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Fox Island Circumnavigation

Scarfs and Stems

PanelscarfStemstripsStemlaminationBack to boatbuilding again.  I haven't been showing much because it's a slow process, and also because I'm just trying to get all the pieces cut out first to make the best use of space I have.  During these preparatory steps it's not very interesting and won't look like a boat for a long time yet. 

One thing that really made me anxious was scarfing the plywood sheets together, because it can be difficult to get a good fit by planing the joints by hand.  Well, hand planing turned out to be not too time consuming and the joints look OK -- not "invisible" but probably good enough to be bright finished (on the inside anyway).  The 3/4 in plywood that makes up the bottom is joined with thickened epoxy over a 6 in scarf and the 3/8ths in plywood that makes up the side panels is joined over a 3 in scarf.  The resulting panels are 14 ft long, so they take up most of the workshop floor.  I'm having to work a lot on my knees (having comfortable knee pads is essential) and step carefully around the room so I don't mar the wood.  I built a frame just to lift the panels off the floor and glue them together.  I fixed a caul (clamping board) over the joint with drywall screws to clamp the panels together tightly.  Parchment paper keeps the panels from sticking to the caul and to each other.

I used up some more yellow cedar to make 1/8 th in strips to laminate the inner and outer stem.  I actually used a handheld circular saw equipped with a homemade "fence" to cut out the strips, and because the blade wasn't deep enough it required two passes.  It did an even better job than my cheap table saw!

Here is a pic of dryfitting of the strips on the form.  Both the inner stem and outer step are laminated during the same step on the form: a strip of plastic packing tape placed in the middle will allow the inner half of strips to separate from the outer half.


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