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maintenance

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.
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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.
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Non Skid for cockpit floor or decks of a boat.

[Translate] One of the new launchings of the Goat Island Skiff had a problem with a slippery floor… Here is my favourite suggestion. Nice way to deal with it is the same way we did the PDRacers. I couldnt find he pics on the building thread. You varnish the cockpit floor normally. Then mask off […]
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Second interview up on FurledSails.com

[Translate] 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 […]
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Q&A – gluing endgrain – including Plywood and Scarfs

[Translate] —gGluing 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 […]
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Teak Decks and Sikaflex, 5200 etc

[Translate] 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 […]
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Goat Island Skiff Plan - simple building and very fast

Q&A – Painting and Varnishing Epoxy

[Translate] 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 […]
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Q&A – Saving time by precoating plywood sheets with epoxy.

[Translate] 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 […]
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Q&A – Fibreglassing method 1 – small areas

[Translate] This is the normal method for fibreglassing small areas – typically using fibreglass tape to hull seams. Here I document the process of coating the hull and glasstaping the chines in one hit. Integration of different steps in this way is one of the major efficiencies of modern epoxy boatbuilding. However if simply glass […]
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Q&A – Are 1 to 1 (1:1) epoxy mixes OK for boatbuilding?

[Translate] Most quality boatbuilding epoxy manufacturers have a structural boatbuilding product. They normally are “high solids” boatbuilding epoxies that have uneven resin to hardener ratios (2:1, 3:1, 4:1 or 5:1) which you have to add powder to make a glue or filleting mix The same companies often produce pregelled products that are mixed in a […]
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