Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Tech Tip Tuesday

Today's Tech Tip Tuesday is about sharpening your own skills by helping others.  You never know what you might learn...

I always try to do my best to help out other boat builders.  Sometimes they're students in my class, sometimes they're people building their own boat who have a question.  It truly varies.  As a teacher, one of the things that I've learned is that students all come from a different backgrounds with different experiences.  As such, they all seem to look at the building process and questions that they encounter from different points of view.  As I've mentioned before, I often think that I learn more from my students than some of the woodworking instructors that I've had.

I got a call from a man who lives nearby and is building a Chesapeake Light Craft hybrid kayak kit - a Shearwater 16, I believe.   He'd done a great job on the tack-and-tape hull and was just getting ready to start stripping the deck.  Having never done any strip construction before, he had some questions about the process.  While CLC makes some decent manuals and offers a good technical support line, sometimes there isn't a substitute for a bit of face-to-face discussion over the parts and tools.  At any rate, I offered to meet him at his shop - a space in a local mill building to see if there was any support that I could offer.

At any rate, we went over some of the questions that he had and deciphered the intentions that the folks at CLC had when they wrote the manual.  It was a very pleasant visit and  as usual, I heard new questions and the same questions expressed different ways.  It gives me a bit of practice and be better prepared for understanding a question that a student might pose to me. 

Go out and sharpen your own skills and do a good deed all at the same time!

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