My Backyard Boats:

The Quark

Prime time

    27 April 03: Yesterday I put the first of two coats of white Interlux primer on the Quark; today I added a second coat. Also yesterday, I did a lot more shaping and sanding on the paddle. I spent a long time on that because I've not made a paddle before. I used hand tools rather than power tools, to get a better feel for the project.

    Today I also used 3M's blue masking tape that can be put on a drying paint surface as soon as it stops being tacky. This allowed me to mask off the gunwales for an initial coat of varnish over the undercoat already in place of epoxy. Tomorrow I'll put on the first of two coats of yellow Interlux Brightside paint, and I'll also put on the first of many coats of linseed oil and turpentine on the inside of the hull.

    We're planning a launch next weekend to celebrate the filling of the Erie Canal.

    Time spend so far: Add eight hours of paddle-making and painting, for a total so far of 53 hours.

    Cost so far: Add $5 for 3M blue masking tape, $10 for primer, and $29 more for epoxy for a total so far of $206.12.

Last look at the natural look. Blue 3M special masking tape in place over gunwales. White stuff is 3M 5200 compound. Remind me to try bondo auto body putty next time. The 5200 sucks as a putty because it takes so long to set up.

First coat of Interlux primer in place. I used latex house paint and primer on the Weekend Skiff and was not at all pleased with the results. I used Interlux primer and Bringside paint on the Harmonica and loved it. I did used some house primer on the inside of the Harmonica but not on the hull.

I anticipated that the paddle would take a bend unless I was extremely careful in the laminating, but I decided that some arc would be good, and that's what I got. I took the block plane to the paddle and fined down the outer plies where they sit atop the paddle blade portions.
After thinking about it for a while and being uneasy about the lightness of the paddle, I epoxied the entire piece and covered all the blades except for the central rib portion with fiberglass cloth. I figured that without some help the paddle would snap or split the first time I used it to fend off. I was in my usual state of hurry concerning epoxy, so I put the tape on both sides. The tape didn't cover the edges at all, so I put on an extra piece folded over the tips and used the 3M blue masking tape to hold the mess in place while it sets. This will make the paddles a lot heavier but also infinitely more durable, too.
The beauty of that blue masking tape is that you can apply it as soon as paint skins over. That was about an hour for the primer. This allowed me to put on the first coat of varnish on the same day as I applied primer to the hull. Tomorrow I paint the hull with yellow Brightside Interlux.
Quark taking shape nicely.
Closeup of the top of the stem, with 1/2-inch hole for painter. It looks like a salamander to me.

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