Homemade wood frame -- bolt question - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 03-01-2017   #1
 
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 24
Homemade wood frame -- bolt question

My partner and I just purchased a 1988 13 foot Otter. It's rarely been used, stored in a basement all these years. kinda like when you find a 30 year old car that's got 20,000 miles on it. Anyhow my bf used some scrap marine wood to repair the wooden frame that came with it. We have oar locks ordered and its inaugural run will be on the San Juan in a few weeks. Any suggestions on how to make the bolts you can see in the photo less lethal should we step on them, you guys know what I mean. Thought about cutting them down or some kind of cover. Wondering how others have handled this.
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Old 03-01-2017   #2
 
Denver, Colorado
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 507
maybe you could cut them down a bit and use acorn nuts.

or replace them entirely with something like a furniture connector bolt, if you could find a version robust enough for your purpose. those have perfect smooth heads on top and bottom.
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Old 03-01-2017   #3
 
Salt Lake City, Utah
Paddling Since: 1969
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 388
That frame is an accident waiting to happen. Ditch the 2 X 2's and replace with 2 X 6 or 2 X 8's. Move the bolts so they are opposed, the two on the outside of the tubes should be mounted so they are shortest longitudinal dimension, the two inboard should be longer. That gives you an "X" which is far stronger than having both in-line (in the same plane). Yes, plywood helps, maybe you want to sandwich a couple of 3/4" pieces instead of going to dimensional lumber (2 X 6 or 2 X .
But you need to get rid of that 2 X 2 that runs the length of the frame...
You can countersink the nuts and washers or cut donuts out of other pieces of wood to make them safe to walk on/around.
Remember yr boat is almost 30 years old regardless of its appearance. Congrats on the score, but keep an eye on EVERYTHING. Every time you inflate it should be baffle by baffle (chamber by chamber) to semisoft (1.5# or so, you can press and deflect with your thumb). Then top off to 2 or 2.5# - you will be able to feel the difference.
I hope I'm wrong, but I'll bet a case of beer that if you use it 15 or more days per year you should count on replacing in 3-4 years. I've hauled a dozen old hypalon boats to the dump in the last couple of years, including 2 of my own, and I babied them (stored indoors, inflated as often as possible). When you roll it up and hear what sounds like corn flakes crushing, it's soon done... that's the coating inside the tubes giving up.
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Old 03-01-2017   #4
 
Denver, Colorado
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 507
Those are obviously not 2x2s. They look more like 1x8" or 1x10" boards to me. And not plywood on the front board at least (is that the new one?). Adding some additional through bolts isn't a bad idea, but since the current bolts sit on top of a steel square tube, I think countersinking those is probably (certainly) not what you want, and countersinking in the already thin (but wide) boards would also be a not so good idea.
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Old 03-01-2017   #5
 
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 24
Mark, thanks, great suggestions.
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Old 03-01-2017   #6
 
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 24
Those are metal rails, not wooden 2x2s. They came with the boat, as did the seat. the rest of the wood was rotted, because the frame had been left outside for awhile. We used some marine board scrap that we already had to fashion the two sides (underneath the rails) and bought a piece of pine wood for the front piece. Good eye, Mark.

We did all of this to get this boat on the water, and the Upper San Juan is mellow enough that we think the frame will work fine. For anything more intense than 8 foot, I'd be riding as a passenger on my bf's raft.
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Old 03-01-2017   #7
 
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 24
Thanks, yeah, we'll see how long it lasts. It's in great shape, but it is old.
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Old 03-01-2017   #8
 
Denver, Colorado
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 507
So I'd guess it doesn't take a lot of leverage on the towers to create flex given that the towers are mounted to a narrow square metal tube - I think that is what B4otter was looking at. That's a limitation that I can't see any way to improve without welding somehow, and why bother? There are bolt down towers with nice broad plates that'd be better, if you want to do that. And the pine is not optimum just because it can split along the grain from the bolt holes to the outside and is pretty soft in any case. Plywood could still ovalize around the bolt holes but wouldn't split that way.

And something else...you know, being able to break down the frame might be a priority, but if you were to wood glue and clamp those boards together until you build something more permanent, it'd be vastly stronger...but the leverage on the towers would still be the same.
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Old 03-01-2017   #9
 
Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1979
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 74
Use a spade bit the diameter of your washers drill down depth of bolt an washer, then grind bolt flush with wood. Good to go


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Old 03-01-2017   #10
 
Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1979
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 74
Just looked at pic again.. drill through top of metal tube an bolt just to bottom of tube


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