Re: Deck Scarfs

Posted by Kurt Maurer on Jul 9, 2004

“You would have to move the forward deck panel 11.5 inches forward to eliminate the nose piece. This would throw the trim (balance) of your kayak completely off. Don't do it. Scarf the little piece on the front panel...”

Mischa, not to sound too grumpy, but just where did you get this (specifically, please), and what does it mean?! It makes no sense to me any way I look at it...

JP, at first glance I want to vote for additional butt joints in the vicinity of the cockpit as the most plausible alternative to the scarf at the bow. In fact, I would NEVER put a scarf at the bow on ANY boat I build. Why, the bow is a focal point for anyone who looks at a boat, and it is practically the first place the eye falls whether it's inspecting a kayak, or the Queen Mary!

The problem with a butt joint at the bow instead of a scarf joint is the backer plate interfering with the sheer clamp seam. The problem with butt joints near the cockpit is the presence of the "rolling bevel", or the transition from the fore deck's more radical camber to the aft deck's lesser one. And indeed, it might be a thing to fear. At any rate, I abandoned tortured plywood decks forever after my first project with them, as too much of a PITA for what you get -- but they *are* quick and easy...

Now, if you decide that keeping a constant camber all the way to the extreme bow isn't a huge concern, there is nothing to stop you from causing the first two or three feet of the deck to be flat. This doesn't look bad at all, except to (most) CLC afficiandos (or however you spell the word); nobody else will ever notice. Indeed, I make all my decks this way on purpose because I think it looks better, and presents a little less windage. Anyway, a flat foredeck allows many more options, such as tipping the decks with contrasting wood, whether plywood (birch?) or dimensional lumber such as solid ash (which is what I used).

Since you are looking at alternatives, and I applaud the move, I thought I'd throw this out.

Cheers, Kurt

Pair O' Mill Creeks Project

In Response to: Re: Deck Scarfs by Mischa on Jul 9, 2004