Day 3


So this stage started with wrapping shrink wrap around the ends of the boat.  This makes it easier for one person to do, and it also reduces the stress by spreading it out over a wider area.  Initially I had tried using a large roll that I had left over from the last time I moved, but that didn't work so well because it covered up too much area.

So off to Northern Tool to get a roll of the 5" shrink wrap. That worked better.

Once the bow was stitched and held together with the shrink wrap, I moved on to the stern.  The stern of the WD12 consists of a wineglass shaped transom which really gives this boat a distinctive look.  The transom does not actually attach to the bottom panels but rather is wired into the side panels which will come together later.  For now the transom piece just gets wedged into the stern stitches.

Now it's time for the side panels go on.  This is a big step because once completed it actually starts to look like a boat.  I started stitching from the middle as the manual instructs, stitching loosely and working towards the ends.  I left the ends open until both sides were on then it was time to close everything up.  

As I was closing up the bow and admiring the curves of this boat I noticed a small crack in the hull near the forward port side temporary form.  This must have happened when I was closing up the bow but I didn't notice it or hear any cracks at the time.  It looks like it is only the face veneer that is cracked so I should be able to patch it up later, and since I am planning on having a black hull it should not matter at all.  Just thought I would point it out.

So everything is now stitched up and closed.  Getting all the panels to line up properly was a challenge.  The side panels kept wanting to lap over the bottom panels rather than meet on the edges so I had to loosen stitches, align the panels, and then re-tighten.  I also had to add a few stitches at the transom and the bow.

I really hated drilling all those extra holes, but I think extra stitches are better than gaps in the boat.  I still don't like the way the side panels and the bottom panels come together, but the copper stitches don't have the strength to pull them together without breaking or tearing the wood, so I might have to try switching those out for plastic zip ties.  It means I'll have to drill larger holes, but it also means a tighter hull so it is a fair trade off.

This boat really has nice hull lines, one of the features that attracted me to it immediately.  All in all I am happy with where the project is today and it looks like a real boat now although my neighbor did mistake it for a canoe.  Next comes the deck which will definitely make it look more kayak-y.

Total time on this phase: 3.5 hrs. 
Total time on construction: 8.5 hours