Tuesday, January 17, 2012

First You Need To Row A Little Boat

So I'm looking for a new hobby to fill my days after I retire next year.  I built a couple of beautiful wooden kayaks 25 years ago.  They were made from 3mm marine grade plywood, mono-filament fishing line, fiberglass tape and two-part epoxy.  A joy to build and to paddle.

So I'm thinking that another small boat project might be just what I need to keep me busy and out from under "She-who-must-be-obeyed's" large, flat feet during the day.  

CLC's Northeast Dory Under Sail

I've always had a soft spot in my heart for small wooden craft that can be rowed or sailed easily by a single person.  The boat needs to be reasonable to build, easy to handle, lightweight and able to carry a good load of people and gear on calm days on the bay.

[He has a soft spot all right but it's in his damn head! - She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed]

[Please ignore her.  - rick]

Chesapeake Light Craft over in Annapolis sells the Northeastern Dory kit.  A dory is the perfect working boat for the bay and it looks like a boat project that I just might be able to finish before Laurel DPW's special pick-up boys need to come to get me.  The boat is 17 feet long, weighs about 100 lbs and will carry 800 lbs.  It's estimated to be about a 500 hour building project for a semi-skilled boatwright.

But this has led to another problem with "she-who-must-be-obeyed" who stated unconditionally that I was not going to make her basement laundry room all dirty and smelly with my boat "cr@p"!  Her retort also caused me to measure the basement door and realize that while I might be able to build a 17 foot boat in the there, I would need to wait for a flood to float it.  It seems that the basement door and windows are all too small to get the finished boat out of the bottle.

So I'm now building a boat shed in the back yard.  A 20' x 12' man cave and workshop 150' away from you-know-who. [Watch it buster - SWMBO]  A nice warm place where a little dory can be born admired and stored.  A quiet place to sit on a nice day and just appreciate the small things in your life, like working with sandpaper, cutting with finely sharpened saws and the joy of watching a boat come to life under your own two hands.

Richard Bode wrote a perfect little book in 1995 entitled, First You Need To Row A Little Boat,
that explains his love for sailing as a boy and how learning to sail was like learning to live and to love.

Watch this blog to keep track of the boat shop being built and the little Northeast Dory coming to life on Laurel Ave.  Stop in anytime, I will have plenty of sandpaper, strong hot coffee and a comfortable place to sit and think about boats and life.



Anonymous said...

Will there be two fingers bourbon in that fine cup of coffee?

Rick Wilson said...

Eric, I'm pretty sure that a little bit of Kentucky's nectar will be always available for good friends of the boat shed.

Anonymous said...

so will the boat shed be big enough for a fine ephiphany party next season. If we have weather like today we could all bring lawn chairs and have and out door party with lots of nectar to go around!! LOL! karen schembari

Anonymous said...

Rick - And when SWMBO finds out about this is fo real an not a work of fiction, we do have a spare room. Bob

Rick Wilson said...

Bob, this is not a work of fiction. I might need to borrow that room until I get the shop built!
Thank You.

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