August 12, 2014

Experiences of the boatbuilder

Boatyard Ruotsalainen from Nurmes has built wooden boats of VENDIA marine plank among the first boatbuilders in Finland. Ruotsalainen has built wooden boats over 30 years, so he was very interested in this new type of marine plank and he also saw it as a welcome novelty in addition to traditional plywood. Now Ruotsalainen has built two boats of VENDIA marine plank and his experiences have been great. Also his customers have liked the end result and especially they have been taken to the appearance of the marine plank.

Untreated boat.

Fitting of the first plank.
At first glance Ruotsalainen took notice of beautiful and knot-free surface of the marine plank. Also the surface is softer than in birch plywood but tougher than in conifer plywood, compares Ruotsalainen. Raw material used in VENDIA is butt logs from old grown pine. A good quality raw material and sliced veneers make VENDIA beautiful and durable. 

Keel and taffrail.

There is no need to steam VENDIA marine plank but otherwise it reminds processing solid wood. The marine plank bends smoothly as if it understands that the clinker should be tight, tells Ruotsalainen.
Second plank found its place.

It already looks like a boat.
Doing a clinker is similar than working with solid wood. It demands bit accuracy because of the colourless glue. Accuracy is needed when shaving but the neat and beautiful end result will reward both the boatbuilder and the customer.

Bow made of 3 mm sliced pine veneers.
Clamping the bow.

VENDIA bends into the ribs.
According to Ruotsalainen’s experiences finding a good quality material for the ribs have been difficult, so he tried out VENDIA also for the ribs. 12 mm VENDIA is suitable for the ribs but he rather recommends 10,5 mm thick VENDIA only made of lengthwise veneers and lightened from the corners. Rib made of only lengthwise veneers was assertive and springy and it bent smoothly. In VENDIA marine plank crosswise veneers have been designed to prevent cracking but in this case there is no need to worry about cracking because the ribs are so narrow. Ruotsalainen also tried out making the keel and bow using 3 mm plank of sliced pine veneers. Making the keel and bow of sliced veneers succeeded well, says Ruotsalainen.   

Finished wooden boat.
In the picture: Satu Tuovinen
According to Ruotsalainen, wooden boats made of pine have always been long-lived, so he predicts long life and durability also for boats made of VENDIA marine plank.

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