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Thread: An Aber in Almonte

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Vancouver, B.C., Canada

    Default An Aber in Almonte

    I hope I’m not breaking etiquette by posting a build thread without actually having started a build? I do have questions, many questions, and now that I have a kit for a Francois Vivier designed Aber on the way, I thought I’d better get around to asking them. First, a quick introduction. I’m a neophyte boat builder with some woodworking skills. Initially, I had wanted to build an Ilur but went with the Aber due to her slightly more svelte hull and lower gross weight. Both important factors as I’ll be building her in a small basement workshop. Looking forward to this journey, nothing better than picking up a few new skills and hopefully a boat at the end of it.

    On to questions. Any issues with epoxy gluing dissimilar woods? If I went with a white oak keel and mahogany keelson/stem, would I have any expansion contraction problems? Should I stick with the same material throughout?

    On epoxies, the plan is to go with West Systems resin with 206 hardener. If I’m planning on finishing the interior bright, should I choose the 207 hardener instead? Any estimates on the amount of epoxy needed for a 14’ lapstrake dinghy? I’m guessing it’s probably best to go with a gallon of resin instead of buying it by the quart.

    Anyways, excited to get started and looking forward to sharing progress along the way.


    Last edited by Wakenedhands; 10-04-2021 at 05:04 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Boston, MA

    Default Re: An Aber in Almonte

    In general, epoxy isn't going to care about dissimilar woods, as it forms a mechanical bond -- i.e., the epoxy soaks in, bonding to itself and then what is on either side (it's why you don't want to clamp too tight, as you actually need a bit of epoxy between the pieces of wood to hold things together). But, various people have talked about problems with epoxy and white oak -- there are tons of threads on here, ideas of why it might happen, people who say it's no problem, suggestions to use G-Flex, etc. So, if you _are_ going to use it, you may want to also through bolt the keel on. But, you may have more peace of mind sticking to wood that doesn't have a reputation for epoxy failing on...

    Re: expansion / contraction. If you entirely encapsulate in epoxy (and that means several coats, not just one), the wood shouldn't move much, so the normal issues around wood movement should be essentially irrelevant.

    If you are going to coat the boat in epoxy, plus the amount used in the laps, you will certainly be using gallons, rather than quarts. No idea for Aber, but Ilur builders (of which there are many) may be able to give you a pretty good estimate, as the techniques are similar and the size isn't that far off. Does Vivier not provide estimates for epoxy? I would guess you would use _at least_ a few gallons (so starting with, say, a 3 gallon kit would not be unreasonable -- and you may use double that if epoxy coating everything...).

    As you've probably gathered looking at threads here: take lots of photos!

    Building a Campion Apple 16.

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