“You can never have too many clamps.”

David Ryan

David Ryan is a boat builder and USCG licensed master captain. He is the owner of Sailing Montauk and skipper of Montauk''s charter sailing catamaran MON TIKI You can follow him on Twitter @CaptDavidRyan

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13 Responses

  1. aaron david says:

    And screwdrivers, never too many.Report

  2. Michael Cain says:

    Absolutely true. I gave up watching “New Yankee Workshop” because I got insanely jealous every time norm clamped up a project.Report

    • dhex in reply to Michael Cain says:

      my issue with nyw was that every single thing he did was “don’t worry this is easy” and 4k of gear (including, as noted, infinite clamps) and 25 years of experience were just handwaved away.

      that said dude was affable as hell. very fun to watch.Report

  3. Road Scholar says:

    A friend of mine makes spiral staircases by hand. He makes the handrail by laminating maybe ten strips of wood together directly on the staircase frame (a business partner makes that from steel). So that takes a clamp about every six inches or so. At least 50 or 60 clamps total, maybe more.

    His is a quality vs quantity business.Report

  4. Stillwater says:

    That’s a damn fine run a clamps. Nice wood, too, all bendy and such.

    I’ve a question, tho: I assume you’re expecting below freezing temps at night, so …. what kinda glue’d you use?Report

    • David Ryan in reply to Stillwater says:

      We use Raka 900 series epoxy resin, matched with their 425 cold weather weather hardener. In the summer a small batch will fire off in about 5 minutes, but the temperatures we’re working we can work with pints of resin with no problems, even with the additives to make our glue.

      Our procedure is to wet out both faces with unthickened resin, then coat one face with resin thickened with colloidal silica and milled glass fibers. The milled fibers make the glue very strong, and the silica is a “thickogen” which gives the glue body so it stays were you put it. Other additives give other properties that are useful in this style of boat building: colloidal and glass microsphere for filleting (filling jointed corners with thickened resin for load-spreading and appearance) or colloidal and phenolic micro-balloons for fairing compound.

      Very cold temps don’t harm the glue, they just slow it down. I expect it will fingernail soft in the morning, good for cleaning up with a surform. By noon it should be hard enough to unclamp and grind.Report

      • Stillwater in reply to David Ryan says:

        Thanks David.

        Man, the things they’ve figured out with adhesives. I guess I shoulda known there was a relatively easy below freezing epoxy, but for some reason it seems counterintuitive to me.

        Keep posting about this, please. It’s like the coolest damn thing.Report

      • Road Scholar in reply to David Ryan says:

        @stillwater , two words: Space Program. Remember those heat-resistant tiles on the shuttle? They needed a way to stick new ones on while in orbit.

        Now the stuff Ryan’s using may or may not have any relationship to shuttle tile goop, but whatever else you want to say about it the space program has been a hell of spur to technology. Military too, but at least NASA doesn’t intentionally kill people as a core part of their mission.Report

      • David Ryan in reply to David Ryan says:

        Except where water is concerned, 32 is a pretty arbitrary number. This essay from master rigger Brion Toss has some good thoughts about that, and other things:


      • The whole aerospace business. The Boeing 787 structure is 50% advanced composites. The Airbus A350 is 53%. Remember when you take off in one of those spiffy new planes that most of it is glued together, not riveted or bolted. And then remember that a few years ago, the Air Force discovered that at least 30 of their pricey new F-22s were inadequately glued together when part of the airframe on one fell off and was sucked into an engine intake.Report

  5. aaron david says:

    Just out of curiosity, have you read McPhee’s Survival of the Bark Canoe? Totally different kind of boat building, but fascinating just the same.Report

  6. Patrick says:

    “You can never have too many clamps.”

    Word. I don’t even engage in that many woodworking projects right now (time considerations) and I find uses for clamps every week.Report