Posted by: Mike Randall | August 23, 2009

Oars, Oars, Oars

Over the last few weeks I’ve been making the oars. I’m so glad I’m doing this now as I’m sure I would go out of my mind doing this at the end of the project. After the mast, spars and oars I’m definitely getting a little tired of making long square bits of wood round!

All my Oars are made from Kauri, this is really nice timber.

Laminated Oar Blank

Laminated Oar Blank

Rough Shaping Oar

Rough Shaping Oar

I shaped and scraped and planed and sanded and sure enough I had myself a set of oars. With nice smooth handles.

Oar Hand Grips

Oar Hand Grips

As part of all this I made the oar Bulls and Tholes out of Iroko. The bulls will eventually be lashed to the oar looms. I only have a vague inkling how to do this so more on that when I actually work out how to do it.

Oar wearing parts, Bull, Tholes etc

Oar wearing parts, Bull, Tholes etc

In the middle of all this I got my first exciting package from Classic Marine. I’ll now be able to finish the boom, mast and gaff by adding these fittings.

Goose neck and other fittings

Goose neck and other fittings

In an earlier post I talked about making a cutting mistake on the timber for the scull loom…Doh! Anyway I glued the timber back together and started again.

Fixing scull loom mistake

Fixing scull loom mistake


Gluing up the scull blank

Gluing up the blank

I thought I would spare the family all the noise I would make shaping the scull so I did this in the carpark out the back of my office, at least the weather was nice for mid winter.

Hand ripping the blank

Hand ripping the blank

Rough cutting the shape

Rough cutting the shape


16 sided

16 sided

Now that I’m a veteran of making long square bits of wood round. The thing that worked the best for me in getting the final shape was using sanding belts and putting my hands inside so you could sand while wrapping the belt around the spar or oar loom – 40 grit then 80 then 120.

Sanding

Sanding

I’ve decided to finish all the details on the oars and spars before I move on, so I’ve got some varnishing, lashing and leather work ahead, but it will be nice to have all this stuff out the way so I can get back to building an actual hull!


Responses

  1. Great work you are doing! I am really enjoying following your build.

    • Hi Sean,
      Thanks for letting me know you’ve been following my Blog. It’s good for the motivation
      cheers
      mike

  2. Mike, I wanted to ask you a few questions. You stated earlier that you cut out your templates from 3mm MDF because you had not purchased the CAD files or the mylar plans. Are the CAD files available to purchase from Mr Vivier? How would you have cut out your bulkheads if you had the mylar plans? Do you glue those plans onto the plywood and cut with a jigsaw?

    Sorry for so many questions. Feel free to email me if you get a chance.

    Sean

    • Hi Sean,

      Ask as many questions as you like! I think I’ve been driving Mr Vivier nuts with my constant questions!

      If I had the mylars I probably would have marked everything out directly on the ply. You do this by taping (don’t glue) the film down then prick holes through the film on key points with a sharp nail or awl and join the dots, or use a dressmakers tracing wheel or put carbon paper between the film and plywood. This would save all the transferring of dimensions from the paper plans to the MDF that I did.

      When I got the study plans there were some sample pics of what the mylar films would look like. All the bulkheads and planking dimensions are layed out on top of each other with a different colour separating each item. Initially it looks confusing but clarifies the longer you stare at it. You still have to have your wits about you to avoid mistakes.

      Either the way I’ve done it or using the films, cutting the bulkheads out with the jigsaw is pretty easy and accurate.

      My cousin who has the cabinet making business and the kick ass CNC machine would have cut the ply bulkheads for me from Mr Vivier’s cutting files, but the cost of the cutting files was an issue for me at the time. I still would have had to dimension and cut with a jigsaw all the planks anyway. Something to do with a special jigsaw join where they would normally be scarfed together!

      So far I’m still pretty happy with my low tech approach, If I was to do it again I’d like to get everything cut on a CNC machine.

      Cheers Mike


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