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Sea Knight build

On April 5, 2021, in Builder Blogs, Power Cruisers, by Adriaan

Hi All,

I recently bought/acquired the Sea Knight plans and decided to document and post some of my progress, although I am not sure if the build will be a speedy process as I have too many hobbies and things going on but I really enjoy it so far so let’s see.

I just finished my first frame (no.5) constructed out of Siberian Larch and okume plywood.

More to follow soon!

So I have been a bit lazy on the posting side of things, luckily Dan was so kind to remind me of my duties.

I have been busy the last weeks with the production of the loose parts like all the frames and keel and the chines and sheers etc before setting up the strongback as the space in my workshop is limited.

Funny thing to mention, all the while I was busy producing my parts and having loads of fun while doing so, I found out that the lovely boat doesn’t fit through my access door… at least not in a level position. I should have thought this through. On the other hand, overthinking things is just not my cup of tea. Let’s just wing it and see what happens, it will be fine, otherwise my entrance will be upgraded…

Frame 1-5
Laminated Bow
Scarf Jointed Keel, same method for chines and sheers
On The Strongback

The strongback should be hard fixed to the floor, but as my floor has been poored recently I just couldn’t bear putting holes in it, so thats why it’s weighted down with concrete tiles instead which I had laying around the house anyways. I hope it will hold up well when the bending of the sheer and chine will commence, fingers crossed.

More to follow soon!

back at it again, for some reason the motivation to post my progress is quite low, this is possibly due to the fact that I have absolutely no clue if this is actually being read. as I have never built a boat I am stunned that I have recieved no tips or tricks on the work done so far. but anyway moving on..

Chines and sheers fixated and glued.

The fixation of the sheers & chines was quite the struggle to be honest, the tension was substantial to say the least. I had to thin out the sheers otherwise these would defenitely break without steaming them, I eventually made it work by wetting them out.

Ongoing fairing works.

The fairing works was a pretty meditating process, I initially bought a battery operated electric planer but found myself doing all the work with my manual planers.

Completed fairing.

Fairing completed for 90%, next stop dry fitting (final touch ups on the fairing) the plywood and glue-ing/screwing them in place.

First panel.

The plywood thickness here in europe (netherlands) is respectively 10mm, the 3/8 inch plywood as specified is actually a little bit thinner, so the tension on the plywood was substantial, I found that wetting out the panel helped a bit.

thats me folks.

Filling up all the holes with thickened epoxy, there are probably better materials for this, but I choose to use this.

Currently busy with prepping the hull for the fiberglass, still not sure if I should make use of peel-ply or just do it without…

More to follow soon!

Alright, back again!

so last minute before glassing up the hull I decided to epoxy glue mahogany veneer on the transom, was playing with the idea earlier but let it go because of all the extra work, but as this has to be a multi-generational boat I thought I shouldn’t be cutting corners and make it awesome, or at least try..

Transom with the Mahogany, 2,5mm thick.
Ready for the Glass.

I found the glassing process to be quite hard to be honest, I started with the transom and made use of peel ply, as I like to do these (pretty much everything) kind of things on my own I skipped the peel ply process after the transom, It is just to much work to do on your own. and sanding her up after the epoxy cured took me only a couple of hours.

Transom (with the peelply)
Glassing the sides.
Fully glassed.
Sprayrail & Skeg installed.
Final coat of epoxy before primer.
First coat of primer.
First coat of primer.

So currently I’m thinking about final paint colours, leaning towards off white for above the waterline, and bleu-ish below, and a red stripe marking the waterline, but this selection changes on a daily basis… not sure yet.

Keep you posted!

Back at it!

It has been quite busy period with holidays, children entertainment etc. but I did managed to get some stuff done.

Decided what the final color should be, honestly there are so many colors what I could like, but I eventually just picked one, The whole hull is going to be painted in RAL 7032 (pebblegrey) with a cream white waterline mark.

I painted the bottom (under waterline) 3 times the roller and tipped it. looks quite clean, still some dust even after wetting the floor etc, but it is acceptable, especially for under the waterline. As I will keep the boat on the trailer I figured I wouldn’t need a anti fouling coat or somesort.

Prepped and ready for first of final coats.
Prepped and ready for first of final coats.
Two layers done, sanded back with 320 grid, ready for final layer.
End result, final coat.
End result, final coat.
figured to glue (sikaflex) a stainless steel strip on the skeg for extra protection.

So after this stage It was time to flip the hull, as it didn’t make much sense to paint the rest of the hull at this stage as the deck still needed to be mounted and the potential of damages etc during the next fase.

Silly me decided to flip this thing on my own, I wouldn’t necessarily advice to do this on your own but it is part of this personal challenge for me, I want to do as much as I can by myself, total control and when the boat is finished I need to have peace with all my own actions. Not sure if this makes any sense but it does for me anyway.

Bought some cheap winches, I was sweating like a pig during this whole event, it was pretty exciting to say the least.
Used my exterior cushions for the needed protection, and just gently rolled the whole thing.
Not a scratch!
On the cradle.

It goes without saying that this is such a great moment during this built, I feel great, the feeling of accomplishment and realisation that you have built an actual boat, (unfinished but still) is amazing.

Next up cleaning up the insides of excess epoxy, making fillets and preparation and investigations of the equipment which will have to be integrated, exciting stuff!

I’ll be back!

It has been a while,

Lots of hours spend on the project, after flipping her over I started with fairing the sheer line and finishing the fwd deck structure.

Finished the fwd deck structure

Meanwhile cleaning up the inside from epoxy etc. and filleting all joints with thickened epoxy, not sure if this is really needed but piece of mind is a valuable thing. It’s not going to be my favourite job of this build, for some reason it took me a large amount of time and its such a messy act.

epoxy fillets
building the engine splash well & aft deck struture.
building the engine splash well & aft deck struture.

So after all the fillets where finished I gave the inside hull a double coat of clear epoxy, the initial plan was to coat it in a (off)white finish, but I might keep it as it is, I think its quite nice that it will always be possible to see the works behind (finished panels, hatches or wathever) and see how it is been build, also this motivates to make it the best i am capable of.

inside finished with two clear epoxy coats.
Splash wel will be coated in the exterior grey color.

The next steps will be to move on with the decking which will consist of 10mm plywood surrounded with a mahogany edge and the top will then be laminated with 3mm mahogany veneer (as per transom) with inlay striping.

Obviously at some point I will need to start integrating equipment and such I am starting to get a bit late on this point I guess..

Coming at this stage I do have a confession to make, As you might have seen I am starting to deviate from the original Sea Knight plans. I extended the hull by 5% (at approx. 18 ft now) and decided at some point that I would like to have an open cruiser without the accomodattion. I will have the windows up front and also the steering wheel will be positioned on the front starboard side with 2 turnable pilot seats. In the end it will look a bit like the Geronimo I guess. Also I would like to have a u-shaped cushioned seating in the mid to aft area with a in height adjustable table which when lowered it can be transformed to a full sunbed area.

Obviously this can change as I’m making this up as I go..

Thank you for sticking with me so far!

How time flies!

It has been a while and a lot has happened so time for a urgently needed update,

Fitted the floor with marine grade ply coated in epoxy, and glued to the frames and hull, created hatches to always keep access to below spaces, just in case..

Floorpanel 10mm thick (reinforced in several areas for chair legs etc.)
floorpanel with hatch cut out.
Cut outs to facilitate drainage to the bilge area.
Floor glued in and start of plinth base for U shaped sitting area.
Floor completed, building structure for Bench.
Bench construction, wanted as little as square corners as possible to decrease the “DIY look”.

The next stop is the decking, intially as mentioned before the plan was to add a 3mm layer of mahogany venneer, but after consideration I bought a stack of 9mm mahogany planking to ensure a controllable way of machining and glueing.

I started with mocking up all the planking with 4mm MDF material and used these as templates to rout out all the mahogany planking.

Margin boards glued with thickened epoxy.
more glueing
And some more glueing..
Almost there..
fitted the mahogany inside edging, also here no square corners, took some extra effort but really happy with the results so far.
Ready to fill the gaps..

Really satisfied with the results so far, it took quite the time and effort to get it done as such, for the next step I searched the forum/internet on how and especially with what to fill the seems, obviously some choose to do this with sealant (Sika or similair) but for me this seems risky as you can’t or shouldnt paint over it as it remains flexible and expands or shrinks with temperatur swings which would make the paint crack over time, therefor I thought to fill it up with coloured epoxy but also here as this acts differently than the surrounding wood which could end up in cracking around the edges. So I chose to go with white ash, ripped the lengths with a slight angle so thight fit would be ensured and glued it up with thickened epoxy.

Leaving it a little proud to finish with the sander.
After sanding.
All done!

Lots of painting was next on the schedule, the hull for the first of three layers also the inside (floor, hull, bench) with the same colour as the exterior. Lastly the deck and transom were coated with 3 coats of epoxy and finished with 2 coats of clear UV resitant lacquer which I will leave to hardenen and will be coated with lots more layers of clear coat to get to that mirror finish.

Lacquered deck and interior.

Next up the Dashboard and side paneling which consists out of mahogany and white ash striping.

Black fabric pockets for small storage of phone etc.
Cutout and trim to fit a Raymarine 9″ MFD, keeping the dash clean of analog clocks and such.

This is where I am at for now, plan for the coming months will be to finish the interior paneling coating and such, building the mahogany windshield, mocking up the floor with templates to order some sort of carpet, buying various equipment for integration like hydrolic steering, speakers & amp, chairs etc.

Untill next update!

Your Thoughts?

17 Responses to Sea Knight build

  1. Larry Pogachar says:

    beautiful job what length is the boat and what is the beam .. amazing job i always wanted to build a boat like that. what is the name of the plans

    • Adriaan says:

      Thank You! I used the “Sea Knight” plans for the hull, the rest has been made up by myself 😅. extended the hull by 5%. Total length is about 5,5 meter with a beam of 2,14 meter.

  2. Mike Hickman says:

    I truly enjoyed watching your progress so far. It looks like your are doing an awesome job and the finished boat will be something to be proud of for years.

  3. ed davis says:

    Hi Adriaan
    I just found your blog, good Job. You are comeing along nicelly.
    I also looked at the spacing of my garage door. It was 8 ft and my middle frame was
    8 ft 3′ ! So I checked the next two frame’s and they were 8 ft sooo i made three frames at 8 ft. Looking at the hull as built no one can tell that i changed that middle frame.
    I still had to remove the door jam and trim them grind a notch in the block to get the boat out.
    My build is the Goliath

    • Adriaan says:

      Thank you Ed, thats a bold decision to modify the frames, great that it worked out for you! I however am not that courages and will cut out the door frame for the final “loadout”, luckily plenty of time left for me to get used and get comfortable with the plan.

  4. Glenn C Mariano says:

    Adriann, Congratulations! You are inspiring! Thank you for sharing your experiences.

  5. Jeroen Brunken says:

    Hi Adriaan,

    Looks really nice. For a few weeks now, the plans that my girlfriend and I had to build a boat are getting more serious. Our eyes fell on the Phantom (which is a bit bigger).

    Where are you located in the Netherlands? Maybe you can give me a few places where to buy materials 🙂

    • Adriaan says:

      Hi Jeroen,

      I’m situated in Zeeland, but order my stuff from all over the Netherlands. but yes I could give you a few pointer for sure. but lot’s of this is also new for me as this is my first boat build!

  6. Tom Stowell says:

    Looks nice. Look forward to more updates.

  7. Looks awesome congrats

  8. David Fannon says:

    Looks like you are doing a great job.

  9. Dan Hennis says:

    In the words of David Copperfield, … “More please.”

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