As I have mentioned, I am building a Bolger Bobcat. It is a 12′ catboat based on the Beetle Cat design. It is going to be a challenging build and my original intention was to have it built by summer 2014. I have since decided that I am going to use this build as a sort of classroom opportunity for my 7-year-old daughter Maggie. We had our first class last week and I have adjusted my completion estimate to June 2020. It’s going to be slow going, but we’re going to have a blast getting there. I suspect that she will lose interest in it mid-2019 and then I will take a year to wrap it up just in time for her to say, “Dad. I’m like 12 years old. This boat is like so old fashioned. I want a Laser like my bff’s have.”
Last week we started in on a scarf joint. I know that the Payson plans call for butt straps or just fiberglassed butt joints, but I thought it would be a good opportunity to demonstrate a scarf and to add a little strength to the panels. My method for scarfs is to nail down the 2 panels cambered by 1.5 inches and to use a belt sander to grind down the angle. I learned quickly that little kids and belt sanders do not mix so well. I was very safe about it, but the sander turned into a vehicle very quickly racing its way across the boards. I finished up that piece of work while Maggie operated the shop vac to keep the dust down.
Next was epoxy. I mixed up a batch and let Maggie do the brushing. We brushed on a thin coat un-thickened and then thickened a batch to ketchup consistency and re-coated. Wax paper and weights held it all in place and viola! A beautiful scarf joint. Maggie was pretty impressed and very excited about our next class which will include alot of measuring and drawing lines. With a little luck, we may even cut out a panel or two. I am planning on doing these boat building classes with her every Thursday night and will update regularly. She is very excited about it as am I. Faire Winds!!