My sailboat's mahogany daggerboard is in sad shape and I decided to replace
it since I have more white oak than I know what to do with.
I made a blank 2"x15"X44". I intended on cutting the corners off on my
tablesaw, but at 35 pounds it didn't seem particularly safe.
So I went at it with my 3" belt sander with 50 grit, and my 2" planer. Both
will work, but they will take hours and hours and hours.
Any suggestions for doing it faster? A router might work, but that doesn't
seem like a good idea either. Would a 3 1/4" planer (rather than my 3a
Kmart planer) be much better?
Yeh, I used to watch that guy (Underhill?) make stuff with old tools. He
would put the blank in a clamp and knock out a dagger board with a spoke
shave in minutes.
Do they even sell spoke shaves any more?
<<<<<< snip >>>>>>
1. White oak is not an appropriate wood for a daggerboard. It makes
great barrels because it swells so well when wet.
2. Drawknife to shape (got one if you want it, it's only 60+ years
old), plane or sander or spokeshave to finish.
An Arbortech cutter in an angle grinder. _NOT_ a chainsaw chain circle
(those are too dangerous). It cuts really quickly, so be careful not to
over-do it. Make a couple of dados down to the shape of a cardboard
template first, then joint them up.
Use a template that's deliberately over size. Then do the whole job
again with the right size of template. Going to final size in one pass
is for people who've been practicing lately!
A spokeshave or drawknife might be useful for finishing, but you'll be
wanting a curved travisher to work on an almost flat surface this wide.
The belt sander is probably the best finsihing step.
I cant imagine a 2" thick daggerboard, but I still think spoke shaves are
the way to go. I just purchased a travisher and it cost over $100 and took 2
months to get. I have a #3 Bailey plane that I set with a wide mouth opening
and use a convex iron in it. I use it as a scrub plane. If I needed to make
the dagger board thinner, I'd use the scrub plane and follow up with a jack
or smoother. To shape the edges, I would use the spoke shave or even a block
plane or a #4 Bailey.
I normally use a travisher to scoop out a chair seat. :-)
That will work.
I made a dagger board for a sunfish one time with a table saw, coping saw,
and a router to round the edges.
As I recall, the dagger didn't vary in thickness except on the leading and
trailing edges. I might have used a belt sander, I don't remember. Today I
would use hand planes and spoke shaves. A person has to use what ever tools
available to him. A 2" thick dagger sure sounds thick to me. :-)
I promise you that properly sharpened, spoke shaves are effortless to use in
It will finish up about 1 5/8". I should have planed the wood to size
before starting, but I underestimated the labor in reducing it and figures
it was better to start with too much than wish I had. Now it is too late,
since I can't plane 15".
The boat is about the same size and weight as a sunfish, but about twice the
sail. I guess that is why it needs a bigger board.
I didn't realize that my spell checker had removed the board from
daggerboard in my previous post.
I suggest you look for someone that can plane 15", maybe a wood working club
or a commercial shop. I had an oversized blanket chest lid sanded by a
commercial shop and he only charged $20.
If your in the Houston area, I can do it for you, using a scrub plane and
hand planes. Probably wouldn't take more than 15-20 minutes. On the other
hand, there is sure to be someone at the Houston Woodworkers Club that has a
I bought a decent power planer and cut it down in 30 minutes. It is only
20% heavier than the mahogany board, when it should be 40% heavier, so
obviously I made it a bit thinner than I intended; but since oak is 50%
stronger than mahogany, that should not matter.
Still don't know if it actually fits, as the boat is 30 miles away with no
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.