Too many days to count. Still at home, staying inside, sheltering in place. Anybody getting out anywhere?

Rick N

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Yes! The front and back yard. Forgot the roof too. Cleaning the moss off for something to do. All the rivers are closed here, Kalama, Grays, Coweemen, Cowlitz and Columbia. I have a place at Ocean Park, Washington but am told not to come down. Long Beach and Ocean Park are like one giant rest home. If you are really bored I have another weed eater and we can weed eat 6 feet apart. LOL Stay safe and at home.

Sounds like you have been busy. Our fly club annually teaches 40 newcomers to fly fish. Unfortunately the current situation halted the classes halfway through the school. We have figured out a method to teach the indoor classes but still have to figure out how to organize the four fly casting sessions with forty + students and 20 instructors. It is going to take some creative planning to do that.

You are welcome to travel north to Spokane and help me mow my lawn. An old auto accident continually reminds me of the injury I sustained, it makes it difficult to labor. When the weather warms up some more I need to continue to sand, prime and paint my boats' interior surfaces.

Good to hear from you! Stay safe and get ready for eventual fishing. By the way where is the Coweemen River. I have either fished on the other rivers or know where they are.

Rick Newman

Got out once.  MF Flathead in rubber with my dawgs.  Water is coming up a bit and should be able to get the dory out soon.


Never loved the small diameter (about 1 3/16") of my oar handles, so I'm wrapping them with 1/16" ash veneer. One set had an odd tapered handle..I owe it to being a little too zealous in my use of a drawknife and peeling them down too small when I built them 10+ years ago. They were 1 1/4" dia at the oar loom, and only 1 1/8" out at the tip. Never was a problem with OarRights, but without, I found it was way too small of diameter to grasp...and also found I now disliked the gloss varnish finish.

I used a farrier's rasp to make sure the old handles were totally cylindrical and ground off the old varnish/epoxy. I then epoxied on sheets of 1/16" ash veneer to wrap around the handle in layers. Cut the veneer slightly longer than the circumference of the handle...the circumference of the sheet is roughly the inner circumference plus the thickness of the veneer times Pi. (or add a -1/8" haha)

Each layer added 1/8" (1/16" x 2) to the handle diameter. I found that the old veneer (it was 20+ years old) was quite brittle and cracked as I bent it...and yet it wouldn't evenly conform. I ended up "breaking" it every 1/4" over the edge of my table saw using a stiff block of wood to make it break evenly. these cracks allowed it to conform well to the curvature of the handle.

After I wrapped the ooey-gooey mess, I'd wrap that with electrical tape (cheap at Harbor Freight, and epoxy doesn't stick to it). Then that wasn't tight enough, so I bound the whole thing tigthly with some copper wire to keep the ash lying flat. Threw a heater on it overnight, then unwrapped the tape and used the horseshoe rasp to knock off the high spots, adjusting each to keep the handle cylindrical. The inner layers didn't have to be pretty, but they couldn't have any high spots that would telegraph their way through upper layers.

(you can also see in the pic where I converted these to square tops a couple years ago.  The spruce was cove cut on my table saw to match the 1 7/8od of the oars.  then I glued the 3/8" thick cherry plates on the outside for weight and impact resistance.)

The weird cone handle on the 9.5' oars got a half wrap to bring the smaller diameter up to 1 1/4", then it got three full wraps to take the total up to 1 5/8".

The 10' oar handles got 3 full wraps to take it to 1 5/8". The final layer got cracked 3/16" or 1/4" as tight as I could get it so no large cracks would show in the final wrap. I also added some radiator hose clamps to get a couple tighter where the wood wouldn't conform.

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Quite a creative way to solve the diameter issue. Good pictures too. We have two labradors at our house, one is my wife's seeing eye guide dog and the other is my daughters comfort dog. I had never had a labrador before, but now really enjoy them.

Speaking of pictures, I see that you have figured out how to post them. Have been around the website for ten years I have also figured out how to do so. However, I see that numerous people still haven't learned how. Some years ago I made a post that explained how to do so. For those that read your post and see your great pictures I thought I would repost the how-to-do-it post for them.

"To post a picture I first locate the file so you could find it on your computer. Click on the small icon above the box where I am currently typing. It is just to the right of the small icon that says "LINK". That will open a box that reads: "ADD IMAGE". You can choose from FROM MY COMPUTER or FROM A URL. If you choose computer, then a double click will start the process of copying the picture so it can be posted on the website server.

When your picture will be posted it will be full sized and there will be no clear margin around it unless you select "padding." Selecting 1 means you will have 1 pixel, or very small space around the outside of your picture. Unless you are trying to place several pictures tightly together you can ignore padding.

You can chose to post the picture to the left right or centered on the page. You can also make a picture larger or smaller based on the width in pixels that you select.

Click okay and the picture will be copied to the post you are working on. Hope that helps. Let me know if you have any questions."

Rick Newman

Rick, we've had 6 Labs over 23 years.  They're cool dogs.  Not perfect at anything, but really friendly family dogs.

My wife used to train Lab puppies as their first phase of being service dogs.  I'd be interested to know how your family's two service dogs interact with each other, or are they "all business"?

Easton and Roxie joined our family 1.5 years ago. I didn't get out on any mellower trips and we didn't try them in the boat.  Our four prior Labs were all too water crazy to sit still.  Last week was my first time ever having them in a boat, and they were incredible boatmates.  I can't wait to get them out on the dory for some overnight floats.


>Quite a creative way to solve the diameter issue. 
Thanks.  It always seems easy to remove wood, and feels "permanent" if we cut something too small or too short.  We do scarf wood for gunnels, but rarely ever make any other wood "bigger." Thought I'd share an idea to add wood in hopes it helps someone else down the road.

The two labs interact quite well. The guide dog yellow lab as you know is trained to ignore other dogs and does a good job of it when on duty. The newer and younger black lab has not had any formal training but is quite easily trained. We have had border collies, heeler husky mixes and an unknown big black dog. I have worked with all of them and trained them to do basic things and be reasonable neighbors. My daughter has trained her comfort dog to do a few tricks but none of us have been able to cure her barking at neighbor dogs.

They get along quite well and will play with each other as well. They are fun to observe. Rick N

Shawn, great job, they look really good. Good use for a trim router to radius the handle ends.

Rick N

We had secured starts on the San Juan and the Smith, but everything went south when the virus hit. With plenty of time on my hands and some scrap wood lying around I decided to make a landing net. First, the bending form

Then a bit of steaming

then glue up

and a bit of shaping

add a bit of teak oil, and a net and voila!

the rivers in eastern Idaho are open but temps this morning are in the teens with a couple of inches of new snow, so floats are a ways off. 

David, that's beautiful. 

So is your bench.  Did you build it yourself?
I have a bunch of ash I'm hoarding, but may not use it for a bench and hold out for its "best use" (clear wood will be gunnels).  Was thinking of building one from a doug fir glulam.

It's kinda strange - I did without a "woodworker's" bench until I was 70 - built this one last year and now it's one of my favorite tools. Can't believe I did without it for so long. The real adds were benchtop holddowns (the really cool ones are from Gramercy Tools) and an end vise with bench dogs - I could have added them to my other bench years ago...

What was your rationale for both square and round dog holes?

Gorgeous.  You should be proud of your work.

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