Keelson, Battens and Birdsmouth

In racing to get some work on the boat done before a busy week, I neglected to take many pictures. The weather was fantastic. Cool and bright today.

What I did accomplish:

  • Keelson shaping-
    • with “witness” saw cuts every 1.5″ a chisel readily removed a majority of the wood. The handplane got closer and will be fine tuned prior to setting the garboard planks.
  • New battens-
    • the previous set were so fraught with breaks and twists that they had to go.
    • new strong yellow pine battens were scarfed and placed on the forms. YP was from the kayak build. Save those scraps. They will be useful somewhere.
    • some tweaking of the battens has been made over 2 days as different views seem to reveal slight “hard” spots in the curves. No dramatic changes, but 1/8″ movements here and there.
  • Garboard plank template-
    • I will use the “ladder” technique to form a template from the battens.
    • a batten will have to be placed on the previous plank to make the successive template. We’ll see how that goes.
  • Cut birdsmouth staves for main mast-
    • all 8 came from a 5/4x6x18′ plank cut into 4 pieces which were then split vertically.
    • using a jack plane the staves were tapered. Hand planing smoothed the final result.
Familiar set up. See kayak build.


Multiple finger boards for ripping with kerf blade.


Planing taper to ganged staves.
Outdoor shop.
All tolled I’ve probably 12 hours of work over the past 3 days.
I forgot to mention I had built a 3/4″ scale balsa model of the boat to study a few details like a simple awning/tent and to generally familiarize myself with the build.


Awning study. Looking for a simple tent design with low windage.


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