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Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 12:06 pm
by kevinw
I have a old Ski tique that I bought cheap with a brand new engine. I have a 36 ft Chris Craft woody that I have been working on for over 20 years(all mahogany). I have an idea... The hull on the Ski Tique is pretty banged up so I'm thinking about refinishing the hull. The idea I have is creating a wooden transom for it. I think that would be really pretty. I went on to think about covering the whole boat with wood. It wouldn't be difficult and would make a old ugly boat into a beautiful boat. I'm not sure how I would go about covering it though and wonder if epoxy bonded wood on fiberglass would take the pounding without letting go.

Re: Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 8:24 pm
by vupilot
https://www.glen-l.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=16220

You might find the thread linked above interesting reading. Not quite the same idea but similar.

Re: Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 9:51 pm
by PeterG
You would do better to build a Glen L boat using the Ski Tique as a parts donor boat :D We all can help with that.
Seriously!
You're talking applying a wood veneer to a boat hull, that's a huge job, even on a 16 or 17 foot hull. I am familiar with Correct Craft boats and the hull shape is very different from most wood hulls. My concern is reliably bonding the wood to the fiberglass. You would have to grind off the gelcoat and bond the wood with epoxy. Not sure how would you clamp/hold it in place, vacuum bagging? Then you would need to apply a fiberglass layer on the wood to protect it. Okay, so do-able, but all the while making the boat heavier.
MUCH more fun to build a boat...

Re: Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 5:27 am
by kevinw
I have built a teardrop camper, a rat rod, airplane, and the boat building is on my to do list. It's a really good idea to take the running gear out of the correct craft and build a boat for it but I've got to sell something first. ;)

Re: Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 6:24 am
by JimmY
While I agree with the idea of using the boat as a donor for build is the best option...
I was able to vacuum bag mahogany veneer on my Squirt with minimal additional weight. If you limited the veneer to above the waterline, you might get away without having to glass over it. However, I would worry about the long term durability of the bond to the hull.

Re: Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 7:23 am
by kevinw
I'm, thinking of staying just above the water line with either a 6mm or thicker veneer. Weight is not a huge issue as the boat will be used primarily for wake boarding. A company makes a 400 lb water ballast kit to add to that boat to make it kick a big wake. I wonder how I would finish off the lower edge though. I wouldn't want to paint the wood. Just varnish.

Side note... A funny thing... I bought the boat for $3000. New engine, Rebuilt tranny, new carb. new starter, new distributor, new stringers, new floor, new floor covering, new seats. The coolest thing is that there is a $3000 sound system on board. 2 huge 12 inch subwoofers in the bow with a 2000 watt amp and new tower speakers and interior speakers.
19748799_10154796939078105_8579115849261742836_n.jpg

Re: Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2017 8:23 am
by kevinw
Hey y'all, I've been thinking about this lamination project that I want to do on this boat this winter. What do you think about screwing the wood to the boat via long stainless steel screws and a rib on the other side of the fiberglass hull to create a sandwich kind of situation with the laminate? My two biggest questions along with that first question is what size laminate or thickness and how to finish off bottom Edge since I'm going to try to keep it above the waterline.

Re: Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2017 9:27 am
by JimmY
Thickened epoxy along the bottom edge, feathered into the sides/bottom and painted to match. You could also finish it off with a thicker spray rail.

The screws would be a good way to hold the boards in place while the epoxy sets up, but I don't know what that could do to the structural integrity of the hull.

Most cold molded hulls are 1/8" laminations, but there are thicker ones as well. 1/8" is pretty thin to counter sink a screw into and plug it.

Re: Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2017 9:53 am
by TomB
Laminating is an interesting notion. I love the look of wooden boats. They are interesting at multiple "focal lengths". From a distance, the wood stands out among the white boats. Up close the details of wood grain, caulk lines, joinery and bungs is very pleasing.

I agree with others that laminating below the waterline does not do much for you so I would probably start the hull laminating at the spray rail. Laminating the hull sides would be still be a lot of work.

The transom is relatively flat so laminating it seems reasonable. Laminating the deck would look good too. It seems like a wood transom and deck with a new paint job (maybe dark blue or black) on the rest of the hull would look fantastic.

Re: Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2017 5:48 pm
by ToddM
JimmY wrote: I was able to vacuum bag mahogany veneer on my Squirt with minimal additional weight.
Do you have photos somewhere on the forum showing how you did this? Or know a good book describing it? Or YouTube video?

Re: Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 6:49 pm
by JimmY
The laminating/vacuum bagging process starts around page 10 of my "Michigan Squirt" build in the small outboard forum. It's pretty straight forward process once you have the vacuum pump. The rest of the supplies are readily available at big orange. The advantage is that the vacuum pulls the epoxy into the wood grain and you can't beat the clamping pressure.

Also, one of the Gentrys built here vacuum bagged the whole cold molded hull.

Re: Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 5:35 am
by kevinw
Hey Jim, thanks for the info. I went through every one of your pages and was really helpful!

Re: Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:55 am
by ToddM
kevinw wrote:Hey Jim, thanks for the info. I went through every one of your pages and was really helpful!

Me too. Thanks.

Re: Wood on a fiberglass hull

Posted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 4:57 pm
by bob smith
Read about my project "The Epiphany" in the power boat thread. Might work for you.