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Spindrift 10N help needed - outboard pad and fwd bulkhead question

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Place a tarp over the dinghy and any "bows" (PVC pipe works good) or tent supports. Get it to drape nice, folding "darts and pleats" into it as you walk around. I use spring clamps, attached to the trap 6" - 8" below the rub rail and hang a weight off them to pull the tarp down. Once satisfied with the "lay" of the tarp, use a Sharpie and draw a line, parallel to the sheer, but about 3" below it. Use the rub rail as a guide to steer the marker. Remove the tarp and cut on the line you've just traced. It's also wise to mark and folds, darts and pleats too, before you remove the tarp. Sew or double sided tape the pleats, darts and folds closed. Fold over the perimeter, where you cut around the sheer making a hem, leaving a small gap at the bow and the center of the transom, then sew or tape this over some heavy duty shock cord (bungee cord). Leave a tail at each end, where the gap in the hem is, which is where you'll pull to cinch up the tarp around the rub rail. Place you bow(s) or tent pole in the boat, toss the cover over, center the gap at the transom and go to the bow and pull the cord, which will cinch it up all around the sheer. Clip or tie the cord at each end and you're done.



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I love this solution for a cover! PAR, you da MAN! Only one addition. Be sure to leave a way for the cover to ventilate. Some kind of vent at each end, preferably near the top. I'm sure that you'll have a good suggestion on this. Paul.Plastic tarps are notorious for condensing and trapping moisture. They have rotted out many-a-boat!

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I like to let the tarp hang clear over the rails, often just employing weights at the grommets, which I put in as needed, if one isn't there. Grommets kits are cheap and easy to install. The weights on larger boats are 1 gallon milk jugs with water in them, tied to a short length of line, tied to the grommets. Smaller boats use a 1/2 gallon jug. The weights keep in in place during the worst of summer thunder storms, which can see  hurricane force winds, though my yard, being heavily forested sees less wind. Bungee cords work, though don't last very long, maybe a season. I've also laced a length of line through the grommets, zig-zagging down to the trailer all the way around. On boats in the water, I like to use a set of bows, instead of tent poles. I find the bows easier on the tarp and prevent low spots from catching pools of water. Agreed, ventilation is key and I have a set of "pancake fans" I use on stored stuff, that force air through the ends of the boat, usually blowing in the same direction to get a flow going. You can get small solar vents that do the same thing and these can be sewn or taped into the tarp as desired.


The bungee cord, modified tarp method I've described is a direct theft from a awning company that makes real covers out of SunBrella. I stole the technique, juts using cheap tarp material. If you use care in shaping the tarp (darts, folds and pleats), it will lay down on the bows neatly and look quite professional too. If you want the tarp to last longer, paint it with elastiomeric roofing paint. This adds UV protection and will seal any tears or imperfections. It'll also make the tarp heavier, but for long term storage, it's worth the extra labor and cost. This treatment will easily double or triple the tarp's life, especially if it's dogged down good. For a cover that's going to come on and off frequently, I wouldn't bother with this paint job, but for long term storage, with occasional de-covering anticipated, it's a good, cheap solution.


Chick, you know how we backwoods, curmudgeon like boat builders are. We're cheap, inventive and determined, as a rule, mostly because we're too poor to buy a good one or too cheap to have someone come out and put one on for us. I'm not a curmudgeon yet, as I have a few more years to go, though have graduated to geezer and am firmly enjoying it. The think Tom Lathrop has ventured into the embrace of curmudgeonisum.



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