Re-skinning
May 20/21 2016

A brief aside: I own a Neptune 16 that is hanging in the rafters of a barn because 200lbs of lead broke off from the swing keel. I need to rebuild the keel and to do that I need to learn how. I've been consulting with a friend, he advised me to make a male mold out of styrofoam, we'll pack special sand around it and pour the lead. In this step I am shaping the Styrofoam for the mold.

Huh. With 40grit sandpaper, it took less than 5 minutes to do the shaping. (it's smoother than shown in the pic.)

Time to get to re-skinning the kayak. Remember last week when I had to undo all the work we'd done before? In the interim, a 150' roll of 8 oz polyester arrived. Looks like we'll be making more Skin-on-Frame boats in the future.

The kayak is 14' 6" long, so I'll cut a 15' piece off the roll.

This HSGM hot knife with Type R blade is fantastic - some of the best money we have spent.

Well . . . poop. It's an inch short on the other end, too. Either I measured wrong or it takes more than 15' of cloth to cover a 14.5' boat, but either way, that's a $30 mistake. Good thing we'll be rebuilding the coracles later.

I stitched the ends first - with the boat upside down - and then flipped her.

There's a trick to stitching the top seam, and I'm not sure I've learned it. You are trying to pull the cloth as tight as possible without A) separating the threads of the weave and 2) not end up with a big bag of cloth in the middle. I got it mostly right.

That's it for the day - I got the basting stitch on the seams.

I took the Bay Road from Newport to Toledo and WOW, the tide was out. Clamers were out, too. I like Oregon.

I looked at my stitch job from last night again and was unimpressed with the tightness. Time to redo it.

Pinch and roll and do the whip-stitch.

Once you get to the end, reverse the whip-stitch to get . . .

That looks nice, don't it?

Time to do the hatch.

Strap tightened down nicely.

It took me two tries to get it this nice. I'm pretty sure those wrinkles would come out when I heat it.

Everything is in place. I learned not to drill through unpainted cloth - it can pull the threads and make runs. We'll see how it looks after tightening.

Sure, she's got a few flaws, but she's still going to be pretty.