Mast Step and Partner and Decks, side and front get covered.
Here are links to other steps of the Puddle Duck Build
- Part One, What's a Puddle Duck? and I get Started
- My Puddle Duck Racer goes 3D It's official, I get my hull number.
- Next, I add flotation compartment.
- Bottom gets fiberglassed and Gunnels are added.
- Daggerboard case and seat get made.
- Making the daggerboard.
- Adding weight to the daggerboard
- Making the kick up rudder along with a tiller.
- I made a wooden sprit
- Finishing the carbon fibre mast I made a few years ago.
- Replaced the Broken Carbon Fibre mast with a wooden one.
- My PDR gets a mast step, plus side and front decks and more glass
- Finally Finishing the hull
- The Duck gets some hardware
- I make a Sail for the Puddle Duck
- My Puddle Duck Gets Launched!!
Mast Step gets glued in.
Mast step gets cut and glued. There are various reinforcements still to go in. The old shelves that are being cut to make the pieces miraculously turned out to be really nice douglas fir.
I measured the location of the mast partner and glued the first pieces on. There are a few other parts that will reinforce it.
The step has had a couple of inside braces glued in and plywood pieces glued on top.
Before gluing the top on I have to decide what I need to attach to the sides and front decks because I have to support any screw that gets put in. Where there is something attached I add a backing piece of wood to the quarter inch plywood. I have a front stainless steel ring to attach in the bow piece. I think I will also needs some oar locks. Some rigs for this boat use a rudimentary traveler so I guess I need a place to attach this at the back as well. I have already cut a piece of wood to line the mast opening. This piece will have a downhaul attachment and maybe a halyard attachment.
I'm winging it at this point because I have not really decided on a final rig. I want to put a leg o'mutton sail but exactly where all the lines go is not established. So much for planning ahead.
Details of the mast step. I will add an insert that will support the round mast.
The holes on the side of the step is to allow me to control the twist of the mast. I have a threaded rod that will attach the insert and slot into the mast. If I want to allow the mast to rotate then I will remove the rod.
I have a hole/circle cutter that cuts into up to 1/2 inch material. If I want to cut deeper I reverse the wood. It is really a circle cutter, it can make circles up to about 6 inches quite easily. It must be used on a drill press. I measured the diameter of the mast, added some clearance and cut my hole.
I also cut a hole in another piece that will be used to line and reinforce the mast partner on the deck.
Check the mast step insert for fit. It's good. The threaded rod will be cut to size and will hold the insert in place and stop the mast from rotating. I'm using a threaded rod because I could not find a long enough bolt. I'll keep looking and replace it when I can locate one. All the nuts are too thick.
If I want to allow the mast to rotate I can remove the threaded rod and replace it by 2 small bolts to attach the insert.
After gluing up the insert using thickened epoxy, I screwed the pieces together, made sure it was square and covered them with a coat of epoxy.
The middle piece is for my Skerry boat. My mast step has always been too loose for my liking so I'm making a cap to fit on current step to reduce the size of the opening slightly.
I bought the little triangle painting thingies at the woodworking show. Epoxy just peels off and it allows me to paint 2 sides at once. Toys!!
Fitting the front deck.I cut the front deck before and very stupidly did not add the width of the gunnels! So I had to recut another piece. I'm planning to put splash boards to keep water from coming in when I plow into a wave, and these will strengthen the deck. At that point I will decide what other reinforcement will be required. I guess the deck should support my weight ( OH Dear! )...To be continued.
Puddle Duck gets a coat of epoxy and inside floor gets a layer of fiberglass.
I finally got back to the boat! Wind has been either really small or too strong so I can work on the boat.
Cut more foam. The foam will help provide stiffness on the sides. I don't trust the Luan I used for the inner walls. I wish I had used good plywood
Some foam just support the width but some go all the way to the bottom and will provide stiffness when I sit on the edge.
Fiberglassing the insideI put a layer of cloth in the front and back compartment. it's quite thin, 3-4 ounces if memory serves. Definitely not the more usual 6 oz. I'm hoping to save on weight.
I made some thickened epoxy and made a thin fillet at the base of the floatation chambers. This rounded the corner and allowed the fiberglass to go up the side for an inch.
I'm only glassing the spots where I will stand. One quarter inch seems too thin to leave unsupported. That's the thickness of my Apple Pie Tender, but it has fiberglass on both sides. Sometimes I have to jump into my boats from quite high when the water is low, so bottom should be strong.
My Foam Spreader
I've tried all kinds of ways of applying epoxy on cloth.
I think my preferred method is using a paintbrush to put resin where I want it and using a plastic spreader or a piece of foam to work it into the weave of the cloth.
This piece of foam worked marvelously well, go figure.
Put a second coat of epoxy on the inside of the float chambers, and over the whole inside of the boat. There is at least one coat on everything and some spots have 2 coats of epoxy.
Sealing the boat with epoxy helps keep the plywood intact. The birch ply is good quality and could get wet but the Luan is not as good. Epoxy adds stiffness too.
It is surprising that the boat is still floppy and if I pick up one corner it still distorts the shape. I'm hoping after this coat of glass and resin the boat will be much stiffer.
I put a second coat of epoxy on the sides of the boat. It is quite rough and will want some sanding before I apply a final coat of resin.
After levelling the boat I left it to harden. I'm using slow cure epoxy. It's slow but allows some time to work and there is less waste.
Closing in the side flotation chambers, adding the front deck and finishing the inside.
I had planned on bracing the chambers more but looking at it it is strong enough and I need to finish. Gave the inside of the flotation chamber a second coat of epoxy. I cut the sides decks and coated them with epoxy, and got ready to glue them on with thickened epoxy. I squeezed out a bead from a baggie with the corner cut out all along the inwale, gunnel back and front deck support and also spots on the foam.
I had sanded the edge of the opening smooth so the deck would fit well.
Put the deck down and clamped it with my cut pipe clamps. I will also add weights. I'm using some good quality meranti marine plywood left over from the Apple pie tender I built.
Both decks in place and glued. I went around and cleaned up the squeezed out epoxy. I made the covers slightly larger and will go around with my router and trim the edges when everything is set. The inner edge is slightly curved because of the warp and I did not notice this when I put it on. Lucky it won't affect sailing. It's less than a quarter inch but annoying. Before leaving it for the night, I made sure the boat was level with no twist. I left it for the night and in the morning I checked and the boat is now perfectly stiff.
Installing the Front Deck
I added a small brace to the mast partner. I can now cover it with the fore deck and open up the hole. I plan to use my router again. Fast and easy.
I think I will add a post to support the fore deck. I can imagine someone sitting on it or standing and breaking it. I'll decide after the deck is in place
After cutting a new front deck, slightly oversize, I coated one side with epoxy. I also put a coat of epoxy on the inner hull under the deck and on the supports. I added a bit of carbon fibre cloth to see if I can make the deck stiff enough so I don't need to add more supports. It is the ragged black on the top braces.
I coated the edges of the deck and supports, then thickened the rest of the epoxy to use as glue. After squeezing a bead on the edges the cover went down carefully. I put a small fiberglass patch where the side decks meet the front.
Adding the decks really makes the boat look much more complete. It's very encouraging.
The next day after the epoxy had set, I pulled out my secret weapon, my router with trimming bit. It was quick to even out the side and front deck inside and out. I also went around with a quarter inch rounding bit and rounded the edges but not the back. I also trimmed and rounded the seat
After a quick sand I filled a couple of voids and checked that there was no problem. I cleaned the boat and dusted it carefully. The decks are ready for a coat of epoxy. It's the first time the boat has been cleaned and dusted in a long time and it's encouraging to see it almost finished except for finishing.
Seeing the boat like this makes me want to keep some of it bright rather than painted. The whole interior has at least one coat of epoxy and there are a few spots with 2 coats.
I still have to open up the mast partner but I will wait till I decide what angle I want the mast to be.
I see a lot of sanding in my future
This web site reflects my personal ideas and doesn't represent anyone else's point of view.
Puddle Duck Racer Wikipedia entry
Article on Puddle Ducks in Sailing Magazine
Michael Storer Oz Version Nicely detailed build photos for his version (slightly different and not class approved but perfectly good) of the Puddle Duck. His plans include a particularly successful daggerboard/rudder shape. He also has a number of really nice video of Ducks sailing.
Polysail has a nice very detailed instruction page for making puddle ducks. They also supply polytarps and kits for making PDR sails.
Dynamite Payson, Build the New Instant Boats
Fiberglass tape over seams only, is often used instead of full glass covering, to save weight.
There are many suppliers of epoxy resin