Frej XS

DavidDeWitt

Builder and paddler
Joined
Jul 24, 2020
Messages
12
Location
Boston
Looks great but there is really no need for fill coats on the inside of a hull (or deck). All a fill coat really does is add weight.
 

LAM

Paddler
Joined
Dec 28, 2012
Messages
248
Location
Outside
“I've always enjoyed watching everyone else's builds so I thought I'd share too. I'm sure Lila needs another boat Doug...”

I just saw this!! :D:D:D Actually I am going to have Doug help me build a paddle board over next winter!

I have also been enjoying reading about your build. I really liked the red as well, but black is the next best color. Looking forward to seeing it on the water. Thanks for sharing!

Lila
 

BigandSmall

Paddler
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
363
Location
Northern BC (FSJ)
Thanks David, I was hoping to do that on the sides. I had intended to just do the bottom where it would be visible through the cockpit and hatches. Unfortunately I had a couple of sags on the sides that looked bad. That 2nd fill coat will allow me to sand out those mistakes and keep it looking good. With any luck I'll only need one under the deck.

Lila, I look forward to seeing the paddle board come together.
 

JohnAbercrombie

Paddler
Joined
Dec 7, 2011
Messages
3,365
Location
Victoria, BC
Looks great but there is really no need for fill coats on the inside of a hull (or deck). All a fill coat really does is add weight.
Sometimes I've had pinholes in the first layer when the glass is applied, so a fill coat helps with that. If you do a good job of removing all the excess epoxy in the glass layer (read Ted Moores on technique for that) , it leaves a pretty rough surface which is a magnet for dirt (and water), so a thin fill coat can be an advantage even in the compartments. Not glassy even and smooth, just smoother. In the cockpit I usually put an extra layer of glass or Dynel where my heels will land, as well as tie-downs on the sole (hull) for pump, etc.. so those areas get extra epoxy then.
 

BigandSmall

Paddler
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
363
Location
Northern BC (FSJ)
What do you suggest for light weight bulkheads? I was thinking about using strip scraps to make panels and then planing them right down with an electric hand plane. I have some marine ply scraps a friend gave me but I was planning on use those for hatch lips.
 

JohnAbercrombie

Paddler
Joined
Dec 7, 2011
Messages
3,365
Location
Victoria, BC
What do you suggest for light weight bulkheads?
Your plan with the strips is 'standard' with strip-built boats, and should work well. The weight of the cedar is so little that I wouldn't bother planing it down - it will only save a few ounces. I know, " a bit here, a bit there.." and I've never had a lot of luck building a very lightweight boat. :) I have a thickness sander so I'd probably glass one side and then run the panel through the sander before glassing the other side.
I use epoxy-glass panels for bulkheads. I lay up about 4 layers of 6oz glass with epoxy on mylar sheet with plywood under and over the Mylar to weight it down and keep it flat. If I didn't have the Mylar, I'd probably use a piece of (window or tempered) glass, waxed, and lay up on that. Wax paper works OK for a non-sticking separator, but try to buy the best stuff you can find - some of the no-name wax paper is very stingy with the wax. You can always add a swipe of paste floor wax (or mold release wax) to the wax paper or Mylar, etc..
Or, much simpler, just glass both sides of a piece of 1/8 doorskin. I've glassed thin plywood when making skeg boxex, and thicker plywood for rudder footboards.
On all those layups PeelPly gives a nice matte surface ready for bonding without sanding.
 

BigandSmall

Paddler
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
363
Location
Northern BC (FSJ)
Put a few hours in today sanding the hull. Found the cloth in a couple of small spots. I know that with wood that this would disappear with varnish. I suspect that it might make a grey blemish with the graphite though? I'll put a thin touch up on once I finish the rest of the hull.
 

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BigandSmall

Paddler
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
363
Location
Northern BC (FSJ)
Well I'm starting to tinker with the Frej again. As I level sanded the rest of the hull I exposed the cloth lightly in a few spots. With a normal boat I've found that varnish will make very lightly exposed cloth disappear. The photo is the worst spot on the hull and since I'm relying on the graphite to make the hull black it will require a touch up to not see the wood underneath. Since there are lots of these spots near the ends and the vertical spots where it's difficult to hang a thick coat I think I might re-coat. Roll on as thin of a coat as I can in the middle and a little thicker on the ends. I also trimmed up the forms a little while ago when I had some free time. I can see that the graphite hull is going to be a pain to get it to look good.
 

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JohnAbercrombie

Paddler
Joined
Dec 7, 2011
Messages
3,365
Location
Victoria, BC
If the graphite gets too vexing, you could always roll on (and tip) a nice coat of marine gloss black enamel at the end. I recall doing that myself. :)
 

BigandSmall

Paddler
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
363
Location
Northern BC (FSJ)
Well once I committed to another coat it made the final touch up sanding a lot easier. I switched grades of paper and to 120 grit which I should have done a while ago. It was easier to not sand through and the finish was nicer with the finer grit as you would expect.
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I ended up exposing more cloth as I fished the last of the sanding. I then used a foam roller to apply a thin epoxy coat. It took a bit to remember the mix ratio for the graphite. With 105/207 you get .9oz with a stroke of each is what I got from the manual for my pumps. So for the pump set I have for 3 full strokes of each I added 1/2 tablespoon of graphite powder.
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The coat went on nice and thin.
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A little too thin and I could see wood with the flashlight in a few spots. I tried to highlight it here.
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I waited just about 6 hours from when I started until it tacked up enough so that it was still tacky like painters tape but not at all wet (this time frame will depend on the heat of your shop). I went over the thin spots with a brush. I find it easy to hang a heavy coat with a brush and I went around tipping off the runs for a bit.
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I think level sanding is easier after using a roller but this sander with the transition pad does such a great job that I don't mind sanding the thick messy coat. The first interface/transition pad (foam velcro) on the sander is trashed at this point but I want to finish the graphite sanding before I replace it. I don't want to risk contaminating the clean epoxy with any black sanding dust. We'll see how it sands out if I need any more applications. Hopefully I got it on thick enough.
 

BigandSmall

Paddler
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
363
Location
Northern BC (FSJ)
I put a new transition pad on the sander today and started sanding the inside while the outside continues to cure. Today I was mainly concerned with removing the excess epoxy trying to keep the weight down. I only lightly sanded the cockpit though to keep it durable. I want a little bit of tooth for the varnish. I also sanded what I could fit the sander in for the inner deck seam. I started with 60 grit and switched to 80 once the ugly stuff was knocked down. I'll give it another pass with 120 grit next week.
 

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BigandSmall

Paddler
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
363
Location
Northern BC (FSJ)
Made another pass over the inside with 120 grit. Started going over the outside also with 120. It was going pretty well but I still managed to expose the cloth again in a few spots but all in the same location. I'm guessing I didn't get it as thick as I wanted there. Hopefully I wont have to re-coat and sand too many more times.
 

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BigandSmall

Paddler
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
363
Location
Northern BC (FSJ)
I finished sanding the outer hull today then gave it a good paper towel/water wipe down before setting some of the forms back in and started thinking about where things would go. After eyeballing it for a while I fired an email off to John for suggestions/advice on how to proceed. I'll put his suggestions to good use in the next few days. The thin coat of black turned out pretty well. It turns out the only thin spots were where I first started sanding. It could have been the low light in that corner of the shop for that section during application or it could have been the inexperience sanding. Either way I'm really like the black now that it's coming together. There were a few halos where I had applied a second heavy coat. When I gave it the water wipe the halos disappeared. I'm hoping it will be the same with the varnish application later on.
 

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BigandSmall

Paddler
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
363
Location
Northern BC (FSJ)
Today I cut the hole for the skeg box. I did it because I had a little extra hardened epoxy in the bottom of the hull that was making form 12 stand a little proud. I also wanted to get another coat of black epoxy painted on the thin spots. I would seal the skeg cut out at the same time. I ended up not getting that far though.

I used the walnut strip in the bottom to help line up the box.
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I drilled a small pilot hole and then opened it up with a 1/2" bit.
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After drilling the holes I put some tape down to mark the cuts.
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The jigsaw makes a clean cut when going slow.
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After making the cuts I used the jigsaw to square up the ends then filed them smooth.
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I used my Ryobi oscillating tool with an abrasive head to sand the opening larger.
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It's pretty snug and will need a little more attention before final install.
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It's starting to look more like a boat though as I get the details figured out.
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So while I didn't get the epoxy on today I did go through some cockpit measurements I had on hand. I had planned on using the dimensions from my wife's old Reval Mini SC but the cockpit the plans came with looked pretty good. It has a claimed 80cm length and 40cm width. I made up the paper template and marked out some Baltic birch plywood that I'll cut out tomorrow.
 

BigandSmall

Paddler
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
363
Location
Northern BC (FSJ)
After some discussion with John and the lack of availability of custom skirts I re-drew my lines on the plywood for some testing. Instead of making just the cockpit opening I added two extra lines. One for a 1" rim and one for a 1.25" rim. The 1.25" was was pretty tight with a Seal's Sea Sprite 1.2. I then trimmed it down to a 1" and I was still happy with the fit. Finally I trimmed the rim off so my wife could sit inside it and see how it felt. Having the skirt on the rim also allows me to measure how much skirt she can comfortably have behind her for calculating cockpit location while still having the skirt be comfortable. I noticed paddle float re-entries were way easier in my Stratos with the gap to the rim vs my Scorpio where the seat ends pretty much right at the rim. Plus it's nice to have room a little storage space behind you for extra water bottles.
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BigandSmall

Paddler
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
363
Location
Northern BC (FSJ)
I boiled some wood today. I bought some walnut accents from Rod when I picked up my last load of supplies from Orca Boats. It is sure nice to have someone else do all the hard work for you. I used the Lee Valley sheers recommended by John to trim the pieces. They make a much cleaner cut with the cedar strips and the laminating pieces than I could ever cut with a saw. I boiled the bow lamination's for 20 minutes before taping them on. The stern I boiled for 35 minutes since I had a much tighter corner to make. Sadly when it came time to tape them on I realized I had nothing on the hull to attach the tape to that would hold such a tight bend. I wasn't gluing them on today just making the bend and letting them dry so I grabbed the form, eyeballed it and clamped them on. I see now I should have done the inner and outer stems at the same time like Rod does. Hoping that the form I grabbed will be close enough to the sanded hull. When I do attach them I'll use epoxy. I don't want to risk any yellow glue showing in the walnut should I have any gaps. We've had a week of -35 to -40 so heating my garage for any epoxy work hasn't really been an option. They're calling for -15 in a few days though.
 

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LAM

Paddler
Joined
Dec 28, 2012
Messages
248
Location
Outside
Thanks for sharing your build with us. Your wife must be getting excited to see how close it is to being done.

Merry Christmas!

Lila
 

BigandSmall

Paddler
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
363
Location
Northern BC (FSJ)
Thanks Lila, I have until the start of May when the ice melts here. So much to do between now and then but with any luck I'll have it ready. Fingers crossed that it will paddle better than her Avocet RM.
 
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