Last week we started an eight week boat building program with the 7th and 8th grade classes from the Bay Farm Montessori School in Duxbury, MA. The twelve students and two teachers come to the Plantation’s marine shop on Wednesdays from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM.
We are building a traditional “Flat iron” skiff. The side planks are each made from one piece of pine about 18″ wide and 15′ long.
We chose to build only one boat with the kids so that we can focus our attention on the individual tasks at hand. It does make for tight quarters sometimes but it is also a good team building exercise. Nothing builds “team” like planing over the fingers of the person standing next to you.
When both planks are the same size we attached them to the stem, which is a piece of white oak cut into a triangle shape in cross section.
The whole trick to this type of construction is to get both sides planks fastened to the stem the same way so that when we bend the planks around the mold the back ends of the planks meet at the transom equally.
They say many hands make light work. Yes, the girl sitting down on the left is helping to hold the plank.
With about twenty minutes left in the class today we got the side planks attached to the stem, the center mold in and the planks bent around to the transom. It seemed prudent to wait until our next class to fit and fasten in the transom.
Next week the students have testing at their school so they won’t be able to come to the museum. Stay tuned for more…