Tuesday, February 28, 2012

limber holes and glueing

I should take this moment to say that so far I have purchased 4 sheets of plywood.  Thats $52 dollars of wood.  All the other wood I have used on the boat has been reclaimed.  I found a 2"x6"x15' board (pine by the smell of it when I cut it) on the river which made the chines and gunwales.  I picked up some crating from a construction site (yellow pine so it seems) that is being used for all the framing.  I got some cedar decking from a neighbor which has become the floors and thwarts.  I have yet to make the thole pins for rowing and some cleats, but I feel confident that I have those pieces of wood lying around somewhere.  I also have yet to build the skeg and skids for the bottom.  We'll see where those come from.

Today I took all the ribs out and routed out limber holes for water to drain thru.  Each rib got 3 holes.
 I used a 1/2 round router bit.  That worked pretty well.
Once I got all the routing done I reattached all the ribs as well as did the final fastening of the frames in the bow.
ribs and framing for the floors.  Note that the orientation of the ribs.  This is because they are only for supporting the risers for the thwarts and the frames for the floors.  They have little to do with preserving the shape of the hull.

I also glued in a inner false keel, of a sorts, in the aft compartment.  This is to give some support to the skeg I hope to attach.  I used the same plywood so that the thickness is double where the skeg will be.

Big iron weight (about 50lbs.) to hold down wood while glueing.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

risers and floors

Got the risers milled and temporarily installed.  The design calls for a 7" high box to sit on  so I put the risers 7" above the bottom of the boat.  The thwarts will add an almost and inch in height but the floors are a total of 2-1/8 inch above the bottom of the boat.  I am not sure how this will feel for a rowing position.  I have to remember to make stretchers or braces for my feet to push against while rowing.

 The risers are yellow pine, I think, reclaimed from a packing crate.  I made thwarts from cedar decking that is also reclaimed.  Don't know if I will make other thwarts that are a bit wider, these are only 5 1/2 inches wide.
 I milled new floors from the reclaimed cedar.  These floors are 5/8ths thick by 3" wide.  I think I like these although they are going to need some time and convincing to take the curve in the rocker of the aft 3 frames.
 Right now the floors are the full length of 7'6", but I may divide them in length to make it easier to get below them for bailing.

I still have to make the bulkheads and get them fitted.  I don't think I will make an inwhale as I don't really see the need for it, and it would just add weight, not much but it all adds up.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Spare ribs

I have removed all of the station frames and got all the ribs put in.

The ribs are not glued in yet so as to be able to work thru the application of the stiffner/skegs and a possible inner keel.

It is a bit strange to see the boat free of station frames.
I used some reclaimed cedar decking to get started on the floors.  I milled them down from 5-1/2" x 5/4" to 2-1/2" x 7/16".  These may prove to be to thin to use.  I may go up to 5/8" thick.  I am using the table saw to mill the wood.  Crude but effective.
Still need to put in the risers and  possibly an inwhale/clamp.

Monday, February 20, 2012


Well I got the 2 decks cut to basic shape and set in place just to see what it is that I am working towards. I still have station #7 in place at about midships but the frames for the compartments are locking in the shape fore and aft.
The camber on the aft compartment looks like it will be a bit of an issue for getting the deck to lay fair.  The camber is really in 2 directions and plywood hates that.
The foredeck is actually a little concave but seems as though it should sit just fine.
Fore deck without bulkhead.
I have also got the forward most set of frames in.  I have settled on 5 frames total between bulkheads.  It might be a bit much considering the boats design is with out any, but I am using a thinner plywood for the hull than the design calls for.
From this shot it looks like a powerboat yet to be.
From this shot the extreme rocker gives it away for being a rowing boat.  I hope to get the rest of the ribs in place and the floors made and dry fitted before I turn the boat back over to do the bottom glass, if I decide to use glass, and the stiffener/skegs, before I flip her back right side up and finish finally attach the  interior components.
I have started to really think about how I hope to build the tent for camping.  I have a plan!
I still don't have a name for her yet.  Her shape reminds me of a Pringle's potato chip, but that seems just wrong for any help naming her.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

By any other name...

I came to the idea that  maybe my version of the skiff will be called the "QTx".  Maybe I should write to J. Machalak  about it.  The "x" is to stand for ExPLORER.

I this version of the boat I have watertight compartments, fore and aft, both for storage and flotation.  A coaming of sorts will protect the cockpit from run off of rain or spray from those decks and allow for an attachment location for a small tent that will allow for camping aboard.  The storage spaces should have plenty of room for a few days of supplies and gear.  I am taking my inspiration for the camping arrangement from John Welsfords "Walkabout" sailing boat.  I may even include a very basic sailing rig, a down wind sail assist.

Yesterday I glued in the frames for the aft compartment.  I probably should have used the cedar decking scrap for the framing, as it is much lighter than the pine I got from the crates, but I didn't.  I'll consider it for the forward framing though I think for the frames amid ships the pine would be better suited.  I do hope to use the cedar for the floors and thwarts.

Still trying to decide between the simple and ever adaptable thole pins or oar locks, which are expensive and losing parts can be problematic.  I am leaning toward the pins.

I  also have to decide about oars.  I have a set of 7 foot oars that I use for my fiberglass 8' dink and I kind of feel I want something a tad bit longer even thought that is the length JM recommends for this boat.  I'd need to build my own if I want a longer oar, and that is part of the attraction to the idea.

Friday, February 3, 2012


It is now the middle of the two coldest months of the year and it doesn't seem as if winter has ever really begun.  I thought about doing some epoxy work in the shop the other day when the temps were suppose to hit 60'f, but decided I wasn't at that point yet.  Besides, the meteorologist say it can only get warmer from this point on, (the over all trend).

Well the bottom of the boat is attached and it is flipped right side up.  I have been shaping the stem, just for something to do while trying to decide what to do next.  I think the bottom is to thin to be practical.  At 4mm the plywood could be holed by a good punch of a fist, or dropping something heavy on it, like an anchor.  I do like the light weight feel of the boat.  It feels like a kayak when lifted, but I wonder how it will do being moved in and out of the water.

I have started the framing of the aft compartment.  It so happens that on a run to the lumberyard to pick up some scrapped palettes, which they give me for free, I noticed new signs going on the gas station across the street.  The crating for the signs was up for grabs and the guys even helped me load it into the truck.  The grates were about 8'-6"x 4'x2' deep boxes made of some kind of pine, yellow I think, but not the best stuff. I pulled them apart and removed all the fasteners.  I now have a good stash of long and short board.

I am using some of this pine for the framing in the compartment aft and I hope to use it for the framing thru out the boat.  So much for the light weight feeling!

The cutting of the framing is a bit tricky in that they all seem to need compound cuts.  It takes time to get the angles and to double check all measures.