Tag Archives: Patrick Ropp

Giving BOUNTY HUNTER New Skin

By Patrick Ropp

Five years ago, Captain Glenn James decided it was time to make improvements to his Coast Guard-inspected charter fishing boat operating out of Edgewater and Solomon’s Island on the Chesapeake Bay. Bounty Hunter is a 65′ cedar-strip planked hull, a one-off Davis™ hull built in 1967 at Harkers Island, North Carolina. The planks are fastened to frames on 16″ centers with monel fasteners. The cedar strips are narrow, less than 2″ wide, and are edge nailed with monel nails and edge glued. Continue reading

Wood/Epoxy Composite Tank Guidelines

By Patrick Ropp

Builders have successfully constructed tanks for potable water, sewage, gray water, ballast and diesel fuel tanks and a limited number of gasoline tanks using WEST SYSTEM® epoxy since the early 1970’s. The regulatory environment has evolved within the last thirty years and has placed safety restrictions on various aspects of tank building, specifically potable water and gasoline. Continue reading

Beam Me Up

By Patrick Ropp

While working in my shop/converted (never to be seen by a car) garage, I noticed that the double 2×8 beam supporting my ceiling joists was sagging about 2 to 3 inches in the middle. The builder of this forty-year-old garage didn’t use full length 2×8’s to span the 19′ width, but four 2 x 8’s nailed together with staggered butt joints. Over the years, gravity took its toll. The nail holes elongated, the butt joints opened up, and the beam sagged ominously. Continue reading

Gluing Plastic Dimensional Lumber

By Patrick Ropp

More people are using recycled plastic/wood composite lumber for decks and other various projects. Although each manufacturer of recycled plastic lumber has his own blend, we found that most are using very similar ingredients: an equal amount of melted recycled plastic mixed with recycled wood chips or sawdust and then extruded in the form of dimensional lumber. Since the wood is encased in plastic, the plastic/wood composite boards are supposed to last longer than traditional decking materials and carry a good warranty. Many of these boards are not intended for use as structural members, but they Continue reading

Nose for Speed

By Patrick Ropp

Some people just have a knack for things. We commonly say that someone may have an “eye” for beauty, an “ear” for music, or a “taste” for art, and now you can have a…“nose” for speed. Nose cones on outboard and sterndrive lower units are common in the world of boat racing. Whether it be outboard hydroplane racing, outboard performance craft (tunnel hulls), offshore powerboats, or customized recreational boats, all have factory built “speedo” lower units, which are very fast, but expensive. However, adding a nose cone to your existing lower unit is affordable, quick, and fun to do. Continue reading

Building Payson’s Rubens Nymph

By Patrick Ropp

My oldest brother, Jeff, was searching for a small boat to take his kids out fishing and just messing about. Since he had more money than time, and I had more time than money, we pooled our resources. I would build two boats and he would buy the materials. We looked at numerous plans and finally found one of Harold “Dynamite” Payson’s (Phil Bolger’s design #516) Instant Boats that appealed to us. The Rubens Nymph is a beamy (4′ 6″ wide), 7′ 9″ long, double chined, rowboat. The Nymph looked easy and quick to build due to a modified stitch-n-glue technique. Continue reading

The Phoenix Racing Team Steams On

by Patrick Ropp

Epoxyworks 13

Cover Photo: “The last thing I needed to worry about was whether or not my boat would stay intact.

Tiptoeing on the edge of danger, I was crouched down on my knees in the cockpit of my ten-and-a-half foot “sheet of plywood” hydroplane, screaming across the water at speeds reaching 65 mph. Crossing the start line with wide open throttle, I, along with eleven other boats, aimed for the first turn pin. Who will make it there first? With just inches between boats, whitewater from the roostertails engulfed my boat and hammered against my helmet’s visor. These roostertails, which extended thirty feet behind the engine and turn fin, were difficult, almost impossible, to avoid. During this moment of frenzy, I prayed that another hydroplane had not stalled in front of me, or worse . . . flipped. Continue reading