Monday, August 31, 2009

So close.......

The last panel is trimmed to fit, it is held in place with screws and plywood washers, and it has had boiling water poured all over it with towels to hold the hot water in place.

All in all it's so nearly a boat.

But On Sunday it didn't rain as much as it always looked like it would rain any second. This is a problem for building out of doors.

There remains some sanding of the battens to do before I can start gluing. I need to do the this in the daytime (weekend) as power sanding when I get home from work might not be a good way to win friends and influence people now that kiddies are back at school and early to bed.

The forecast looks good for this weekend. I should have a complete hull.

Then I need to set a few bronze screws that are sitting proud, fill the remainder of the screw holes and start the whole sanding and glassing process. There's a bit of tidy up sanding to do at the scarfs, but not too much.

Shortly after this I will be moving the boat out to the front garden to make way for some building work. That should be fun.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

burning the midnight oil....

At about 8pm the kiddies were off to bed, so I nipped out to just sand the chines and keel, ready for a glue up the next night. But that didn't take long, so I thought, I'm here now, let's glue.

A good plan and a bad one. I had not yet marked all the spots for the screws. It's best to do this before you start mixing glue. Anyhow... I did the usual, coat with neat epoxy, then mix up epoxy and microfibers, then screw the panel into place.

I knew I had one slight "dip" in the chine, so I filled this out with epoxy and chopped strands, and pretty much left the panel at that point to just follow it's curve. It worked out well.

Half way though my halogen site lamp blew. So I had to finish the job, mixing epoxy and microfibers, and marking and drilling and screwing using a portable flourescent lamp powered off a drill battery. (Makita rocks)

I finished up at about 11:35pm.

Most of that panel is now trimmed back, and I now have only one panel left to do. Tuesday looks like a good evening for boat building. And I have some spare bulbs for my site lamp now.

I can still look inside the remaining "hole" in the boat, and it all looks sort of boat like from the inside.

I then need to trim the centerboard slot back properly (I am still wondering how to use a roundover bit given the gradually changing slope of the bottom)

Then glass it and turn it.

Then I need to get it out of the back garden. I'll pin a temporary "deck" into place to give it some strength before the lift, It should be interesting.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Cutting Limbers after the fact.

I played with a tiny ratchet driver and a 6mm auger drill bit. I clamped a scrap batten to a work bench, and I can make a 6mm hole in the batten about 1mm from the bench. This will do just fine. So when the hull is turned I'll do the job on the three battens. I will probably have to cut the auger short, and glue on a socket to the end so that I can fit it between the battens, but that's no big deal.

I will also reinforce the battens on both sides with an extra 1/2 inch from the transom to the next frame. Since these will be flat surfaces, I'll use Balcotan (Marine PU) for the Oak. Previous tests show it works just fine. My test lamination has been knocking about in the garden and in the shed on and off, unpainted for 2 years and it's still solid.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Getting there....

I've started to fit the foreward sections of the hull.

Both the aft sections are now glued, screwed, and trimmed (Since I took the photo above)

The squares of plywood are used as Giant washers.

Monday, August 10, 2009

And this is what the inside looks like

I just held the camera under the boat.The unplaned wood is the building frame and there is an oak plank in the top left corner of the pic.
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Sunday, August 09, 2009


Remember me posting "Note to self: I still have the limbers to cut." back about here. Well I was busy congratulating myself on a nicely glued up panel, trimmed and all, when I realised I'd entirely forgotten about the limber holes in the battens and keel.

I've been on the forums and had lots of advice, from "you don't really need them" to various ways of fixing the problem. I've cut the limbers for the other side now, this little detail will have to wait until I turn the hull and try to figure out how I'm going to drill a hole at the bottom of a 1" batten beside the plywood, with only 2" to the next batten.

The current plan is to use a right angle mini ratchet screw driver to run a screw through the batten.

Once that's through, I will feed a coping saw blade through the screw hole, and start the long slow process of cutting out the limber. I expect to have to make up a holder but that will be the least of my worries. A dowel and sandpaper should help me finish off.

The battens from the transom to the last frame aft will be reinforced with an extra 1/2" of oak. This will mean that even with a 3/8" hole, there will still be 1" of Oak. Add the strength of the . Add the strength of the plywood to that and It should be plenty strong.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

1 Aft panel = Two evenings work

The oak battens, chine and keel that I was going to glue the aft bottom panel to were all tarnished from just being open to the air. It took most of the first evening and 3 belts (40 grit) on my belt sander to remove all the tarnish and leave nice clean wood to glue up. New belts are cheaper than the added time it takes when you persist in using a dead one, and dead ones burnish a surface. That's not good for gluing.

I'd gotten an attachment to allow me to connect my bosch sander to a vac, so there practically no mess.

I clamped a few guide blocks in place, and put in a few locating screws. This allowed me to consistently replace the panel. Then I marked up the places for all the screws, it takes long enough that you don't want to be doing that while the glue is setting up.

The next evening I coated the oak in neat epoxy and then pasted on micro fibre mix. A little careful lifting and the bottom panel was in place.

There's ¾" screws every 3 inches on the chine and keel and every 6 inches on the 3 battens. Add in the screws on the transom and you suddenly have about 100 screws. Two 18 volt drill/drivers means that you don't have to keep swapping drill bit/driver bit.

When I get home I'll see how well it all went.

Even so it was well dark by the time I finished, my builders site lamp is getting a good workout these evening.

More sanding this evening to start the aft panel on the other side.

Monday, August 03, 2009

And now the Scarfes are cut

One thing to note is that if you run the power planer at 90 degrees to the scarf, some of the plies come off as long splinters than quickly block the vac outlet. Run at 45 degrees and your vac will get most of the rubbish. When the vac outlet blocks up it's not subtle, suddenly there's bits everywhere.

The scarf joints are now cut, so I guess next up is to glue the aft panels in place, they don't require much in the way of fitting. Glue and trim to fit. The forward panels are cut about 2" over size so that I can screw in some locating holes, and trim them to fit. The forward panels must be trimmed before gluing, so the locating screws allow me to get the same position each time.

Then I'll apply lots of bend with towels and boiling water. A clamp on the edge of the panel, with some scrap ply backing to spread the load gives you something to tie a line to, then the panel can be hauled into place with a small block and tackle, and a rake load of clamps to pin down the progress as you make it.

The weather forecast is not looking good until the weekend.... But we'll see.