The First Garboard Plank The first plank is on! It has been the most difficult part of the build so far. I’ve gone through 4 planks to get it right. For my fellow LJers who may be wondering, I’ve put in a few hours here and there, but I’ve taken quite a bit of time away from the project since the holidays. I’m exciting to be focused again. The challenge with this is getting the plank flush and tight into the rabbit along the keel. It’s a tough plank bec...
Participating in the marking gauge swap has been a lot of fun and has pushed me to keep making more costom/specialized tools. This tool has been on my to do list for a long time and I sure wish I had made it a long time ago. Often times special making gates are quickly made from plywood or whatever for a one time job and then tossed so it was hard at first to take the longer time to build this but it is worth the effort if you have a boat project in front of you. I found the inspiration in an...
Just a few more steps left before I can start putting the planking on the sides. Cutting in the Rabbet Between Stem and Keel The next crucial step is cutting in the rabbet between the Stem and Keel. This was done entirely by hand with a few sharp chisels. I used a small piece of wood (3”x1”x3/8”) as a template, representing the plank, to ensure a smooth transition as I cut away the rabbet. Here is the before picture: And the after picture. This was done on both ...
Completed the transom today. The transom is the back section of the boat where I’ll mount the 250hp Mercury outboard. (Just kidding). Transom is 1” thick black cherry. I choose cherry because I like it and I have a lot of it from a tree I milled a few years ago. Here is the glue up with epoxy. Joints are splined with pine. Straightfoward so far. This next part gave me a headache for awhile. The edge around the transom is a compound beveled edge and the entire transom ...
Plywood construction probably presents the easiest method for an amateur to build a good boat, but it is also useful a useful construction for a professional shop wanting to satisfy a customer who doesn’t have a large budget. It is a straightforward process and the plans tend to be easy to follow but there are a few tricks of the trade which I will try to cover. The two boats covered here are quite different sisters from the same plan. The first, “Catspaw” was built on s...
It’s been a busy month for other things, but I’ve made some good progress on the boat. I’ve also managed to find some great planking lumber, with a great story behind it, which I’ll write about a bit below. But first, update on the transom which now completes the stern. The transom is attached to sternpost with 5 countersunk #10 bronze screws which are covered with matching cherry plugs. Later on, I’ll epoxy in and cut the plugs off flush. And a ...
After about 12 hours of work, nearly all lofting is complete and I can finally start some construction! The famous boat builder and author, Howard I. Chapelle wrote in his aptly named book ”Boatbuilding” – ”There was never a boat built in which too much lofting had been done”. By lofting, Mr. Chapelle is referring to the laying out of the lines and drawing of construction details to full scale, a tedious practice he writes ”avoids much trying and fitting...
I’m a member of the awesome Sonoma County Woodworkers Association. Every time I go to a meeting, I kick myself for every meeting I’ve missed, because skill and knowledge demonstrated and transferred by the participants is amazing. A few years ago, there was a meeting at West County Design at which Craig Collins raved about the Bodega Bay Fish Fest Wooden Boat Challenge. This is a competition in which you’re given: 2 sheets of 3/8” x 4’ x 8’ plywood 12 pieces of 1”...
This is the third in a series of blogs on the different types of wooden boat construction I’ve done. The first two covered traditional carvel planking and framed plywood construction. This one will concentrate on a method called “cold molding”. Cold molding refers to the fashioning of a hull form by gluing up layers of thin planking in different orientations much like a sheet of plywood is made, but in this case it takes the shape of a boat. There are several methods by ...
The strongback is completed and the molds are in position. Starting to take shape! The strongback is the very flat, level and squared box in the photos below. It is attached to short (2 foot high) sawhorses on each end. The molds are attached and braced to the strongback. The boat will be constructed upside down over the molds. So far, I haven’t built anything that will be an actual piece of the boat when it’s completed! Everything in the pictures below will eventually go to the l...
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