Bending Strips

While viewing the videos showing Nick Schade applying strips, I noticed the strips he was using seemed to be quite flexible, a LOT more flexible than the strips I'm using on my Shearwater 17 Hybrid. I tried using a heat gun but that didn't seem to have any affect, unless my technique is wrong.

I'm hoping that the glue will hold these in place when my clamps are removed, I'm not using staples. Any specific techniques for using heat?



5 replies:

« Previous Post       List of Posts       Next Post »

RE: Bending Strips

   I've always used a steam box, then clamp the strip to form, then (when dry) it assumes the shape close enough for the fasteners to work.

RE: Bending Strips


there are not a lot of severe bends on a shearwater hybrid so bending strips should not really be a problem.  the place with the most action will be alongside the combing as you transition strips from the foredeck to the aft deck.

a heat gun is a pretty effective tool....but it is a spot tool.....and not something for dealing with a full length strip.  so when i say a spot tool....its for an area of maybe a linear foot where you have a severe bend.   the piece needs to get very i always recommend you practice on a small two foot scrap.  it should be hot enough that if you accidently held it in one place for more than 10-15 would burn the wood.

all that said, the glue is amazing in terms of holding power.  but you do need to keep straps in place until the wood is self you may need to deal with 3 to 4 strips being held in position for it to resist bending back.

as to why nicks video's look like he has strips that are bendy.....1) he often builds with full boat length strips....longer than the 6 to 8 foot strips that CLC ships.  so it will appear much more bendier.  and 2) sometimes he is working with 3/16 strips and not 1/4 inch strips which is what CLC ships.

i have built strip builts with CLC strips over much more curvaceous hulls than the shearwater.  you can do it.

RE: Bending Strips

   I bought a cheap steam iron at a discount store. As I worked, I put a block of wood where I was working and steamed the strips by holding them between the steam iron and the block of wood. I usually steamed both sides, and then bent the strip into shape. Then I stapled the strip in place. It worked well.

I wouldn't recommend using your family iron, as the wood stained the bottom of the iron pretty quickly. Also, the iron I bought for $15 went through water rapidly, so I kept a used milk plastic milk bottle handy to refill the iron.

I made a Petral, which has some pretty good bends. I found that the compressed fibre they used to make the forms wouldn't hold the stapled strips if they had a lot of tension pulling up, so this was my solution to that problem.

RE: Bending Strips

I used a cheap clothes steamer ( hand held ) That worked fine untill  I tried about a 110 degreee bend then I had trouble.      

RE: Bending Strips

When I did my Petrel, I used an iron, but I wetted the strip, and kept wetting it, and had pretty good luck.. On the more severe bends and twists, I would over bend, and clamp it in that position for awhile hopping the wood would have some memory, then install it on the forms. I used stapless construction so I also got creative in clamping. Overall it was succesfull, with just a few failures.   

« Previous Post     List of Posts     Next Post »

Please login or register to post a reply.