Sunday, September 28, 2014

ALOT - An Easy to Build Jon Boat

One of the things that may keep people from building boats is all the angles and trying to figure out how to make angles that are angled.   Likely, that is why stitch and glue boat building is popular is that thickened epoxy makes those joints for you.  On the downside, epoxy can be a mess and is a paint to sand.  The other thing that may keep people from boat building is time.  There never seems to be enough of it - life sort of takes it away.

These two things were the inspiration for this design - ALOT.  Could a boat be designed that could be really easy to build by an 11 year old( with supervision) without epoxy in a reasonable time frame?  Could a boat be designed with these parameters that does not scream "Homemade Boat!?   Constructed from only home center materials?  ALOT to ask.

Boat designs are often inspired by other designs and ALOT is no exception.  The basic jon boat was one, the Boggy Creek Bandit was another, throw in a Carolina Skiff and a ShadowCast Ankona and top it off with the SoloSkiff.  The boat also needed to have a capacity to hold an adult and a child as well as some gear.   The basic dimensions of 12' x 2'-8" were determined based on capacity as well as material efficiency.

Here is ALOT on one of it's first fishing trips with the proud skipper and builder at the helm.

The flat bottom makes it quite stable but it took a bit to get used to the "feel" of the boat.  The second time out we were both casting from the front and back decks standing up.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

JAM (8) Around the Web

The JAM 8 was originally designed in 1995 and since then a number of them have been built.  It is tough to tell how many have been built but a tour a of the web shows that the boat has built and enjoyed by a number of people.

So check out these pages for inspiration:

Ben Nibali built one of the first JAM 8's back in 1995 in his apartment:

Roger Matthews built one and wrote a nice piece for Duckworks magazine:

Ken Abrahams did a nice job on "Wooderaux":

Don Metz teaches a class at Brookfield Craft Center on how to build the JAM, there is a great picture of 4 happy students with their new boats!

Download the manual and create your own story, Synergy Boatworks is looking forward to it.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Free Canoe Plans - The RIP 8

The RIP 8 is a small double paddle canoe that you paddle like a kayak but it does not have a deck.  The advantages are it is easier to get in and out of the boat and it is cooler in the hotter weather.  The RIP 8 is a derivation of the JAM 8 kayak with a bit more "V" in the hull which allows it to carry a maximum of 250 pounds.  It is 7'-4" long with a width of 32".  Constructed of 4mm plywood it has a weight of around 25 pounds depending on the details of the boat.  Like the JAM 8, it's size makes it easy to transport(it fits in the back of an old school Subaru Outback) and storage is a breeze. 

The 17 page construction manual can be downloaded here: RIP 8 MANUAL.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Beer or Epoxy?

Occasionally in boatbuilding you need to make hard choices.  In this case do you keep beer cold or epoxy warm? My shop is like most other people’s and is not a conditioned space.  It is hot in the summer and cold in the winter.  Lately, I have been using System Three brand epoxy and it’s storage instructions are very clear to avoid freezing.   From an earlier experience, I can confirm that this is advice that should be heeded.  Additionally, when epoxy gets cold it’s viscosity increases and it can be difficult to dispense through a pump system.  So this past winter, a shop insulated epoxy storage compartment was needed.  I could have built an insulated box, but my cooler of 14 years caught my eye along with an about to be discarded exterior light.  Combining the two, quickly created a epoxy storage compartment that could be heated in cold weather to bring the viscosity up to a more useable level.  It has worked extremely well and I would recommend this system to anyone looking to store their epoxy. Summer is coming and I may regret the decision.  Till then.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Free Kayak Plans - The JAM 8

The JAM is what we refer to as a "true personal watercraft.   It is 7'-6" long and 32 inches wide and capable of carrying 200 pounds.  It is a totally low effort boat great for exploring marshes and rivers.  It's size lends to quick construction and easy storage.   Below is a picture of three JAM's together on a beach.   "Clam" was a first time boatbuilding project.
To get the the 23 page building manual, click on this linkJAM 8 MANUAL.
Here is the cover:

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Shiloh's JAM

Here is a very nice JAM 8 made by Shiloh Copenhaver of Oregon.  He plans to use the boat to chase Salmon. He did a super job including a flush rod holder.