Hello Jennifer Raworth,
Please allow me to introduce myself. My name is John Cupp and I am a writer and columnist. I have columns that deal with new tools for the boat building industry and mainly homemade boats. You would be very surprised at the number of boat building projects that are completed each year in Canada the United States and South America by homebuilders. This is a market virtually ignored lately by the Can-Ply marketers and no new products for this application have been made in nearly 40 years. In fact, every year we find less suitable products for our use and the different sized sheets of plywood once available have disappeared. Oversized sheets that I could buy in 1985 are no longer available and the quality of once good plywood now is filled with inferior wood and there is no end to the amount of hidden voids inside the sheets of plywood sold by the companies you represent.
Essentially the plywood boat building section of your market is now totally ignored. I have people from Canada, Mexico and the USA write me trying to find inexpensive good plywood for boat building that is made in the Americas today. Unlike a few decades ago when your organization was called PMBC and you catered to the home boat building market you now seem to have left us out in the cold like a step child. Believe me when I say there is a market and if you came out with a good, less expensive marine glue panel, I would announce it and sing its praises in every boat building shop around the world! You folks once sold boat-building plans by now famous marine architects like Edwin Monk, William and John Atkin and other famous naval architects. Now sub divisions and custom homes have taken all the wood away from the boats that supported plywood in the early days.
Please believe me when I say I am not asking but begging that you spend some R&D money to bring out a new less expensive sheet product that is designed for the home boat builder. In fact, most of the Marine plywood that is of good grades comes in from overseas. I have done the boil testing and marine plywood from the Americas when you can find it is very sub par and as expensive as imported plywood. That seems out of place, doesn’t it? There are many things that could be done with new marine grade plywood such as epoxy bonding or UHMW overlays on one side for boats that work from a beach. Fixing core problems would also be nice. Finally, a special inexpensive marine plywood that would be treated with rot inhibitors made especially for fiberglass epoxy overlay. I know the price of wood has gone up but you could use this specialty market as much as boat builders could use the product.
Thank you for your time and I apologies for my rantings but we have been and still are a good market that has been ignored for some time. Bring out some new marine products and we will be there in full force buying them up.
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