We build a little Junk
July 5-6, 2014
We were donated this little Bolger Nymph from one of the Coots.
It's a nice little boat, and we wanted to have some fun with it,
so we decided to make it into a Chinese Junk. You can see what
we did last week. This week, we were going to do more.
Step 1, pull all the screws from last week and fill the holes with
toothpicks. If you don't have one of these little nut drivers, you
should. The charge lasts for days and they are powerful as all get
out. We have Bosch
from Lowes. The link chows just an impact driver for $129 -
we got both a drill and impact driver for $159 at Christmas. Watch
for sales and deals.
Next thing to do was knock off some corners. I learned a trick
from outstanding boats designer, John
Welsford: Use an angle grinder - I use mine with a 36grit pad.
Goes so friggin fast it's like using a chainsaw.
Whoops, break time. A couple who had just purchased a pair of stand
up paddlers came down to test them out. I asked if I could try one,
they said "Sure. Start on your knees, then . . .
. . . Stand up. It works! I wasn't entirely comfortable - still
a lot of weight aloft - and I still had my wallet and cell phone
on me, so I only took it on a quick loop.
OK, after the angle grinder came the router
but our donated router likes to let the bit slip, so my perfect
corner became less perfect the longer I went. That's fine, back
to the angle grinder.
We are trying to 'expand our skills' with this boat, so I decided
to get artsy with the rudder reinforcement plate. Nice, innut? Always
marks your centerlines boldly.
Next thing I needed to do was some epoxy work. I was going to use
thickened epoxy, and was going to put it in a plastic sandwich bag
with a corner cut off to use as a squeeze bag. The hard part is
getting the epoxy from the mixing cup into the bag, so I made this
little jig. The sides are about 5" tall and the base is about
There. It holds the bag open just fine. I spent the rest of the
evening working by myself, getting things done here and there.
Saturday was dead calm - water as smooth as glass.
Curt was there, and we tried to get an idea of how we expected
the boat to sit in the water. Our best guess was the skipper would
sit as close to the middle as possible.
Enough sitting. Time to get to work. We'd savaged the outside with
the angle grinder, and now needed to smooth out our savaging.
Geoff is in charge of rudder design. We did a little practical
testing of tiller ergonomics.
Visitors! The journalism teacher from the local high school, Peter,
came by with his son-in-law, Kyle, and grandson, Huckleberry.
We put 'em in Bea and off they went.
It was experimenting time. I'd bought some tempura paint to see
if I could tint epoxy. My initial trial was unsuccessful, so I read
the directions on the label and saw they recommended mixing it 1:1
(when using it with water) so I figured, "What the heck?"
and tried it 1:1 as well.
Duckworks Economy Epoxy comes out 3oz at a time, so I got a
3oz measuring glass.
It mixed up very well, creating a thicker-than-syrup but not-as-thick-as-mayonaise
but . . . . it didn't go as far as I'd have liked. We only got
half the interior of a pretty small boat covered, and I can't tell
you it is any better than plain old exterior paint. Expensive experiment
- works, but isn't worth the cost. Coat with plain epoxy, then exterior
primer and exterior paint.