Deck Construction

Before you start to glue strips... (page 1 of 4 pages)

A little set up goes a long way (next few photos). For building the deck we have first removed the station molds from their upright stands and placed them back in the boat, securing each with a few dabs of hot-melt glue. The hot-melt glue is great stuff for temporary forms, since you can break the form free from the boat with just a few hard wiggles or a good firm pop with the heel of your hand.

A little set up goes a long way (continued...). Having removed the station molds from their upright stands, we now set the boat on padded cradles made from scrap A/C plywood and foam water pipe insulation. In this photo I have already done quite a bit of strip work... note how well the bungies work as clamps when anchored to the screw eyes in the strongback.

A little set up goes a long way (continued...). Although in this photo I have already just about finished stripping the front of the deck, notice the use of the "break-away" forms. (This is all covered in the Nick Shade book The Strip-Built Sea Kayak.) The tops of these station mold forms were cut off with the bandsaw, then reattached with wavey ribbons of hot-melt glue applied to each side of the form. These modifications facilitate removing the tops of the forms (once the stripping gets to the point shown in the photo), so that the cut-out for an inset deck for the coaming can be made with less obstruction from the tops of the station molds. This type of "sub-deck" is a bit of extra work, but is a neat touch for the overall boat design. Also, it is a little better design for smaller-stature paddlers (like my wife, for whom I am building this boat). This aspect of deck construction is well explained in Shade's book (see the boat-building bibliography).

Set those outside deck shears... Before beginning to strip the deck, be sure to mask off the inside and outside hull shear strips with vinyl packaging tape. I stappled right into the glassed hull... no big deal, since the staple holes later will be covered with some combination of glass cloth, heavy glass tape, and resin.

Next.(more deck work)


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