The ski is now ready for the top and bottom ply skins to be attached. The plans call for the surfaces to be glued and also nailed ... probably not necessary to nail but the brass nails (escutshions) would look good under the varnish.
THE FINAL STORY ...
To commence with the attaching of the ply to the frame I first cut out a template out of heavy cardboard (packing box) place it over the frame and trace it out with a texta. This is for the front half. This way you don’t want to risk marking it out and realising that you made a mistake. I allow about2ins extra to trim later on the stock.
Left: Stringline for screws. Right: Foot stirrups.
I then transfer the roughed out cardboard pattern onto my stock and cut it out with the trusty ($5) garage sale) jig saw. I put in a cross piece of ply where the centre join will be so when I put in the 3/8 screws along the straight edge of the ply I have something to screw into.
Once satisfied all is okay I glue the ply onto the sides (which is double skinned). I taped the sides with packing tape to avoid runs ... You always get runs. It will save a lot of time doing a careful taping job. I then mark out the rear ply shape same as the front section with the cardboard etc., transfer onto the ply and cut out with the extra bit just in case ... I check carefully that my butt joint is neat and matching and even though this is the bottom we must be particular.
The top two ply sheets are put onto the ski in exactly the same method.
From top: Clamped up; Nails spaced at 2ins, 800 of them; Laminated rails; Keels in place.
Always err on the side of caution with the marking out to ensure there is plenty of overlap.
Allowing overnight for the Bote-Cote to dry (remember safety precautions) I trim the side edges very carefully with the jig saw and then use a small block plane and palm plane finishing off with sanding. Watch the planning as you don’t want to take off a veneer of side ply!
Once trimmed I mark out each two inches using a piece of wood as a marking gauge with V markings for say 6ins and mark out carefully the nail positions ... yes 800 of them.
A nose block and stern block is glued,screwed according to the plan. I shaped up the foot blocks to my own design using pieces of Kauri with rubber straps and screwed to the foot blocks with hand made brass plates. I made the keel out of Tassie Oak from Bunnings 3/4” by 1/2” screwed and glued in place. I made the simple skeg out of King Billy pine glued to the keel.
With the varnishing I use marine grade Bondall and with one of those sample roller kits I roll the varnish on and lay off with a 2in foam brush. This way you get an even finish and no brush marks.
I then had made a stainless steel handle for the stern using a cardboard pattern and went to the friendly steel man who made it up for me. I fitted a stainless steel saddle to the front of the ski and spliced a short length of rope onto it so I have got something to hang onto.
Well that’s about it. I tried it out and it goes quite well with the Cedar paddles. I will make another set of double paddles for fun as my next project. Ski weight ... 40kg, length 13ft 9ins.
Bote-Cote glue $70
Incidentals, rubber/brass $50
The ski is for sale at$2500