Friday, September 16, 2016

Ama Sides

Glued up the bottom of the ama... stitch and glue style... with epoxy/sawdust mixture a few days ago. clamped the side on for a eyeball check... the bottom is 3/8 inch b/c plywood and the sides are 1/4 inch maple plywood... it has very thin veneer and a thick core... not ideal but plan to reinforce the sides inside and out with fiberglass and epoxy.

Shooting for something that looks like the ama on the boat below

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Full Size Proa

It became more and more obvious that I just as well go ahead and build a full size version rather than continue to fiddle with the models. Sonner or later you got to build your first proa... just to see what you would do different should you build another. This is the 24 ft main hull... complete with dragon heads... and will have about an 18 ft ama. This is based loosely on Gary Dierkings Wa Pa...  though I'm thinking it might make building it easier to make the dragon heads a bolt on addition... just clamps holding this together for the pic. The plan is to have bamboo cross members... set on the stanchions with another set to be in the center. Just a plain butt splice three sheets of plywood with the stanchions located at the splice.A little beamier than his design... about 24 inches widest spot on the bottom... a bit more flare in the sides as well... I hope I don't regret it... just recently noticed that the Wa Pa's built to plans sit pretty deep in the water with two aboard... The ama will be a bit more beefy as well. More interested in more load carrying ability than maximum speed.

Like I said... you need to build one to see what you'd do different.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Proa Models

I've been working on a couple of proa models... one is your basic long skinny boxy canoe form... the other is an asymmetrical shape that is designed to eliminate the need for a centerboard.  Still trying to decide which route I would go for in a full size version. The outrigger hull would be pretty much the same in either version. Still trying to decide too on whether to use big ass bamboo for the connectives  or something purpose built. The bamboo version would probably need to be glass and epoxy reinforced both for strength and longevity. So it kind of defeats the purpose of using it to start with... which is you would not have to fabricate it. But I have harvested some and we'll have to see which method wins out. I found a good deal on some used sails that were meant for the head sail on a regular sailboat. They are quite large... I cut some bamboo that would have been long enough to use as spars for one of them had I not shortened them before hauling them home. My trailer was only about 20 ft so quite a bit hanging off the end.  They were 35 feet plus before I hacked them... kicking myself a bit now.

The pond test was mostly to see how the two hulls sit in relation to one another. The mount on the smaller hull was temporary. I think I'd want a little more displacement in the smaller hull. It's sitting pretty deep in the water.

Still working on the asymmetrical hull. I don't think it would float upright without an outrigger.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Fest Pac

There was a gathering in Guam recently for Fest Pac... Festival of Pacific Arts... with many Polynesian sailing craft there to comemorate this event. This is Ulitao... one of the attendees... they are now raising funds for Fest Pac 2020... to be held in Hawaii... the plan is to build and sail an even bigger Proa from Guam to Hawaii to attend the event. There will be multiple boats in the flotilla to help insure safe passage. I pulled this photo from Gary Dierkings blog and he has quite a few high resolution photos from all over the Pacific that are well worth checking out even if you have no interest in these boats.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

The Proa Bug

I've got the proa bug pretty good now and looking to build something with a main hull of 32 ft...  outrigger in the 20 ft range... shunting pacific style proa with a little bit of western thrown in. I found this 31 foot Te Wa by Gary Dierking. I have his book but had not seen this design... it was on his main site where he sells plans for his other designs here... unfortunately no plans for this one... but he has construction photos and story here.  I built a model with guesstimated dimensions based on his construction photos. I'll be following up with some pics of that... and hopefully a full size model in the not too distant future. I recently emailed him and he provided me with some drawings with dimensions of the main hull. He is originally from the states but now resides in New Zealand and his designs heavily influenced by Polynesian proas indigenous to the South Pacific

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Big Water Test

I finally got to take the wannabe proa out in some pretty good wind and big water. This revealed some not so endearing qualities. The spookiest is the result of the boat just having one crossbeam. This allows the ama to rotate on its mount much more than it would if there were two crossbeams. It beacame apparent that in short choppy wave conditions it would not be too hard for the bow of the realatively short ama to nose dive and with the likely result being it could rotate on its mount and flip upside down. This would be a serious event while underway... and probably fairly difficult to recover from. It should be noted that the outrigger is too small and would benefit from being longer and more bouyant.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Canoe Proa Take II

I've spent the last six weeks or so upgrading my 17 foot grumman canoe into a pacific style proa wannabe complete with shunting rig and lanteen style sail. Ultimately I would like to have a crab claw sail but I've been out a few times now and the rig is working pretty good.

Lots of rope a dope 

Added quite a bit of bonafide sailboat hardware... can trim the sail from either end.... v jam cleat stops on most adjustments.

The paddles as rudders work very well... the bungee cords pull them up out of the water when not in 
use... it was too easy ;)