Shearwater spot welding


I've stitched together the hull and deck and have done a trial dry assembly of hull and deck and it fits great.  At this point, the instructions call for both hull and deck to be spot glued and then wired together until the epoxy cures.  I understand the reasoning is to have the epoxy cure while both parts are together to assure proper shape.  My concern is that epoxy drips and runs from the underside of the deck will make a mess and prevent the subsequent fiberglass tape from laying down neatly.  I'd prefer to separate the hull and deck and to spot glue them separately.  Has anyone done it this way and has there been any problem with fitting them together later?   Also, it took a bit of force to form the deck around the deck forms to create that nice camber up front.  Once those curved forms are removed (after spot gluing) will the camber spring back and also affect the final hull/deck fitting?  I'm considering leaving the aft deck form in and removing it after the hull and deck have been glued together.  I realize that this would require glassing the underside of the deck in two pieces.  


2 replies:

« Previous Post       List of Posts       Next Post »

RE: Shearwater spot welding

Hi Windsurfer18, 

great questions. i have built the shearwaters before so i can appreciate your questions/concerns.  here is what i would suggest.

on the spot glueing....i would not worry about drips.  first the spot glueing should be done with a thickened mixture of epoxy/woodflour...not just pure epoxy.  so that will make it a little more stable and stronger than unthickened epoxy.  second, you should wait ~ an hour for the epoxy to become partially cured prior to temporarily putting the hull/deck back together to hold shape.  it will fully cure to the final shape...but by allowing it to partially cure (plasticy) it will not run.

here is a picture of the disassembled 'spot glued' deck (this is after it was disassembled after it was temporarly held in place).  so you can get a sense of what the spot glueing looked like.  the hull looked similar but in this picture was glassed so the 'spot glue' in this picture has already disappeared.  the blue tape i was using to make very clean fillets and is removed after the fillet is put in before it hardens.

  you are absolutely right that it takes a bit of force to pull everything into alignment but as long as you temporarily pull the hull deck together after any signficant glueing/glassing step, you will be fine.  

so to faciliate this coming together, after i filleted and glassed the inside of the hull (and again after i glassed the inside of the deck) i re-assembled the hull and deck while the epoxy was 'plasticy' and then left it until the epoxy fully cured (so usually about an hour wait after glassing/epoxy placement).

the other thing i did was hold things together using strapping tape instead of temporary stitches.    it costs a bit more (for the tape), but i consider it easier to work with.

while this is a different boat, an example of temporarily strapping the hull to deck is shown below:

so to repeat, i did this temporary strapping after the spot glueing, and again after internal glassing of the deck and hull while the epoxy was plasticy and not fully cured.  the strapping tape was then used a final time to hold everything in place when the hull and deck are actually glued.

while you could try your approach, i think the focus needs to be to not accidently lock in shapes that won't fit together.   so for me the only way to assure that you do that is to actually temporarily put the parts together while the epoxy cures.

hope this was helpful, 


RE: Shearwater spot welding


I just wanted to say I enjoy your posts, the detailed explanations, and of course the pictures. Keep them coming.



« Previous Post     List of Posts     Next Post »

Please login or register to post a reply.