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Setting Up Forms

Here I show using an aluminum strongback and spacers to quickly and accurately set up forms. This same technique would work with a plywood box beam. The aluminum is more rigid, but the plywood will work as well.

My newer book "Building Strip Planked Boats" includes a description of the spacer method of setting up forms on an internal strongback.

Ripping and Sorting Strips

The 2" strips were too wide for the kayak I am building so I ripped them in thirds. I will be "book matching" the strips on the boat, so I am keeping the strips in the order they came off the plank. As I rip the strips into thirds I sort each third into groups of corresponding thirds from all the other strips.

Cutting Strips

This is my setup for milling strips. I use a Delta Unisaw, with a Freud "Diablo" blade, the fence is the Delta "Unifence". I've got a couple saw horses on the in feed side and a table on the out feed side.

Cutting Forms for a Strip-Planked Kayak

The first step to assuring your boat comes out right is to assure you have accurate forms. You could buy a kit with pre-cut forms made on a CNC machine, but if you want to do it all yourself, cutting the forms from the paper patterns provided in the plans is not hard.

Photographing Boats

Since I sell many of the boats I make, I like to document them before I send them off into the world. While I like on-the-water shot, I often have need for studio style shots that don't have the distraction of a background. Typically a white or black background works well.

I use one end of my shop as a studio for these photos. I start out with a 40 foot long by 10 foot wide muslin backdrop that I clip to the garage door track. I put a pair of saw horses under the muslin and place the boat on the saw horses.

Space still available to build your own S&G Night Heron

There is still a few spaces available at my Build-your-own S&G Night Heron Class at the WoodenBoat School in Brooklin, Maine. This is a fun class at a great location, if you are looking for way to spend a week in Maine and come home with a fun boat, this is your chance.

Designing a Traditional Skin On Frame

I recently took on the task of designing and building a skin-on-frame kayak in the Greenland Inuit style. "Designing" a SOF kayak before building isn't really the traditional way. Typically they are built to traditional measurements based on an anthropometric measuring system i.e. using hands, hips, arm spans etc. as measurement units. These basic measurements may be tweaked based on the builders experience, making a wider/narrower or longer/shorter as needed by the user.

April 2009 Newsletter

I have started sending out periodical newsletters through Constant Contact. Here is a copy of the first issues. Actually it is the second issue of my newsletter because I had sent one out via standard mail previous.

If you would like to sign up to receive the next newsletter, please fill out this form.

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