failing at first step

I am really struggling with the first step in my Shearwater 17 hybrid build, which is putting together the puzzle joints on the hull.

The joints dont seem to fit properly, and it is taking many hours to sand them down so they somewhat fit, then glue, but there are gaps and they look like crap.  The third joint i did is a disaster and not even.  I would have thought puzzle joints would fit together without hours and hours of trying to get them to join properly.

The local distributor in Australia has included a product called TPRD, which is not in any CVC manual, and I was told to mix this with a batch of epoxy, and cover all over each piece before putting anything together, which i duly did.  This is supposed to make the wood more waterproof.  This added hours to the process even before step one, as each hull piece needed painting with a 2/1/.2 mixture, and then a lot of sanding as the wood became bubbled.  I am wondering whether this advice was wrong, and it swelled the wood and the joints which is why I am getting this issue.

It is ruining the whole experience and I am about to burn the whole thing. It has taken me two months to effectively get nowhere. Any advice?

6 replies:

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RE: failing at first step

Ouch!  Not good.

I do wish you'd gotten on the horn with our Australian dealership within the first two hours of trouble, if not two minutes, rather than being frustrated for two months!  And if they didn't help at once, you should have pinged us here in the States immediately.

Obviously not acceptable for puzzle joints to give trouble---they should be effortless.  Please contact me at and we'll find a resolution to this, pronto.  

RE: failing at first step

thanks for the quick reply - that is what i call service. I have sent a detailed message directly with pics.  Desperate for a way forward.

RE: failing at first step

John that is why your company is so highly respected. When I recieved my Petrel kit and found I was short some strips you had them in the mail to me  in no time, and I was not delayed in getting my boat done for the comming season.  

thanks again for being there for us.

RE: failing at first step

Just to close this out, the pre-step of TPRD was the issue, and I will not use this product at this point again.  What this did was not only swell the wood and the joints so they did not fit, but also made the timber like concrete so I could not effectively sand. 

The local distributor provided new pieces and brought them directly to my house, and spent some time with me.  So good service all around and I appreciate the power of this forum.

Thanks to all.

RE: failing at first step

Struggler , I wish you all the best and believe me' you will be so happy with the end result, These are great boats and the satisfaction of paddling your own handywork puts a smile on your face everytime, And to Chesapeak Congradulations, That sort of service blows me away , Its something that ya just dont see much in this day and age, What a wonderfull outcome,

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