gonna head out, but taking a bit to do so
Its cold out, and while weather is not an issue, this ol’blogger prefers SOME comforts. The temps are supposed to be mid sixties by 1 or so, and then, Im in like flynn.
SO, I’m sitting around the house, dealing with GrumpyKat (she’s BAAACCCKKKK!!!!) (otherwise known as Mamakat the last month or so, but she’s back to her usual “everybody sucks and I’m gonna let them know I don’t appreciate it” bitchy self.) and
yah, thinking about kayak building. Apologies to y’all that don’t get it, its a thing, like jeeps or motorcycles (MC’s I get, the jeep thing, not so much, but that bug did infect my sis for a time being.)
Whats rubbing the cells together today is an extension of something I was thinking about before I found and picked up Lizzy. BlueJean is one hell of a boat, and I fully intend on keeping her in the quiver for a long time, but like ANY boat, there were compromises made and some of them can be tamed by simple(like building a boat is simple, LOL) change in materials. IE, she is currently a rotomold boat (actually, I have reason to believe she is blowmolded like the prijons,,,) and HEAVY. Ghost boat weighs in at 63#, Blue jean is closer to 80 and a foot shorter. SO, simply changing the material of construction could bring her into reasonable range.
If I were going to all the trouble to ‘rebuild’ in FIberglass or Carbon Fiber, why not address the other changes I would like to see. Length to 17’6″ or so. Lessen the beam to 20-21″. LOWER THAT BACK DECK for rolling ease and to get the cockpit lip OUT of my frillin’ kidneys. And add a bloody SKEG so that she will track when I need a railroad type boat.
NOT THAT I AM GOING TO BUILD ANEW.
hell, I dunno, just tossing ideas around while I’m waiting.
One fo the first considerations is FORM. How would I go about making the form to ‘kinda sorta replicate’ her. Making a plug is out of the question, but, I can make a internal mold using techniques I learned by building skin on frame boats. I even played with making some ‘flats’ of what type materials I would use (covered in an earlier post) and proved the concept valid (and I know I am not the first to do so, but I haven’t found any documentation online about someone doing it that way and asking on the GRP* forums gets you the side-eye and snubbed.). This is the closest I have come to ANY information about using an internal ‘plug’, and it worked for Xyla, why not me (other than the fact that she’s MUCH cuter than I,,,)
Looking at the construction method used for making the LettmanIV, I know others have done something similar for “hand lay-up”. The hull was made using a plug, you can tell by the shape of the outer gelcoat, but you can see the wrinkles in the layup where thickness isn’t uniform. THAT is curable by attention to detail. Its also curable by vacuum bagging which is what the GRP geeks INSIST is the only way to go, but ya’know, I don’t have a couple ten grand just laying around to invest in equipment that I MIGHT only use once,,,, Yes, it makes a perfect finish, inside and out, with uniform thicknesses across the entire product, contains smells and other nasty things you won’t want to get into your lungs or bloodstream,
and costs an arm and a leg and takes up space that I don’t have currently, and has very little resale value,,,
And I have no intentions of going into making glass boats for a living when the market is nearly flooded and heavily marketed to loyal customers of “this boat is THE boat of the century”,,, And I would be roughly copying a design that IS copyrighted. You can copy it FOR PERSONAL USE, but don’t you dare attempt to make a profit on it,,,, There might be some loopholes seeing how I would be changing some aspects of the design, but I already claimed to be copying it, and that is IN PRINT, and admissible as evidence,,,, No, don’t wanna go there.
Dunno, I need to get my arse in Lizzy and go play; that whole SEAT TIME, SEAT TIME, SEAT TIME thing, But to be honest, solo gets old, and there is always a ‘what if shit goes sideways,,,,’ aspect that haunts the back of the head but mostly, SOLO GETS OLD.
I’m working on that,,, Unlike working with materials, I struggle with people. Not much of a people person to be honest, but Kats and fish are shitty kayak buddies, and the doggies don’t want to roll, at least not ON water,,, And location location location keeps biting me in the ass too. Have friends, kayaky friends at that, but distance, schedules, life in general,,,,
yah, Gotta work on that part even more me thinks; not the friends, though that too, but mostly that whole “living in the armpit of SEKY,”,,, (and some would say the asscrack of it, but I try to be a little more optimistic. I DO TRY!!!!)
Anywhooos, we are starting to feel the left overs of Hurricane Ian here, and interestingly enough, I can smell the salt in the air out there. Makes me want to go Coastal even more,,,, Its not cold, not hot, and not raining,,, more like a miserable dribble of mist with traces of salty air and occasional gusty winds. Good kayaking weather IMO,,,,
*GRP Glass Reinforced Plastics. Epoxies ARE plastics. the term is loosely applied since they now use aramids (kevlar, ballistic nylons, etc ) and Carbon Fiber in place of fiberglass (or in addition to).