At the Boathouse
June 27-28, 2014
We took a bit of a break from the Boathouse to go adventuring.
Adventures are over and it is time to get back to work.
I unlocked the doors and - it was as if I'd never left. That boat
in the foreground is a Bolger
Nymph that had been donated to the Boathouse. We decided to
make it into a tiny Chinese-style Junk.
Before the break, we'd made a Cooper's
Mast from a single 12' 2x4. There are 6 staves and a 30"
plug in each end. It is glued together with TiteBond III and is
both shockingly light and amazingly strong.
One of the things we are trying to do with this little boat is
'up our build game' and in that light, we are putting forth extra
effort to make things look nice. I didn't want a hexagon mast, I
wanted a round one, and that takes effort. I made a little V-shaped
brace to hold the mast in position while I took the power planer
First pass at knocking the corners off.
Second pass with the power planer. After this, I used a belt sander
and got it mostly round.
There is the sail - the ugliest one I have ever made. I cut it
from leftover bits from another sail project, which is why the stripes
run horizontal instead of vertical. I got the bamboo from a friend's
farm out in Molalla. Test fitting showed the mast could be 11',
so we chopped a foot off of the top.
We saw a family out walking the docks and did our best to get them
in a canoe, but they were headed to the coast and had only stopped
to look around.
Mast round and trimmed, it was time to turn to on the other fiddy
bits. This will be the leeboard, sort of a modified Elephant Ear.
36" long, 6" round at the top and 12" round at the
bottom, and 3 layers of 1/4" ply thick down the middle. Will
it work? I don't know.
Curt tried his hand at cutting seats. It's a little harder than
On Saturday, Geoff joined us and turned to on making the rudder.
Seats are hard. Sometimes, you have to try a lot.
Designing a rudder is a contemplative activity.
If you aren't using an angle grinder for your boat building, you're
doing it wrong. A nice, 40grit pad on there and epoxy runs, drips,
and fiberglass seams disappear in the blink of an eye.
Curt was impressed, too.
Our last task for the weekend was to epoxy in the mast step, deck,
and seats. We decided 'level' for the boat based on the plans and
then put the mast vertical.
Next week: make her pretty and maybe paint.