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Building a Two Paw 8 for Trailer Camping

Don Silsbe

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I’m pecking away at this little boat, step-by-step.  I thought I was getting ready for the big “Cut ‘er Up” step, until I consulted my instructions.  Darn!  I needed to do the quarterknees.  That was my morning— cutting and tweaking these little parts, until I was happy with the fit.  Incidentally, I want to share one of my tricks with you.  I use Adams’ foam board to make my patterns.  You can buy a sheet of it at the Dollar Tree/General/Store for a buck.  It marks up easily.  It cuts with a knife or scissors.  Notchy curves can be sweetened with some sandpaper.  Best of all, you can photocopy your plans and spray-glue them to this board, and cut it out with a razor knife.  I love this stuff!




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That’s what I thought, Chick.  But according to the instructions, the keel comes after the outside seams have been taped.  Very soon, I get to cut her up.  Then, I do my outside taping, button her back together, and work on the keel.  That’s the plan.  But first, I need to get my bulkhead bolts back in place.

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I did the dirty deed today— I cut a perfectly good boat in two.  It went well.  I tried using my Roto-Zip.  It was OK, but a little hairy.  A sharp handsaw worked best.  I started with my grandfather’s old saw, but switched to a sharp one later on.  Don Rausch stopped by to help.







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  • 4 weeks later...

Long time, no post.  Florida called, we answered.  Actually, a friend in Sarasota invited us down for a week.  I got the OK from the War Department and our gracious host, so we towed Local Honey along behind.  On the way, we did one night at Cedar Key.  What an interesting place for small boats!  Probably the best day was sailing with two other guys in Honey on Sarasota Bay.  We had a good breeze, and she simply flew through the water.


Back home, I got cracking on TP8.  I got the forward compartment (would that be a bow-zarette?) primed and painted.  The lid (seat/deck) went on, and it’s all taped in place.  I also worked on my daggerboard slot.  Here are a few photos.


Still thinking of names.  “Schizo” is a little too edgy for me.  Thinking about “2 Bits”.











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  • 2 weeks later...

I’m pecking away at the pram.  I’ve faired out most of the lumps in the forward half.  The daggerboard trunk is about ready to be glued in.  I wanted to tape it in place, but I had some bowing in my side plates.  I needed these reinforcements to flatten it out.  



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Don- I have been lurking along with your build. Looks like a sweet little boat.  When I get ROSIE in the water (“the last boat I am going to build”), I will need a dinghy.  Might have to get started on a nesting dingy like yours. 

As far as names go, in the 80’s I built 2 nesting dingys designed by Danny Greene. The first one got stolen the first time I used it. The design was called 2 bits.  Since my sailboat was called Cats Cradle, the logical name for the tender was Cat Box.


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I’ve been under the weather, but I did complete the d/b trunk.  All that’s left for this half is to finalize the forward hatch, fair & sand, prime and paint.  I did mentally switch over to thinking about the floatation tanks for the after half.  I think I’m going to do mine much like Pete McCrary’s TP7.  I want more agressive floatation when my grandkids are sailing.  Maybe these can be add-ons.  At least I’m nearly done with the forward interior.



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  • 4 weeks later...

OK, the lull is over.  The Spring Messabout inspired me to get rolling again.


I live it, when I can borrow techniques from one hobby to another; it sort of justifies both of them.  Chick Ludwig introduced me to RC airplanes.  Flite Test’s products have taught me the value of Adams foam board ($1/sheet!) and a hot melt glue gun.  I used foam board to cut precise patterns for my aft seats.  Then, I used those scraps to hold the pieces in position for the fillets. I’m pleased with the results.





My big question:  Do I really need inspection ports in these air chambers?  PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE!

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44 minutes ago, Thrillsbe said:


My big question:  Do I really need inspection ports in these air chambers?  PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE!


I never put them in my Spindrift and after 8 seasons of casual use and 2 of leaving it in the water for the whole 5 months I have experienced no issues.  I highly recommend a light colored interior (at least) if you do not install them.  Mine is a white hull with pale green interior.

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