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riverboat

It's a rugged, beefy craft designed to take the wildest rapids in


stride, but tame enough to slip quietly into any shallow fishing
inlet under oars. Best of all, you can build it for about $100

• IT'S A REAL THOROUGHBRED, this high-riding


river sled. Evolved over a lifetime of white-water
experience by famed riverman Glen Wooldridge,
Riverboat
it features a fast-rising bow which lifts easily
over the largest riffles. This, combined with
steeply flaring sides and a long flat after section,
built
gives the boat tremendous lift, excellent maneu-
verability and unbelievably shallow draft.
Glen's typical power rig is a mid-range out-
for white water
board equipped with one of those husky jet-drive By CLINTON R. HULL
lower units from Outboard Jets. Such a setup

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riverboat

white-water riverboat, continued perfect alignment, the use of a building jig is scr
advisable, but this can be made of any secondary br<
lumber, if straight. me
gives the boat maximum shallow-water capa- The template for laying out the frames can be res
bility. I've been aboard when he's skimmed over made from 3/8-in. plywood or other relatively
4-in.-deep riffles without touching bottom. cheap material. The template layout dimensions gr:
Best of all, it's very easily built and performs give the placement of the five nail "pegs" to form or
well with any outboard motor from 18 to 60 or the frames. Use small blocks to keep rib tips or
more horses, depending upon the boat's size and level. ad
the load carried. (The plans show an overall Incidentally, except for the jig, all dimensions pr.
length of 16 ft. 10 in., but a 15-ft. 8-in. or 19-ft. of the lumber used in the boat are net. Thus, the m<
2-in. hull can be made by removing or adding 3/4 x 3-in. frames and ribs are exactly that size. loi
one frame just ahead of the transom.) To assure All nails should be galvanized, and bolts and tin

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screws either galvanized, cadmium-plated or You may have to soak the chine strips in order
bronze. For salt-water use, bronze is recom- to get the proper bend. Just wrap them in an old
mended. In addition to these fastenings, water- blanket, towels or ourlap, and pour on boiling
resistant glue should be used on all joints. water. Pour on more hot water after about 15
Wood recommended for this boat is first- min. and then let them set until nearly cool.
grade, straight-grained, clear spruce, Douglas fir Bending them will then be much easier.
or white cedar. All plywood should be exterior If you plan to use a jet drive on the motor,
or marine grade and fiberglassing is definitely leave the transom full height in the center. For a
advisable. The construction follows standard long-shaft, propeller-type lower unit, notch it to
procedure—frames are assembled first and then 20 in. and for a standard lower unit on the motor
mounted on the building jig, after which the notch to 15 in. as shown. If you use both jet and
longitudinal members are installed and, finally, propeller drives, notch it to suit the propeller
the planking. motor, and either make a detachable transom
piece to bolt in place or obtain one of Glen's
transom brackets for this purpose.

cut and shape the keels


Cut and shape the keels as shown in the draw-
ing. Then drill and countersink holes in the iron
straps—one near each end and two between each
pair of frames—to accept the heads of 3/16 x
1-1/2in. flathead machine screws. Bevel the front
ends of the keels so the straps will fit over them
smoothly, and bevel the tips of the straps to pre-
vent snagging grass.
If you decide not to fiberglass the bottom, use
glue and the 3/16-in. machine screws, nuts and
washers to attach the keels. If fiberglass is used,
the keels may be covered with it. Put the seams
on the keel bottoms so the straps cover them,
and apply a coat of the resin to the keel-to-boat-
bottom joints.
Make two transom supports by flattening 2 in.
of the ends of two 7/8 x 30-in. pieces of electrical
conduit and then attaching them to the transom
16 in. from (and level with) the gunwales, and
also to the gunwales. Put small spacer blocks
between the inner and outer gunwales at the
points of contact and use 5/16 x 4-in. carriage
bolts to fasten the supports. Use 5/16 x 2-1/4in.
bolts through the transom and transom posts.
Give the inside of the boat two coats of a dull,
nonglare marine paint. (Light, bright paint is
tough on the eyes.)
If, as Glen does, you like to stand erect when
running white water, use the 3/8 x 36-in.-wide ply-
wood rear floor piece shown. Otherwise, the
floor strips can run the full length of the boat.

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riverboat

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The hull framing is assembled right side up on the
building jig, which can be made from any straight
lumber. The jig assures perfect alignment

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