Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Stand by for Action!

Well thats the hard part done!

3 months and 13 days have gone by and from 21 metres of western red cedar decking I now have a brand new sea kayak, all varnished, fitted out , and ready to go on the water.

I got the Karitek skeg all plumbed in, and went for a natty blue and white choice for deck-line and shock cord. Hopefully sea / lake trials will take place this weekend, to get the seat and footrests in their correct places.

All loaded up and ready to go to Coniston Water in England's Lake District!

[That's where Donald Campbell died in 1967 when his craft Bluebird flipped attempting the world waterspeed record. I don't think I'll have the same problem..]

Now, what shall I make next.......

Monday, 23 March 2009

The final run in..

I've been fairly busy recently, but have managed to complete the last major step in building a cedar strip kayak; joining the deck and the hull. It's good to see the boat in one piece at last.
I've also made the seat from Minicell foam, and finished the carbon fibre coaming, and fitted the Karitek skeg box.

Internal view of skeg box

Carbon fibre hatch rim detail. The hatches are the same size as on my Valley Aquanaut.

View of the inside of the hull to the bow... the black circles are carbon fibre patches to reinforce the bottom of the deck fittings

And along to the stern.
The pieces of wood were necessary to force the hull outwards to meet the deck whilst the epoxy set. You can see the double layer to reinforce under the seat and the internal keel strip.
The inside of the hull is a bit scabby, so I'll probably paint it.

The boat needed a roll and a half of nylon reinforced tape to keep the two halves together...
[and it's a pig to get off too].

I attached the fibreglass tape with wee dots of hot melt glue to keep it in place.

I used 2" tape on the outside. By trimming along the line of the masking tape when the resin has just gone 'green', a very neat seam is created, without the woven edge of the tape showing.

The hardest and most unpleasant bit was getting the resin along the tape on the inside, but didn't take as long as I thought it would. I rolled a length of pre soaked 1" tape on top of it for extra strength.

Joined at last !

Monday, 2 March 2009

March update...

Well, it may not look like I have done much since the last post, but I have finished glassing the  hull and also the inside of the deck. I'm totally surprised at how stiff and light the boat is.

I built up the sides of the coaming with wood strips, and today fitted the deck line fittings which arrived last week.

Nigel Dennis himself told me where I could source them, and they are a neat touch, fully recessed, and very tough as they are glass filled nylon and stainless steel. I've set them out exactly the same as my Valley boat. 

The purists use webbing or wooden fittings, but I prefer these ones

They can be sanded down so they follow the lines of the deck too.

Next job is cutting out and fitting the hatches and building the spray deck lip.

I lashed out today and bought some carbon fibre cloth  for these operations, so fingers crossed!