WSJ: Weekend Sailor Turned a Hobby Into a Big Business

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In his early 30s, Frank Butler owned a small machine shop in North Hollywood, Calif., making parts for manufacturing companies. Then his hobby took over.

Mr. Butler, a novice weekend sailor, ordered a dinghy from a tiny boatyard in the Los Angeles area and paid in advance. When the boatyard failed to deliver on time, Mr. Butler showed up at the premises and built the dinghy himself. With help from others at the boatyard, he figured out how to build a boat by doing it.

“I’ve always liked problems,” he told Cruising World magazine in 2008. “I like solving them.”

He enjoyed the task so much that he soon started building boats for other people.

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