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Construction of Two Portuguese Style Dinghies (Small Boats)

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Step 3: Cut your "Ribs" and Prep for Bending.

Cut three pieces of wood to be used for "ribs" that will help you shape the boat.
I cut scrap 2X4s I had in half lengthwise.
The short rib for the front of the boat is 34", the center rib is 46" and the back rib is 43". Hannu suggests angling the cuts to help fit them in to the boat. I did not do this on the fist boat, but tried it on the second. If you know how to cut angles, give it a try. Might make things easier.

I set the two sides on the ground for ease.
For this first boat, I was alone when trying to bend the sides. Bad idea. Get someone to help you out. In this case I used these straps I had. I looped them over the sides so that as I tightened them the ends of the boat would come together.

Also note that in the second boat, below, I soaked the sides in water for a while before doing this step. I highly reccommend doing that. Hannu also has ideas for how to bend wood using a heat gun.

Now you're prepped. The next step is adding the ribs and bending the plywood.
 
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