9 October 2014

New oars

I have started making a new pair of oars for my dinghy. The ones I have are too short and really not very good. I have got plans from Peter Culler's book on boat building, and adjusted the lengths a bit to suit. For timber I just got a pack of four eight foot boards from B&Q. Each oar is a sandwich of three boards. Much, if not most, of the outer boards will be planed off in the shaping process. This first photo shows the first oar blank cut out, alongside one of my current oars and an uncut board.

I marked the outline from the plans onto one board and cut it out on my band saw. This was quite a rigmarole as I had to unscrew the saw from my work bench and screw it onto a workmate so that I could get enough space for the board lengths on to and off of the saw table. Once I had cut one blank I used that to mark out the other five. This was quite a slow process. I think my saw blade must be getting blunt.

Three blanks are sandwiched together with polyurethane glue. A really messy process, the glue squelched out all over the place. Keeping the blanks in line was quite tricky as the clamps were tightened. The two outer layers are a bit narrower than the central one, but this won't matter as they will be carved down to a tapered side and won't come anywhere near the edge of the finished blade, The outer layers are unlikely to come more than a third of the way down the finished blade. I am seriously thinking of buying a power plane, because there is an awful lot of wood to remove.

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