Floor installation is pretty simple. Considerations include waterproofing, support, and water drainage.
I previously fiberglassed the bottom side of the floor with 2.3 ounce fiberglass cloth and two light coats of epoxy. I used 6 ounce cloth for the side you step on with two coats of epoxy also. The top side of the floor will also be painted with flat green paint.
The span between each rib is about two feet and 1/4” plywood would break when stood on without support. 1 1/2” pink styrofoam fits on top of the keel and supports the floor just right.
Notice I didn’t trim the bolts for the runners to length. They work well to hold each panel of foam panel in place under the floor. The white oak washers also provide support to the foam.
Three foam panels in place.
I fastened the floor in place with a 1/4” bolt at each corner. I intend to take the floor off regularly to let the hull dry and decided that threaded inserts would reduce wear on the ribs.
The floor doesn’t extend the full length of the cockpit. This is a view of the stern where Copper will lay behind my head. I had a scrap of mini cell foam that filled this space nicely to extend the floor for the dog.
Copper’s pad is 16” by 28” and is positioned over the floor extension.
I expect a lot of water to get into the boat during the many retrieves Copper will be making! I drilled limber holes in each rib on both sides of the keel before assembling the boat frame. These are 1” diameter holes that are cut only in a semi-circle. They allow water to move along the length of the boat. An initial concern was that the foam would hinder the flow of water to the bilge pump. However, I soon realized that the keel and the white oak runner washers held the foam off the floor and allowed the water to flow freely from bow to stern.
In the next installment, I’ll discuss seating and oar lock positioning.
-- Mark, Minnesota