So my friend Odin Gilbertson wanted to redo his pontoon boat. Since most on the water are of the aluminum construction variety, he thought he would do his differently. He always wanted a pontoon boat in the style of the old sailing vessels, so he decided he would construct his deck and rails out of wood. I then introduced him to the Kreg Jig. He was admittedly a little skeptical, but I reassured him this would be the way he should go. Since the cradle I finished was done using the Kreg Jig, he let me show him how it works.
We started by screwing down the deck sheets, and from there, went with 2 x 2 construction. I wanted to opt for 2 x 4 construction, but Odin was worried about overall weight. So, I relented to his wishes. I showed him how using the Kreg Jig would give his design added strength on the joints. Granted, when we put the first posts on, they were a little wobbly. However, I told him that when we add more posts and siding, they would stiffen up just fine.
We also constructed the benches, using the Kreg Jig to secure them in place. Odin was quickly amazed at how fast our process was being completed. He was sure this would take us over a month of weekends working diligently. Within two weekends, we went from a platform to being nearly three quarters finished - WITH THE WHOLE PROJECT! The pictures I've uploaded show you how far we've come in a little time. The only things we still have yet to build are the seats for the back benches, and the captain's wheel tower.
After all that, we will need to sand, stain, and put coats of marine-grade varnish on it, to protect the pontoon from water damage. Keeping at our pace, this craft will be ready for the water by late April for sure.
We don't know any statistics, but we're pretty sure this might be the world's first pontoon boat made with a Kreg Jig. And you thought this tool was only for land-lubbers!!
Hey, I just noticed that my truck is the same color as my Kreg Jig. Coincidence???
Well, ever since the birth of their first child, they've had to put this project on hold. However, I won't let this project die, and will continue to do what I can to make this pontoon leave dry-dock. It's too cool of an idea to abandon. I'll keep you posted when more gets done on this project.