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Welcome to my blog on the building and sailing of a Goat Island Skiff (GIS). Join us on the Michael Storer Wooden Boat Plans forum or on Facebook, where the community of Storer Boat builders, owners, and admirers share their ideas, experiences, and watery hi-jinx.

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Friday, June 3, 2011

"That's What She Said" Dept.

Holy CRAP that thing is BIG!!!

Um... wow.  I had no idea how tall the GIS mast really is compared to something familiar like... my house.  Standing next to it, I strained my neck to peer at the tip and it dawned on me the the sail plan extends even higher by several feet more.  All those pictures I've seen online make the GIS seem like a lovely little dinghy.  Such a cute little boat you can build in your own garage, even a tiny European garage.  Anyway...

My mast is constructed and tapered.  I still need to round off the corners with my router and then sand all four sides smooth.

Here are a couple of shots of the ladder assembly.

I started with shaping the narrow staves.  I used a taut string to establish a center line that made the best fit on the not-so-perfectly-straight lumber.  I then marked the dimensions for the taper per the designer's plans.  Thankfully the two boards were close enough in shape that I could clamp them together and plane them simultaneously.  I should have taken pictures of that.  Next came the spacer blocks.  Each one must be square in section and sized exactly to the width of the stave at their respective location.  My Japanese pull saw made quick work of the cheapo pine filler stock.  The photos above show the gluing process.  Based on the experience of other GIS builders (yay internet!) I used the wide stave board as a platform to keep things lined up.  Packing tape protects the base from being fixed to the ladder prematurely.  I also use packing tape to make up for my small number of clamps.  One good aspect of using epoxy as an adhesive is that it doesn't require great clamping force.  In fact, too much force will squeeze the expoy out and leave a weak bond.

Once cured, I cleaned the epoxy drips and sanded smooth the edges in preparation for the wide staves.  I glued each stave separately, just to keep better control over the process.  The wide staves were then planed down to the tapered shape of the narrow staves and... voila!  One box sectioned mast.  After I round and sand the surfaces, it will be ready for reinforcing fiberglass and epoxy coating.  I will put that on hold for a bit for two reasons.  First, I don't yet have the fiberglass.  Second, there are some spots where the seams need a little more epoxy glue.  I have another spar to glue up as well as oars to make, so I'll use some of that glue to make corrections before I progress any further.  Those other pieces need to catch up before any glassing and coating gets done.

Next up: boom and oars!

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