Building my first wooden boat

Discussion in 'Boatbuilding' started by mittoo, Jan 16, 2011.

  1. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    No insult was intended and my apologies if you felt any of these comments were directed specifically at you. I'm not sure of the forum where you've heard about problems with oak and epoxy
    but again the jury has been in for some time and the throw backs I mentioned, are just these often well respected experts, some with well regarded books on the subjects, they haven't kept up on.

    With the first high tannin content bonding failures, sampling and testing was conducted by the major players (early 1980's). This was documented and published in several volumes, including the Gougeon brother's boat building book, which at the time was the bible on the subject. Now in it's 5th incarnation (the Gougeon's book) and long term testing completed recently in the "aging machine" over at West System, confirming what was previously known, some of these "experts" can't get off their soap boxes. This isn't a dig at you, but at them, some of which I know read and participate here.

    The bathing, eating and the like wasn't literal, but a tongue in cheek approach to being reasonable about the chemicals. Point being if you wear protective garb, don't inhale particulates and most importantly of all follow regular, commonly called for precautions, you'll have nothing to fear. In other words if you open a can of something and it smells like it can hurt you, it probably will, without precautions and procedures on the user's part. I think this goes without saying, but some need to hear it.

    In short, dispelling myths about these procedures and techniques has been on going for some time and can be found in multiple previous threads by me and many others. Why some of these folks insist on saying you'll have three headed babies, if you rub some epoxy into your hand one afternoon while coating the bottom of your boat, I just don't know. The general belief of the novice is, epoxy is going to burn a hole right through you, with out gloves on and that white oak is an epoxy shedding wood, that will fail just because you thought about using it as the glue. Neither is supported in testing nor fact, both of which are easy enough to substantiate in the published data and leading formulator web site user/product guides.

    Do you have a link for that previous discussion? I guess my two major points that I apparently didn't get across as well as I'd hoped were, epoxy isn't as dangerous as some will have you think, unless you are working with it daily for years and that the oily wood debate is only by those, that haven't checked with the formulating leaders in some time (decades). Again my apologies to you Viking North.
     
  2. viking north
    Joined: Dec 2010
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    viking north VINLAND

    Thankyou PAR, I know it must be frustrating re hashing old info that combined with a newer guy on the block asking foolish questions and not yet hardened to snap answers all combine to add to the mix. The big debate was over on the Wooden Boat Forum, it centered mainly around white oak but i think there was some talk of teak also.It sort of threw me off guard as i have never had problems with epoxy and teak, in addition to preping with acetone i also run each laminating strip thru a spinning wire brush to create longitudional grooves to act as a sort of resin traps to help prevent glue starvation due to increased contact pressure on tighter bends. Rought sanding would create the same effect but the wire brush on the drill press is faster production. I wrote down the alternative glues they recommended but for some reason can't remember where i wrote it ( at almost 70yrs. the accumilative effects of 60's drugs, old age, and yrs' of workshop chemicals and christ knows what we inhaled in the military, just might be taking their toll) I do recall one type was only available from Europe. There were some weird and wonderful names and numbers and as soon as i locate them i will put them out there for comment. I'm trying to locate the origional debate thread thru their search engine but have not thus far located it, it could have possibly been a sidetrack on another topic but it was in great detail, as soon as i find it i will pass it on. The recent threads on the topic of laminating with epoxy is exactly as you said, failures are mainly due to poor prep and in experience but they were a little more critical on the exposure.
    It's just another one of those topics on marine fabrication and design that will be ongoing and maybe rightly so to keep the manufacturers on their toes. Geo.
     
  3. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    The WoodenBoat forum used to be a good place to get honest information and still is to some degree, but it's now over populated with self appointed, self absorbed experts that authoritatively speak of things they don't really understand. When you call them out on their talking points, the whole of the "mob" over there jumps up and defends the ideology of his argument and frankly it's no longer a reliable place to find answers, to anything more then common questions. Don't get me wrong, there are several skilled and well meaning members there, but they are usually drowned out by the "bilge rats" and reasonable discussion has to be taken off line or to another location. I've stopped posting there some time ago as have many of the professionals.

    Most of the substitutes for epoxy on oily woods require machine like precision in the joints and lots of clamping pressure, plus most also need very specific temperatures for cure. Resorcinol, phenol or urea formaldehyde, PVA's, PU's, etc. They all have brand names such as Aerolite, which is is a urea-formaldehyde, but none are as effective as epoxy, when all things are considered.

    If anything it's the formulators (goo manufactures) that are keeping us on our toes. New entries to the market (Silver Tip, G-Flex, etc.) plus updated testing are answering questions and solving problems. I personally use a proprietary epoxy mixture, that was designed by me and their chemist, through many discussions and a little trial and error.

    There's a place for these other adhesives, particularly the PVA's and some of the PU's (at least for me) and I still use plastic resin and resorcinol occasionally, usually during repairs with similar glues or where compatibility issues might arise (epoxy doesn't stick to PVA's for example).

    Toothing up as you've described will work, though you can burnish the surface of wood if you're not careful with a wire wheel. Move quickly and don't linger anywhere too long and it'll be fine. Of course the mechanical "keying" doesn't have to be this "tall" to be effective, but over kill isn't a bad thing sometimes.
     
  4. viking north
    Joined: Dec 2010
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    viking north VINLAND

    Yep, was on that forum for awhile and still lurk over every now and then but i think it's hard to break into.Thats the hardest part of joining a new forum and wanting to be active on it and i understand it's the new kid on the block syndrome, who's this guy posting on more than one thread. Thats one of the reasons i started the reverse engineering thread, get it over in one shot. I had guys e mail me saying man thats a tuff one for your first post but i got thru it met alot of nice guys here. Yesterday actually helped a guy out on his dingy and got a thank you.Thats a good feeling.Was over on the other forum again today and still can't find that thread or where i wrote down the info. I recall in addition to the adhesives you mentioned above there was another one in particular i believe it had a number associated with a name that several guys were really impressed with it. However will stick to the true and tried epoxy, used it to laminate up all my floors (easier than shaping ) and will do the same for my deck and cabin beams,That reminds me have to take a photo of these planks i got my hands on from Africa and see if someone can identify the wood. I was told it was Bata and was similar to teak.But no one seems to have heard that name. Thanks again, Geo.

    P.S. Regarding the wood Bata? have opened a thread with photos under CONSTRUCTION, materials WOOD, topic MYSTERY WOOD
     
  5. hoytedow
    Joined: Sep 2009
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    hoytedow Carbon Based Life Form

    I found the word bata associated with coconut wood. It seems that it is used to make percussion musical instruments.
     

  6. viking north
    Joined: Dec 2010
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    Location: Newfoundland & Nova Scotia

    viking north VINLAND

    Wow, and i've got a fair amount of it and know where there's another lot. Some of my planks are 12 to 14 in wide 16ft. long. Maybe shouldn't use this for boatbuilding the thing might sound like a 12 string ECHO RANGER when the rig is installed. Ok time to take photos and some description and see what it is. Hoyte , i googled on that name BATA and came up with zilch about 2 yrs' ago and the local speciality wood supplied never heard of it, so there you go The Forum Has Power. Thanks, Geo

    P.S Regarding the wood Bata? Have opened a thread with photos under CONSTRUCTION, materials, WOOD, topic MYSTERY WOOD

    A yacht is not defined by the vessel but by the care and love of her owner.
     
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