Saturday, April 24, 2010

wood duck kayak

Now the hull is very stiff. It is now a composit laminate. Four milimeater Okoume plywood with glass cloth and epoxy on both sides. It is very strong but still very light weight. I need to give it 24 hours for the epoxy to cure before I move to the next step.

wood duck kayak

Fiber glassing the kayak hull. The glass cloth is draped over the hull and then the epoxy is spread over the cloth, bonding it to the wood hull.

wood duck kayak

Mixing a batch of epoxy. The epoxy comes in two parts. Resin and hardener. Once it is mixed together you have about 15 or 20 minuets to work with it before it starts to set up. It works faster if it is warm, slower if it is cool.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

wood duck kayak

This evening after work I spent about an hour finishing the hull interior.

I put another coat of epoxy over the glass cloth to fill the weave. Then I brushed a coat of epoxy over all the bare wood on the interior to seal the wood and make it water tight.

Tomorrow is my 12 hour day at work so have to wait until the day after to start sanding the exterior of the hull.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

wood duck kayak

You can see the wet tape over the panel seams.

After two hours, I put fiberglass cloth over the now tacky tape.

This is the inside of the cockpit where you sit.

wood duck kayak

The new fillet's are about two hours old and are tacky to the touch. Time to cover them with fiberglass tape.

Once the fiberglass is soaked with epoxy it becomes clear. The wood grain will appeare natural.

Once the epoxy sets, It is very strong but still very light weight.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

wood duck kayak

Today I put fillets on all the hull panel joints. I used epoxy mixed with wood flower and filled all the joints with a 1/2 inch radius.

In about two hours the epoxy will be tacky enough that I can start laying glass tape over the joints.

Monday, April 12, 2010

wood duck kayak

Today I spent the day with my Dad. We went to Johnson's Workbench in Charlotte MI. I wanted to buy all my cedar for the kayak deck. I was able to get northern white cedar but they were all out of western red cedar. ( It's a 90 mile drive to Charlotte from home ).

I wanted to get all my cedar and rip all of it into deck strips all in one day. Now it will take another full day to do it all over again.

Oh well, I need to spend more time with Dad so this will be another day together.

In the photo I am riping a 1x6 into 1/4 inch strips. I got 17 strips out of each board. I cut up 4 boards, all on Dads table saw at his house. I fed the cedar into the saw and Dad pulled from the other side. It took about an hour to cut all four boards.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

wood duck kayak

I could build much faster but I have to wait for the epoxy glue to set up. It's like you work for an hour or two, then wait until tomorrow before working some more. I think I could build this thing in 4 or 5 days if I did not have to wait for the epoxy to set.
In this photo I have just glued all of the hull panel seams. ( WAIT UNTIL TOMORROW ) Then I will remove all of the stainless steel stitches and all of the temporary hull forms.

Friday, April 9, 2010

wood duck kayak

Finally, after all this time, I have something that looks like a kayak.

It took me about five hours to stitch the four hull panels together.

Tomorow I will start glueing the seems with epoxy. When the epoxy cures, I will remove all the stitches.

It's too late to turn back now !!! The kayak is to big to get out of my man cave. You can see the window in this photo. I will have to cut through the 10 inch thick concret wall and make a window large enough to get the kayak outside.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Now comes the fun part. After all the time spent making parts and jigs, it's time to start assembling parts into something that looks like a kayak.

The hull panels are held together with wire. Everyone seems to use copper wire for the stitching. I tried copper wire and the stitches kept braking. I was not even touching the kayak and I heard a ( POP ), another broken stitch !!!

So I tried some .041 SS safty wire !!! Much better.

The stitches are temporary. After the panels are tacked with glue, the stitches are removed.

wood duck kayak


A lower hull panel clamped to the router jig.

I routered all four hull panels in less than an hour.

wood duck kayak

My good old block plane and carbide sanding block. Simple tools that make hard work easy.

If you look close at the edge of the hull panel you will see the bevel that goes the full 12 foot length of the kayak. It took only three or four minutes to make that bevel with the tools shown.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

wood duck kayak


Here I have glued the scarf joints for the upper and lower hull panels for the left side of the kayak. I have clamped them to the router jigs for proper alignment. The epoxy glue needs 24 hours to cure. Then I will repete the prosses for the right side panels.

wood duck kayak

04-04-2010 Easter Sunday

I have spent my life as a tool maker and have never used a block plane until now. What a great tool. I used it and a carbide sanding block to make the tapers for my scarf joints.

The kayak is 12 feet long but the Okoume plywood is only 8 feet. That is why I need to scarf two pieces of plywood together. So that my hull panels will be long enough to make a 12 foot kayak.

Thursday, April 1, 2010


This is a poor photo of the router jigs that I made for my kayak. They make the part layout on the Okoume plywood very easy. Then you rough cut the parts out with a saber saw. The parts are finished by placing them on the jigs and using a router.

You would not make jigs to make just one kayak. But it makes the job so much easier when you are planing to make multiple kayaks. This will also make all the parts uniform in shape. The left side panels will match the right side perfictly, eliminateing any chance of a twist in the shape of the hull.