Tiny House Talk Team

  • December 16, 2016, 2:00 pm

    My plans are to put one of TH on to a pontoon platform with a 50 hp motor. It will roll on to the rig and be held in place with pins, pull the pins and TH rolls off the boat. I check with the CC. They said as long as you have fire e, horn, floats , first aid kit. It will be good to go. But this was last yr.

    • Natalie
      December 19, 2016, 11:35 am

      Interesting! — Tiny House Talk Team

  • Fergal
    December 16, 2016, 2:48 pm

    Sadly, I have checked a number of places and many municipalities, landbound and waterfront , have expressly made it illegal to live in a boat, or in a boat beside a house, and in/on anything but designated mooring areas. Some lakes have not one so, as yet. Good luck with finding a place to live in your floating (or not) home.

  • Lisa E.
    December 16, 2016, 3:10 pm

    I agree, too many beds. This is fine for a family, but what about the single person with animals? You need to take some of these spaces and have other options available, like instead of one of the double-births, make it an office space, and the other spaces (settees) can be used for storage, flat screen viewing, or a music area. I also agree with making it so you can easily pull it onto a carrier and take it to other locations. Good idea, though. Just needs a little tweaking here and there.

    • Natalie
      December 19, 2016, 11:34 am

      Yes just depends on the owners. — Tiny House Talk Team

  • Claude
    December 16, 2016, 4:22 pm

    A different application of a mobile tiny house. For the purpose of economy it should be trailerable, otherwise the slip cost is almost like a monthly rent. Always loved sail boats, pure freedom.

  • Sylvester Riel
    December 16, 2016, 7:08 pm

    This looks to me like an attempt at a modernized version of the Chinese junk including the use of the battened Chinese junk sail. Too many beds as others have pointed out but I like it. If it is anything like its progenitor I think it would make for a very nice design.

    • Natalie
      December 19, 2016, 11:25 am

      Glad you like it! — Tiny House Talk Team

  • Michael
    December 17, 2016, 6:40 am

    The design is trying to maximize interior space and keep cost down.
    Beside racing boat I haven’t seen not one 36 ft boat with ten bunks.
    The junk rig is one of the simplest rig on the planet and it cost a fraction of the mostly used Bermuda system which is expensive and far away from being simple to handle.
    Sure there are to many bunk beds but this is easy to change.
    Interesting is the idea of using it as a tiny home on which floats for a big family. In FL we have plenty of couples and bachelors living on their boats.
    I like this alternative well thought approach and would like to
    watch its further development especially when it comes to building, sailing and cost.

    • Natalie
      December 19, 2016, 11:07 am

      Yes I will look forward to the finished product! — Tiny House Talk Team

  • jm
    December 17, 2016, 5:26 pm

    As a motorhome is a motorhome–a boat is a boat.

    • Natalie
      December 19, 2016, 10:53 am

      Both can be tiny homes 🙂 — Tiny House Talk Team

      • jm
        December 19, 2016, 4:11 pm

        Sure, so can a tent. My point is that motorhomes, campers and boats are pretty specialized and have had their own websites for years. Maybe because being a “home” isn’t their primary purpose.

        • Natalie
          December 20, 2016, 6:21 am

          But why not? We want to encourage people to think outside the box and live sustainably and inexpensively, and if a boat works for someone, saying it’s not a home only hurts tiny homes in general. — Tiny House Talk Team

  • Donna
    December 18, 2016, 10:41 am

    Junk rig is sweet and simple and sails on her feet. Ideal for liveaboard. If she heels more than 8 degrees, you reduce sail — easy as lowering a venetian blind. I’ve lived aboard several junks for many years — a 57′ teak Hong Kong junk, a lorcha (British hull and Chinese rig), and my current 1900 34′ Ho Sang teak junk. All sweet and beamy, shallow-draft comfortable homes for exploring. Yes I would change some bunks to living and storage spaces and larger opening ports for views and breezes, but otherwise, right on.

    • Natalie
      December 19, 2016, 10:42 am

      So glad you love it 🙂 — Tiny House Talk Team

  • AJ
    April 3, 2019, 11:51 am

    I grew up sleeping quite comfortably in a Navy surplus hammock with a sleeping bag, and they fold up into a locker by day. Use them here.
    Your boat needs insulation & double glazing for winter living–the dank humidity will give you pneumonia quick, otherwise. Also you need screens on windows, or mosquitoes will eat you alive & give you diseases in summer.
    For furniture, think IKEA Norbo drop leaf wall-mounted table; good-looking plastic stacking lawn chairs for space-saving furniture which can’t be ruined by humidity, and can be moved ashore for picnics.
    Don’t forget polyester curtains for privacy; match curtain, bedding, floating-cushion cover colors to linoleum floor for unified decor look. Get and use a Kelly Kettle (set on a concrete paver) for boiling water and small cooking safely in a boat.
    Attach corks on cords to every utensil, tool, etc, so you can retrieve it when it falls overboard.

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