Fitting Two Stage Tapers

Sometimes when fitting strips on a strip built boat you have space where multiple strips intersect. So, instead of having one simple taper, you have a combination of two different tapers. Here I show the process of creating that fit.

I started by marking the first taper. Holding the end of the strip even with the pointy end of the space, I mark the crossing point where the  bottom edge of the new strip intersects the  bottom edge of the strip that creates the first taper.

I hack off the excess with a knife and then plane down to the line. I double check the fit. In this case it fit well on the first try.

I then marke the beginning point of the second taper on the deck just to make it easier to find. With the tip of the new strip held in place I marked the intersection for the second taper.

I started planing down towards the line, but stopped before I was right on the line to make sure the angle of the taper was good. The second taper was matching well but needed to be pared down a bit to allow the strip to slide all the way in. I took another few swipes with the plane and checked again. After about two more passes with the block plane, the strip slid home, tight on each face.

One of the keys to accurately cutting tapers like this is a sharp plane. If you have to push hard to make it cut, you will bend the tip of the strip, causing concave edge instead of straight. The blade should not be set very deep. Take light cuts. The plane should be able to cut a smooth curl from the heel of the taper all the way out to the toe.