Saturday, February 28, 2015

Old News from Oceania

Recent archeological diggings in the Mariana Islands has revealed pottery that dates to 3500 years ago.  The logical migration route would have been from the Northern Philippines, 1200 nautical miles away.  To get to the Marianas from there means sailing dead to windward against the Northeast trade winds.  That may set the timeline back some for the early development of the Oceanic proa.

Sailing for Survival written by Mary R. Mennis is a report on the trading systems and canoes of Papua New Guinea

Tangaroa is the Polynesian god of the sea and seafaring.  This carving recently sold for $1.5 million.  Nice to see him getting some well deserved recognition.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Sussex Wa'apa

 Robin Bennett and family making good progress on their Wa'apa.   There's a building blog here.


Saturday, February 14, 2015

e15 Tacking Outrigger

Tim Eley's e15 tacking outrigger.  See more here.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

New Ulua in Western Australia


Stewart Jackson in Western Australia is doing a fine job on his Ulua.





Sunday, February 1, 2015

Sailing With WAM


Things are looking up for the building/sailing program called WAM in Majuro, Marshall Islands.
Visit their new website or even go for a ride.


Sunday, January 25, 2015

Geoff in PNG



Geoff Husa sailing his Wa'apa near Madang, Papua New Guinea.  Read his blog here.


Sailin' Shan Skailyn from geoff husa on Vimeo.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Voyage of the P5 Proa Lili'uokalani

Reto Brehm has published an account of his recent cruise along the coast of Croatia.  You may remember Reto from his ingenious crabclaw reefing setup.

Monday, January 12, 2015

The Single Outrigger Canoe of the Cook Islands


One of my personal heroes is Te Rangi Hiroa otherwise known as Peter Buck.  He was a doctor, military leader, health administrator, politician, anthropologist, author of Vikings of the Sunrise, and eventually the director of Honolulu's Bishop Museum. 
He traveled extensively through Polynesia in the 1930's and gathered rapidly disappearing information about the old culture.  This is his study of the canoes of the Cook Islands.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Va'a Motu Racing in Tahiti



I'm glad to see that the fleet of Va'a Motu (island canoe) is still active and having plenty of fun with their huge gaff rigs.  Captain Cook observed the transit of Venus in this bay in 1769.



Sunday, December 28, 2014

Hawaii with Kiko

Instead of shoveling snow, why not visit Kiko in Hawaii.  He'll take you on a memorable outing.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

T2 by Guy Rinfret


Le Lac Saint-Jean se fait beau pour Bororo. from Michel Boissonneault on Vimeo.

Guy Rinfret was one of the very first builders of the T2 proa.  This new and beautifully shot video shows that it doesn't take much sail area to get it moving.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Monday, December 8, 2014

Thursday, December 4, 2014

The Disappearing Fillet Radiused Chine

If you watched the last America's Cup races, you may have noticed that the hull shape has basically been turned upside down; flat on the bottom with a radiused chine and veed on the foredeck.  I'm sure that millions of dollars were spent reaching that design conclusion, so the least I can do is figure out a way for the backyard builder to achieve a close result (minus the carbon fiber). 


Radiused chines have previously been constructed with strip planking in between the plywood panels, but fitting the long tapered strips is very time consuming.  What I am proposing is a method that uses disposable fillets in a stitch and tape hull.


Stitch the panels together by any method that you choose.  In this example 
I'm using 6mm (1/4") plywood.


I'm planning an outside radius of 50mm (2") so the spatula tool must be shaped to the correct radius and width.  Install a fillet using the lightest and easiest to shape filler, like microspheres or Q cells.  Even polyester resin could be used because the fillet is only temporary.  Mix it as dry as possible for easy shaping later.

Lay in heavy double bias fiberglass tape.


Remove the stitching and grind or plane off the chine while checking the radius often with a plywood template.  Use a long sanding board to make it fair.  This is the hard part but it will look great.

Finish off with lighter fiberglass sheathing on the outside. 


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Baltimore Wa'apa


From Robert Kearney:
Finally splashed the Wa 'Apa that I've been working on for a while now. Shouldn't have taken as long as it did but life has a way of getting in the way of the fun stuff. It also took me a while to think/experiment through some of the stuff I hadn't done before like working with fiberglass and epoxy. I just went with glass on the bottom of the vaka and ama. One of the things that I had to think through was how to assemble the plywood ama. Once I realized that I could pre-assemble the two top pieces and one bottom piece together, adding the final bottom piece became as easy as putting the lid on a box. I have a few photos of that. At any rate, I wanted to sail it at least once before the water get's too cold here in Maryland. It sails great! Thanks for a well thought out design.
The rig is a 47 sq. ft. lug sail that I used on my plastic canoe. It's in a temporary step. A bit under-canvassed but good for now.  The leeboard mount is temporary (attaches to a clamp on seat) for now.
Pictures are accessible at: