Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Fourth of July Launch

It Floats!!!

After a fair amount of finishing time, I finally launched my kayak.  Official launch was just before noon on July 4th, 2013 in Bass Lake located about 8 miles south of Biwabik, MN.  Bass lake has special meaning to me as we have had a family cabin on this lake for many years and was the first lake (and still my favorite) to swim in.  

I don't have the exact totals yet but I am somewhere in the 250 - 300 hour range for time, used around 24 different 3M products and just under $1000 USD for cost.  I have learned a lot during the 10 months which have passed since I started building it.  One of the biggest things, for me, was patience.  Taking time when needed and not rushing it.  There were times when I thought I could just hurry up and quickly get something done, like install just one more strip, and usually, that one didn't look good at all. 

So during the course of this build, I have been thinking of a name for my creation, and building upon my learning and my Finnish ancestry, I chose the Finnish word Maltti.  Translation to English is probably closer to presence of mind so I thought it would be a fitting name for this watercraft.  

I do have some more pictures to post about the fiberglassing and finishing so for those interested, I will write another post which will get into more details.  For now, here are more pictures of the finished craft.

St. Croix river view across the bow.

Standing on end to complete the "end pour."

On top of our car for the maiden voyage to Bass Lake. 

Glassing complete, ready to go.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Nearing the end!

As with previous posts, it has been some time since my last one!  But, I have been making solid progress.  This post will be short on the words and heavy on the pictures.  To quickly summarize, I have completed stripping of the deck, sanding, fiber-glassing/epoxying, building the cockpit and cutting the hatches.
I have yet to epoxy the inside of the deck, join it with the hull, varnish the entire outside, then launch.  Ok, maybe there are a few other minor details in there but those are the major steps.

My 3M product usage count is now up to 21.  I added a 1/2 face respirator, organic vapor cartridges,  a Bondo scraping tool and a tack cloth.  I've got plans for at least 4 more products and when I am all complete, I will publish the entire list.

Enjoy! The next post should be soon and will include some launch pictures.
First strips of the deck

The completed deck
The cockpit cutout and recess
Completed Combing

Glassed Hull
Glassed Deck

The rear hatch cutout

Front hatch cut out with gasket recess

Building the combing lip.  Yes, I did use every clamp in my shop!

I will add some cheek plates to the inside of the cockpit, then I'll get it all 'glassed.  I can then join the deck and hull, add the bulkheads, some gaskets on the hatches along with their hold downs, varnish it, then launch.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

1/2 complete with the 2nd 3rd

Again it has been some time since my last post (beginning of December) but progress has been made.  So far I have completed stripping the hull.  This marks a milestone for me as I am now, what I like to say, half way through the second third of the project.

Completed hull
I have divided up the project into three parts.  The first part being the form building and strip cutting.  The second part is the strip installation.  The final part is the finishing.  Since at this point I am complete with stripping the hull, I consider this 1/2 way through the 2nd 1/3.  It makes sense to me!

The final strip installation on the hull.
These final strips took a little bit of fitting, but, they went in and look great.  It is amazing how much easier a sharp plane shapes the wood.  I thought a video of all of the stills which I have taken of stripping the hull.  Enjoy!

I have completed planing and rough sanding. The differences in the redwood and cedar are readily apparent and the beauty of the wood is showing.  I plan to come back to finish sand the hull just prior to fiber-glassing.
Shavings from planing.

Here is a video of me turning the kayak over on it's stands.  I still need to modify the stands a little to avoid the sharp contact points on the hull.  I plan to cut a couple of curved pieces underneath the hull and attach these to the stands.

With previous posts, I have been keeping track of the different 3M products being used.  My total count of different products is now up to 17.  I added the ergonomic sanding block to my list of products.  Surprisingly enough, I did not own a hand sanding block.  So, with a recent trip to the company store, I saw this and purchased it.  It fits my hand well but the only minor problem with it is that ,to me, the spikes which hold the sandpaper onto it are placed too far into the cut outs.  I almost need three hands to attach the paper, but in the end, it works as a sanding block should.

Lastly, I have been thinking that I need a name for my creation.  Since most boats have names, I have begun thinking about what to name it.  I have a couple I am considering and I am open to sugestions.  Feel free to leave a comment if you have a suggestion for a name. Stay tuned for more info.  The name reveal will come out during the initial launch which I am hoping to do sometime around the end of May or early June.

Until next time...