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Thread: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

  1. #1
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    Default Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Hey folks,

    I'm gearing up for a CY build which I expect to last a couple of years at least. The boat will be built in a bow shed, in my backyard in Southcentral Alaska, planks of 9mm okoume, DF stems, etc.

    Over the past four winters we haven't seen anything below -25F for extended periods, but we do get sustained temps in the -15F range.

    This isn't my first build, but it's my first build at this latitude. I don't plan on doing any planking, painting, etc during the winter, so wherever the hull's at come end of September is where it will stay until April, while I work on spars and sails inside.

    Anyone have any cold weather building/storage experience? How does 105/205 hold up at extreme negative temps? Should I build molds out of MDF/ply/pine boards (or other?) to counteract thermal contraction?

    Trying to get my ducks in a row here, any comments welcome.

    Thanks,

    Cole

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Store your unused epoxy inside. You can pretty much work until you hit the mid thirties but the epoxy benefits from the warmth of the house and anything below fifty is pretty much going to take 24 hours to cure even with fast hardener. Once it’s cured it won’t matter how cold it gets. For molds in bow tent you can use pretty much whatever you want. You should only need them for the first season anyway, the boat planks up pretty fast.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    I built a strip-planked boat in northern Wisconsin, where temps of -20 are not uncommon, and -40 now and then. I built in an unheated garage (not attached to a house) without any problems. On warmer winter days a couple of electric heaters let me work a little, but mostly I abandoned the boat during the winter. As noted above, don't let your unused epoxy freeze. If it does, though, it can be re-heated by putting the jugs in hot water and the crystallization will disappear, and it can be used again.

    Tom
    You don't have to be prepared as long as you're willing to suffer the consequences.

    www.tompamperin.com

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Thanks for the replies fellas.

    Here's another one: any reason why I can't use box store DF for laminating the stems? I've got some dry, clear 2x4s that have have been in the garage for a couple years.

    Cole

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Are you sure it’s Fir? I’ve never seen decent Doug fir at a big box store. The common lumber they sell is hem-fir which can be a number of different species, most of them not suitable for boat building.

    But if you’re sure it’s Fir and it’s nice tight grained (10+ rings to the inch) and knot free go for it.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    I used a nice clear Doug-fir 4x4 from a big box store to slice up for laminated stems. Worked great, nice tight growth rings. I have not seen good fir in 2x4s.

    Tom
    You don't have to be prepared as long as you're willing to suffer the consequences.

    www.tompamperin.com

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Screen Shot 2019-05-08 at 9.27.59 PM.jpg
    It honestly never occurred to me it might not be Doug Fir, as it was labeled as such. It's definitely not old growth, tight ringed stuff. Just grabbed a screeshot from Lowe's website..

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    I would look for something better.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Tom, do you have some photos of that stem lamination? I'm curious as to the grain layout/orientation.

    On a totally different note, Jim, I notice you built a bow shed as well. I was going to DIY mine rather than buy plans, constructing a jig using the formula for an equilateral arch. It looks like you might have gone with a lancet arch (or just tall sidewalls?). Any recommendations for either? Pros/cons?

    Thanks guys, really appreciating the feedback.

    Cole

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Not really any great stem photos, but here are a couple. I wasn't all that thoughtful about the layout, actually, so make no claims that I did it the best way. Seemed to work ok, though. Had to get the layers down to 1/8" thick to take the bend if I remember right. From the photos, it looks like some of the pieces were tighter grained than others.

    DSCN2545 (2).jpg

    DSCN2544.jpg

    Tom
    You don't have to be prepared as long as you're willing to suffer the consequences.

    www.tompamperin.com

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    I just drew up something that would fit my space and project after looking at pictures and plans on the net. The arches sit on a 2 high pony wall.

    581A6550-5E9B-4BEB-A310-322FB25F5E13.jpg
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Quote Originally Posted by WI-Tom View Post
    Not really any great stem photos, but here are a couple. I wasn't all that thoughtful about the layout, actually, so make no claims that I did it the best way. Seemed to work ok, though. Had to get the layers down to 1/8" thick to take the bend if I remember right. From the photos, it looks like some of the pieces were tighter grained than others.

    DSCN2545 (2).jpg

    DSCN2544.jpg

    Tom
    Looks pretty good Tom.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Blackbear, you might want to take care to cover your work during prolonged storage periods with something opaque. There's precious little daylight during Anchorage winters but the UV exposure will still accumulate. Uncovered epoxy will degrade in UV light.

    As for the big box store 2x4..... The lamination process will help minimize any detrimental effects of subpar wood structure if you take care to mix-up the lams. Don't put them back together the same orientation they come off the board. This will increase the horizontal shear resistance in the completed stem. A good thing.

    Quality wood is available from Hardware Specialties on 54th street off of Arctic Blvd. They buy a lot of material in the PNW from a variety of wholesalers. They will special order and have the material shipped along with their regular stuff which will save a bundle on your freight costs. At least that was my experience but I believe it is still the case. It's been a few years since I lived and worked there but I still have friends in Anchorage.

    Best of luck with the project.

    Jeff

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Jim, your shed looks pretty professional, nicely done.

    Tom, thanks for the photos of the lamination. Glad to hear box store DF worked for you. I'm away from home for a few days but will see what I've got in the garage when I get back, as well as examine the 4x4 selection at Lowes/HD.

    Jpatrick, thanks for the recommendation. Sadly, all too many of my hard-earned dollars have gone to Hardware Specialties on past projects. They quoted me $137 per sheet of 6mm okoume yesterday. I can have Crosscut Hardwoods in Seattle barge it up for less than that. Superior Hardwoods in Fairbanks is actually quite a bit cheaper, which really begs the question on HS's pricing. I'm not traditionally a penny-pincher, much preferring to pay for quality materials, but daughter number two arrived a few months ago and the boatbuilding coffer's fortunes are much diminished since my wife quit work. HS's prices for tight VG DF are similarly inflated, so if stem laminations could be got out of a length of box store dimensional lumber, I'd gladly give it a go.

    Furthermore, if Vendia is producing "keel" and "keel plank" members from only lengthwise pine veneers, I'm wondering if I can't do something similar for the keel and keelson on the CY from clear lengths of box store DF. I realize there is a lot of time, effort and epoxy involved, but their innovations are thought-provoking. Any good threads on this?

    Cole

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Quote Originally Posted by jsjpd1 View Post
    Looks pretty good Tom.
    Thanks. The laminated inner stem was the first thing I built other than the temporary molds, if I remember right. Didn't even know enough to build my jig on the inside of the curve! I can tell you it's much harder to bend stem laminations by clamping them to a jig on the OUTSIDE of the curve. It's a good thing my build took as long as it did, because I sure had a lot to learn along the way.

    Tom
    You don't have to be prepared as long as you're willing to suffer the consequences.

    www.tompamperin.com

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackbear View Post
    Furthermore, if Vendia is producing "keel" and "keel plank" members from only lengthwise pine veneers, I'm wondering if I can't do something similar for the keel and keelson on the CY from clear lengths of box store DF. I realize there is a lot of time, effort and epoxy involved, but their innovations are thought-provoking. Any good threads on this?

    Cole
    Cole, I laminated a Herreshoff stlye plank keel for my Biscayne 14 out of DF. The structure is probably somewhat different from how the CY is put together -- the keel is about 13.5' long and nearly a foot wide amidships, 1 5/8" thick, rabbetted for the planking, but hopefully the general process is helpful. I used tight VG DF. You can find a few posts and photos here:
    http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...45#post5835645
    --Nate

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Nate-

    Thanks for the link. That process looked interesting. I haven't quite got the economics of lamination vs solid keel members worked out yet, currently stuck up in the high arctic with work and can't get to the hardwood supplier. There's no doubt lamination would be a lot more work. Is your keel affixed to the boat yet?

    Cole

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackbear View Post
    Nate-

    Thanks for the link. That process looked interesting. I haven't quite got the economics of lamination vs solid keel members worked out yet, currently stuck up in the high arctic with work and can't get to the hardwood supplier. There's no doubt lamination would be a lot more work. Is your keel affixed to the boat yet?

    Cole
    The boat is all planked up around the backbone. It's flipped over and I am working on the centerboard case and floor timbers now.

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackbear View Post
    Screen Shot 2019-05-08 at 9.27.59 PM.jpg
    It honestly never occurred to me it might not be Doug Fir, as it was labeled as such. It's definitely not old growth, tight ringed stuff. Just grabbed a screeshot from Lowe's website..
    Lowe's around here carries 4x4 Doug fir. It's definitely Doug fir, not the best, but if I dig through their stock I can often find some that is fairly clear and tight grained. Not as good as my normal supplier, but have used it in a pinch. For a CY stem, if I was careful in picking out pieces, I would be willing to use it.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by WI-Tom View Post
    Thanks. The laminated inner stem was the first thing I built other than the temporary molds, if I remember right. Didn't even know enough to build my jig on the inside of the curve! I can tell you it's much harder to bend stem laminations by clamping them to a jig on the OUTSIDE of the curve. It's a good thing my build took as long as it did, because I sure had a lot to learn along the way.

    Tom
    I did that once several years ago.

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Thanks Peb.

    Very interested to know about the inside/outside of the curve lamination issue you have mentioned. It seems your consensus is that inside is better. I just watched an OffCenterHarbor.com video where Geoff Kerr is gluing up a CY stem lamination on the outside. Is this just a chocolate vs. vanilla issue, or what? I've never done a curved lamination on a form so this is all quite new to me.


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X7MPtSFw2bo


    Thanks

    Cole

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackbear View Post
    Thanks Peb.

    Very interested to know about the inside/outside of the curve lamination issue you have mentioned. It seems your consensus is that inside is better. I just watched an OffCenterHarbor.com video where Geoff Kerr is gluing up a CY stem lamination on the outside. Is this just a chocolate vs. vanilla issue, or what? I've never done a curved lamination on a form so this is all quite new to me.


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X7MPtSFw2bo


    Thanks

    Cole
    Cole,

    I watched the Geoff Kerr video--that's what I mean by putting the laminating jig on the inside of the curve. The jig is on the inside, the laminations are clamped to it on the outside of the curve.

    When I did it wrong, I put the laminations on the inside, and the jig on the outside--the opposite of what the video shows. It's much harder that way to get a good fair curve. But it worked, I guess--my boat floats.

    Interesting watching him glue the inner and outer stems at the same time. I did just the inner stem, then laminated the outer stem in place on the boat after planking. That worked really well. I think I prefer it to trying to handle that many slippery laminations all at once.

    Tom
    You don't have to be prepared as long as you're willing to suffer the consequences.

    www.tompamperin.com

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Quote Originally Posted by WI-Tom View Post
    ...I can tell you it's much harder to bend stem laminations by clamping them to a jig on the OUTSIDE of the curve. It's a good thing my build took as long as it did, because I sure had a lot to learn along the way.

    Tom
    Tom,

    Haha, totally misread your post, and consequently wasted a lot of time on youtube trying to find examples of laminates on the inside of the curve, wondering why I wasn't finding any...glad that's cleared up.

    Cole

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    You need to dig through the archives to find the posts from Bob Smalser regarding optimization of big box doug fir for boat building purposes. The upshot was the bigger and longer timbers will yield a higher ratio of useful boat building wood, after you work around the sapwood and the knots. Note the sapwood in your illustration of a big box 2x4.
    Steve Martinsen

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Thanks Steve.

    Well, I've been looking for that article. I feel like I actually read it before, maybe ten years ago. I'm simply not finding it now, using either the forum's inbuilt search or google. I did read a lot of initially amusing, then gradually more depressing back and forth sniping between Bob and someone named pcford.

    Anyone out there got it bookmarked? If I search for all posts by Mr Smalser, I get 5 pages of results, but only page one seems to be viewable.

    Cole

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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    I found Bob’s posts when researching my keel. Very helpful. Try using google advance search, try the phrase “vertical grain Douglas fir.”

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    So finally made it over to Lowe's to look through their DF 4x4s. There were several like this one.
    IMG-5649.jpg

    The grain ran vertically throughout the depth of the board, top and bottom had a similar appearance.

    I give it roughly 21 or 22 rings in that 2 inch span, so 10-11 rpi.

    The wood is a little moist, but it should work for a stem lamination, no?

    Cole

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Yep, no problem.
    -Jim

    Sucker for a pretty face.
    1934 27' Blanchard Cuiser ~ Amazon, Ex. Emalu
    19'6" Caledonia Yawl ~ Sparrow

    Getting into trouble one board at a time.

  29. #29
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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    That looks very similar to what I used for my stem.

    Tom
    You don't have to be prepared as long as you're willing to suffer the consequences.

    www.tompamperin.com

  30. #30
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    Default Re: Building/Storing Caledonia Yawl in Extreme Cold

    Saw and thickness plane the veneers out now. They'll dry a lot sooner as thin stock. You can even bring them into the heated house for a while.

    Here's a jig for laying up several bow shed frames at the same time.

    Bow Shed 001.jpg

    Bow Shed 003.jpg

    Bow Shed 002.jpg

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