Wooden dagger board fit?

Discussion in 'Laser Talk' started by Rusty, Sep 29, 2006.

  1. Rusty

    Rusty New Member

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    I always wanted a Laser and recently purchased an old 1973 Laser, dull orange hull. I'm trying to restore it so I can sail it locally, non-competitively.
    I think the dagger board has swelled; it would only go half-way into the slot. I sanded it till it went all the way down.
    What kind of "fit" should the dagger board have in the slot without the little rubber piece installed, snug, loose or very loose?
    I was also wondering what to finish the wooden dagger board and rudder with, oil, varnish??
     
  2. Merrily

    Merrily Administrator Staff Member

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    Welcome to Lasering, Rusty!

    My board fits snugly into the slot but it slides easily up and down. So I guess the fit has to be "just right" like Baby Bear's porridge was to Goldilocks. ;) The wooden blades should be varnished with a high quality marine varnish.
     
  3. 49208

    49208 Tentmaker

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    Welcome

    Some of the old wood blades were notorious for tight fitting in the trunk, as the quality control was a bit lacking and the widths of the blades would vary. It was considered a good thing when you found a tight fitting daggerboard !

    It's possible it has swelled somewhat - if you can strip of the old finish and keep it in front of a de-humidifier or in a low humidty room for a few days you'll know for sure. If it's still to tight, you'll have not choice but to sand it down a bit.

    I disagree with the varnish for refinishing - (unless you like refinishing often,as varnish is a soft finish and will be very suceptible to scratches from the trunk)

    I would seal the wood with West System or other high quality epoxy resin - this will prevent it from swelling in the future - after the epoxy, finish with the hardest clear or white paint - polyurathene or epoxy based.
     
  4. Merrily

    Merrily Administrator Staff Member

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    I disagree with paint. Part of the coolness of wooden blades is their beauty. Don't paint unless they are really ugly. You can use West with the 207 hardener, wash to get the "blush" off, then clear polyurethane would work over it.
     
  5. Rusty

    Rusty New Member

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    Thanks for all the information and your quick response!
     
  6. Steve_Landeau

    Steve_Landeau New Member

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    My new boat (Ok, it's a 1976) also has wooden foils. The rudder is ok, but the daggerboard is pretty rough. To what extent can I "repair" them yet still remain legal? Am I allowed to cut off 1" of the entire trailing edge, and replace it with a new strip of wood, shape it and fair it to original specs? All I could find in the rules was that they must be original.
    I also agree, if you're going to carry wood, it needs to be naturally finished. Clear LP will be my choice.
    Steve Landeau
    Laser USA 9999
     
  7. 49208

    49208 Tentmaker

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    I'm pretty sure '76 boats did not have wood blades - If that 9999 is really the number on the boat, it's not a 76 (76ers would be in the 40000-45000 range IIRC)
     
  8. Steve_Landeau

    Steve_Landeau New Member

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    Yep, sorry it's a '74. I bought 2 of them at the same time. One is a '76, and the other a '74. The '74 came with the wooden blades. It's one of the boats that has no "stamp" on the transom. It has 9999 engraved in (or under) the gelcoat at the bow right at the painter attachment. My '76 is #32188.
     
  9. roshambo

    roshambo New Member

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    paint the blade yellow... with flames radiating back... that'd be cool!
     
  10. Laser76489

    Laser76489 Member

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    I have always understood that if you ever paint wood that god will strike you dead on the spot....besides wood would look so much better than flames...wood is wounderful stuff...trees have been made of it for years.
     
  11. roshambo

    roshambo New Member

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    agreed...

    natural wood is hard to beat.

    for some reason sarcasm doesn't come through in text.
     
  12. 49208

    49208 Tentmaker

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    I love the look of a natural finish on wood as much as the next person, but I also grew up sailing in water loaded with eel grass and other weeds. They are easy to spot on your rudder when it's painted white, and that's what most of the hardcore racers did, wether it was a Laser, Lightning, Thistle, etc... Different strokes for different folks.
     
  13. glasky

    glasky Member

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    Try a 2-part clear reaction lacquer (old ones used to be polyurethane I think - may be some new epoxy ones now)

    Can be sprayed or brushed on carefully - but when cured, sand to a flawless finnish and bring back the gloss with cutting compound after fine wet and dry. First use an automotive water cutting compound then move on to something finer like 'Brasso' TM metal polish. - just ensure you don't cut thru the surface coating, particularly on leading and trailing edges.

    Use tape on front top (and if not racing seriously) bottom rear of the centrecase edges. Adjust cboard shockcord tension so it holds but doesn't groove the bottom rear ccase and destroy the board's trailing edge when you lift or dtop the board whilst sailing. Some people also adjust the rubber 'stopper' at the rear top of the case - but frankly I have never sailed a Laser where this seems to be adjusted or installed in a manner that seems to make any real difference - unless you run aground sailing fast and dead astern.

    Probably worth smoothing the inner case too and the finnish will last longer if you wet the board before putting it in the case when setting out.

    Wood can be fast too - might even be stiffer than the new foam ones ??

    Good luck
     
  14. ebay100

    ebay100 New Member

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    Hi

    The board can be as loose as you like in the slot (as long as it isnt too small:rolleyes: ) it is the elastics that keep it in place. Make sure you leave space for the thickness of the varnish/paint (its thicker than you think) before you finish sanding:D .
     

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