View Full Version : Fitting Seats to Boat
07-29-2002, 08:56 PM
I have spent the last day fitting seats in the Dobler 16 that I am building. The seats are 8ft long and run on the port and starboard sides of the boat from approximately 2 feet in front of the transom. I am not happy with the fit of the seats. Not only do they not conform fully to the sides-- even after meticulous scribing and cutting-- but the cutouts for the frame members are an unsightly mess.
Is there anyone out there who can give me a crash course on fitting seats. I would appreciate it very much.
07-29-2002, 09:02 PM
Will the seats fit on a support along the hull sides? If so you can make a templete with 1/4 luan in many short pieces screwed together along side and then transfered to a bigger piece and cut and fit before you transfer it to the good plywood or solid timber.. Remember in the curve in sections, it will need to be scribed out in the middle of each piece.
07-29-2002, 10:43 PM
Sounds like more than a one-day job. Especially the first time. Take your time. Oyster's got the idea about using small cheap pieces for the trial and error fitting. My only other suggestion would be to leave an intentional gap all around. Whatever errors are left will not show (as much). You might even be able to salvage your pieces. Slow down. This is a hobby, dammit.
07-29-2002, 11:05 PM
I appreciate the insights from both Oyster and Paul. In regard to this being a hobby, it would be a hobby if I had the luxury of a boat shop or garage to leisurely make my way through the building process. Unfortunately, I don't. My neighbor has been gracious enough to allow me to use his maple tree for a shed. The boat is under a tarp, at the moment, and needs to be completed by the 3rd week in August before the fall term starts.
This is my second boat in two years. Last year, I built Dave Carnell's $200 sailboat. I had no woodworking experience whatsoever and the boat turned out to be a looker, although not a gold plater. The Dobler, a much more complex building job, is coming along well although there are new challenges and things to learn every step. It will turn out alright, but it won't be a gold plater either. I will be unhappy with a lot of things that I don't believe went right with the boat. I will spend a lot of time thinking of what I would do differently when it is through, and I will use that knowledge on the next boat I build.
But despite the fact that her master is not a craftsman, the Dobler will be a great source of satisfaction to me. Even now, in spite of my best efforts to the contrary, the boat looks good and I expect it will serve me well even though she won't win any beauty contsts.
When I build again in a few years, perhaps then I will have a garage that I can ply my carpentry skills at a more leisurely pace. Boatbuilding will be a hobby then. Right now, building a boat is a means to and end -- sailing.
07-30-2002, 06:00 AM
Making templets sounds like the thing to do. Make sure when scribing that you keep your scribing tool paralell to the direction the seat will slide, not at a right angle to whatever point you are on the curve. This might be what is causing you problems.
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