- Mike: This is my opinion, mind you... But. I wouldn t loose too much sleep about the wood selection. there are several varieties of wood which will workMessage 1 of 5 , Feb 16, 2009View Source
This is my opinion, mind you... But. I wouldn't loose too much sleep about the wood selection. there are several varieties of wood which will work nicely. The key here is to keep the weight down as much as possible. I feel that was the consideration when Platt designed these boats. However here in the southeast, some of these varieties are somewhat more work to get ones hands on than others.
That said.. You can get spruce from local lumber yards (not Lowe's or HD). I got a couple of 2 x 12's I think and started cutting them up on the table saw. I made the floor boards for mine from that, as well as the seat thwarts. I didn't like the wood for stringers, because when I cut it into those small dimensions, the wood would sort of spring into weird twists or curves. No doubt having to do with the individual board I was cutting, But nonetheless, I decided not to continue making sawdust from it. I got some nice clear poplar from Lowe's and used that for the stringers. Now people on the Woodenboat website forum will quickly tell yo that poplar isn't as rot resistant as spruce. True enough. But my boat isn't sitting in the water when not in use. Also, I'm 63 years old and I figure it'll last as long as I want it to. It's not intended to be an heirloom. I used some douglas fir from that same yard for the inwales and gunwales, I got some white oak, five quarters by 6" by 8 feet from a local wood working store for the keelson and outer stem and reb rails. I used a clear piece of pine for the skeg. I used some mahogany from the same wood working store for the transom, breast hook, quarter knees, oarlock blocks and parts of the centerboard trunk. I used red oak for the ribs...again they aren't in the water ( I hope )... As you can see, with two exceptions, pretty much what I could find, or wanted to use for appearances.
So, ...try to find wood as clear as you can...At the lumber yard, tell them what you are using it for and they will likely try to help you get wood as clear as they can. You're going to have to scarf it regardless so a knot here or there isn't a big deal. Just cut them out and scarf a couple of pieces together for the length you need. Wood working store, you can just go in a d pick through the wood to get a board you like. Same at Lowe's or HD. You're going to varnish all of it inside and out anyway, so unless the boat is in the weather all the time the choice of wood will likely not be too critical.
--- On Sun, 2/15/09, georgiasailor52 <michaelkentmueller@...> wrote:
From: georgiasailor52 <michaelkentmueller@...>
Subject: [Airolite_Boats] Wood Sources and Availability
Date: Sunday, February 15, 2009, 11:50 PM
I live in the Atlanta, Georgia USA area. Am not familiar with the
assortment of woods that might be available from lumber companies
other than Home Depot/Lowes. I wonder if the recommended varieties are
readily available since the Aerolite boats were designed.
Recommendations regarding species selection, available sizes, and
general availability would be appreciated.
How are the strips (stringers and ribs) produced. Are they ripped
using the table saw from the 2x12's that are mentioned on the GA web page?
Any estimates of wood material cost for Snowshoe 14 or similar boats.
The plans and partial kits seemed to be very attractively priced.
What are your opinions of the instructional materials provided with
- Hi Mike, You came to the right place. :- ) For the stringers, I use 2x10 or 2x12 Home Depot stock. They have fewer knots than 2x4. And yes, rip them with aMessage 2 of 5 , Feb 16, 2009View Source
You came to the right place. :- )
For the stringers, I use 2x10 or 2x12 Home Depot stock. They have fewer knots than 2x4. And yes, rip them with a table saw. We’ve had various discussions about the saw blade, but I think the answer is that the state of the art of blades have advanced since Platt made his recommendations and now any good carbide combination blade will give satisfactory results.
Myself, I use a radial arm saw, which isn’t ideal, but I have jigs in place to hold the wood in as I rip. Someday I’ll spring for a table saw, but I’d want something better than a $100 Craftsman. The arm saw got me through my first Arrow 14 and it doing fine for the Classic 14 under construction.
The rib stock will be harder to find. You need to find non-dried stock. I found rough-cut green (not-dried) White Ash at a local mill and bought enough to last about 4 boats. Cost about $18 for 4 pieces of 2x10x60-ish
Oak strips for the keelson can also be purchased at Home Depot. They have some hardwood stock, and the Home Depot stuff is Good Enough.
Same is true for cedar for the floorboards. Though I had to slice them widthwise to get them thinner than stock.
Where it starts getting more interesting is the plywood. There are only a couple of plywood pieces needed for the canoe-style boats, and I just substituted pine board instead. But Home Depot does not have the kind of plywood you’d want. Their external grade is mainly B/C or C/D, and you’d want A/A for the stems. In the Boston area, there is a plywood store in Somerville that has great stuff, and since I’m building a Classic, I need it for the transom.
The total cost of the wood is far less than $100, if I remember correctly. Maybe even $50 for the Arrow. More for a rower since the transom alone starts to get pricy and then you need the expensive plywood for the dagger board and rudder.
As for the plans, you have to get used to Platt’s style and nomenclature. I was completely thrown when I read the instructions for the first time. The first 10 times, actually. Then I started building, and I began to understand what he was talking about. Most of us on this list will recommend two DVDs: one that Platt himself made, which is interesting to see things from his point-of-view; and one from a TV program which is great.
Consider reading the archived posts. When I first joined the list, I read through all the posts over several days and learned a lot, even though I had already build my first boat, but I am using what I learned for the second.
Good luck, and don’t be shy about posting questions. We wouldn’t be subscribed to the list if we didn’t want to help out and/or learn more.
- My number one concern for wood species used would be natural rot resistance due to exposure to water etc. Teak I know is used a lot in sailboat decks ? ? ?Message 3 of 5 , Feb 16, 2009View SourceMy number one concern for wood species used would be natural rot
due to exposure to water etc. Teak I know is used a lot in sailboat
decks ? ? ? This assumes that glue could adhere to it strongly.
I may have heard that some oily woods dont glue real well.
Contact the wood workers equipment supply stores and ask about local
custom wood sellers. There are lots of cabinet/furniture builders
and carvers to keep those guys busy. Not too long ago I bought
some maple to make a chopping block for a new kitchen counter
I was building.
> Take a look in your phone books from surrounding rural areas for
> Sawmills & Hardwood dealers. You should be able to find both Cedar
> and Ash if you do some looking, also Cypress may available as far
> North as Atlanta. Be sure to get wood that has not been Kiln Dried,
> either air dried, or if possible freshly cut. Kiln dried wood does
> not take kindly to steam bending.
> Ash is probably the easiest to bend and is strong, Cedar is light, but
> the eastern variety has a lot of knots from my experience. Cypress is
> almost as as light, but rather localized to areas where it grows. We
> have it available here in Florida, don't know about your area. Also,
> if your want a strong wood for the frame, there is always White Oak.
> Strong, steam bends easily, but it is heavy.
> You can cut down your strips from larger stock. Pay attention to the
> direction of the grain, and cut accordingly. A table saw is just
> about a given, a thickness planer is nice, but you can live without it.
> Also, in the Atlanta area is Aircraft Spruce who carry Heat Shrinkable
> Dacron, Kevlar Roving and a good assortment of adhesives. My cost for
> the covering and roving for my Arrow14 was about half of the cost from
> GA. You could pickup and save shipping as well. They carry wood,
> but it is very pricey.
> --- In Airolite_Boats@yahoogroups.com, "georgiasailor52"
> <michaelkentmueller@...> wrote:
> > I live in the Atlanta, Georgia USA area. Am not familiar with the
> > assortment of woods that might be available from lumber companies
> > other than Home Depot/Lowes. I wonder if the recommended varieties are
> > readily available since the Aerolite boats were designed.
> > Recommendations regarding species selection, available sizes, and
> > general availability would be appreciated.
> > How are the strips (stringers and ribs) produced. Are they ripped
> > using the table saw from the 2x12's that are mentioned on the GA web
> > Any estimates of wood material cost for Snowshoe 14 or similar boats.
> > The plans and partial kits seemed to be very attractively priced.
> > What are your opinions of the instructional materials provided with
> > the plans?
> > Best Regards,
> > Mike Mueller
> > ....
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