Page 8: Building a wood 48 DUCK


With the hull complete, the exterior is now “glassed” over. If you’ve used really top level ply this may not be needed but I still would as the glass coat protects the wood from minor damage as well as the elements. The first step these guys did was put a layer of glass tape over every seam, as this shot shows.
Here’s the raised deck. Note how close the shop rafters are to the deck. Obviously, the pilothouse will be added later. This is common stuff. One DUCK was built in the Carolinas and trucked to Boston. The pilot house was installed there. You can see a photo of that happening if you go to my Link page and follow the link taking you to Wendell’s 38 DUCK site.
They started the glassing at the keel. Here we see the cloth stapled in place. It’s then painted with resin.
After the keel, they glassed the bottom. This was no picnic and after repeated attempts to get the damned cloth to stay in place long enough to be painted, they took some limber oak strips with a rag on the tip to protect the cloth, and wedged it up….  After you look at this and the following photos, if you haven’t already, go to and my “Random Thoughts” section, and read my ramblings about glassing a hull. I say that if I were to do it, I’d glass each sheet before nailing it on, then do the seams and nail holes later.Harry said they used 5/8″ ply for the outer layer and were concerned it wouldn’t bend on if coated first. I’d have used several layers of 3/8″ only because it would weig less to handle as well as bend easier. Hey, it’s easy to “quarterback,” ain’t it! I’m grateful for these photos because man I sure know now how I WOULDN’T do it!

The bottom was the worst part. After than the sides probably seemed a snap, except of course for all the epoxy dripping down. They must have used a fairly “hot” mix to keep the resin from all flowing off.

Years ago I talked to a guy who regularly glassed wood hulls. He’d first paint the bare wood with resin, and, after it go tacky, he hang the cloth on. I’m sure Vickie and Harry could speak volumes on this stuff!

Here’s what the cloth looks like as it gets “wetted out” as it’s called

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