Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Update from the Instructors

Just wanted to update what has been happening in the shop lately with our Apprentices and the Interns. Phil and I run a program in the afternoons known as the Apprenticeship Program. This program gives us an opportunity to teach young people various skills such as boatbuilding, working with tools and developing work place habits. Some of the projects we work on are commissioned projects from people who believe in what we are doing and would like a wooden boat of their own to enjoy.

Currently we have a Cosine Wherry that we are finishing for a gentlemen in Chicago. This hull was cedar strip built and was fiberglassed over by a professional builder who stopped building in the middle of this boat. We typically don't build these type of boats because of the exposure to nasty chemicals and requires a lot of sanding which does not equate to good youth development. So since all the nasty stuff is done we are trimming out the boat with structural members. This will require a lot of skill from the apprentices, they will need to accurately cut and fit two quarter knees, a front breasthook and fit three thwarts and two seats. As of this point we have fit the two quarter knees the breast hook and one of the thwarts. Please come back and check the progress of this boat.

Another boat we have in the works is a Swedish Pram. This boat was designed by Mark Hansen of the North House Folk School and is a very enjoyable little boat. Our goal with this one is to teach traditional boatbuilding at some of our off site Boatbuilding Partners. This boat lends it self well to developing skill and good work habits such as teamwork, craftsmanship, self confidence and perseverance. Plus there is a lot of action going into the building process. Here we are bending planks into place and then riveting them to secure.