Chesapeake 17 stern

Side view of sternBoat seems square - silver & yellow levels

I have wired/stitched the boat and things look square. The only question I have is the stern. The instructions state the malalignment of the bottom and sides will be taken care of later using a plane, sander or saw. It looks like an awful lot and the holes for the wires on the "longer" side will be pretty close to the edge.

Should I trim and rewire the side panels to make them meet better?

Same/different with the overhanging bottom panels?

Is the gap between the bottom and side panels too big?

Am I making a mountain out of a molehill because the end poors will take care of this?


7 replies:

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RE: Chesapeake 17 stern

Second try on the images. Here are the links:


RE: Chesapeake 17 stern

Another try at the image.

RE: Chesapeake 17 stern

Hi John

one thing you could try is loosen your chine wires and spread the bottom panels out a bit. Ideally, the corner edges of the panels meet, so you may be able to make the fit better that way. If that doesn't work, I'd just trim them to match the side panels and re-wire. But I wouldn't just fillet as you have in the picture because you'll probably sand through the plywood veneer to get it smooth.  

RE: Chesapeake 17 stern

Hi John,

The two side panels can sometimes differ slightly in length, due to alignment differences at the scarph joints. Did you happen to check how well they matched up after scarphing, before stitching them together? That would have been the best time to trim off any differences. It also helps to make sure that the two bottom panels match each other closely before starting the assembly.

If the side panels did match each other closely, then misalignment at one end can indicate that the stitched-up hull shape is not quite laterally symmetric.

Likewise, if the bottom panels were a matched set, then their ends should also align with each other after assembly. It is quite normal, however, for their ends to not quite align with the ends of the side panels. That is easily solved by trimming any excess after the hull is assembled and the stitches have been removed.

The slight gap between the bottom and side panels that you have at the stern can be easily filled with epoxy thickened with wood flour, and will be covered by fiberglass on the outside, and fiberglass tape on the inside. But if you will be varnishing rather than painting, the visual look of your seams is a personal matter.



RE: Chesapeake 17 stern

The panel gaps can be pulled in with straps, rather than wires. This will close them up tightly without enlarging holes or breaking wires. There are some pictures of this on my Shearwater here.

RE: Chesapeake 17 stern

Good solution, Beaker. I would also suggest extra care in making sure that the stems are both exactly vertical before permanently locking in the hull shape by filleting the seams.

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