Gluing plywood structures together with epoxy fillets saves considerable time constructing the joints and reduces overall weight of the structure compared to more traditional methods using wooden cleats and screws. The strength and gap-filling qualities of epoxy eliminate the need for precisely fitted wood cleats that otherwise require time and skill to create. When gluing with conventional adhesives, that are non-gap filling such as resorcinol glue, wood cleats need to be well fitted, need to be wide enough to provide sufficient glued surface area and provide enough thickness for screws to be driven into. Building with epoxy fillets is especially beneficial when attaching bulkheads to hull sides, attaching hull sides to hull bottoms where the faces of the plywood are coming together at ever-changing angles. Continue reading →
The employee-owners of Gougeon Brothers, Inc. are proud to congratulate the Great Lakes Boatbuilding School Class of 2016. Comprehensive Graduates (1st year)—Justin Bensley, James Biernesser, Daniel Cinal, Lauren Gaunt, Robert Hankenhoff, Sam Hoffrichter, Wayne Marmon, James Nelson, Mark Pugh, and Ariana Strazdins. Career Program Graduates (2nd year)—Mark Bilhorn, Caleb Gulder, Sean Libby, and Danton Thon.
We came across the historic ROCKET ice yacht at the WoodenBoat Show in Mystic, Conn. The ROCKET is 50′ long has a 900 sq. ft. sail and was built in 1888. After many decades of deteriorating in storage and some stop and start restoration attempts, the surviving parts (cockpit, plank, and rudder) were sold to a foundation that formed to restore the historic vessel. In 2003, the Rocket Ice Yacht Foundation of New Jersey purchased what remained of ROCKET for one dollar from the North Shrewsbury Ice Boat and Yacht Club. The project was led by boat builder Bob Pulsh, a retired plumber from Port Monmouth N.J. Bob and his team of volunteers used WEST SYSTEM Epoxy to restore and reconstruct the ice yacht’s parts. The project was completed in 2014.
Cover Photo: WOW, a 20′ Glen-L Rivieria built by Mark Bronkalla
In June of 2000, Mark Bronkalla launched his nearly complete but unnamed boat. The boat turned heads wherever Mark took it and the reaction from bystanders was a universal “WOW.” This is how the beautiful home built 20 foot Glen-L Riviera got its name.
Mark had never built a boat before, and found lackluster information from first-time boat builders like himself. Websites or blogs with good information tended to end once the structure was built. Mark used his background in woodworking, marketing and computer science to share his first-time boat building experience to encourage and help other first-time boat builders. In this article, I’ll give a brief overview of this build where WEST SYSTEM® Epoxy was used. Anyone considering a build similar to this should consult Mark’s website, bronkalla.com, for more detailed descriptions of each step. Continue reading →
Wood inlay marquetry has been around for a very long time, and I am always looking for different ways to use epoxy. I have learned that it is possible to use a laser jet printer with a clear transparency film to print an image, then transfer that image onto a substrate coated with WEST SYSTEM Epoxy, resulting in the look of marquetry without all the cutting, fitting and craftsmanship. (Ink jet printers do not work with this process because the ink does not transfer to the transparency film.) The image could be a picture of a wood inlay or whatever you can imagine. Here is the process I have found that works the best. Continue reading →
The project was creating a shower pan for an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) bathroom in the home I’ve been building in Cedar Key. How does one satisfy shower pan requirements of Levy County Florida and meet ADA suggestions, too, when the floor is concrete, twelve feet above ground? Continue reading →
My neighbor Rollie is always coming up with these unbelievable deals along the highway between his home in Bay City, Michigan, and his cabin a couple hours north. The latest super deal was a big red garden tractor that was mechanically in near perfect working order—except the previous owner ran it into something and busted up the grille. He brought it over and asked if it could be fixed. Here’s how we repaired “Big Red.” Continue reading →
I first saw outdoor ceiling fans while vacationing on Isla Mujeres, Mexico, just north of Cancun. These fans are ubiquitous and evidently inexpensive. Used both indoors and outdoors, they’re mounted on 3″x 3″ concrete beams. Some of those beams also support sun shades, but usually the fans are completely open to the weather. Continue reading →
As a career architect-sculptor, Larry Brown created a vocabulary of freeform shapes that bring a sense of naturally flowing, organic dimensionality to his art. Recently, he applied his methods to a municipal scale art project using recycled fiberglass boats. His goal was to make large fine art pieces and park scale sculptures. Continue reading →
Wood has always been used in fiberglass boat construction, in stringers and oftentimes as core in high compression areas such as under cleats, stanchions and winches. Wood works great in these applications but we all know that the big problem with wood is the fact that it rots if it gets wet. Here at Gougeon Brothers, Inc. (GBI) we have spent long hours writing manuals and training people to use proper techniques using epoxy to keep wood dry and strong. Continue reading →