I quickly sand off the excess epoxy from the joint. I will re-varnish this spot. It will be covered by reflective tape later.
I going to make up a plug for the mast base. Because I reinforced the exterior of the mast with epoxy & cloth, I do not need as long a reinforcing plug on the inside as I had planned. I stuff more aluminum foil into the hollow mast. I leave just enough room for the plug stem. I use a plug of aluminum foil to make a “dam” to keep the epoxy from flowing down the mast into the “crumpled for radar reflection” aluminum foil.
I start with an oak hand shovel handle I bought from Princess Auto.
It is almost an exact fit. I sand off the finish so the epoxy will soak into the wood. I cut off the rounded top and the excess on the bottom.
I make up an oak disk, just over 2½” in diameter with a 1″ hole in the centre. I use my Shopsmith disk sander to round down the shaft of the handle. (I then sand the bottom of the mast to bare wood) The disk will fit against the bottom of the mast.
I mix up the epoxy…Two hundred stirs.
After I have coated all the bare wood, I mix wood dust with the epoxy and get ready to glue it all together.
I angle the mast so the base is up and pour the thickened epoxy into it. The Aluminum foil “dam” keeps the epoxy from going into the “crumpled for radar reflection” Aluminum foil while I get the plug glued in.
I then wrap the joint with the packing tape to keep the epoxy from leaking out. I stand the mast upright in the garage with the heat lamp on it.
Now all of the epoxy will flow down around the plug for a good glue-up.
I now turn to the other (Masthead) end.
I give the Masthead end a light sanding with the 350 wet/dry sandpaper and touch up the varnish.
The mast is 17″1″ long and 16′ 10¼” to the centre of the sheave. It is 2½” in diameter at the base, tapering to 2¼” at the masthead. There is 1½ pounds of (radar reflective!!) aluminum foil in the mast. The mast weight is (using my luggage scale) 14lbs.
Three photos of the finished mast in Gwragedd Annwn:
When the rains stop, I will rig Gwragedd Annwn with her new lugsail. I believe that I will have to move her mast-step and the mast partner to balance her for sailing…a little trial and error is in my future.
The epoxy has cured on the base of the mast reinforcing. I used 6oz. cloth, left over from Paul’s Canoe build.
I get out the wet/dry 350 grit sandpaper & bucket of warm water with a little soap again. I sand smooth the joint where the cloth meets and where I did a little filling.
The varnishing consists of: a coat of varnish, rotating the mast every 30 minutes for two hours to minimise drips, let dry, repeat. It is the same method I used to epoxy coat the mast, just more coats of varnish (8!)
I take the Masthead Sheave plug assembly into the house to fit the sheave, washers and pin. The pin is 3/16″ brass rod. I got the brass washers from Roy.
After I cut the pin to size, I file the edges smooth. Ready to epoxy the plug into place.
Both the plug and the masthead are sanded down to bare wood. I set up the mast stand and then mix-up the epoxy. Two hundred stirs.
All is good.
After I have coated all the bare wood with the straight epoxy, I add wood dust to thicken the epoxy. I put the base of the mast on the floor, angling the mast up towards the top so the epoxy will, if anything, run down into the mast. I fill the mast head with the thickened epoxy mixture.
I insert the Masthead Sheave plug, the bamboo pin and then wrap the joint and pin ends with packing tape to prevent the epoxy from leaking out.
To have all of the epoxy settle around the Masthead Sheave plug, I place the mast upside down in the centre of my garage. Gravity will make the epoxy flow down and around the plug stem.
The distance to the inside peak of my roof is just a little over 17″. The mast barely fits!!!
Next step is to make the mast base plug. I have a piece that I will fit into the base. Tomorrow’s job….the mast is almost finished!
We have had over 20cms (almost 8″) of rain at the house. It has been very rainy and more rain is predicted. I decide to wet sand the mast tomorrow. Well, it is now tomorrow and it is supposed to rain all day today. I was all set up to wet sand the Mast and Masthead plug in the rain. Would you not know it…no rain today, but the temperature is just over 13° C.
I have a margarine container with some hot water with a little dish soap. I really want the varnish to stick to the mast, so I am making sure that the mast has a good bonding surface…the soap will wash off any “anime Blush” that there may be on the mast.
Well, there is a change of plans. I am going to fill a few minor flaws that I have found while sanding. I will live to varnish another day.
I mix up a small amount of epoxy and a touch of sanding dust and go around the mast, filling the few flaws that I have found. To keep the epoxy in place, I put a piece of packing tape over the epoxy. Sort of like a band-aid.
Well, this is a change of plans. I decide that since I cannot varnish the mast until the epoxy cures, I might as well go all the way with my other “idea”. Generally, the base of free-standing masts are reinforced on the inside, as there is a lot of stress placed on the mast base while sailing. I am going to wrap my mast base with epoxy & cloth to reinforce it. This will also keep the mast from being damaged where it goes through the mast partners (the thwart). I will still leather the mast at thwart level. (about 16″ up) to reduce chafing.
I used 6oz. cloth left over from “Paul’s Canoe build”. I am putting epoxy & cloth from the mast base to about 27″ up.
I intend to wrap the Mast/Masthead plug joint with silver reflective tape when I am done. Hopefully I can wet sand the mast base, the filled minor flaws and start to varnish tomorrow.
To solve the increasing inside diameter issue, when I epoxy the masthead plug in, I will stand the mast on its head, the epoxy will flow down around the masthead plug shaft, filling any gaps.
The procedure will be to push an “epoxy plug” into the mast, (remember, the mast is filled with crumpled aluminum foil) pour in epoxy & wood dust mixture, tape around the joint, stand the mast on its head, The epoxy & wood dust will flow down around the masthead plug. I have 17″ of height to the peak of my garage roof, so my mast will just fit.
When I made the mast, I used a belt-sanding jig to round the mast. The result was a round mast, but there are lots of cross-grain sanding marks. I am going to now re-sand the mast, with the grain, to end up with a smooth finish.
I mark the mast with a pencil circle…I will sand each stave and the marks will tell me which stave I have sanded
This part is where I “sand-off” an afternoon…the procedure is to move up and down the mast, sanding as I go…Each stave takes maybe 10 passes of the sander to sand off the cross-grain marks.
After I have sanded the mast with 80 and then 150 grit, I pin the masthead plug to the top of the mast and sand it flush with the mast.
I now brush off the sanding dust and vacuum the mast & masthead plug.
I take out the Masthead sheave plug to epoxy separately. I re-arrange my mast supports, one on each end. I use a metal bar, inserted into the top and bottom of the mast to hold the mast in the brackets. This way I can rotate the mast and epoxy all its sides.
I clamp the Masthead Sheave plug in a vise to give the top part a coating of epoxy. I will not epoxy the shaft and the bottom of the plug. When I epoxy the mast and the plug together, I want the epoxy to soak into the wood on both pieces.
I am epoxy coating the mast for two reasons. One: While sanding the mast I had noticed that some of the joints were not filled…the was sanding dust in the joint. To insure that all of the mast stave joints are epoxy filled, and Two: to seal the wood so no water will be absorbed.
The screwdriver is used to help turn the mast 180°. Why do this? Gravity makes the epoxy flows around the mast and settle on the bottom
My solution to drips is to rotate the mast 180° and then brush the drips out. I rotate the mast every 30 minutes until the epoxy is too set for the drips to form.
I also brush off the drips that have formed on the Masthead sheave plug.
A Note: after turning my mast a few times, I decide to epoxy coat my Traditional Small Craft Association membership card…I just got it in the mail today. The epoxy is now a little stiff, and does not flow over the card evenly, but now the card will last forever.
After the epoxy cures, the next step is to give the mast and masthead plug a light sanding, then varnish them. It will be easier to varnish the plug and the mast in the rotating rig separately. I will glue them together after a few (too many) coats of varnish have been applied…probably one a day for a week or so.
Yesterday I filled in the small flaws in the birdsmouth mast. Today the epoxy is still too soft to sand. Today I am going to start work on the Masthead plug with the sheave.
I have read a lot on the internet about stuffing your hollow mast/spars with crumpled aluminum foil so your small boat will show up on radar.
What the heck??, I buy four boxes of heavy-duty aluminum foil at the dollar store.
I use a left-over piece of aluminum pipe to stuff the foil into the hollow of the mast. I will need to leave room for the Masthead plug tail and the plug for the bottom of the mast. About 18″ for the masthead, about 24″ for the mast base. I stuff from both ends of the mast. I use a broom handle to gauge how far the foil is stuffed in.
Well, I now have ≈ 75 square feet of crumpled aluminum foil in the centre of my birdsmouth mast. I wonder if it will work, and give Gwragedd Annwn a good radar reflection.
I am so enthused with this idea that I will take my yardarm, hollow out the middle, stuff with aluminum foil and re-glue. Probably I will only be able to get 35 square feet or so of crumpled aluminum foil in the yardarm…but, hey, the more foil the better! Tomorrow’s project.
For the second time, the Urban Oarsman rowed from Squamish to the Hollyburn Sailing Club. This time, the write-up for “The Spreader”, the Club newsletter was written by fellow paddler, Ken Parr. This is Ken’s account of the trip. I added a few “additions” in italics.
Squamish to West Vancouver –by
Kayak and Rowboat by Ken Parr
On the Labour Day long weekend, a group of HSC adventure seekers put into action a plan to spend some quality time abusing our bodies over a number of days, on the water of course, from Squamish to HSC world headquarters in West Van. The plan was simple… Leave
Squamish in the early AM, and paddle hard, with 2 nights of camping along the way. Our route going south was to go West around Gambier Island, and would eventually, over 3 days, be about 82 kilometres.
Our equipment for this adventure was safe and robust. We had GPS and ample safety gear, maps and backup systems. Mike of course was Captain of his “battleship”… the tested and sturdy “Gwragedd Annwn”,
complete with steel (actually bronze) keel to do battle with the barnacles. The rest of the crew had kayaks… plastic and fiberglass. Meals were simple: Maciej and Rueben were great chefs for communal feasts; drink was adequate; comradery was high; laughter and smiles were abundant. The weather was fortunately warm and mostly sunny. There was a Strong Wind Warning for the Northern Howe Sound (for both Saturday and Sunday) and the winds were as expected and predicted. The winds were forecast to build in the late morning until reaching their peak in the afternoon. Mike got hit by the outflow (actually inflow, into Howe Sound between Bowen and Keats Islands) winds on the morning of the third day. At times the waves were sometimes about 4 foot. On Saturday Sept 1st we left Vancouver about 6AM, and drove to Squamish (in two cars, my FJ and Steve’s minivan. I arrived first and offloaded the two single kayaks and launched Gwragedd Annwn at the Squamish boat ramp. Gwragedd Annwn was fully loaded, so, I left right away. The kayaks are twice as fast as I am and they will catch up and pass me shortly) with the help of kind family members, we off loaded our gear at the public boat ramp. After stuffing things away in all the nooks in our boats, Maciej, Rueben, Steve, and Ken set out going South.
We caught up to Mike in his row boat at Watts Point on the east side of Howe Sound.
We then paddled to the west side across choppy (and windy, the wind was so strong that I could not make headway against it. I took shelter along the west shore of the sound) seas to Zorro Bay, arriving about lunch time. This proved to be a delightful bay, sheltered, pretty, with a pebble beach, and part of the Sea to Sky Marine Trail. (I arrived much later, using Gwragedd Annwn’s electric trolling motor to make headway against the strong inflow winds) After a relaxing lunch and Maciej’s tasty sausages,
Mike caught up with us after battling against the head winds. We waited a few hours for the wind to die down some before we left on the next leg to Islet View, a small campsite overlooking Anvil Island.
Bernd, the contra explorer, joined us while we were resting at Zorro Bay, en route North, to our delight! He left West Van early on Saturday, and rendezvoused with us, on his way to Squamish, all in one day!
After a brief chat and some group photos he continued north and arrived in Squamish at 6pm. Bernd made us feel that our achievement of mastering choppy seas going South was a little more than a warm up for him traveling about 60+ km hugging the coast… all in one day!
We had paddled about 20 km on Saturday, our shortest leg. We had a lovely pasta dinner made efficiently by Chef Maciej, and nestled into the camping spots for some well-earned sleep.
Mike, one of the ‘Ol Men in the Sea’, anchored and slept on the water.
The Otters or seals seemed to want to play in the night, and we occasionally woke up to splashes … or maybe some curses that the bloody anchor had dragged with the tide!
On Sunday (after Mike had rowed away) we had a hearty breakfast, complete with Maciej’s delicious camp coffee, and then set out for Sir Thomas J Lipton park on Gambier Island. Surprisingly, we had very flat seas for the first part of the day. It was like paddling on a lake.
The final half of the 31 km leg was through choppy water around the Western side of Gambier. We lunched at a comfortable beach on an island at the South Western tip of Gambier, and then made our way North into the bay where a lumber carrier built in 1919 – named after Sir Thomas J. Lipton of Tea Clipper fame – rested, her remaining hull still poking out of the water to welcome us.
The campsite across from the Lipton was spacious and comfortable.
Rueben made a lovely dinner and we finished with lively conversation and bottles of wine and spirits to complete a wonderful day with smiles.
Monday Sept 3rd was Labour day… and labour we did. Another 31 km was recorded. Maciej left early to get home in time for a pre-planned family event.
Mike left early to begin his long row home. Both encountered kinda gales at 7 AM – along with an Orca pod sighting leaving Gambier.
The rest of us had a more relaxing start at 8 AM and by then the wind had subsided and paddling was easy.
We managed to avoid the Ferries and then stopped off at Whytecliff Park for a light lunch.
The kayakers caught up with Mike near Lighthouse Park
and shared stories of Mike greeting Orcas earlier swimming a few feet from his boat. Seas then became a little rougher and large 4 foot rolling waves provided some excitement with tired muscles trying to stay above water on the home stretch.
Kayakers arrived by 2 in the afternoon and Mike amazingly was not far behind.
We all had smiles on our faces (and water in our boots)
that we had indeed succeeded and could then stop the bloody paddling in favor of relaxing to heal our aching arms and blisters on our hands! What a trip! Along the way we saw some great views… beautiful scenery, historic spots, seals, orcas, and lots of other sea life. A big highlight was getting to know each other much better, and to sharing some very magical time.
Tide Tables for the Squamish to HSC row:
A few notes on the wrecks in West Bay, Gambier Island.
In West Bay is the wreck of the Sir Thomas J Lipton of Tea Clipper fame. The name plate was gone, but there was no mistaking the rotting remnants of this piece of nautical history. If you are interested, look at the very end of West Bay.
The Sir Thomas J. Lipton was built at Brunswick, Georgia in 1919 as a lumber carrier in anticipation of a post World War I building boon in Europe which failed to materialize. She was 209 feet in length with a breadth of 42 feet and was schooner rigged with four masts. She had a yard for a large Square sail on the foremast.
By 1924 the lumber trade had vanished and she was laid up at Astoria, Oregon where she remained until 1940 when she was acquired by Island Tug and Barge Co. of Victoria. She was then converted to carry hog fuel which was used to heat the boilers in pulp mills. Most of her deck planking was removed and bulkheads at least ten feet high were built all around the opening.
In 1941 or 1942 she was beached in West Bay (Gambier Island) to keep the log booms from going aground on the shallow beach where her remains now lie. Her wreckage can be observed at low tide, with her port side uppermost and her bow pointing North. The words “Island Tug”, which had been painted on the above mentioned bulkheads, could be seen from far out in Howe Sound. (not visible when we camped there)
Another source lists the Sir Thomas J, Lipton, 1358 tons,schooner, 1918, 217405, LPHM. Apex Navigation.
Sir Thomas J. Lipton (schooner)
The 1,588 ton four-masted schooner Sir Thomas J. Lipton built at Brunswick, Georgia in 1919 and transferred to Honolulu in 1921 for the Northwest Lumber trade, was acquired by the Island Tug & Barge Co. of Victoria and transferred to Canadian registry as a barge. The vessel had been laid up at Astoria since 1924. Gordon Newell, Maritime Events of 1940, H.W. McCurdy Marine History of the Pacific Northwest.
Citation: Tacoma Public Library
The big steam tug Lorne, built in 1889, may be located in West Bay, Gambier Island.
There are two historic period sites, both located in West Bay, Gambier Island, containing five heritage wrecks, Site Di Ru-066 is the wreck of the Thomas J.Lipton, a four-masted lumber schooner of about 201ft. (64 m) length, 1205 net tons, built in 1919 in Georgia, Alabama, and converted for use on this coast as a wood chip barge (Stone 2007). The wooden hull was driven ashore and abandoned sometime after 1940, and remains a conspicuous, partially submerged, structure lying along the shore in West Bay. Site Di Ru-069 consists of four unidentified wooden wrecks some of which are exposed at low tide, down to 7 mbsl to the shallowest wreck component. The wrecks are described as two scows, a vessel (62m by 15m) one mistakenly thought to be the Lorne, but now thought to be a deep-sea barge, and a smaller vessel (Stone 2007).
Additional photos courtesy of Steve Britten, Ken Parr, Rueben Schultz and Maciej Sobczyk
Now that I have done my test sails and found that Gwragedd Annwn is a good sailer, I am going to make a new mast for her…a birdsmouth hollow mast. The old mast is about 2′ too short, the new mast will be over 16’4″ long.
There are a lot of formulas for determining the size of your strips. My mast will be 2½” at the base tapering to about 2″ at the top. I used the one on the Duckworks site. My strips will be a little bigger than ½” by 1⅛”. I will try to get the most out of my Douglas Fir beam. Depending on the test sailing results, I may make a boom for the rig.
The first step is to rip up the strips for the birdsmouth mast.
I will first rip it into 3 planks. I want to get 6 strips out of each plank, for a total of 18 strips. I need 8 for the mast and 8 for the boom, if I find that Gwragedd Annwn needs a boom to sail well downwind.
My 10″ Shopsmith table saw will not cut through the beam in one pass and trying to line-up in and out feed tables does not work…I decide to use my circular saw and the edge guide. I spend a lot of time setting up the saw and the guide…the saw adjustments are not very precise, but, I do my best.
The routine was to make a cut, turn around and make another cut on the opposite side, then roll the beam over and make the two cuts on the (now) bottom side.
My son, Paul (of Paul’s Canoe) helps me rip the strips. I set up the Shopsmith to rip the boards into equally sized strips.
Fortunately, I only need 8 strips for the birdsmouth mast.
I end up with a ⅜+” taper, from about 2½” to 2+”.
A little string (not shown) aligns the forms on the 2 by 4s.
The shop temperature is about 10° Celsius. That is why I am using Cold-Cure Epoxy. I will have a lot of working time at this temperature.
I ended up with some sort of clamp every 4″ or so.
I turn on the shop heater and warm up the mast. The overnight temperature is predicted to be -2° Celsius. The shop will stay at about 10°Celsius overnight.
The mast looks pretty straight. I should be able to fair the mast to be straight to the eye. I think the glue-up has been a success. The next day I strip off all of the clamps and get the mast ready for final shaping.
I use my shop scale to weigh the mast…a little less than 14lbs!
The weather is predicted to warm up. It will get to 8°C today and will stay about that warm overnight. I will continue to work on the mast in a few days.
A few days have passed and the epoxy is cured enough to work with. The first step is to knock off the biggest lumps so I can use my power planer.
The mast blank seems to have a few “bends” in it. I will see what they look like after I begin to plane off the sharp edges.
I will again let the epoxy cure for a few days. Next step will be to sand, this time with the grain to get the mast smooth for varnishing. I will then make a plug for the bottom and a masthead insert piece with a sheave in it, glue them in, let the epoxy cure. Then, more sanding.
The mast diameters have ended up being 2½” at the base, 2⅝” between 18″ and 24″ from the base and 2¼” at the top of the mast.
finished spar with a few (7! soon to be eight) coats of varnish.
Now, on to the Mast:
Two unsuccessful dumb sheaves need to be filled for the new cobbled together lug sail.
The new dumb sheave is drilled into the mast and is faired smooth.
Fitting the mast step base.
The base is epoxied to the bulkhead and onto the keel. It is also screwed to the bulkhead from the inside and into the keel.
I will line the mast hole in the thwart with leather later.
The first time I made the belaying in hole too large. I filled the hole with epoxy and re-drilled it.
The two belaying pins, made from surplus gardening tool handles.
I am going to add inspection ports to all of the buoyancy tanks.
New inspection hatch on the port side of the stern tank
Starboard inspection hatch marked out for cutting.
Inspection hatches fitted and glued in with sealant & screws.
From cruising experience, I decide to take out the forward inspection hatch and replace it with the deck box. This will give me greater access to the dry storage in the forward buoyancy tank.
Forward deck box being used as a cutting guide. I traced around the bottom of the box.
The old inspection hatch cut out for the installation of the deck box.
Bow storage box, bottom cut out, epoxied into place. Heat lamp to help curing.
I us my small router to cut a circular grove into a thwart for my stove.
The base of the Trangia stove fits perfectly. Now I can cook at sea!
My wife bought the Trangia stove new almost 40 years ago. (and has used it on a lot of hiking trips since then!) Still works like a charm. Boils fast, simmers slow. A great stove. (You can still buy them from MEC…they do not offer the “kettle”option any longer but, you can order a kettle from the manufacturer) Now, I can take the thwart, flip it so the groove is on the top, put the stove in it and start cooking. The thwart will fit anywhere along the two buoyancy tanks.
Old big jib sail I bought off of a friend years ago…Too bad he had cats!
I bought a old Elna sewing machine because it could sew through six layers of sailcloth from the jib.
The Elan sewing machine I used to sew up the cobbled together Lug sail. I cut the top and bottom off of the sail and hemmed it up using the Elna. I kept the bolt rope in the sail, sewing it to the top, The bolt rope was already in the luff and I sewed it into the foot of the sail. The black disks in the tray allow me to do very fancy stitching…I only straight and zig-zagged.
In this photo, you can see that this is a jib with the top and bottom cut off and hemmed.
I put eyelets every foot or so along the top edge. I kept the rope luff on the sail and sewed it to the top and foot of the sail. I guesstimated the curve to go against the yard.
Fitting the mast to the sail.
Lug sail laced to the yardarm. (sitting on my other boat, “Snowdrop” a clinker Turner lifeboat)
OK, so I hoist the lug sail and see how well it fits!
Looks a little too long, I need to cut off some of the bottom or get a higher mast.
I mark and cut off some of the sail at the bottom and re-hem the sail.
You can see in the photo where I have marked the centre of effort of the sail.
Here is the final sail fitting, I have sewn on a Canadian flag. The sail is now about 85 square feet.
I still have to make a rudder for Gwragedd Annwn.
I use a Taser rudder for parts.
Using the Taser rudder as a guide, I glue up some 4/4 oak for the rudder blade.
The streaks you see is the epoxy glue.
Rudder blank being fitted to the stern of Gwragedd Annwn.
I fit the blank to the stern of Gwragedd Annwn, using the rudder pintles to fit the gudgeons to the transom of Gwragedd Annwn. The gudgeons are bolted to the transom. ( the pintles are bolted to the rudder as well)
After everything is fitted, I dissemble and varnish the rudder.
I make up a new tiller as well using the old Taser hardware. The hose in the picture is part of the dust removal system in my shop.
Gwragedd Annwn’s temporary “test leeboard”, an old Enterprise centreboard.
I will tie the test leeboard to the gunnel to determine where Gwragedd Annwn’s centre of lateral resistance is and where the leeboards should go.
I now have enough done to take Gwragedd Annwn out for a test sail. Will she actually sail well?
I take all of the gear down to the Club, fit it to Gwragedd Annwn and out we go. I forget the camera and GPS. No bailer either. I row her out past the fishing pier and hoist the sail. There is between 5 and 10 kms of wind. I have a bit of a hard time hoisting the sail high enough to keep the luff tension tight. Will have to fix that…a two to one hoist? Theoretically Gwragedd Annwn has enough lateral resistance with her hull shape to sail without a centreboard or daggerboard or leeboards. I watch her stern wake….I can see that she is slipping to leeward. I attach the makeshift daggerboard and try again. This time there is no discernible drift visible in her wake. I move the makeshift leeboard forward and aft to find Gwragedd Annwn’s centre of lateral resistance…where the helm feels best balanced. She sails well, feels fast for the wind speed, and tacks easily. I feel that her rudder could be a little bigger. After an hour or so, I head back to HSC…The sailing test has been a total success!!!
Sadly no photos……
Based on the success of the sailing test, I am going to get a “real” sail made…Sadly, my local sailmaker has retired and his shop is closed. I look for lug sails on line and find that the Goat Island Skiff lug sail is almost the exact same size as my sail, probably within 5% or less. The sails are a deal! I order one from Duckworks in Port Townsend. Most likely will have to make a new taller mast and a longer yardarm. The centre of effort of the sail may be significantly different than my sail so I cannot fix my leeboards permanently. I will have to wait for the new sail, make a mast and yardarm to fit and re-determine where the leeboards should go.
There are things I can work on now…..
I will make the rudder blade bigger…Oh, yea, I have to make the leeboards too.
Gluing up the “good” leeboards.
I break a clamp gluing up the leeboards.
The two leeboards roughed out, ready for foil shaping. The convention is to have the leading edge rounded and the trailing edge tapered about 3 to 4 times as long as the leading edge.
Between the two of them, there will be more surface area in the water than the cobbled-together leeboard I tested Gwragedd Annwn with.
I round the leading edge of the leeboards and taper the trailing edge about 4 to 1. Sand and varnish. (many times)
I remove all of the hardware and cut the rudder down the middle and biscuit joint in a middle piece. I also glue in a piece for the rudder hold-down bracket. I am gong to move the tiller bracket , so I fill in the bolt holes with bamboo skewers and epoxy.
The rudder also needs a tiller extension, so I make one.
I have a tiller extension fitting from another boat. Tiller extension fitting in top centre of photo.
Some of my salvaged fittings.
I cut a tiller extension to mirror the tiller I made before.
Varnishing the tiller extension. Might as well put a few more coats on the tiller as well.
Rudder and tiller final. That is a Halloween decoration castle in the background.
Everything is ready for another test fitting…I do not have the new sails yet, however, I can still do some test fitting…
I take the leeboards down to the Club and tie them onto Gwragedd Annwn.
I have to come up with a better attachment than this…I make a plan!
I stare at the leeboard for a while and come up with this attachment support.
The rope (or could be a 3/8″ bolt) fits through the top of the support. It could be attached to a cleat on the support. I add an additional 3/4″ piece on the outboard side of the support. this will allow me to shape the support to allow the leeboard to parallel the keel and not the curve of the hull where the leeboards are. Again, this will depend on the test fitting.
The support blocks glued up next to one of the two plant-pot heaters I use to keep my shop from being damp.
I shape the leeboard supports and give them a coat of varnish, assemble the leeboards:
The canoe launch is today, Father’s Day, June 17th , 2018, at the Hollyburn Sailing Club.
Paul carries the canoe to load onto the FJ.
Paul easily picks up and carries the canoe.
Onto the roof racks.
I have taped towels onto the roof rack crossbars. We centre the canoe and I tie it down. The now bolted-in bow and stern rings work well.. Feel very secure.
The bow and stern lines are just the right length to tie to the FJ.
Two green ratchet straps, (the ones used to hold the strips to the station molds) secure the canoe….It could be a little further forward?
Unloading at the Sailing Club.
Aside from all the admiring glances, an uneventful drive to HSC. Paul and I unload the canoe and place it on two kayak stands.
It is a light carry into the Club.
We put the canoe onto the kayak stands (now canoe stands). This club has everything you need to get out on the water…
We get the paddles and I park my FJ in the Ambleside Park parking lot.
Paul’s paddle is 66″ long and mine is 63″ long. (Paul is 6’2″ and I am 5′ 9″) Today will be a good time to test the lengths for comfort. Paddle length is always a bit of a guess. Today we will fine-tune the lengths.
Showing off the paddles.
We get our life jackets on and take the canoe to the beach.
…To the beach!…
Paul will take the first paddle solo.
Paul is not one for a lot of ceremony.
We place the canoe in the water and Paul gets in…
Getting in, waiting for the swell to moderate.
And away Paul goes…No flip, no dump, no hesitation.
A successful launch!
Paul takes the canoe for a test paddle. Looks good!
The canoe is a little stern heavy.
Paul has good balance sitting on the seat. He could be a little more forward.
Paul tries sitting on the floor of the canoe just forward of the seat and the balance is perfect.
Paul does several circuits, trying out different sitting positions and both paddles. He is quite pleased with the results.
The canoe tracks well, feels quite stable and is easy to paddle.
Paul and I are happy with the canoe, still unnamed. Paul feels that his paddle is too long and my paddle is maybe a little too long as well for him. We will take about 6″ off of his paddle and re-attach the handle. We will come out again soon for another paddle trial.
My wife and I take the canoe out for a spin. The balance with two paddlers is perfect. The canoe looks level. No photos of that paddle.
Canoe paddle handle detail.
Paul’s canoe will be ideal for two paddlers and their gear. An expedition canoe. Paul did want to do some tripping and this canoe is the one for the job.
A quick rinse before we go home.
Final stats for Paul’s Canoe: Overall length: 15′ 3″. Width to outside of gunnels: 35¾”, Width to outside of hull: 34¼” Depth of hull: 11½”, final weight 60 lbs. Bow height 19″.
With the canoe finished, Paul and I start work on our paddles. In speaking with fellow Vancouver Wooden Boat Society member, Ian McGrath of Great Northern Craft, I tell him about the paddles. Ian has some paddle blanks and will sell us two. This will save me the hassle of sourcing wood for the paddles. We get the blanks with Ian’s “Otter tail” design drawn on.
The paddle blanks cut out to the “Otter tail” design.
The lines on the paddle blanks indicate where the biscuits are.
Paul intends to do some longer trips so we have chosen “Otter tails” for long-distance paddling.
Paul marks the blade edge.
We will use the belt sander to shape the blade.
We start out by clamping the blade and working the sander.
This is really awkward. The workmate keeps moving and it is hard to put any pressure on the sander.
We have to come up with a new plan…
I have seen old photos of workers sanding oars. We decide to clamp the sander and work the paddle.
This way we have more control. We can put more pressure on the sander.
I shape my blade down to a ⅛” edge. Paul leaves his a little thicker, closer to 3/16”. I suppose that Paul will be rougher on his paddle than I intend to be on mine.
The new system works a lot better. We start out with 80 grit and finish with 120 grit on the belt sander. We use my ⅓ sheet sander, with 220 grit paper, to take out the 120 grit scratches. We then go to the random-orbital sander with a 240 grit pad. Hand sanding with 320 grit finishes the job.
One blade shaped, one to go.
I use a ¼” round-over bit in my router to rough shape the shafts. No photos of that. We finish sanding the paddles by hand.
Cutting the slot for the wedge.
We put on the handles. We square up the shaft at the top, cut a notch, and wedge the handle on, (with a little glue of course).
Ready to tap in the wedge, wipe up the excess glue.
Because Ash has such open pores, we will epoxy coat the paddles for a smoother finish.
Epoxy coating will also make the paddles tougher…The same method worked for Gwragedd Annwn’s spoon oars.
When the glue is dry and the handles are sanded, Paul mixes up six shots of resin and hardener. We roll on the epoxy and brush out the bubbles.
Brushing out the bubbles.
We leave the epoxy to set…then four or more coats of Varnish!!!!
Epoxy cure time. (Actually looks just like Varnish cure time!)
The routine for Varnishing will be a light sanding followed by tack-clothing, a Varsol wash then a rolled-on coat of Varnish brushed out, until we run out of Varnish.
Second coat this morning.
I know what you are thinking…I am just posting a bunch of pictures taken at the same time. I am not, varnish drying just looks the same in every picture.
Third coat this afternoon.
The stuff on the workbench changes.
Put the fourth coat on last night, fifth coat this morning.
Fifth coat in the morning.
Brushing out the bubbles.
Fifth coat to dry, sixth coat this evening.
…Three coats later, (Eight coats in total) I take out the eyehooks in the handles and plug the holes.
I cut off the tip of a bamboo skewer and using varnish, plug the hole.
I will give the bamboo & handle a light sanding and a few more coats of varnish to glue in the bamboo plug.
Both holes plugged…ready for use!!
The official launching of the canoe will be on Father’s Day, June 17th, 2018, at the Hollyburn Sailing Club, 1326 Argyle Ave West Vancouver, BC, at 9:30am.