Scary Sharp

A lot of boatbuilding seems to revolve around woodworking. Even if you’re inclined to a steel hull, most of the interior will still be wood. There are all kinds of resources for woodworking knowledge, both on the net and elsewhere. Despite being somewhat familiar with this field, I had never ran across the "Scary Sharp" method of tool sharpening. I guess since I tend more toward rough and read wood butchery instead of fine joinery, the fine arts of tool sharpening have passed me by.

Anyway, check it out… its a method of sharpening using sandpaper instead of the more common stones, etc.

Thanks to Dave’s blog (mentioned elsewhere) for this pointer!

Lust for Knowledge

Dan Gill, respected moderator of the Backyard Boatbuilding group, and builder of a Diesel Duck 44, made a recent posting with some good pointers and a question.

His message concerned the availability of boatbuilding resources, which ones he uses and soliciting suggestions for other sources. Since this closely matches a lot of what I’ve aimed to cover on this web page, I wanted to pass on part of his message here and encourage you to join the Backyard Boatbuilding group and add to the thread, or add comments here and I’ll pass them on to the group.

I read hours each week. I have all the required books from boatbuilding, rigging, carving, finishing, to storm tactics and safety at sea. My magazines include Wooden Boat, PassageMaker, Lats & Atts, Professional Boatbuilder, Workboat, Professional Mariner, and Fine Woodworking

I attend a few boat shows (they are pretty worthless) and IBEX (extremely valuable). I hang out at boat yards and talk to the most experienced captains that I can corner for a few minutes. It doesn’t matter what kind of boat their experience, I can always pick up a choice tip from them.

Internet sources must be evaluated carefully, because you can write anything and call yourself an expert. This includes our own Group. A source which I recently have been perusing is very good. It is "". For large powerboaters, the Dashew section is great, especially the detailed discussion of their latest project, the FPB (fast power boat). Tech Talk is an invited discussion by cruising sailors on topics of interest. Many of the authors are names we know from the boating press as circumnavigators.

What have you found that answered your questions, or that you are learning from?


Steelcraft and Safticraft

>>> Steelcraft and Safticraft

There is often a feeling/opinion that small craft can’t be made from metal, steel especially. Other’s will disagree.

A recent thread on the Bolger mailing list had a good discussion on some factors between steel, aluminum and wood construction. A pointer was given to this site. Its a well done history of some steel boats (runabouts and cabin cruisers) made well back in the last century. Some fine looking boats and an interesting read.

Welcome to Sag Harbour

>>> Welcome to Sag Harbour

A really neat collection of writings and ramblings by David J. Flemming III covering his life and times as a boatbuilding apprentice and various discussions about boat building. Discussions include hand tools, shop tools and other day-to-day factors in addition to more auto-biographical writings. Highly worth a read. Good writing, nice, laid back style, and definitely the right topic 🙂