Off she goes, Iain Oughtred's slightly foreshortened Penny Fee, at 15ft. Sails by Jeckells, spars by the wonderful Jeremy Freeland at Collars. The rest by Messrs Burke and Morgan (that's Jonny by the way...)

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

The Vendia has arrived

The Vendia for the 16ft Gartside skiff arrived yesterday, crown cut, 35 planks, 6mm x 225mm x 3000mm at a cost of Eur 509.25. Add delivery costs from Finland to Ullapool, a not unreasonable Eur 219.00 and, with Finnish VAT (24%) the total was Euro 903.03, around £715, which compares quite well with a quote for a similar amount of solid larch at £650, or so delivered.

First impressions are excellent, both quality and working. The top two veneers on each side (of a total of five) are what they call crown-cut, close grained pine, with a nice figure and no end grain showing. Only the middle layer exposed. This should make it much more resistance to water ingress, and impenetrable once properly clear sealed.

The scarphs I cut to make up the garboards proved a joy, with no splintering under a very sharp plane. It was like working with solid pine, with a middle layer to give an accurate idea of the progress of the scarph itself. So, it is plywood, but not as we know it.

The only thing is I will need to be super careful gluing and handling it to keep the surface pristine as much of the boat will be varnished, perhaps all to start with, if I can persuade my owner...

To that end I intend to fine sand and clear prime the strakes as they are put up, to seal them while the boat is built.

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