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Dory Forum - Yes!

Especially if you would welcome a plastic builder. I made a 13" modified Briggs deign on Rhino 3D, and cut it out of HDPE plastic sheets using printed patterns, joined with an injection welder. Why plastic? I'm an old kayaker, never really rowed, and I do hit rocks. It has a raft frame to give it some rigidity, but I'd like to modify that.

I made one serious mistake, built it so it would fit in my Toy truck, but that's a whole other story. I do love how she feels in waves, though.
 

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Especially if you would welcome a plastic builder. I made a 13" modified Briggs deign on Rhino 3D, and cut it out of HDPE plastic sheets using printed patterns, joined with an injection welder. Why plastic? I'm an old kayaker, never really rowed, and I do hit rocks. It has a raft frame to give it some rigidity, but I'd like to modify that.

I made one serious mistake, built it so it would fit in my Toy truck, but that's a whole other story. I do love how she feels in waves, though.

Most cool, my immediate thoughts would be 1) hoow heavy is it, and 2) given the price of HDPE, what do you have into the boat ?
 

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That's incredible, @coloriverdude! How long did it take you?
I'd love to see more pics!

Even if we don't get a subforum, I'm loving this thread.
 

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While we're at it, more pics of Bears Ears too please. Such a cool boat.

What's the story on the Briggs? Go to cut a Christmas tree and stumble upon history next to the tree you picked? Has anyone assembled a list of the Briggs boats with whereabouts?
 

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Thanks! She was a Craigslist find. I did a boat building class with Brad Dimock, in Flagstaff, which gave me the courage to deck her out. Andy Hutchinson @ High Desert Dories helped me out with improving my hatches and getting a graphite bottom on her. Here are a few more pics of her transformation.
 

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More Plastic

The plastic wasn't too costly, less than $1,000. The Injectiweld plastic welder costs $3,300 though. I found a used one one Ebay, $1,800. EZ to learn and use. I tried a cheaper version first, wasted $.

The main issue with a plastic boat is that it's very flexible, great for the bottom but tough to mount oars and a seat on. The Boulder Boat Works people add a beautiful wooden frame to their boats for that rigidity, but to me it defeats the purpose of plastic. Something that could break, and it needs maintenance. I strapped a rafting frame to the gunnels for that, an OK solution that required straight gunnel sections. I did not deck the dory, that might have added enough rigidity. Ideally it would still flex somewhat, otherwise under stress the welds will break. I have done repairs on a trip, I brought one of those nifty mini torches and some smooth steel shapes. Heat the steel, and smush the plastic together. More about the need for repairs below.

Fletcher's "Drift Boats and River Dories" book has all the info for shape and design. My shorter version, 13', weighs less than 150 lbs.
Another option: Hog Island Boatworks makes a really nice rotomolded hull. I thought about adding a deck to one of those.

My boat was a mistake. I hate trailers, almost wrecked with one I borrowed that wasn't loaded right. Anyway, I designed my boat in two pieces, to fit into my truck. It has two bulkheads which bolt together. Nice on float trips, but on fun rivers there is too much stress on the bulkheads and the welds start to leak at the top. Dumb. Stubborn. Against all good advice. It would be a good lesson in life, except I'm too old to learn it.
 

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I spoke to MNichols by phone a bit on Sunday. Sadly he hasn't yet been able to row her, as the water is still too skinny in Colorado.

Here are the Bears Ears pics on Brad Dimock's blog:
https://fretwaterlines.blogspot.com/search?q=bears+ears

I just got back from a week of Westwater duty, I'll endeavor to find the time to take some detailed photos of Bears ears and post them here shortly. I as well had River Rat Ray at tuffriverstuff.com make me a custom cover for her, unbelievably detailed and fits perfectly.



Stay tuned :)
 

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Hey Marshall, Hal Jaeke here (coloriverdude)....you built a fine 3 bay frame for me about a decade ago....still Going strong ( Even after a few, shall we say, unintended "roll sessions".) Glad to see you came over to the "wood is good" side of floating! Pray for a good snowy winter ,so we can get these girls in the water! Cheers
 

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Hey Hal, believe it or not, I think I remember you, the name anyway. Has been every bit of a decade ago, blast from the past so to speak.



Indeed, since I rowed the grand in an aluminum Mckenzie dory in 2000, I fell in love with the Briggs, and like you took Brad's class as I wanted my own "Gaily painted eggshell" as a friend on last year's grand trip called them. Is damn near killing me not to be able to row her, and do little more than look at her.



A guy who was in Brad's class from ID keeps telling me to come up to ID and do the lower Salmon, but that's a looong way to go for low water :-( Good to hear from you, and yes, praying for snow, or a Grand trip next year. I missed the deadline for the lottery as I was in Brad's class at the time, so hoping to beg onto someone else's permit this year.Would love to boat with you, PM me your contact info and I'll do the same...
 
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