Looking for plans of Rickard Sarby’s Olympic Finn Dinghy in wood

The Finn Dinghy has been one of the most important of the racing classes over the past six decades. It was always in the forefront of sailing developments. One fellow contacted asking if there were plans to build a Finn dinghy … and I was able to find a partial answer.

12sq metre Sharpie (Heavyweight Sharpie) for sail in Australia.

A rare beast, a circa 1960s 12 square metre sharpie with some of the original rig is for sale. I am not involved, but in the interests of helping preserve a little bit of Australian sailing and boat design history I would like to help find it a good home. The 12sq metre (heavyweight) Sharpie came to Australia for the 1956 Olympics. NZ first, Oz second. However the boat totally changed the approach to the design of Australian skiffs. Thought you might be interested to read my understanding of the design issues and influence. How the Sharpie name went from the USA to Europe and then to Australia – and how it changed our boats.

Minimal repairs to keep an old Mirror plywood sailing dinghy going

Melanie in the UK wrote to me. She has just bought an old Mirror dinghy and started sailing for the first time. Problem is that the boat leaks and she doesn’t want to stop using the boat until the end of the season. I have a philosophy of keeping older boats on the water and not pulling them off for months on end until you have the time to do the job. So the article here is useful to see what can be done with an old leaky plywood sailing dinghy to keep it going. It is perfect sailing weather at the moment in the UK and it is better she is out there learning but with the worst of the leaks gone. With a disciplined approach she should be able to get all of this done in a week or so. The general leaks fixed permanently and the rotted area reinforced so that the boat won’t break.

Podcast Online – Wooden Boat Construction by Michael Storer – 2 of 3

This is the second of my talks in the USA. It focuses a bit more on construction and some of the methods that can be used to keep a boat light and simple, but very strong and stiff. It also discusses how there is a “creep” in boatbuilding and design that increases the weight of boats way over what is really needed for a strong structure.

Table of Contents for Michael Storer Wooden Boats Forum.

It is a bit hard finding information on my forum as the list is not very ordered, so I have attempted to fix this.There is a general building section then each boat is in alphabetical order.To see all the images you may need to become a member, however, they are a good bunch and will […]

Second interview up on FurledSails.com

The first part was up last week. This week we talk about traditional vs modern sailtypes – everyone knows I am a fan of trad rigs because of their low cost – but here I go into the influences on the other side. I love the efficiency of modern rigs so I use all the […]

Q&A – gluing endgrain – including Plywood and Scarfs

Gluing Endgrain Gluing timber end grain with epoxySee drawing of endgrain right.. The basic problem is that end grain is highly absorbent so it can steal the resin from the join leaving insufficient for good bonding.  The trick … is to feed the end grain some mixed resin before the glue mix is put on […]

Q&A – Should I use coarse sandpaper on timber or ply to make the epoxy stick.

There  was the suggestion that very coarse sandpaper was the best to use on a timber surface to ensure good bonding when gluing or fiberglassing the surface. This is not recommended – the following explains why. There  was the suggestion that very coarse sandpaper was the best to use on a timber surface to ensure […]

Q&A Why hasn’t the epoxy cured – coating gluing glue

This is a problem most of use come up against at least once. However it is unlikely to happen a second time. Richard wrote to me asking why his epoxy was still soft 3 days later.  He suggested it might be because of one of: 1. The immediate guess is that it’s been too cold […]

Teak Decks and Sikaflex, 5200 etc

There are two tricks to sikaflexing between strips. Use the Sika Primer – it improves the bond strength to the timber for a permanent job. You can get away without it often, but it changes the situation from a fairly strong bond to a hugely strong bond (you’ll know this if you have ever removed […]
Goat Island Skiff Plan - simple building and very fast

Q&A – Painting and Varnishing Epoxy

Paint vs Varnish Paint is more durable and will protect the epoxy and timber the best. Varnish hides a rough surface better.  If you have done a rough job the timber grain will hide it.  Make sure the varnish contains ultra-violet filters.  It is a photo from the Goat Island Skiff Calendar put together by […]

Q&A – Saving time by precoating plywood sheets with epoxy.

If ply sheets are precoated it saves lots of time. It is easier to coat areas on the flat Gravity works with you to keep the coated surface level so there can be no runs. It is easier to get an even distribution of epoxy on the surface There is much less chance of missing […]

Q&A – Fibreglassing method 3 – Method for large areas

Fiberglassing larger areas is done differently from small. Large areas require that the glass be draped dry over the surface then the epoxy is applied over the glass and worked through the surface. The example here is glassing a centreboard but the principle is the same for much bigger areas like the bottoms, sides and […]