Saturday, August 20, 2016

Long Steps is taking shape, all the frames are up.

Slow progress, but progress nevertheless.

I’ve altered a couple of things, so had to remake one frame. But that’s done now, and I’ve all of them stood up, glued and screwed to the bottom panel, and the interesection between the two filleted.
Note that I mask the fillets with plastic paint masking tape, the ones that will be seen anyway.  It makes getting a tidy job much easier.
I peel the tape off as soon as I’ve got the fillet properly formed, otherwise when the epoxy sets its very  hard to remove.
Note too that in order to make them easy to sand but still structurally sound for a high strength application I sometimes do the fillet in two shots. One with thickened glue using an 8mm radius tool for strength, then when its tack free but still green I’ll run a fillet of low density filler such as microballoons in epoxy over that with a larger radius tool. That makes it easy to sand and it looks nice.

Back to the boatbuilding.  With all the frames up its evident to those with an educated eye that she’s pinched amidships in the top two planks, that’s to keep the beam down a little where the oars will be,  Shes about three inches narrower there than she would otherwise be, and that translates into oars that are about  5in shorter, an important issue when trying to stow them in the boat.
Why not just make the boat more slender? Loss of sail carrying power, she’s relatively narrow on the waterline so she’ll row, but wider just above there so when she heels she picks up stability very quickly. I need all of the stability at 12 to 15 deg of heel that I can get but still keep those oarlocks at a reasonable distance apart.  Its all about how to work the compromises.

Filleting to go in yet but the structure is beginning to look vaguely boat shaped.  There is more room in the "cuddy locker" and in the Cuddy than in a SCAMP, and the cockpit is a good metre longer, has the last metre or so as a stand up place .  She feels BIG right now, the last several boats I've built have been much smaller.  I'm enjoying the work!

The next job will be to start putting in some of the lengthwise pieces, the corner stringers between the seat fronts and seat tops, they’ll act as some of the bracing needed to hold everything in place while I wrap the stringers around.

While working on that I”ll be putting some extra pieces in to spread the load from the big fairlead ( Chock) on the foredeck, the mooring line, sea anchor and anchor lines all go through that and it’s a highly stressed item so there will be extra bracing under the foredeck king plank to take that.

On Monday I’ll be off to the place that has expensive pieces of wood to buy some Western Red Cedar which I’ll rip up for stringers. Some of those  need to be over 20 ft long so I’ll buy the wood at about 12 ft, rip it  to size then scarf it to get the lengths needed.
Four stringers 20mm x 30mm each side, plus the inwale, that’s the one along the inside edge of the side deck and cuddy and supports the foredeck as well.  That’s ten scarf joints to make. The outer, or rubbing strake will go on much much later.

I’m only getting a couple of hours a day, and that not every day so I plan my work around the time available, that sometimes means that should I get more time, I’m still waiting for glue to set so can't do much. When that happened on Thursday last I decided to occupy myself by sharpening a couple of planes and make a start on rehabilitating some beaten up Marples Chisels I got very cheaply off TradeMe.
But sometimes patience, or tolerance wears thin.  The toolrest on my Ryobi grinder and linisher was a dreadful thing, too short, too flimsy, interfered with the hands as the tool was run back and forth over the grinding wheel and, well, it was a pain in the very low back to use.
So, out came the engineering tools, hacksaw, files, drill, taps and such, and I’ve made a  nice toolrest from a 6in long piece of 1in x 3/16in mild steel, drilled and threaded, cap screwed to the highly modified old toolrest, and beaten into parallel and square with a few whacks of the middle sized hammer.
I didn’t get the tools sharpened,  but did get one of  the things that was annoying me out of my life.

Priceless! I should do that more often.

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