Newsletter 15 - March 2018


Denman Marine Newsletter - March 2018

Hello, and welcome to the latest Denman Marine newsletter. 

In this month's newsletter we have;

  • Southwester Dory overview
  • March Special - Free Galley Module with Teardrop Camper kit
  • Customer Build Update
  • Barton Marine - 'K' Cam cleats
  • Kit Building Class - Spring 2018

If there is anything you would like to see in our future newsletters, discuss, query or order, please contact us via the contact form on our Denman Marine website.

Southwester Dory

Southwester Dory

The Southwester Dory is a lightweight and highly capable expedition boat, designed for sailing, rowing, motoring, or any combination of the three.  Elegant and straightforward to build from a kit or plans, this is an ideal boat for family outings, beach cruising, WaterTribe-style expeditions, or just gliding through the marshes.

The dominant feature of the Southwester Dory's interior is the bench seating along the sides of the boat.  The compartments below the seats are filled with foam and provide 844 pounds of positive flotation.  The wooden Southwester Dory is unsinkable already, but the flotation chambers make it easy to self-rescue from a serious mishap.  They also make great comfortable seats---no sitting on the floor!  This is a boat you sit "in," not "on." Large storage compartments at the bow and stern provide dry stowage for over 12 cubic feet of gear.  Assuming the hatches stay in place, the storage compartments contribute another 790 pounds of flotation.

With the considerable interior fit-out, the Southwester Dory is a bigger project than the Northeaster Dory or our smaller sailing and rowing craft.  Expect to spend around 250 hours on a sailing version with the motor well option;  builders will find some experience with epoxy and fiberglass useful before undertaking a Southwester Dory project.

Construction uses our proprietary LapStitch™ technique to render a beautiful round-sided lapstrake hull without a mold or jig or the need for sophisticated joinery skills.  Kit builders will assemble the planks using "puzzle" joints, then stitch the hull together with copper wire over four integral bulkheads and a transom.  We've drilled the wire holes for you, and frames are located with computer-cut mortises in the BS1088 okoume marine plywood parts.  The entire hull is assembled within a dozen hours of opening the kit boxes.  Fiberglass reinforcement inside and out is applied, and the seats and compartments fitted.  Finally, rails are glued on, everything is sealed in multiple coats of epoxy for rugged durability, followed by paint and varnish for beauty and UV protection.

You can find more information about our Southwester Dory here. Otherwise please contact us if you would like to place an order.

Southwester Dory


Barton Marine 'K' Cam cleats

Barton Marine's 'K' Cam cleats are manufactured from a composite Kevlar/Zytal material and are available in 3 sizes to accept lines up to 14mm in diameter. This advanced material offers performance advantages over carbon fibre and conventional glass-reinforced resins; 'K' cams are very strong, lightweight and have excellent wear-resistance. A progressive tooth design ensures maximum holding power on all types of line, whilst maintaining minimum wear to both cam and line.

'K' Cam bases feature a stainless steel wear bar for prolonged life.

Cams utilise stainless steel leaf springs which give a smooth but positive action.

They are also stronger and have a longer life than conventional wire springs.

'K' cam cleats are supplied as cleat only plus separate accessories in grey, green, red or yellow where appropriate, to allow colour co-ordination for port, starboard etc.

We can supply anything from Barton Marine's wide range of products. See here to view their range, otherwise contact us to discuss your requirements.


Free Galley Module with Teardrop Camper kit

Every Teardrop Camper base kit purchase during the month of March will receive a free Galley Module valued at $495 *. Contact usto place an order for your Teardrop Camper today and take advantage of this offer while it lasts.

*Offer valid from 01/03/18/ till 31/03/18. Does not apply to wood only kits, or plans and manual packages. Applicable to Teardrop Camper base kit purchases only.

Teardrop Camper


Customer build update 

Below we have some pictures that you have sent in during various stages of kit construction. We are always thrilled to see your project during any phase of construction, so please send us in your pictures so that we may publish them in future newsletters for everyone to enjoy.

Sam's Kaholo 14 under construction

Sam's completed Kaholo 14

John's Matunuck Surf Kayak under construction

"I spent almost five months of mostly after hours constructing this ripper surf kayak [from plans]. I opted out from having the 4mm marine plywood parts professionally cut. Admittedly it took me nearly a week to do it myself, but with the care I took all parts were nearly perfect. I used jig saw, small sharp hand plane followed by belt sander. The highlight side strip was stained at this stage with water based timber stain.

The 'stitch & glue' method is a very efficient and easy way to bring all large and narrow parts together. Fibreglassing the inner of the hull and the deck went smoothly but joining the two halves was problematic. Pulling together the two nose halves was almost impossible. I was sold 8oz fibreglass cloth, instead of the recommended 6oz, from our local dealer and combined with a generous amount of filler I used in the hull joins, may have made it too stiff to bend. During my sweat and frustration my wife suggested to heat it up. It worked a treat.

Glassing the exterior went smoothly. I used West System epoxy which had a reasonable pot life. The installation of the cockpit collar and lip was finicky and required a lot of clamps. If you intend to install fins, the fin boxes should be cut out and inserted prior to glassing the hull to get the best finish. I used the Futures fin boxes with small John John thrusters.

I located the side fin fronts in line with my hips when seated in the kayak. Initially I surfed with all three fins which made the kayak too stiff. I removed the centre fin which was much better. Still not quite right I made my own fins about third smaller than the John Johns which made the kayak nimbler.

I also filled part of the inner front and all the inner stern full of expansion buoyancy foam. This ensured that even when full of water it would not sink and at worse I can still get in and paddle to shore. However, in this configuration I am able to empty 97% of the water without needing to go to shallow waters and still get back in again.

Prior to the Matunuck, I have been surfing on commercial WaveMaster 2.4 sit-on-surf ski. The Matunuck is much better in small waves than the WaveMaster and it holds the rail on the faces as well as the WaveMaster. It seems to cut through the waves better than the WaveMaster when paddling out. So far I have really enjoyed surfing in it.

On the Chesapeake website the Matunuck is listed requiring intermediate skill to make it. I would almost say it requires advanced skills to complete this project. It certainly challenged me on many levels despite having a lot of woodworking experience. Having said that, building the Matunuck has been one of the most rewarding projects I have done. Not only does she look great but is also so usable." - John, on the construction of his Matunuck Surf Kayak from plans

John's completed Matunuck Surf Kayak

Kit Building Class

Denman Marine is seeking expressions of interest for a “build your own Chesapeake Light Craft kit” class that we are looking to run in Tasmania during spring 2018.

The 7-day course would empower you to build a boat under expert instruction, enabling you to walk out the door at the end of the week with a structurally complete boat. The course would be open to simpler kits such as stitch and glue kayaks, canoes, paddle boards, and rowing boats to ensure that your project can be structurally complete within the time-frame, and would be limited to 10 people.

If you are interested in having a week of great fun and learning, please contact us with your desired kit to register your interest if you haven't already.


Contact us

Please feel free to contact us at any time via our contact form to discuss your next boat or project.

You can find a link to our current a previous newsletters here.

Please note, all prices listed above are in Australian Dollars and include GST.

Denman Marine Pty Ltd ATF | ABN: 54779786053 | 2888 Channel Highway Kettering, Tasmania 7155