Friday, July 1, 2016
Mini Simmons experiment
Sister craft. After a year of on and off work I finally finished my two Mini Simmons twin fins. These boards are both 5'3" by 23 and around 2 7/8 thick. The swallow tail with the marine ply skins was made for the Slinn family and the paulownia board with the athwartship planks and redwood bat tail was made for Eric Rindal. Both of these boards are hollow, all wood and have no outer fiberglass reinforcement - just an oiled finish. The swallow has no glass at all due to the strength of the plywood. It is also a bit heavier and flatter due to the plywood's weight and desire to stay flat rather than bend in two directions. The bat tail is lighter and curvier. The ship lap planking technique proved super functional in forming compound curves but was insanely labor intensive. Each deck plank was rabbeted with the router and each lap joint was lined up with a curved rib for addition support and joint water tightness. The bottom planks have no ribs but I did put one layer of 4 oz glass on the inside after planking. Both boards are vented with brass plugs and, despite my best joinery efforts, will likely leak a little. I getting closer but still haven't quite cracked the code for the ultimate wood board - lightweight enough where you'd want to ride it, strong without glass and water tight. Here's a full set of photos.