In a previous post I was making an effort to finish a project I had a vision for and started over 10 years ago. I kept the basic frame and arrows and moved it all to Greenville from Little Rock in 2007. About 3 years ago I grabbed a piece of river birch bark for this project and it sat all this time in my closet. I finally pulled it out and finished putting the pieces together.

The final step was to stain it and get it completed. I plan to put this on the bookcase in my office.

I am real satisfied with how it turned out!

It feels good to get it finished. Finally.

After turning 50, I decided to make a concerted effort to finish some old projects before starting any new ones. I tend to have an idea that gets stuck in my head. I can see it fairly clearly but before I can finish it, I am on to the next idea in my head.

A good starter but not such a good finisher.

So this is a project that I started over 10 years ago. It has even moved states with me many years ago. It never really left my mind so it is time to finish it.

I made this simple frame to start and that is as far as I got. I even used a router to cut a groove in the back. The frame made the move but that router bit was lost a long time ago so I decided to do it all by hand.

I finished all of the sides and sanded it as smooth as necessary since this will be the back.

I cut some very thin plywood and nailed it in place with a nail gun. I didn’t have a piece long enough for the whole length so I did it in two pieces. 

2 or 3 years ago Sherry and I went on a trip to Canada and I grabbed a piece of river birch bark. I had pressed it flat before it dried and had it stored in my closet for safe keeping for this very project. I told you it was still on my mind.

I laid out the contents as they will best fit. The whole idea was based on Psalm 127:4 that says, ” Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, So are the children of one’s youth.” I have three boys so this is my reminder to invest in them so God can use them even after I am gone.

I still need to stain the whole thing and figure out how to hold all of it in place.

1982 O’day Daysailer 2

Posted: November 27, 2016 in Uncategorized

The guy that had the boat before me tried to put a bigger outboard motor on it and use it to fish off of. One of the first things I needed to do was take the reinforcement he added to the transom. 

I after getting the boat back from getting the hull repaired, I decided to put the mast and sails up and see what needs repaired.

Several little small repairs will need to be done. The gooseneck slide for the boom was cracked.

I found one online for around $16 so this will be an easy fix.

New boat, new project

Posted: November 25, 2016 in Uncategorized

I literally check Craigslist every day for deals on all kinds of things. One of them is sailboats. I recently stumbled on a guy selling a 1982 O’day Daysailer.

I went and looked it over. It needed some work but all of the good stuff was there…mainly the sails. This boat had a main sail and a jib and they were in great shape. So I bought it.

One minor issue was a needed repair to the hull.

I decided to take it to the guys at Creative Fiberglass for this repair mainly because the boat is so heavy, turning it over would be impossible.

Finding the Sail

Posted: March 31, 2016 in Boat restoration
Tags: ,

We have been working on a 1976 Chrysler Dagger 14 sailboat. One of my biggest challenges was going to be finding a sail for the boat. 

A local sail shop (yes a sail shop in the upstate of South Carolina) quoted me $450 to make a new sail. Knowing this was my worst case scenario I began searching online for the right sail.

I finally tracked down a sail at Minney’s Yacht Surplus store in Costa Mesa, CA. They were great to work with and the used sail was only $95.

I decided to convert over to a slug and shackle system which should be easier to use for one person. I took some measurements and bought the 7/16 slug and the 15/16 shackle from Sailrite.

I have 9 grommets and I attached them to my new sail.

Of course I could wait, so even though it was starting to get dark we moved the boat out of the garage and hoisted the main sail!


The Chrysler Dagger 14 sailboat I recently bought as a project was missing the centerboard. I contacted a guy online through a Chrysler sailboat forum and he sent me pictures and a drawing of his centerboard.

A friend had recently given us some scraps of mahogany so we glued some pieces to make the board and then began hand shaping it.

Once we got the basic shape down based on tracing the hole for the centerboard.

I just keep fitting it in the hole and marking with a pencil where it is rubbing and then shave with the hand plane and repeat the process.


I recently bought a 1976 Chrysler Dagger 14 a fun little boat to learn how to sail on. I was on a pretty limited budget and this boat was about as cheap as they come – $100. You can read the first two posts on this project by clicking Restoring a Chrysler Dagger 14 and  Cleaning the Hull.

Of course there was a reason the boat was so cheap, it was missing three key elements: the centerboard, the rudder and the main sail. Minor problems, right?

We are in the process of making our own centerboard after getting the dimensions from a guy online. A future post on that part of the project is in the works.

After searching online, I found a guy selling a rudder and sail from a Jetwind boat made by Sears and he lived just 20 minutes from my house. The sail wouldn’t work but the rudder bracket actually matched up. The blade on the rudder is about 6 inches shorter than the original for my boat but the hardware and the tiller handle were exactly what I needed. Since there is not much of a market for Jetwind parts I got it all for just $40. I gave the sail to a buddy who has a Sunfish to see if he could use it.

The hole on the rudder bracket was 5/16 so I drilled out the bracket on the boat to match.

I bought a 8 inch lag bolt and cut off the threads, leaving myself enough space to taper the end and drill a hole for the pin.

 I wanted to use stainless steel for this but the store I went to didn’t have anything that long. So I will just keep an eye on it over the season and replace it if it gets rusty since it only cost me $.91.

I used a bench grinder to taper the end and smooth out any rough spots. This will help it slide through the brackets more easily.

I used my drill press to drill a hole through the bolt that the pin will go through to keep it from falling out.

Again I used the grinder to smooth out where the drill bit came through and installed it to see how it works.

Everything lined up great and the rudder is balanced and swings easily. I will need to add a spacer to the tiller handle so it doesn’t rub the deck of the boat. I have some mahogany to do this with so it shouldn’t be a problem.

I have decided to try the rudder out before making any major changes to it. If I find that the rudder isn’t giving me the performance it should, I will replace the blade with a longer one made of wood.