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Texas Spindrift 11N Build


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As my first post on this forum I may as well start a build thread.


I should start out by saying I have little to no experience with boats, but I love building things and my wife says we don’t need any more bookshelves or lawn furniture.


I have read many of the build threads on this site and have appreciated being able to get a more in-depth understanding of the process.


I also watched Alan's set of videos.


So one day I called and talked to Alan, and ordered the kit.


The next thing you know I have a large stack of wood parts, several bottles of epoxy, and rolls of fiberglass tape.










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Good luck on the build and keep the pictures coming.  There was no kit available when I built mine so you are already way ahead of the game.  It is funny that you mention the bookcases and lawn furniture as I was just discussing the same thing with a fellow woodworker.  He started building guitars, I started building boats.



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You've chosen a great way to start building boats-- a kit and this forum.  Take it nice and easy, keep the goo off your skin (use white vinegar and water when you do), and post on the forum, when you get into a jam.  We love thinking that we're experts at this stuff!

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Thanks for all the replies and well wishing.


cdunc: That's funny. Last summer I was overcome with a plan to build a couple of Adirondack chairs. I ended up making eight of them. Most went to family.




Alan: I will try to take pictures as I go.


Thrillsbe: I guess a trip to the grocery store is in order. We may be low on white vinegar.


roam: I have been following your build and learning from it. So thanks.


Steve W: I really appreciate your videos of this boat in action.




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My plan is to try to use the parts supplied in the kit, and to stick to the plans, so I can actually finish this thing in a reasonable amount of time.


I don't know if anyone is interested in seeing the kind of parts that are in the current kit, but here are a couple of samples.




These are some of the small plywood parts.




And here are some of the solid wood parts. These are softwood of some sort (Doug Fir maybe).


So back to the first line in this post about not making modifications...I may want to replace a few of the softwood parts for hardwood depending on what material I can find to use for the gunwales. I have no idea how well softwood holds up after being coated in epoxy.


Another thing that is interesting are the CNC daggerboard and rudder. I went with these thinking it would save me some time. I could always glue up my own at a later date I guess.




Roughed out by the router.






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Here is my first (of many) questions. Last night I was dry-fitting the parts of the transom, trying to get everything to line up with the pen marks on the plywood.




What I noticed is that when I get the bottom edges lined up, the top crosspiece is about 3/16" higher than the upper pen mark. The result is that the top of the crosspiece is proud of the top of the plywood as well.




This is the bottom, all lined up.




And this is the top as it relates to the upper pen mark.


So my question is: should I just glue it up as I have it in the pictures, and then trim/plane/sand the upper part as needed after the boat is assembled, or do I need to make adjustments at this point to make everything line up?



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Mike, I built mine from scratch, so I'd ask Alan/Graham. But that said, the transom isn't perfectly at a right angle to the bottom hull panels. So I'd line it up at the top, and when you go to attach it to the hull, you'll have to shape (I use a hand plane/sandpaper) to the angle of the hull panels. I'm not sure what the instructions look like in a kit, but I think the instructions I have talk about this.

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Make the top flush and let the bottom hang over. The reason is because we are anal. The transom rakes and the keel centerline rises making the bottom joint an obtuse angle. We intended for you to bevel the bottom overhang after it is glued together for a closer fit requiring less epoxy in the joint.


We could have made those pieces to the exact height of the transom and just let you to fill that large gap with epoxy. The end product will be the same either way but we cannot help ourselves.

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Thanks for the quick answers. 


That makes sense as far as getting a good fit to the keel. I will let it overhang the bottom.


I also noticed the horizontal stiffener overhangs on either side by a bit, and now I realize that it is for the same reason as you describe.




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First glue-ups are completed. I ended up just laying plastic on the garage floor and then folding the plastic over the glued joint.


After applying the glue, I placed a 1" thick board over top of the joint and then built a tower of heavy things to try to hold it tight to the floor.




The first two panels I left to cure overnight. I ended up worrying about it quite a bit. I think I had nightmares of horribly deformed wooden parts.


Fortunately, these CNC cut parts are fantastic. I really didn't need to worry about it at all. I now have side and bottom panels that are identical mirror images of each-other.


The worst part is that I used too much glue.




This is from the underside of the joint, which I was unable to clean up before it set. So I had to spend quite a while sanding off some of the excess glue.




The above picture was taken after the bottom panels had cured and I laid them on top of each-other. They match up perfectly.


I am really impressed by the accuracy of these parts.




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Awesome! I think if you use  propane tank, trailer hitch, old paint cans and an ammo box to weight hings down there might be a Jeff Foxworthy joke somewhere there! Looks a lot like what I do.


Get yourself a cabinet scraper and learn how to sharpen it's edge. It makes cleaning up those joints really quick. Looking good!

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Assembled the transom last night. I think I got enough squeeze out, but there are a couple of visible gaps between layers.




Before gluing, I decided it might be easier to go ahead and round over some of the edges before the parts were glued, so I did a bit of routing.






Will these joints eventually have a fillet?





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I did more prep work over the weekend, including building a cradle stand. It seemed to be easier to build the stand as one piece instead of building individual sawhorses. Also it seems like it will be easier to keep things aligned. Forgot to snap a picture.


I assembled the nesting bulkheads and realized that I don't have enough clamps.




I rounded the inner edges that will be difficult to access later. I also filled in the bolt holes with epoxy.




Finally I joined the side and bottom panels at the dovetails.




Removed the support boards and revealed the joints. They look pretty good to me. I used too much epoxy.




Now I need to do some sanding to remove the excess epoxy. Once that is done I think I may be just about ready to stitch the panels together.






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I don't believe the parts you pictured get a fillet.


I also built a single piece cradle stand. I figured it would be easier and it would keep the two cradles in the same place in relation to one another. I don't know if yours is similar to mine but the one issue with mine is getting underneath the boat to tighten the wires when you do the unfolding.


The one issue I had with laying the fiberglass tape on the insides was the area around the supports of the nesting bulkheads. You'll definitely want to put a fillet there. If I was to do it all again I'm thinking I would add 2" strip at the bottom of the nesting bulkheads between the center and outside supports. This would give you a single flat plane to apply the fillets and fiberglass tape to. 



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