Thursday, January 14, 2016

Why I Practice…

Before cutting, fitting, punching and sewing leather chafe protection for Gardens' spars (boomkin and boom are ready), I need to practice: A spar sample (from last spring's birdsmouth experiments), a small bit of leather cut to size, a nail & hammer, waxed thread and two needles. Here is the result:

This is why I practice:
  • The leather was cut too short so the gap is too wide
  • Different number of holes on one side than the other
  • Using the nail to punch holes, some holes were smaller/tighter than others making it difficult to pull the needles through
  • The beginning stitches left the knot on top
  • Stitch pattern is not consistent
These will all be improved and corrected as I practice a bit more.

On the other hand, the results are not bad. If I didn't point out the mismatched number of holes, it would take a keen eye to spot it. And, while the gap is too wide, it is consistent.

I'll do at least one more practice piece before working on the boomkin and boom. Please note, the practice piece has not been treated in any way. The leathers on Gardens' spars will all be treated to guard against drying out.

Working on the leathers is an indoor project. The weather has been very cold this week and the propane heater, running on 1-lbs canisters, is too costly to run. I've ordered an extension hose to connect the heater to a 20-lbs tank. I'll be back in the Boat Cave shortly.


  1. Did you soak the leather? If you do that, that gap might stretch, and then be really tight once it dries

    1. Charlie, I think I remember soaking the leather when I did my oars but, no, I did not soak this practice piece. Help me out... how long should the piece soak before stitching?

  2. till they get wet all the way through- 20-30 minutes?