A flat iron dinghy
from two sheets of plywood.
Since my goal has been to find a good small boat for kids to build with
their parents, it occurred to me that parents would probably prefer to be able
to be in the boat with their kids before setting them off on their own.
As much as I
enjoyed building Herb's OSS design, I ultimately decided it would be good to design a 2 sheet skiff that
could have about 400 lb capacity with only slightly more building effort
than the OSS. Mike Goodwin's creation also inspired my doodling. Check
out his article at the Duckworks
The lines for the basic hull came together pretty quickly, but while
I was struggling with all the details I ran across Jim Michalaks prototype
plans of his "Slam Dink." It was almost the spittin' image of my boat but
all the details had been worked out. I sent him the $15 in a heart beat.
As it turned out, I started tweaking his design right away (boat designers
just hate that) and after I realized I was gradually metamorphing his Slam
Dink into my Cygnet 2, I gave up and decided to build my own boat instead.
Sorry Jim, I tried, but I think I'm a hopeless tinkerer.
Cygnet 2 hasn't quite hit the water yet, but here are some notes and photos
of the process.
(Any small blue framed images can be clicked to view them larger.)
After using Gregg Carlson's Hull design program to give me the dimensions for
the stem, sides, frame and transom, I began making some sawdust.
From this angle you can see the gentle S curve at the bottom of the sides.
Glad I don't have to come up with that making lots of little models.
First, some true confessions.
I'm always trying to make the most from the least, and so I found myself
trying to maximize everything about this little boat. Maximum beam, maximum side
width etc. Well, I learned that just because a thing CAN be done, doesn't mean
it SHOULD be done. Unfortunately my cute little card stock model didn't make
this error in proportions very obvious. It took a full sized boat staring back
at me for me to see I had a problem.
After attaching the sides to the stem and bending them around the frame, it
started becoming apparent that I'd drawn a fat, tubby, chunky boat... I
retreated to my "moaning chair."
After realizing that this was MY design so I could change it, I slimmed her
down by simply sliding the frame up, until I liked what I saw. Slimming the
sides was not going to be as easy though.
I decided to clamp a guide strip for my circular saw to rest on and set
the blade to a shallow cut and lop off the offending side height. Ta daaa... not
so hard after all.
After "I saw the light" shining through my careful incision...
I pried it loose from the transom and stem and peeled it away.
I thought, Ahhhh... that's more like it.
She hasn't hit the water yet, but I'll keep you posted.
Next... the saga of the dastardly breaking inwales!