Sunday, May 18, 2014

This years travel, two Wooden Boat Festivals and a Messabout!

This years travel.

I wasn’t able to make it to the USA early this year, in fact I even missed out on some local events.  But living on board the ship here on the river must be doing me good and I’m really looking forward to later this year when I’m off to SCAMP Camp in Port Townsend.

For those who don’t know about this event, it’s a kit building class for SCAMPs, buy your kit, its delivered to the classroom, you come in on Monday to find the building jig all set up, the kit ready to go, an instructor to student ratio that means you’ve got lots of time with someone who can show you all the tricks and help you when you need.
It is an exceptionally social event, family teams are encouraged as well as singles,  the participants form long term relationships with instructors and other students, the event includes time out on the water in SCAMP #1 and the Small Craft Skills Academy is running sailing skills courses just before and just after that.
Those skills courses are seriously good fun, involve classroom learning as well as on the water with instructors on board, and then time away overnighting to put it all into practice.

For me, having attended several of both events they have become very special memories, as instructors Howard and I find that we make a considerable difference to peoples lives and it’s a wonderful thing to watch our new friends enjoying their new skills.  Really rewarding stuff for us.

After all that, it’s the Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival  which is an amazing celebration of wooden boats both classic and modern.  Restorations, rebuilds, veterans, modern and new, professional and amateur, this event is a must do for anyone who loves boats.
Its going to be on Sept 5 6 and 7 this year, and “here” is a link to a you tube video that shows you around the 2012 show, you’ll see the inside of the Maritime Center workshop where SCAMP Camp is held as well as a couple of partly built SCAMPs which went to the show after the SCAMP Camp.

I’ll be there, again, wouldn’t miss it.

But that’s not all, I’ll be home for a few weeks to catch up with things , then back on the big silver bird again heading for Sail Oklahoma on Lake Eufaula Oklahoma where Mike and Jackie Monies host what has to be one of the best small boat messabouts anywhere.  I’ll be running a workshop course the day before the event, covering ( so to speak) the fiberglassing of plywood and associated skills such as taped seams, filleting, wet on wet glass cloth buildups, fairing and finishing fiberglass skin. Sponsored by this promises to be a really fun weekend.

From  there I’m off with Chuck Leinweber of Duckworksmagazine back to his house in Harper TX, then on a couple of days later  to Port Aransas for the inaugural Port Aransas PlyWooden Boat Show.  I’ll be running a course there as well, this one a two day one called “Essential Skills for the Beginner Boatbuilder. The course covers use of epoxy glues and coatings including fiberglass, sharpening and use of hand and power tools, setting up woodworking machinery including sawbench, bandsaw and jointer. Scaling plans up to full size, drawing fair curves, scarfing plywood, making several joints common in plywood boatbuilding and a question time where you can get advice and often demonstrations about how to do things that puzzle you.
Here’s the show website, not completed yet but the details on venue and dates etc are there.

Oh yes, there will be SCAMPs there too. If you are a SCAMPer and live within driving range, do bring your boat. In fact, even if you haven't got a SCAMP, come along anyway.

Just a thought, I fly back and forth from my home in New Zealand a lot, we Kiwis are the most isolated country in the world and flights across the Pacific can vary from 11 to 15 hours depending upon the start and finish points then I have to take more flights to get where I’m going.  At the time it feels like the ordeal will never end, it does of course, eventually but it’s a cramped and uncomfortable experience every time. This time though I’m flying both ways on an Airbus A380 superjumbo, I’ve not been on one of those before. I’m looking forward to it.

Hopefully I”ll see some of you at one of these events.


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      John Welsford

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