Friday, April 29, 2011


After a few days spent moping and playing sad songs on the violin, I got back at it.  I picked up two new sheets of plywood.  I ripped them in half, stacked them up, and set to work.  After the last go at scarfing, I swore off using power tools to create scarfs.  So, I pulled out my assortment of hand planes and set to work.   I wish I had done it that way to begin with.  Long curls of wood materialized as I ran the plane along gradually receding edges of the plywood.   It just felt an artisan practising his craft using the time-honored tools of the trade.   And the results were perfect.  Why didn't I do it this way to begin with?  Why did I think a power tool could beat a well handled plane?  Never again will I use a power tool to cut a scarf.

I made several passes with the jack plane and then finished it off  with my block plane.

OK, now here are some 8:1 scarfs to be proud of!

There are times that I think power tools and wooden boats were never meant to be brought into contact with one another. Except for random orbital sanders.

I glued my newly cut scarf joints together.  How'd they turn out?  Perfect.  These has turned out exactly the way that the first set should have.  So good, that I've contemplating redoing the other panels so that they too are of the highest quality. But aside from the desire to attain perfection, I can't really justify doing this.  I've inspected the other long panels are solid.  And they may be ugly, but all those surfaces will be painted.  The godfather of stitch 'n glue boatbuilding, Sam Devlin, says that you have to set realistic expectations or else "you will find yourself bogged down by an obsessive desire to have everything perfect."  So, I think I will leave well enough alone.  But still...

Continuing the re-work, I laid out and cut the new side panels, sanded them, and set about re-fiberglassing them.  With the keel and building cradle in the shop, I am a little short on space in the shop, so I only have room to fiberglass one panel at a time.  So, right now I have one done.  The other will get done in the near future. And then it'll be back to sanding.
Deja vu...Haven't I 'glassed panels just like this before?

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