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oar blocks cracking

Posted by caneyqueen 
oar blocks cracking
September 09, 2022 05:07PM
Hey all, need some advice. After 15 or so river miles on slow water, both my maple oar blocks developed 1/4 in deep cracks. I temporarily filled cracks with epoxy but need a better more permanent fix.

Blocks are epoxied to inside edge of hull and attached with screws through from outside of hull (under rubrail) so if I can fix vs replacing them that would save a bunch of work.Thinking I can strip varnish and wrap with 12 oz fabric/epoxy and that will stabilize it. Think that'll stop the spread ? other ideas ?

Re: oar blocks cracking
September 10, 2022 12:57PM
Re: oar blocks cracking
September 10, 2022 01:47PM
I found that same page online. I hate to redo the blocks with thru-hull screws under rubrails...ugg.
Re: oar blocks cracking
September 10, 2022 02:05PM
Make a gluelam block with 3/16" thin strips of ash. If you buy 4 quarter ash you can get 3 strips out of it with the table saw. Smooth that up with a planer if you have one, or maybe a hand plane if you don't.

Glue it to it. I made the following as part of a sliding/adjustable oarlock block assembly. That's almost done now.

.........you could make a gluelam block with chunks of plywood waste too. I will never make gunwales any other way again. Gluelam gunwales are vastly stonger, plus you can make them 3" inches high if you want, let alone as thick as you want. Slow set epoxy gives you all day to get it assembled, plus lots of Visqueen to keep the drips under control.

Cold molded hulls used to be popular, ten to twenty years back. You never hear about it anymore. Back in those days people used huge wide veneer strips. I wonder if there is a way to do it with lots of overlapping 1/8" ash or white oak strips maybe 6" inches wide. I'm not sure I want to buy any more mahogany plywood. I think it's time to leave the tropical rain forests alone. Ash grows like a weed.

........off the top of my cold molding head: make a male plug with cheap construction plywood. Cover it with thin 4mil Visqueen. Use a finish nailer to start one 1/8" ash strip 6" inches wide. Add rows all the way up to the top, troweling slow set putty on the joints as you go. Now start a second rowl 3" inches up, so this layer of 6" wide overlaps joints below. This row of 1/8" strips get resin and putty behind. Staple it on through 3" square scraps of plastic (from orange juice bottles?) so those staples can all be pulled 24 hours later. This wouldn't be ship lapped so you cold sand it up smooth and glass it. Marine plywood requires a second mortgage these days. I'll bet you cold make that hull a lot less than Meranti Hydrotek.

If you made the male plug with 1/4' AC construction plywood you could pull all the original first layer finish nails from the inside, before popping the hull off the male mold.
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