Aeon at rest after a good run.
My desk faces two big windows. In the afternoon, the sun slants across the porch and peeks in. There’s a wisteria vine curtain that waves coyly if there’s any wind, and through the gaps are red and yellow maples that join in, shimmering. Further off still are woods, then mountains, a ripple of blue-greyed horizon, like distant surf. Makes it hard to get work done sometimes.
Tuesday was a beautiful day, a breezy day. I ignored it successfully and regretfully until it was too late to do anything with. Yesterday was much the same, though, and two in a row is just unfair. The Schooner Race posts will just have to wait a bit longer. Terri has her weekends in the middle of the week, so we loaded up Aeon and headed for big water, back to the Chickahominy. (Caesura gets no love until she muscles her way onto the trailer.)
Doug helped me flip the boats while he was here so he could see them right side up. That gave me access to all the parts that still needed a last coat of varnish (this year).
The Decks and Coamings now have three coats, the Rails have two. I also got two coats on the Tillers and, finally, two coats on the Hatch Covers. Now they match the Decks, and for the first time you can see how the finished topsides will look with all matching woods and colors. Very nice, I think.
Working strenuously on the hardware now. More on that soon.
Mike with Odin, circa 1985
When you spend long days in the shop, on tasks that don’t require much thought, your mind tends to wander. Since I’m working on boats, that’s where my mind goes, and I often take long mental journeys in boats from the past. Something happened earlier this year that reminded me of the second boat I could actually call my own, and I’ve been thinking of it a lot lately. The first boat was great, too, but it’s the second one that’s really been on my mind lately. Like the first boat, this one I shared with a friend, and that contributed a great deal to all the memories connected with it. Continue reading
Got the final coat on both creatures last night after dinner, so that’s done, and the house can finally start airing out. The fumes are rather heady, to say the least.
Within a few hours, the fresh paint was firm enough to remove all that attractive blue tape. I was anxious to do that, curious to see how the natural wood accents would interact with the colors. Very nice, i think. Should be even better once rails, stems and transoms have been cleaned up and varnished – at the moment they’re dusty and only have a seal coat of epoxy.
A large image, shows detail before the fairing and painting. Pretty rough.
melonseed skiff, mellonseed skiff, melon seed, mellon seed
Shaping the Keel Plank
(to start of project)
Gluing up Ash strips for the keels worked really well. Left off the last two strips so the whole blank would fit through the planer, which evened everything out, then planed the remaining strips to the same thickness and glued them on.
Outside looking in. Where’s Spring?
(to start of project)
Between doing taxes, borrowing a planer (Thanks G!), snow storms, birthdays, and working late at a real job, a little still gets done on the boats: more sanding and scraping, and some work on the keels.
Most people use a high quality mahogany plywood for this part, and there’s much to recommend that. It’s pretty wood, and easy to use, though you’d still have to scarf two sheets together, and laminate two 1/4” sheets, to get the full length and thickness necessary. In my case, it’s the only place where mahogany would be used, so I think it might seem a bit out of place – if possible, I’m trying to use only woods that would have been available locally.