My ongoing search for the slickest way to cut a perfect 8:1 bevel for a plywood scarf has gone decidedly retro. I’ve used routers, circulated saws, power planers, and belt sanders, all of which make a horrendous amount of noise and debris and all of which work…okay. But today it’s back to a hand plane—Bruce’s mom’s Stanley No. 7 Smoothing Plane. It’s not as quick as a power planer, but there’s virtually no set-up time, and you can stop short of screwing things up a lot easier. I think these are the best, most precise bevels we’ve done yet. Go figure.

And I am still using my Luddite clamping technique, pounding wedges to get even pressure on the joint while the epoxy cures.

They are sure coming out nicely.

Meanwhile I have finally deduced that the reason many of us Briggs boat replicaters are having a tough time getting the angle of the bow post correct, is that it is not an angle. It is a rolling bevel—45° at the base, 52° at the top. That’s what we cut for Bob and it worked magnificently. So here we go again.

I took yesterday off work to head to the big hardwood store in Phoenix with my friend Dan. We spent a lot of money, but have enough nice, straight-grained wood for a few more boats. And my bunk of marine plywood arrived as well. Let’s cut it to bits.

Chelsea is oiling up the ribs for tomorrow’s assembly.

Janek is wiping the oil back off.

Cataract has come down from the loft to act as a form for the steamed chines and gunwales for Omo.

Janek and Justin are pounding wedges on the floor scarf joint.

And finally we are mapping out the side panels from the sacred scroll.

And drilling countless holes in them.

Tomorrow we should go from sticks to a sexy hull. Fingers crossed.