Friday, June 30, 2006

Point Bennett Hull Glassed....

I stayed up late last night glassing the hull of the Point Bennett. I was a little bummed this morning to find some bubbles I missed last night. No big deal though. This isn't my first rodeo. It just slows me down. I can't wait to get this thing in the water! I love the design of the hull. It is beautiful to look at. It has been a relatively easy boat to build so far. No major blunders on my part. Just little mistakes.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

More Progress....

I was able to get the wires out today and seal the seams. I still need to make my deck. I was hoping to do that tonight but my wife wants to watch a movie so I can tell the boat may be postponed again :)

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Survivors were in the mall today!

Point Bennet update....

Side and bottom panels stitched. I need to trim the bottom panels yet. They come out a quarter inch too long.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Commando Kayaking!

Dubside has his own site. You've got to check it out. He has rolling clips, a dvd, and you have got to read the commando kayaking stuff. Hilarious and very cool!

I have heard great things about this guy and his character. He is not only one of the worlds most famous rollers but MANY people call him a friend. He seems to leave a wake of positivity everywhere he goes. I look forward to meeting him someday. I hope he is at the training camp this year!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Autoloaders Came.....Point Bennet Forms Done.....

I got my forms cut out for the Point Bennet today.

My Malone Autoloaders showed up today. So far they seem pretty cool. The plastic is a lot heavier than I expected. The brackets are too. The only issue I have, as you can see in one of the pics, is that the bracket on the front dents in the roof a bit. When I pull the boat off it seems to pop back so I don't think it matters much. The bracket is rubber coated so it doesn't scratch but it was a little tricky getting the bolts in so close to my roof. If you were using these on a normal rack system you would have no issues. The factory bars on my Vibe are real low. The Autoloaders even fit my big fat Acadias! I have not done a road test yet but so far it looks as if these are going to work well.

I want to thank the folks at Jay's Sporting Goods for shipping these to me the next day after I bought them. I should have called them first.

Freya made a comment on my blog for one of her posts. It was pretty cool to see her name in my email box. I can't help but be a little star-struck!

Monday, June 05, 2006

Autoloader update....

CLC dropped the ball on this one. I ordered these last month. Then they said I would have them by the first. Now I here that although orders have been filled , I was going to have to wait until August. Nothing against CLC. Just don't call there expecting to be able to order these. They apparently have a waiting list.

I called Malone and got a list of retailers across the country. Jay's Sporting Goods, in Gaylord, Mi, has got them on the shelves and will ship. So, by next week, I should finally be able to give my promised review of this rack system.

Incidentally, this rack will be put on a Pontiac Vibe. The Vibe is notorious for not having a lot of options available for it. The Autoloaders are supposed to fit directly to the factory bars. We'll see.....:)

Dave Housers' Point Bennet

I received an ecouraging email from Dave Housers. He built a Point Bennet three months ago and it turned out beautiful, as you can see. He increased the size 3%. I am looking forward to finishing mine.

I have made a decision to leave the skeg out for now. I have a CLC drop skeg in my other boat, and love it, but I want to try this one without it. I can always add it later, as I did with the Patuxent.

I have the day off tomorrow so I hope to make a little more progress. Thanks for the motivation, Dave!

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Freya Has A New Website....

Freya Hoffmeister has a new website. This is a great pic from the site. That is her son in the back hatch. I'm not sure I am confident enough with my skills to ever put Ava in the back. However, I don't think Freya is human! She has god-like rolling skills!

She also has a new blog.

Andrew Elizaga Christens The Shooting Star...

The Dash Point Pirate can be seen here with his newest creation.....the Shooting Star! Great job, Andrew! I am feeling a little boat envy!

Andrew Elizaga is a fellow blogger who's site is full of great info. I enjoy his articles and thoughts on traditional kayaking.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Inspirational Boat Building

Check out these boats! A fellow builder posted a link to his site on the Kayak Builders BB. Here is his post:

"I built two SK S&G kayaks for a total cost of around $400. I built them using plans ordered from Sea Kayaker magazine ($6), 1/8" luan (had to fill in voids), fiberglass cloth from ebay (4 oz) and epoxy from Raka. The $400 includes everything else I needed to build them....Sea Dog footbraces, seat foam, rigging cord, work table, sandpaper, brushes, polyurethane, stain, etc. They came in at 41 lbs each. "

You can click on the pic to go straight to his picture gallery of the building process.

I think stuff like this is cool because it shows almost anyone, with very little space, time, and money, can build a boat. It takes a little focus, and sometimes, some creative financing. Ebay is a great place to find inexpensive materials.

US Composites appears to be the best source for resin and fiberglass. Plywood is always the tricky part. This builder bought cheaper wood and filled the voids. You can do this by shining a light behind the panels in a dark room and circling the voids with a pencil. Or, you could save the work and find a source for marine grade and pay the extra $20-30 bucks a sheet.

This builder bought his plans from SeaKayaker Magazine. They are a reprint of an article from years ago. I also ordered these but elected to build a similar boat from It is called the Point Bennet. I found instructions a little easier to follow and Duane, the designer, has been supportive. The Point Bennet plans are free. Free is good.

You can build a better boat than you can buy. It will come out lighter, sometimes stronger, customized to you, and less expensive. The major factor that should influence your decision to build one is whether you have the time and the patience to build one. Your first one is slow because you have to take the time to learn. Read books and familiarize yourself with the process. Get to know other builders. Learn from our experiences. Just get started, be patient, and have fun.

In the words of Gerald Hopkins, after a stressful afternoon of deck attatchment, "It's not like were building a piano, Dude! Relax. Sh*ts gonna happen. Grab a beer and let's get back to it".

Thats wisdom from one of the world's great woodworkers.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Bottom Panels and Side Panels Stitched.....

I had some time to work on the Point Bennet today. I need to get the stations cut so I started drawing them out tonight while watching The Parent Trap with my family. It's nice to be able to work on my hobby and be with everyone. One of the catch22's with boat building is that we usually have to be away from everyone else while doing certain steps. It's not like we can crack open a gallon of resin in the living room! :)

Perfect Birthday Gift!

My boss just turned 47. He's real sensitive about his birthday and doesn't like people buying him gifts or even talking about it. However, he smiled and shook my hand at the sight of a 30 pack of Miller High Life Lite! Yum. And yes I did put the bow on it.

Let this be a lesson for you ladies out there. Here is the list and you will never go wrong. In fact, now that I have given this to you never need to ask again what we want for a gift.

1) Anything sharp that shines (knives, fish hooks, etc). It's a guy thing.

2) Large amounts of beer. It's not like we are going to drink it all right away. We just like to have it around.

3) Anything loud. Stereos, guns, motorcycles, etc.

4) Tools

5) Gift certificates to buy any of the above.

From now on, don't ever say that we're "hard to shop for". :)

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