Boat shopping and project plan

August 20, 2007

Well, I went to the big blue box on Saturday to get boat bits.

I came home with a pull saw, a t-square, and a piece of practice wood. I left the pretty little Stanley plane in the store for another trip. My rule on tools is gonna be "buy em when you need em."

I also made some plans for production process, carry rack, and exact materials.

Details after the fold

I had originally intended to get a sheet of 1/4 BC exterior to make the frames with, and to use that as practice.

It turns out that they don't carry BC exterior, and they don't trust the quality of the stuff when they get it in. I was worried about project weight anyway. I will spend the extra money and go with cheap 5-ply 5mm marine plywood - cheap being a relative term here. That should save weight.

In the short run, I picked up a sheet of 5mm luan for $11. I will use that to make a 1/4 scale model of the boat to test technique. It will also let me figure out exactly what I want to do with the seats and decking.

After looking at wood stock and re-reading the plans a little more, I realized that I will need to make my framing and wales by ripping long boards. Whoops.

After a day to get over the shock, I am sort of looking forward to it. Tonight I will grab a couple of slabs of cheap pine to use for the practice boat, and even to start ripping into frames for the final boat.

For the wales I am going to need long thin 16 foot pieces. I am not sure if it would be easier to somehow lug home and rip a 16 foot board, or if I am better off bringing home 8 footers and making a scarf joint. I have not yet picked a wood for the wales - the designer spec'd soft pine for ease of working. I will probably grab 8 foot boards of the most affordable clear stock. The wales are gonna get some hard wear from cartopping, so I am leaning toward getting a hard wood and then borrowing a neighbor's table saw for the cuts.

I have not decided what to use for the bulkheads around my flotation. They might be the same pine I use for the disposable frames, or they might be the same harder clearer wood that I use for the wales.

The stem is gonna be a 2*4, cut long and then planed to shape. Again, this is a cut that would be eased with a table saw.

I will be cutting oars from a large board, laminating the handles, and working from there. That is a lot of saw work - and I don't own a bandsaw. The plan there is to make my first set from clear 1*8 pine. If I see ash, I will use that instead. The recommendation is to start with one 16 foot board to make two oars, because that way you know the wood will be balanced in weight and strength.

The cartopping frame is going to be two pressure-treated 2*4s attached to the factory rack with countersunk u-bolts. The factory frame is rated for 150 lbs, so I should be fine with any boat I can lift. I will put blocks on the outside of the 2*4s to help in loading, strap the boat to the 2*4s, and run a bow line down to the front center underframe. That is the only underneath tie-down I found on the car.

I will test using a pair of ropes running back from the bow to the car rack as a way of preventing slip-forward. If those don't feel secure enough I will have to get a couple of tie-down eyes welded to the rear frame of the car. The bumpers are all very slick and plastic and not good for tying to.

Finally, I am visiting my folks over the weekend. I think I may be able to borrow some woodworking clamps from Dad's workbench. I really want the clamps on his workbench, but I have no place to put bench, or clamps, or even for indoor woodworking.

This is gonna be real backyard (and back deck, and front porch) boatbuilding.

Posted by Red Ted at August 20, 2007 10:27 AM | TrackBack