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Thread: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

  1. #1
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    Default Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    I'm just starting the build of Karl Stambaugh's Sailing Skiff 15 in western Virginia.

    Remember the old story about a sailor who wanted to swallow the anchor? He walked inland until nobody could recognize the oar he carried on his shoulder. That's where he settled down.

    That's where I live.

    I took a previous boat, without mast, to the local garage and asked them to repack the trailer wheel bearings. The mechanics spent some time scratching their heads. They finally decided it had to be a sailboat because, "There ain't no place to put a motor."

    There are some compensations. Here is the view from my shop. The closest sailing venue is a 45 acre National Forest flood control lake, on the other side of the mountain in the distance.

    20190614_121642.jpg
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
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    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    I started by making lofting battens, ripped from a clear Douglas Fir 1x4. They came out 3/4" x 7/16" x 19'6".

    Note the redneck drafting ducks made from bricks and scrap lumber. The design is not original -- I found it online in a "build your own boat" article from the 1950s. Sorry, I rotated the image in my computer but it does not orient correctly on the forum.

    black batten 09.jpg
    Last edited by UCanoe_2; 06-28-2019 at 11:33 AM.
    "George Washington as a boy
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    He could not even lie."

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    I am lofting full size, even though Karl provides full size frame patterns. Having an aversion to crawling on the floor with arthritic knees, I built a lofting table. I neglected to secure the plywood in my truck and lost the load at a busy intersection, resulting in tire marks on the plywood. Fortunately this is only underlayment and not $78 a sheet okume.

    20190614_122217.jpg
    Last edited by UCanoe_2; 06-28-2019 at 05:27 PM.
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
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    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Sheer and chine laid down. Still have not figured out the rotation thing -- image rotates in my computer, but not on the forum?

    sheer and chine rotated.jpg
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    I've been contemplating this design so I'm very interested in following your project. Thanks for sharing.

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    LOVE the table

    dad n i built one that size many moons ago and it'z still in service today

    gotz me a big ole glass of sweet tea and i'm ready for the build ;-)

    sw
    "we are the people, our parents warned us about" (jb)

    steve

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Quote Originally Posted by pelicanbuilder View Post
    I've been contemplating this design so I'm very interested in following your project. Thanks for sharing.
    Thanks, Pelican. It's a handy boat and not hard to build, but with enough details to make it challenging. It's a lot prettier than most of the "easy to build" stitch and goo designs.
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Thanks, swoody. You must have a big barn to store that table in. This one will have to come apart after lofting is complete, to make room to actually build the boat.


    Quote Originally Posted by swoody126 View Post
    LOVE the table

    dad n i built one that size many moons ago and it'z still in service today

    gotz me a big ole glass of sweet tea and i'm ready for the build ;-)

    sw
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    yes it is(my legacy from my grandfather that came down thru dad)

    50'x70' under roof and 20'x50' enclosed on cement floor w/ full bath and RV hook ups inside just in case... ;-)

    we built the table knee high and used(i still do) it as a buiding platform

    dad had a roll around chair that he worked from A LOT of the time in his waning years

    the deck overhung the frame by one 2x2 which provided an sound point for clamping around the entire edge

    the LEVEL deck could be screwed into for holding stations/molds and could be used to verify dimensions to within a chigger's whiskebr />
    a bold centerline and 2' station lines are marked on the plywood deck w/ a Sharpie

    IMG_1743.jpg

    my Michalak AF-3 is currently leveled and blocked up on it for finishing and fitting out

    it is so much easier doing this kind of stuff knowing that i'm working on a level playing field

    Carnac the Magnificent says there's lotsa sanding in my future... ;-)

    sw
    "we are the people, our parents warned us about" (jb)

    steve

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Cool. Where do you buy a rule graduated in chigger whiskers?
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Quote Originally Posted by UCanoe_2 View Post
    Cool. Where do you buy a rule graduated in chigger whiskers?
    late night RFDTV infomercial ;-)

    sw
    "we are the people, our parents warned us about" (jb)

    steve

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    More lofting

    20190628_144933.jpg

    But sometimes there are too many errors scribbled out, and you have to paint over the lines and start over. Fortunately, all my points are well located and marked with nails. I will only need to spring battens and draw legible lines.

    20190630_161624.jpg
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Sometimes progress is forward, sometimes backward, and sometimes sideways.

    It always helps to organize the shop and equipment. Dust collector cyclone piggybacked onto shop vac.

    20190629_202738.jpg

    Plans stowed in cargo net. They are easily accessible, but won't get damaged sitting on the workbench. 1950s ShopSmith jointer is awaiting removal of blades for sharpening, and installation of upgraded guards and dust collection.

    20190630_222722 (2).jpg
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    along with lofty(ing) ideals i always maintain a pocket full of waivers

    i see you buy your WHITE OUT by the qt ;-)

    sw
    "we are the people, our parents warned us about" (jb)

    steve

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    swoody, I don't fool around with those little bottles. I only make big mistakes.

    Profile redrawn with great improvement in neatness and accuracy. The chalk line on the waterline is still messy, though. Even standing on the workbench, I can't get the whole drawing in a landscape view. Stay tuned for body plan and half breadth.

    Photo uploads won't work tonight, maybe tomorrow.
    Last edited by UCanoe_2; 07-01-2019 at 09:03 PM.
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
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    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Time to pop more popcorn and pour another glass of iced tea.

    Took a few days off boat building to earn some Boat Bucks.

    Painted over mistakes, made some more mistakes and painted over those. Cleaned up the messy chalk line waterline and redrew in blue pencil. Installed a centerline batten for drawing half breadths. Drew half breadths, including transom crown. Cut out and marked measuring sticks, and hung them on the wall on their own nails.

    In the photos, red lines are profile, green lines are half breadth. Some of the half breadth lines are faint. They may be revised in the course of drawing body plan.

    20190708_190333.jpg20190708_190523.jpg20190708_190717.jpg
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Time for white out again.

    The offsets in the Sailing Skiff plans are given to the inside of the planking. That makes it easier to build the frames correctly, but it also means it is necessary to account for plywood thickness, for example to draw the profile of the keel and the bottom of the stem in the right places. Oops.

    Also, I decided the profile of my stem rabbet had a flat spot. None of my battens had exactly the right spring, so off to Lowe's for one more piece of plastic molding. I will redraw the erroneous lines this afternoon after the paint dries.

    20190712_121407.jpg
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
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    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Took out the flat spot in the stem rabbet profile, and sketched a couple of possible shapes for the inboard bottom of the stem. White nail polish does not do the white out job as well as paint.

    20190712_163028.jpg
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Chapelle wrote, "...there was never a boat built in which too much lofting had been done." He did not say how many boatbuilders have gone to lunatic asylums.

    Now I'm working on the body plan. With both body plan and half breadths drawn to the offsets, there is about a 5/8" discrepancy at the intersection of Station #2 and the sheer. Moving the sheer half breadth inboard 5/8" to match the sheer in the body plan resulted in a definite flat spot. No good.

    20190714_153256.jpg20190714_160423.jpg

    Leaving the half breadth as per the offset and moving the sheer in the body plan to match resulted in a flat spot in the body plan. Also no good. This photo shows the 1/16" thick "noodle" batten.

    20190715_152744.jpg

    When I split the difference and moved the sheer 5/16" outboard in the body plan, and 5/16" inboard in the half breadth, things didn't look so bad. Maybe still a little flat spot on the sheer in the body plan. It would probably fair better if I used the white plastic batten instead of the noodle.

    20190715_153933.jpg
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    The after half of the sheer in the body plan looks pretty good. Time to apply more white paint to the scribbled out lines.

    P.S. White nail polish is not a good substitute for white paint as lofting "white out."

    20190715_155452.jpg
    Last edited by UCanoe_2; 07-16-2019 at 07:55 PM.
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    I always get a lot of satisfaction when lofting a boat before I build it. Let's you really appreciate what you are about to creat.
    I was born on a wooden boat that I built myself.

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Rich, not everyone has the ability to do this stuff, let alone enjoy it. My pre-retirement (and post-retirement part time) job is evaluating folks' potential for various trade and technical jobs, including occasionally drafting. I administer standardized psychological tests of spatial relations, as well as observing people's performance in tasks such as using wiring diagrams to build electrical circuits.

    There is a wide range of ability, and I believe this ability is for the most part hard wired in someone's brain. If the right neural circuits are not present, it's practically impossible to teach someone the necessary visualization skills. Think about a carpenter framing a house, or a car mechanic assembling an engine. For some people the visualization "clicks" instantly, while others can't get a mental picture of what they are building, no matter how hard they try.

    I was fortunate to inherit some pretty good wiring, although I'm far from the 99th percentile. My dad was a loftsman at Newport News during WW II. I learned a little bit of drafting from him growing up, but not nearly as much as I now wish I had.

    Then too, we live in a culture that no longer encourages people to use the visualization circuits of their brains to build stuff. Some people think "drafting" is a process used to recruit football players in the NFL......
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    OK forumites, now I really need some advice and words of wisdom.

    I have the sheer ends of the body plan sections pretty well located, but the chine ends remain an unsolved mystery. The battens and yardstick in the photos represent those section lines. If you look closely, you can see they are not parallel. The sections look parallel in Karl's lines plan, but definitely are not in the full size frame lofting.

    I thought the sections always had to be parallel in plywood boats??

    I have emailed Karl for clarification, but pending his reply your opinions are welcome.

    20190712_163333.jpg
    Attached Images Attached Images
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Remember that the reason you are lofting is to find the discrepancies in the offsets...
    Lofting mine is still pretty fresh in my head as I just did this a few months ago.
    Loft the profile and half breadth views, using as stiff a batten as will make the curves...
    Fairing with the batten - ignoring the points that don't make a fair curve.... Don't force the batten in to a point if it doesn't want to fall there.
    Do not use the offsets to make the body plan --- use a tick stick to pick up the dimensions from the profile and half breadths and use these to draw the body plan.
    In this way you have found and eliminated the discrepancies in the offsets.
    Double and triple check your work before you start cutting wood.

    You all feel free to shoot me down if I am incorrect.

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Thanks, Timo. Do you still have your way cool skiff with the stick up jib?

    I did make tick sticks; see the last photo in #16 above. They agree pretty closely with the dimensions in the table of offsets. Now I'm trying to wrap my brain around the fudge factors needed to make points on the lines fall in the same places in all three views.

    What are your thoughts about making the sides of all the sections parallel? I can adjust their lower ends inboard or outboard at the chine. Have not attempted to draw this yet so don't know if the chine would still be fair.

    Anybody else? Need your advice here.
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    somewhere it is written:
    "a fair line supercedes any given dimension" (or measurement) something like that..
    Trust the batten -- and use a good one.

    Your lofting when done should look just like it does in your plans -- only bigger.


    If you are adjusting the chine like you say, you are changing the shape of the boat.

    It will not look like the plan or perform like it was intended.


    The stickup was just sold to make way for my ninigret.

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Been away for several days for a relative's surgery, and just returned to work on the boat.

    I emailed Karl with my questions above. He pointed out that the body plan sections do not have to be parallel, as long as they all meet at the apex of a cone when extended. So one problem solved.

    Karl very kindly made a brand new CAD drawing of the body plan with corrected offsets out to 4 decimal places. I checked all my measurements and found a few errors. Now I am sure all my points are correct. There still is a flat spot in the sheer at Station #1 in the body plan.

    I have written Karl again for advice, but this situation seems like a Catch-22. If I follow the measurements in the plan, the line is not fair. But if I fair the line, I am not building to the plan and the boat turns out differently.

    20190721_202020.jpg

    Pink spackle is the loftsman's friend. It fills the erroneous nail holes, dries fast, and dries white.

    20190721_201928.jpg

    No build thread is complete without a picture of the four legged shop helper, who normally sits perpendicular to the horizon. I still have not mastered the picture rotation. Mickey was a feral kitten and my wife tamed him. He has learned how to make the automatic garage door go back up when it is closing. Gives a cat a real sense of power.

    20190721_175115.jpg
    Last edited by UCanoe_2; 07-21-2019 at 08:46 PM.
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    As usual, life has interfered with boatbuilding. I was out of town for a relative's surgery, then went to work

    for a couple weeks to earn some boat money. Some of you are old enough to remember Maynard G. Krebs.

    Finally, after an email exchange with Karl and much head scratching, the light dawned over my problem with the unfair curve. I was trying to include a point that should not have been there. I was treating Station 3 (aft of amidships) as a midship frame and expecting the sheer line to include it along with Stations 1 and 2. When I removed the offending point, the curve faired. I did have to temporarily remove part of the baseline to allow my drawing batten to lie exactly right.

    20190728_143424.jpg

    Today I redrew the inner surface of the stem one more time. I also drew the forward deck, its riser, mast step, and mast partner in both the profile and half breadth. Hopefully this is the lofting home stretch.

    20190806_172302.jpg20190806_182557.jpg
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

  29. #29
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Went tool shopping and found a Craftsman (made by Sargent) knock off of a Stanley #78 rabbet plane:

    20190813_220723.jpg

    20190813_220833.jpg

    These old planes are often missing the depth gauge, fence, and/or cutter spur. This one was complete at a good price -- just needs sharpening.

    I also found a Stanley 18" brace bit extension. Now I am ready to bore the shaft log hole for an inboard motor boat.

    20190813_220739.jpg

    At the Habitat for Humanity ReStore, for $2, I found a slightly damaged hollow core door. It will be cut up to use the skins for patterns for boat parts.
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

  30. #30
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    I lofted some curvy lines for the quarter knees,

    20190813_171511.jpg

    the stern seat,

    20190813_163653.jpg

    and, with Mickey's help, the breast hook:

    20190813_220621.jpg

    Some parts of these curves don't look exactly right, so I will go back and tweak them.

    Today I did some less photogenic work. Corrected errors and finally got all the frames on the correct sides of the station lines. Drew the batten keel and filled in details of the centerboard trunk.

    The end of the lofting is in sight! I picked up some balsa from the model train store, and will make a half model to derive scale patterns for the boat's plywood side panels. I tried to wrap my head around the instructions for side panel expansion in the Royal Australian Navy lofting manual, as well as some projection techniques from my dad's WW II era drafting textbooks. I decided a model would be faster, easier, and require less thought.

    Stay tuned.
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

  31. #31
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Quote Originally Posted by UCanoe_2 View Post

    Remember the old story about a sailor who wanted to swallow the anchor? He walked inland until nobody could recognize the oar he carried on his shoulder. That's where he settled down.
    That story is older than you probably think - it's from the Odyssey. Most of Odysseus's troubles were because the sea god Poseidon was mad at him for putting out the eye of the sea god's son, Polyphemus. To placate Poseidon, Odysseus was told to walk inland carrying an oar until he gets to a place where people know nothing of the sea. When a passerby asks him, "What are you doing with that winnowing fan on your shoulder?", he must plant the oar in the ground and offer sacrifices to Poseidon.

    Speaking of Polyphemus, did you know that he once tried to work as a teacher? He had to quit because he only had one pupil.
    I will beg you for advice, your reply will be concise, and I will listen very nicely and then go out and do exactly what I want! (Apologies to Lerner and Lowe.)

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Al, thanks for your classical insight, and for the pun in the finest WBF tradition!

    Meanwhile, a more serious return to boat construction.

    I was mistaken about the $2 hollow core door from the ReStore. It was on sale at a 40% discount, so it only cost $1.20. Yesterday I found another, slightly smaller, for the same price. A few minutes with the circular saw will give me 40+ square feet of doorskin pattern material for only $2.40.

    Feeling proud of my frugality, I headed to Staples for more pattern-making material: vellum, carbon paper, and rubber cement. Do you know how much carbon paper costs now? A package of 100 sheets is $21!

    The clerk at the checkout tried to explain that carbon was a rare, expensive, high-tech material. Yeah, right. Back in the day carbon paper was a cheap item found in every secretary's desk. Of course the real reason for the price increase is supply and demand. With the widespread use of computers, the demand for carbon paper, and for secretaries, has dropped precipitously. So has the supply.

    Good ol' basic carbon paper has become a specialty item. Who woulda thunk it?
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    nowadayz when driving between Rockport and Aransas Pass one has to have known where the carbon black plant was

    once the plume from that plant guided us in toward the mouth of the jetties from out n over the hump :-(

    sw
    "we are the people, our parents warned us about" (jb)

    steve

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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    This is a digression, but worthwhile. My father-in-law learned to sail on the Charles River in Boston, while a student at MIT. At that time there was a chocolate factory on one shore, and a soap factory on the other. The sailors could determine the wind direction by scent. This of course gave MIT a home court advantage when visiting sailing teams came to regattas....
    Last edited by UCanoe_2; 08-24-2019 at 10:49 PM.
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

  35. #35
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    Default Re: Stambaugh Sailing Skiff Build in Virginia Mountains

    Has it really been a week since my last post? I have not been idle, just scratching my head a lot.

    If anyone understands this triangulation method for developing side panels, please enlighten me. It's from the Royal Australian Navy's apprentice manual on lofting. My dad's old drafting textbooks showed development of surfaces by triangulation, but only for mundane items like heat ductwork.

    Now the file upload is not working. Grumble.
    "George Washington as a boy
    was ignorant of the commonest
    accomplishments of youth.
    He could not even lie."

    -- Mark Twain

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