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Tin Canoes, First Experiment

Some pictures here and here.

Hope to finish attaching the deck soon.

Then we will pull the tin roof down and try to turn it into a boat.

I find this guy most exciting.


Thistle on a Reach

It was just me and my friend Paul on the boat in conditions that really required three people to compete, but Paul somehow got a free hand to make a little video with his iPhone. Paul is trimming the spinnaker and hiking out at the same time he is holding the iPhone.

I hardly ever get to see video from my own boat because we are usually real busy just sailing it.

There were sixteen boats racing.

Mike Rees

Thistle Fling #3590

And, all day to get there...

Lady Bug and I went to the unpeopled burg of Coolin today. Priest Lake with no boats, or wind, was quite a sight. No place to be, and all day to get there. Five miles covered in five hours "under sail." Max observed speed, 3 kts. "Normal" speed, ½ knot. Quite an adjustment day for a chronic Type-A. Gotta' go take a nap to get over all the excitement. Oh yeah, and an 80 mile round trip drive with nothing on the road but a few log trucks, and a handful of boats coming home for the winter. I don't think I even could spell f-r-e-e-w-a-y anymore.



From Europe to America by Sail

Here is your chance to sail across the pond in a sailing ship In No Tech Magazine. Besides a cargo capacity of 35 tons, she has accommodation for 5 crew members and a maximum of 12 passengers. On board you learn the basics of square-rigged seamanship: maintenance, navigating, maneuvering under sail, safety, cooking and much more. Actually, more work than play? I love notech magazine.


Crystal River Boat Builders - Update

Before: July 2011

After: August 2013

Considering that about a dozen old, coffee drinking, grey-beards only work a half-day on Wednesday and a half-day Saturday, and they only use hand tools, this is some accomplishment!

Looking for a September SPLASH!

Follow us on facebook for the dates of launch, christening and PARTY!

Bill Whalen

Not a PDR Testing

The front deck is 3/8 ext ply well braced so I can stand on it and hold onto the mast for balance. I find that makes it nice when messing with the sail in high winds and seas. Notice the small lip on the edge of the front deck. That is my "Save my butt" rail. It's there so when the deck is wet IF my foot slips I won't go over board. It will also keep things from rolling onto the sea.

The rear deck is also 3/8 ext ply. I can step on both decks. The side decks are well braced 3/8 ext ply designed for keeping the boat afloat if it's on it's side but also can be sit on when messing with the sail. The are NOT air boxes. The only flotation in the boat will be some empty bleach bottles secured under the two end decks when the wind is high. Otherwise I don't see a need for more than a couple of empty bottles just to keep it floating. The side decks have 3 inch thick pieces on the inside edges of them. This should trap air in some circumstances. BUT mostly I don't expect to capsize. Based upon my PDR experiences air boxes just add weight. This boat came in under 100 lbs. The only weight is the forward deck and all that bracing.

The rear view shows the rudder attached by a pin and parts from two gate hinges. The rudder can not jump off because the pin is locked in place when the tiller handle is down. Raise the handle, pull the pin and pull the rudder. The rudder is another idea I am testing. The pull down lines are ONE big loop. Notice the top of the rudder in the rudder photo. That nodule was left when the shape was cut out. It gives me a better way to get the right angle of pull on the pull down line. That line goes almost to the end of the tiller handle and feeds through a hole and back to the back side of the rudder. Near the rear (unseen in the photo) is a plastic ball with a hole drilled in it. The line runs though it and is secured by a knot on each side so the ball stays on the line where it's placed. I can pull on the ball to lift the rudder and push it down to lover the rudder. THEN when the rudder is in place I can simply lock it there by holding the tiller handle down. IF I want to hold the rudder in place with the tiller raised I can simply hold the line at the end of the tiller and raise the tiller while keeping the rudder in place.

The boat is deceptive as a PDR. In fact the bottom is 42 inches wide mid ship but tapers to 40 inches on both ends. The sides are flaired out to 48 inches at the rail mid ship and the ends flair out as well. The sides being flaired and curved SHOULD help the boat not root on a heel. I believe that sail WILL induce heel since it heels the PDR which DOES root on heel. Because the PDR roots with this sail I believe it slows the PDR down. In fact I feel my home made Spirit sail moves the PDR faster due to the fact the PDR does not root. Notice the bottom curve. I did not like the big deep bow on the PDR which allows it to root at times. SO I made my boat with the curve you see. IS that better? I won't know until the boat is tested. I had hoped to sail it today but so far there is not one drop of wind.

The hull is Luan the bottom is 1/4 Ext Ply and topsides 3/8 ext ply. The boat is sealed inside and out with several coats of Titebond II and Latex Paint. ALL seams including the top decks are sealed with Fiberglass sheet rock tape and TB2 then coated with Latex paint. I did learn that the full 1/4 ext ply is good for boats and is easy to bend if you bend it slowly using wet blankets and sun light. The boat was started in June of last year so during July the the hot summer sun on the wet blankets with some weight made the plywood fit the bottom curve, it took a week.

The Lee Board is made out of a very old Old growth Pine 1 by 12.. It was already cut that length. I found that pine to be very hard wood. It's surprisingly hard. There was only one very tiny knot in the entire board. The board was salvaged out of an old building I was working on years ago. It would have been burned IF I had not found it. My first thought was making a boat paddle. The board lay in the yard for years and when I wanted a Lee Board it sort of called to me. Shaping it took two days since my Planer needs new blades and are not found in this area.

The boat is entirely glued together using TB2 and held by staples.. The only screws are in the rudder area, on the handles and on a brace on each side at the side decks. I estimate there are 22 screws in the entire boat. I have built a smaller LOM sail for windy days. BUT I have not ruled out my Sprit sail. I find the Sprit sail lowers the sail and on a small boat in high winds it seems to work well. I want to get a few hours on the tiller before I make a decision about this boat. IF I don't like sailing it I will install a motor board for an electric motor. The entire boat was built using a former located mid-ship and levels placed on both ends making sure the hull is not twisted as is was assembled.

Rudder on boat.
Side view, sails and foils on boat.
Side view, sails up ready to go.
Side, rear view, sails up ready to go.

Sailed the boat today. It's definitely NOT a PDR. It loves to heel. I can sit on the side and heel the boat in low wind and it seems to ghost better. Lots of differences in how this boat handles differently than the PDR. This boat sails like a sail boat. The PDR is better for a beginner. I loved this boat I had to hike out and it DOES heel well. It goes WAY over on it's side. The bow is a better angle and takes the head on waves better. BUT it's a bit more tender. The bow will go deeper in the water if I stand on the forward deck. In fact That is good if you want to re-board from the bow. You can pull the bow down closer to the water making it easier to re-board. The boat is not a beginners boat and it has to be sailed. Yes, I loved it. smile. I will make a 4 sided Sprit sail for high winds. Otherwise I will need flotation. At 5pm the wind dropped down to a whisper. I heeled the boat Starboard with the sail over that side. She ghosted well. Also she paddles in dead wind better than a PDR. BUT the PDR is a good boat.


Too Many

Like that note that Annie sent around said, "Only problem with building a boat. is, now you own a boat."

And, for some us, now you get to rent another stall from the friendly, neighborhood, storage building people. Because, there's another one on the operating table, and a few more still in the waiting room. At any rate, I just put some new Freud saw blades into the table saw and sliding miter-just about that time of year when some otherwise good plywood gets turned into smaller chunks, dust, and noise in the search for the "perfect boat." Yeah, right.


Work on the Spindrift

The weather is so good right now, it's hard to get any progress. That's a good thing - more people on the water is a good thing.

We had visiting Coots, Hal (far left) and Dennis (far right.) In the middle were some folks, just passing through. I couldn't talk them into a boat, but we had a nice visit, all the same.

My hope for next week is to get her 3D and tacked with a little bit of thickened epoxy.

Andrew Linn

Toledo Wooden Boat Show Photos

I finally got some of the photos I took at the recent boat show in Toledo, Oregon online.

And here's a photo essay on the Show by Andrew Linn, sparkplug of the Port of Toledo Community Boathouse.


A Nice Photo

There might be a place on Duckworks for this photo.

Paul Austin


It´s starting to look like a boat! That grey area in the mast is from glassing with polyester. I sawed it too thin and recollect that according to Jim the best way to make the bottom part of the mast stronger is to glass. It should become clear after cure and I´ll probably varnish the mast.

Now it looks like I´ll make the boat as ready as possible and take it to the mountain lake in March and continue finishing it there in May. The vast Inari lake which I was planning first seems to be risky, a storm from the Polar Sea may raise 2 metre high waves and small boats tend to sink.



Here is a photo of MicroWave with Howard Rice onboard taken in April at Port Townsend Small Boat Academy. (The ferry is farther away than it looks.)


New Coopers Mast

I depended heavily on Ed (Chief Red Bear) Davis's article "Making a Coopers Mast" to make myself a lovely 10 ft octagonal mast yesterday out of two pieces of premium 1×6 pine lumber.

His sawing instructions were particularly helpful on the safest way to get a trapezoid cross section with the smaller parallel side ¾ inch and the equilateral nonparallel sides at 22.5 degree angled cuts.

I used wood flour thickened epoxy and held the glue up together with string and rope.

Thanks for this wonderful collective body of information you maintain called Duckworks.

Tim Ferguson

Building the trimaran Polka Duck in Thetford, VT

Reason #572 to Love Your Smartphone: 

The New GetMyBoat iPhone App 

August 22, 2013 – San Francisco, CA – It’s now possible to book a sailing excursion, jetski trip or a P. Diddy style yacht party all from the palm of your hand, thanks to the latest innovation introduced by GetMyBoat, the world’s fastest-growing boat rental and charter marketplace.  The company today unveiled a new, first-of-its-kind iPhone app that allows anyone to search and book boats in their vicinity simply, affordably and in a matter of minutes.

“Someday, the idea of having idle boats in marinas 92% of the time while aspiring renters go through onerous, time-consuming processes to charter a boat will seem just as outlandish as having to go to a bank teller to withdraw money from your bank account,” said Sascha Mornell, CEO and Co-Founder of GetMyBoat.  “GetMyBoat has already proven that boating is perfectly suited for the new sharing economy.  Now with our new iPhone app, we’re showing that procuring a boat from your phone can be easy, secure and fun.” 

Like Uber for boats, brings together aspiring boat renters and owners to create the world’s safest, most robust peer-to-peer boating platform.  The GetMyBoat platform contains over 9,600+ boat listings, in over 60 Countries, from kayaks and catamarans to 100-foot, fully crewed yachts, posted in an easily searchable app that includes full feature lists, pricing, and photos.

The GetMyBoat iPhone app uses location based software that can immediately display all boat listings in the immediate vicinity of the user. A user can also browse photos and features, procure pricing information, connect with owners, insure their trip, and board the boat all in a matter of a few swipes.

“As boating enthusiasts, we get particular satisfaction out of knowing that GetMyBoat has the potential to revolutionize and democratize the boating experience,” said Bryan Petro, Head of Product for GetMyBoat.  “Whether you want a quick kayak trip in Maine, to speed boat through Sydney Harbor or to ‘own’ a yacht for the day and cruise the Greek Isles, we can make it easier and more affordable than ever.”

For owners and charter companies, GetMyBoat charges no fees, commissions, or monthly membership dues. Boats can be rented by the day, hour or week, depending on the owner's preference. Renters have the option to rent or charter the boat with a captain or without (bareboat).  For more information about GetMyBoat, visit


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