Thursday, September 27, 2012

Optimist Building in Virginia Beach

Al from Virginia Beach writes in and shares pictures of his project boat...


I'm building the boat for 3 and soon to be 4 grandkids. I sail and my 2 sons sail, so getting the little ones into it makes sense. The oldest is 8 but lives about 300 miles away, so when next summer comes and we get to our lake house hopefully the craft will be ready to use.

I'm using West System to coat and put this together but am not glassing the boat - extra weight that I don't want or need. My boat is Maranti plywood, 12mm for the transom etc and 6mm for bottom and sides. I'll make my own foils from 12mm also.  For the "solid" wood I have found some very nice and cheap spruce. I plan to use some mahogany for the rub rails - I have some nice pieces. Almost at the point of fastening things together since today I got the chine bent and straightened - that was fun and am glad I had as many clamps as I have, but one never has enough clamps!


I fished a piece of spruce out of my pond and tried again with bending a chine.  I figure that 24 hrs underwater with all the enzymes and slop in my lily pond should make it pretty bendable.

I clamped the stern and mid ship positions and placed the above type clamps to make it parallel.  Then I gently bent the end of the chine toward the forward bulkhead and did two things. First I used a long clamp around the chine and the nearer stringer. Then I hung my tool bag with saws, drills and assorted heavy items on the end of the chine. I never changed the weight but I applied the straightening clamps and gradually tightened the long clamp.

The whole process took no more than 45 minutes and I never heard a creak from the wood.  When the chine was finally in position I removed the long clamp and tool bag and attached the chine to the forward bulkhead with a clamp. Not a screw in it yet. I will let it dry for a few days before removing clamps and attaching with screws. Then I'll see how the skin fits.