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#6106561 - 12/28/15 04:32 PM Pirogue Boat Build
ZachW Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 10/11/13
Posts: 183
Loc: Texas, TX
Has anyone on here built one? If so I'd love to see what you did to steal a few ideas.

I started to get the itch to get a canoe or kayak at the beginning of this season. After looking around at a lot of great boats, I decided to spend a few days over Christmas putting together something a little different. Yeah, I get it. Right in the middle of duck season is the exact wrong time to be building a boat, but it's the only time that I would have a few days off as well as a few extra helping hands.

I'm specifically building an Uncle John's Pirogue http://www.unclejohns.com/boat/default.htm. It's been a blast to build and quick to put together, but don't kid yourself with the "6 Hour Canoe" tagline on the website...


Day 0 - Supplies and Dimensions

Uncle John recommends building a boat between 12' and 15.5' using his "plans", which are really a set of general guidelines. I'm going with 14'8", but with a couple modifications:
1. 4 ribs. Using 4 ribs instead of the standard 3 the UJ plans call for will increase the average width slightly
2. Lengthen ribs. I decided to increase the width by 2" for the largest ribs, and a little under 1.5" for the smaller ribs to give myself a little more weight-carrying capacity

Wood:
Ribs- cypress
Stems- cypress
Hull- 1/4" Luan plywood from home depot
Rub rails- 3/4"x1 1/4" pine furring strips
I settled on cypress for the ribs and bow/stern stems to stick with tradition. New-growth cypress isn't nearly the wood old-growth cypress is, but it's the best I could find.

Other materials:
All of my epoxy and fiberglass was ordered through Raka.com. These guys are great and are a wealth of knowledge when it comes to small boat building. Not to mention their epoxy is reasonably-priced and of great quality.

Pictures and more to follow!


Edited by ZachW (12/28/15 04:34 PM)

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#6106570 - 12/28/15 04:40 PM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: ZachW]
SnakeWrangler Online   content
THF Celebrity

Registered: 01/22/11
Posts: 20871
Loc: Fairfield, TX
popcorn
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Now that food has replaced sex in my life, I can't even get into my own pants.

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#6106581 - 12/28/15 04:46 PM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: ZachW]
sallysue Online   content
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 02/21/06
Posts: 2557
Loc: Belton Tx
Just go buy a 4 Rivers layout boat and go hunting

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#6106583 - 12/28/15 04:46 PM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: ZachW]
Hopedale Online   content
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 09/12/07
Posts: 5855
Loc: Central Texas
Are you going to do a scraf cutt to join the wood together or just butt them up against one another?
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#6106640 - 12/28/15 05:12 PM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: ZachW]
Misfire Offline
Tracker

Registered: 02/16/11
Posts: 610
Loc: Hood County
I haven't built a pirogue but I did build a Gatorboat Duckhunter many years ago. We hunted out of it for 7 or so years before the wood eventually deteriorated enough that it was unusable. I stored it upside down, outside, under a tarp. I built it from home depot exterior grade plywood, glass cloth and epoxy. Building your own boat is a very rewarding. My advice would be to take your time, keep all the joints tight and have fun. Good luck with your build and I'm looking forward to pics.

Here are a couple of pics of the boat I built.


.
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"I wanna go fast" -Ricky Bobby

"Mind bottling isn't it?" -Chazz Michael Michaels

.

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#6106646 - 12/28/15 05:13 PM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: sallysue]
ZachW Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 10/11/13
Posts: 183
Loc: Texas, TX
Originally Posted By: sallysue
Just go buy a 4 Rivers layout boat and go hunting


Why didn't I think of that?

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#6106649 - 12/28/15 05:15 PM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: Hopedale]
ZachW Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 10/11/13
Posts: 183
Loc: Texas, TX
Originally Posted By: Hopedale
Are you going to do a scraf cutt to join the wood together or just butt them up against one another?


I scarfed the plywood but was about 10 find 16' sections for the rub rails. I was worried about that scarf joint but it ended up being really simple with a belt sander. Plus, it gets covered in fiberglass later so I don't have too much concern.

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#6107183 - 12/28/15 09:00 PM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: ZachW]
tripod Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 08/30/07
Posts: 101
Loc: Coppell, TX
up

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#6107317 - 12/28/15 09:50 PM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: ZachW]
Dave Speer Online   content


Registered: 12/27/07
Posts: 4550
Loc: Austin
Good luck! Should be a fun project. I look at a duckboats site pretty frequently, almost every day. Keep thinking I want to build a boat and keep stopping myself from yet another hobby/time/money killer laugh Would love to hunt over my own blocks with a boat I built though.
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Originally Posted By: wal1809
Anybody can follow along, not everybody can blaze a trail.


Dave Speer Wildlife Art @ HuntCrafted

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#6107318 - 12/28/15 09:51 PM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: ZachW]
ZachW Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 10/11/13
Posts: 183
Loc: Texas, TX
Day 1 - Make Stems and Ribs

I was planning to build the pirogue back home in Texarkana with my dad and brother and knew we would only have a couple days to work. To get a head start I headed to FW to work in my buddy Dave's wood shop. He's a proper wood worker type with proper wood working tools, which came in handy. (If you're interested you can check out his work he does on the side at http://www.burkettcustomfurniture.com/)

The shop:



Step 1: Rough cut, joint, plane


Step 2: Cut lap joints and angles in the newly-squared stock to make our final pieces. These would eventually form the skeleton of the boat


I lost of few pictures from day 1 on my phone. Of note was us using a compass and a ruler, but no protractor, to figure out a 15 degree angle needed for the ribs which would form the sidewalls and remembering equilateral triangles contain 3 60* angles. Thanks geometry up


Edited by ZachW (12/28/15 09:54 PM)

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#6107331 - 12/28/15 09:56 PM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: ZachW]
ZachW Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 10/11/13
Posts: 183
Loc: Texas, TX
Also taking place while I was shaping the ribs, Dave put together a few carving knives for wooden spoons. The steel was cut from an older planer blade and needed heat treating, and I thought these turned out nicely. A little ugly, but functional.



Edited by ZachW (12/28/15 09:57 PM)

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#6107359 - 12/28/15 10:11 PM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: ZachW]
Dave Speer Online   content


Registered: 12/27/07
Posts: 4550
Loc: Austin
Those knives will work!
_________________________
Originally Posted By: wal1809
Anybody can follow along, not everybody can blaze a trail.


Dave Speer Wildlife Art @ HuntCrafted

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#6107724 - 12/29/15 08:35 AM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: Misfire]
garrett Offline
THF Celebrity

Registered: 01/19/06
Posts: 10287
Originally Posted By: Misfire
I haven't built a pirogue but I did build a Gatorboat Duckhunter many years ago. We hunted out of it for 7 or so years before the wood eventually deteriorated enough that it was unusable. I stored it upside down, outside, under a tarp. I built it from home depot exterior grade plywood, glass cloth and epoxy. Building your own boat is a very rewarding. My advice would be to take your time, keep all the joints tight and have fun. Good luck with your build and I'm looking forward to pics.


this is great, I have been telling myself that I would like to do this, but the lazy gets me every time
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#6109166 - 12/30/15 12:38 AM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: Misfire]
Arbor Guy Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 09/14/14
Posts: 113
Originally Posted By: Misfire
I haven't built a pirogue but I did build a Gatorboat Duckhunter many years ago. We hunted out of it for 7 or so years before the wood eventually deteriorated enough that it was unusable. I stored it upside down, outside, under a tarp. I built it from home depot exterior grade plywood, glass cloth and epoxy. Building your own boat is a very rewarding. My advice would be to take your time, keep all the joints tight and have fun. Good luck with your build and I'm looking forward to pics.

Here are a couple of pics of the boat I built.


.




Now that is impressive!

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#6109403 - 12/30/15 08:53 AM Re: Pirogue Boat Build [Re: ZachW]
ZachW Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 10/11/13
Posts: 183
Loc: Texas, TX
Day 2 - Ribs and Plywood Glue Up

Christmas Eve was a shortened work day but we were still able to get a little done. The goal was to be completely ready to actually piece the boat together on Christmas morning. To get to that point I needed to:
- Assemble ribs
- Cut and glue scarf joints
- Cut bow/stern angles in the newly-glued 16' plywood sheets

I used Raka's 127 thin resin and fast hardener for most of this work. The fast hardener gives you a working time of about 8 minutes, which is plenty long enough for any of this. Only when we got to epoxy coating the hull and glassing did I move to slow hardener.

Epoxied ribs curing (4 instead of the usual 3)


Scarfed plywood sheets that will later form the sides. I wish I had taken a few pictures of making the scarf joint with the belt sander- it was quick and easy.



After a few hours the sides had set enough to move them around and cut the bow/stern from each piece. I clamped these together and used a pull saw. If you've never used one, I highly recommend it. My $15 pull saw from Lowe's is my favorite cutting tool and comes in super handy for small-medium precise cuts.

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