Archive for the ‘Eva Won’ Category

Name Boards for Canoes – conclusion

Saturday, September 10th, 2011

Not that I’m a slow worker or anything like that… The name boards, carved nearly a month ago are on the canoes. They are finished to match the canoes. Two coats of Cetol Marine went on first. That prevented paint, applied to the incisions, from running in end grain. A third coat of Cetol sealed them.

Placement varies from what the Brits use, smack in the middle of the sides, because those are spots where these boats ride against each other when being transported. Instead, I found relatively flat spots away from the middles. I also used some Dolfinite bedding compound on the green boat because those boards were being placed with attachment holes drilled into the flotation chamber.

The best thing about them is that they will usually be seen while the boat is bobbing around, and one can’t see both sides of a boat at the same time.

photo of bedding compound being applied photo of the green canoe with name board photo of the red canoe with name board

Name Boards for Canoes

Sunday, August 14th, 2011

Learning Lettercarving – parts 2 to 376 have been cancelled. It’s not that I’ve quit Chris Pye’s course. I’m just continuing over in a dark corner of the shop and won’t bore you with details.

Needing to break out of the Practice, Practice, Practice regimen, I decided to actually make something. Long ago, I gave up on making name plates for the two canoes, not wanting to resort to die-cut plastic letters or something else equally dull. Now, I have a better alternative, carved “Name Boards.” On larger craft they might also be called “Quarterboards.”

(As always, click on the pictures to see the full / larger views.)

photo collage - sawing, planing, etcI always resort to the scrap pile for first of a kind projects … erm, prototypes. That way, if they turn out poorly, they’re still scrap! The scrap pile is fresh out of old growth mahogany (the preferred material for name boards), or any growth mahogany for that matter. The pile did include off-cuts from the cedar planking used on Eva Won. Voila! Light weight material that might actually finish up nicely. These were pieces already dimensioned to about 5/16″ thick, and there were enough of them to easily make 4 boards, two for Eva Won and two for Eva Too.

Prep is easy. Rough cut the length. Rip to desired widths. Plane the long edges smooth. Cut the curvy parts with the curvy saw. Cleanup the broad curves with the dreaded sanding block.

photo collage - layed out boards and carving with mallet and chiselLayout took a lot more time than wood prep, not unusual I guess. A double course of borders, each about 1/4″ defined the space remaining for lettering. I drew up paper patterns for the lettering, primarily so I could fold them in half lengthwise to find the center of the text. Not being as clever as Kari about making a transfer tool, I just used dividers to pick measures off the paper and then drew the letters directly on the wood. A small shop made straightedge, shop made square and a bevel gauge made this work easy despite being tedious.

The lettercarving is done with chisels and mallet in the classic incised style. With cedar being very soft, there were many areas where the mallet wasn’t really needed. However, here’s where extremely sharp photo of completed name boardsedges really matter. The cedar’s texture runs from imminently carvable to imminently crushable. In places it is soft and stringy and only a slicing cut will work. So, cedar has become the new test bed for my chisels and gouges. After sharpening, I always test the sharpness with a couple of plunge cuts and a couple of cross grain slices. If those cuts can be made smoothly in this cedar, the tools are sharp enough for self-apendectomies.

Once the letters are carved, some pinwheel ornaments are placed around the future screw holes. Then, the borders are lowered in two steps.

photo of helicopter toysNext, finishing. Just checked; there’s no gold leaf in the paint locker.
Finishing and mounting on the boats in another entry.

P.S. Also made good use of the off-cuts from these pieces. We’ll be visiting a swarm of grandkids soon. Some low-tech “helicopters” might entertain them a few minutes.

Secondary Stability

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

picture of a meter showing "Very Stable"One of the factors for selecting the Mill Creek 13 for the Eva Too build was stability. The CLC Boats site had this confidence inspiring meter showing the boat to be very stable. That really appealed to Eva.

We’ve had both boats out several times recently and have gotten used to their rolling nature. Yesterday, I had no water sensitive electronics aboard, so I tested “secondary stability.” That’s the kind of stability that a hull exhibits (or doesn’t) when rolled off of its normal keel. My tests were simple and didn’t go all the way to a complete capsize. I simply leaned over until it felt as though I was about to fall out of the boat. Each boat behaved very nicely. They rolled over onto one of their planks and remained stable. I was able to roll to the point of having a rub rail submerged.

In the end, we need another notch on that meter. It was harder to get the Fiddlehead over to rub rail submersion than it was the Mill Creek. I think one would literally fall out of the boat before either one rolls enough to capsize.

Eva Won is Launched

Monday, September 7th, 2009

Eva, my best friend and partner of 45+ years, won the naming contest. I was, of course, planning to name the boat after her. Since I am planning on building two boats, one for each of us, in my traditionalist fuddy duddy way I intended to name them “Eva I” and “Eva II.” She’s a linguist, perpetual language student, and language teacher. She did a little word play to turn those into “Eva Won” and “Eva Too.”

Today’s launch was at a Lake Sebago, in the Palisades Interstate Park near where we live. The lake is too small for power boats and just right for canoes and occasional competitive rowing and sailing events. Transport to the lake is atop the lumber rack on my truck. It’s a short walk / carry to the small launch dock. Putting in was a piece of cake. Getting underway was a different story. You ought to hear Eva laugh at the sequence of these next two pictures.

happy boatbuilder launched boatbuilder

I was so busy talking (about the boat, of course) to the guy with the blue hat that I wasn’t careful enough in entering the boat. Swim around to a shallow area, climb out, and try again. The next time went better, after we pumped out about a gallon of water. THANKS to another bystander who had a nifty hand pump. (Gotta get one of those.)

paddling 1Yes, the boat is tippy, but no more so than a white water kayak. Actually, probably a little bit less. Once situated, I felt no uneasiness at all. The boat rows easily. It was not at all difficult to put on some comfortable speed. It tracks well. Perhaps it could turn more easily, but that could also be due to my novice rowing technique. It seems to be quite watertight, except when you submerge one side when trying to enter. Water in the boat came from two sources, submerging the port side on the first entry attempt, and from the paddle. The drip rings on the paddle helped, but need to be improved. After returning home, I checked the watertight compartments and found them bone dry.

paddling 2The paddle worked well too. The paddle itself taught me how to use it. Once I found a good technique, the paddle became absolutely silent in the catch and almost silent in the exit. The paddle’s length (90.5 inches, 230 cm) was determined by the length of lumber I purchased. I think it could stand to be 6 to 8 inches longer. I found myself reaching outside that imaginary box formed by shoulders and elbows to get enough paddle  immersion.

It was a very fine launch day, and a good time was had by all … especially the spectators at the dock. Now, I know why many advise “never paddle alone.” You need someone, not to hold the boat while you enter, but to laugh at the harmless mishaps (and to help carry – THANKS Eva!).

paddling 3Ready to float, the boat weighs 51 pounds. It’s an easy weight to load and carry and only 5 pounds heavier than the designer’s estimate. A fellow who had just carried his Coleman 15.5 canoe (listed at 76 pounds) lifted mine and smiled at how light it is. I think mine is heaver than what Harry specified because I avoided making the scantlings too scant. I erred on the fat side when thickness planing the planking material. The one area where I erred on the thinner side was the coamings. If you look closely at the second picture, you can see that the port side coaming became a casualty to my clumsy first entry. It cracked when brushing the side of the dock as that side submerged. It will be easily repaired.

Back to the boat’s name. There are no name banners on the boat yet. I tried creating waterslide decals, but found that inkjet inks just aren’t opaque enough for this application. (I wanted yellow lettering on the green hull.) We’ll try another approach soon.

Eva’s still laughing at the first two pictures.

Full Boat Pictures

Sunday, September 6th, 2009

These shots are for the youngster who wanted to see the whole boat, not just the top or bottom. As always, click on any image to see a larger version.

up close from bow from stern

It Isn’t Easy Bein’ Green

Friday, September 4th, 2009

Well, actually it is. Here is a fabulous rendition of Kermit’s theme song. Go listen to it; I’ll be here when you get back.

bein greenI have often read that you can’t paint a lapstrake boat with a roller. So, I plundered through two coats of primer and the first coat of Kirby’s Bottle Green with a really good brush. A little bit of added Penetrol made brushing easy, but my technique still creates lap marks. Then, I remembered the 4 inch rollers from another project. They work. Yes, you can paint a lapstrake boat with a roller. Just get the right size. Paint the lap edges with a brush and them roll on the rest. Kirby’s paint is fantastic. All the tiny bubbles from rolling gradually disappear with no need for tipping.

Launch day is coming soon. …