Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Thanks Bro'

I convinced my brother to come join me for a spot of boat building. I had 4 long (14'-16') oak planks to plane down to 22mm and cut into long strips for battens.
Hard to man handle all alone.

My PT85 was quite inadequate for the task. It would plane oak just fine for a while, but then just overheat and give up the ghost. Unless I wanted to run a board through, then shoot the breeze for 20 minutes and repeat (not a bad idea, but my time is limited) then I needed bigger iron.

I rented a Makita 2012NB from SamHire for the weekend. Like many hire shops they treat weekends as non business days, so I got it for 3 days for the price of 1.5 - In the end, due to various commitments, I only used it for about 3/4 of a day - but that was enough.

We spent quite a while running 15' planks through the planer, and got things down to a fine art. In retrospect, I should have just paid The Lisnavagh Timber Project a few bob to run it through their big industrial planer and it would only have taken an hour or so. You live and learn.

Cutting the battens is made easier by a very simple trick. Clamp the planks to bits of scrap on top of your workbenches. Then set the blade so that it cuts the oak, and cuts into, but not through the scrap. Now you don't have to get inventive about how you clamp the wood so as not to cut your workbenchs in half. So simple.

In fact for the first few battens, the oak was heavy enough not to even need clamps - do clamp the scrap bits - unless you want to see how far your saw can fling them.

Next up will be steaming the chine logs and the sheer clamps.

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