HOWB 082 – Interview | Schooner Zodiac’s Chris Wallace & Jeff Carson – Part 1

by admin on April 11, 2013



Todays featured spot is an interview with Chris Wallace and Jeff Carson.  Chris and Jeff live aboard their vintage 65′ wooden double ender – Kwaietek.  Kwaietek is an ex British Columbia, Canada Forest Service boat that is built stout and beautiful.  Chris is also the Port Captain for the wooden schooner Zodiac.

Jeff was born in California, the son of a career Navy man.  The family moved frequently and eventually his dad retired in West Virginia where Jeff attended High School and then college at Western Virginia University.  Jeff studied and graduated with a degree in Design and Technical Theater and went on to travel with theater companies building complex sets for their plays.  Eventually Carson ended up working at the Seattle Repertory Theater building sets.  During this stint, he met wife Chris Wallace.

Chris hailed from Corvallis, OR and her father was a well know professional set designer for theater.  Chris learned the old school techniques from her father for painting theater sets and went on to study costume design and art history in college.  Chris eventually moved to Seattle and joined the production side of the Seattle Repertory Theater.  Chris first learned to sail on the 160′ wooden schooner Zodiac, and earned her 200 ton Captains license.  She is now the Port Captain for the Zodiac.

Jeff and Chris first lived on a 36′ sloop in Seattle and eventually bought a ’40 ketch.  Then in 2010 they purchased Kwaietek, which they live aboard with their youngest daughter Juliet.  Kwaietek was built in 1923 and used by the BC Forest Service to take survey and inventory crews and top brass to the forests along the west coast of British Columbia.  She is plank on frame constructed with a 100 hp Gardner diesel which has powered the boat since 1936.

Click on the green player button above to listen to the full interview with Chris and Jeff.

Here’s some pics to enjoy (click to enlarge):

Jeff & Chris live aboard this 65' wooden vessel Kwaietek - a double ended ex B.C. Forester boat. Photo courtesy of Jeff & Chris.

Jeff & Chris live aboard this 65′ wooden vessel Kwaietek – a double ended ex B.C. Forester boat. Photo courtesy of Jeff & Chris.


Jeff Carson and Chris Wallace on Zodiac deck. Photo courtesy of Wooden Boat Dan.

Thanks Jeff & Chris for taking time out of you busy schedule to do the interview.  Best to you and your family!

Wooden Boat Hack of the Week – #20 | Build a 4 Hour Clean Room

Need a space in your garage or shop that is free of dust and debris – someplace you can use for varnishing your boat or occasionally parking your car?  Look no further – build your Wooden Boat Dan style “clean room” in 4 hours for less than $

  • Frame (on the ground) a wall of 2×4’s, 32″ on center that is 2″ shorter and 2″ narrower then the space you will be placing it in.  The studs should be nailed inside the top and bottom plates same as traditional house framing.
  • Set the wall in place, block it several places at the ceiling and at each end wall and secure to studs/ceiling joists with screws or nails (I prefer screws since it is easier to take down that way).
  • Frame a 30″ door into one of the openings between the studs.
  • Take a blue tarp (heavier duty is better) and stretch over the wall.  Place screws into studs where tarp grommets are.  Trim excess tarp with utility knife.
  • Staple tarp to wall every 12″-18″ between grommets and along floor and ceiling plates.
  • If you like, frame in a window, staple tarp to window framing, cut tarp for window opening, install window.
  • Use recycled materials as much as possible and you can build this for just a few bucks

Now you will have a clean space for varnishing, and an extra wall for hanging shelving, racks, etc. on.

Shoot an email to ole if you have other tips.

Upcoming Nordic Lapstrake Construction Workshop by Expert Builder Jay Smith

Jay Smith is putting on 2 One Day Workshops at his shop in Anacortes, WA on April 13 and 20th, 2013.  The workshops will run from 8-5, cost $140 and include lunch.  You can call 360 293-2034 or email to register.  Jay is the go to guy for Nordic boat building.  Check out for an interview I did with Jay about the Viking Ship he is building.

WANT TO HELP? PLEASE LEAVE FEEDBACK! I want to build a community of people from all over the world who want to connect, learn, share stories and photos, and have fun with wooden boats.

I would REALLY appreciate you sending me wooden boats pics, stories, or projects you are working on. You can also write comments on this blog, email me at, or call my feedback hotline at 424 261-2360. Click HERE to subscribe to my email news list for the latest and greatest fun stuff and click on one of the buttons below to subscribe to my show. Keep the bright side up and the barnacled side down – Wooden Boat Dan “over and out”! Subscribe to the Hooked On Wooden Boats Podcast here: Zune iTunes RSS Feed

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