Slope Oak

it's the ride that counts

Temple Dragon Soiree

Took a three-day weekend and did a late-season ride in southern Utah, I’ve wanted to do this ride for a couple of years- was worth the wait. High 30’s to low 40’s at night, mid 60’s during the day. Short days meant starting at sunset the first day and riding on a moonless night for ten miles. Lights on I crawled up the Reef to camp at 6000 feet. Windy, cold but made for a stunning view in the morning. A true Slope Oak start to the day.

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Boatpacking on Flaming Gorge

Me and the youngest went for a two-day paddle on Flaming Gorge. This is a huge reservoir near the Utah/Wyoming border, set in some truly stunning scenery.

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Mill Creek 16.5, Part 13- Christening

A poem, some greenery, great friends and a nice Prosecco come together to name her Serenity.

A sprig of honeysuckle to ensure safe returns

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Mill Creek 16.5, Part 12.5- Build Task Sheet

For any future builders of this boat, here’s the task list I put together for the Hybrid build based on the manual and my own additions. I left in my approximate build times- for reference this is my first boat and I’m an IT guy so not a lot of transferable skills from my day job (except this spreadsheet).

Millcreek 16.5 Tasks

Mill Creek 16.5, Part 12- The Launch

With the heavy cloud cover and light rain, it was a perfect day for a Viking funeral. Unfortunately, the boat floats fine, so we’ll be throwing her back on top of the car after a nice paddle.

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Mill Creek 16.5, Part 11- Varnishing, grab loops, hatch hold-downs

ESI Grips custom Chunky silicone MTB grips cover my homemade grab loops. Look Ma, no knots!

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Mill Creek 16.5, Part 10- Making the Hatches

Hatches, hatches…there are two hatches. Bungees loop to hooks on the underside of the hatch covers to hold them firmly in place. A Monkey’s Fist knot in turquoise paracord forms the handle.

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Mill Creek 16.5, Part 9- Cockpit Coaming and Seats

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Mill Creek 16.5, Part 8- Fiberglassing the top deck

Shape the deck, sand the deck. Fill the gaps, let the epoxy dry, sand the deck. Fill more gaps, let the epoxy dry, sand the deck. Fill the now magically-appearing, aiming-to-crush-my-soul gaps, let the epoxy dry, sand the deck. Remember the Tootsie Pop ads?

The answer is 364, although twenty non machine-assisted lickers averaged 252 licks to get to the center.

The question now, dear readers, is how many times can you sand a deck made from 1/4″ thick wood with 80, 120, 150 and 220 grit sandpaper without discovering the other side?

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Mill Creek 16.5, Part 7- End Pours and Fairing

Planing the deck edges

With the deck glued to the hull it’s time to shape, sand, fill, sand, sand, sand, and sand. A process known colloquially known as “fairing the boat”. Above, the boat goes in one end of the plane, art and scrap comes out the other.

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