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Friday, August 1, 2014

Never enough clamps

The boat project progresses, I assure all of you. It's nothing much to take a photo of. Some of what I'm doing doesn't really show up in a photograph. There's not much visual difference between coats of epoxy. I'm also building some windows and a cabin hatch, but they might not end up on the boat. Sometimes I've got to build something to see how it'll look.

Anybody who's ever built a boat has the same complaint: there are never enough clamps. Boat building employs a lot of adhesives and bent lumber. That means clamps and plenty of them. Often I find myself waiting for the glue to set up so the clamps can be moved to the next piece of work. It really doesn't pay to be hasty. There's a lot of waiting for things to cure, set or dry.

Thanks to the wonders of the Internet I've been researching different ways of building leeboards and rudders. I've lost track how many videos, forum posts, and web sites I've looked at. Some designs use materials that are already in my supply pile, so those ideas get moved up the priority list.

I've some marine hardware and Spectra Rope on order. Some things can't be picked up at the local hardware store. However, nuts, bolts, pins, and screws come right out of my local Tractor Supply. Their stainless steel hardware has held up as well or better than the official marine stainless. Those little things add up so it's a significant price savings.

The sailboat is far enough along that my lovely wife and I are trying out different names to see if one will fit. I'm thinking that the shorter the boat the longer the name. Since this is a 12 foot boat, it's going to have one monster of a name. If you don't have displacement you've got to have attitude.

The boat build is moving along. Some builders do really fine smooth work. I'm not one of those. At some point I'll get tired of sanding, put some paint on it and call it good. Can't make it too pretty or I'll be afraid to use it.

Now if only I could rustle up some more clamps . . .



  1. Haha, I love the concept, you have to make up with attitude what you don't have in length... wonderful!

  2. Glad you like it. Attitude makes up for a lot sometimes.

  3. call it "Greatest Attitude"

  4. This is a big boatbuilding problem! Clamps.. I have dozens of the things and its still not enough! You can make some nice simple ones, very useful, by cutting 4" thick wall plastic pipes in 1 1/2" or 2" sections , cutting a slit in them and voila, instant clamps!

    1. I should have made a pile of those. I've even put my collection of vice grips into play.

  5. There is a great little magazine called "messing about in boats" Geared to small boats and suchlike, lots of info in a typical issue, and suppliers O plenty. It's not a glossy thing, very low key... Worth checking out.
    Jesse in DC