Monday, May 31, 2010

13th month

I put in 40 hours of boatbuilding this month. That brings the total to 497 hours thus far. Breaking that down, if you are thinking that you dont have the time to build one of these boats yourself think about this. If you break my hours down by month its basically an hour per weekday and 2 hours each weekend day. Food for thought.
Im going to try to put in more hours on the boat in the next couple months and really strive to get finished soon. I still wont announce an official launch date, but the one in my head seems do-able. The last major decision I need to make is how to do the deck planks. Not sure if I want to do all mahogany or add some contrast by using a different species of wood for the individual deck planks. In the mean time I need to prep the sub-deck and permanently install it.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

King Plank fitting begins

Gotta love boat building days like this. It was 80F with a nice breeze blowing into the garage, I got lots of things done and didnt make any mistakes. (at least none that I have noticed yet) Today, I cut the inside curve on the port side. I also rough cut the outside edge of the coverboards on the port side. I left over 1/2" overhanging so I can fair the edge of the coverboards up at the same angle as the hull sides.I also cut the Vee angle into the front of the king plank where it matches with the coverboards. I couldnt resist clamping it in place for a picture. I will be trimming the king plank an inch or two narrower later on. The coverboards will be narrower when the outside edge is faired as well.
Next I'll continue working on the king plank in the aft two sections of the boat and figuring out how wide to make the king plank and deck planks.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Moving forward again

I got a handle on the coverboards inside curve now. Starting at the center of the boat with the batten and working fore and aft was the ticket. Now the only problem I foresee is duplicating the other side as a mirror image but I dont expect that to be too difficult. Here is the first piece with the inside curve cut, you can see it line up with the line drawn on the second board.

The line marked down the aft section of the boat along the cockpit.

The inside cut complete on the starboard side. The outside edge is only rough cut.

Head Scratching

These darn cover boards look so simple but have me scratching my head. I have marked the inside curve 3 times and finally have a fair curve but I dont like how the curve interacts with the front cockpit sides. The first two attempts werent even a fair curve, more snake like.

Im going to try a different approach in the morning by clamping the 10' batten I am using to mark the curve at the cockpit side first and then forward and aft from there. Up until this point I have been starting at the bow or transom and working from end to end. I'll try starting in the middle and see what happens. If that doesnt work I'll go back to my templates and experiment. Its quite annoying that this has been hanging me up for several days now.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Cover Board Joints Cut

Weds and Friday this week I cut the joints in the coverboards and tacked them in place with brads. Im pretty pleased with the joints. I did simple joints with one elbow, i figured the less complex the joint the cleaner my joint lines would be. After the inside and outside radius is trimmed off these boards only the middle 6-8 inches of these 12" wide boards will remain.I cut these with the sabre saw and hit them with the belt sander and a file to finish the jointsI think I am going to be really happy with the way the coverboards come out. The grain in the back 2/3rd of the coverboards really looks awesome, the front 1/3 isnt quite as good since the more angled cuts mean the grain doesnt line up as well but its still very consistent. Getting these all from one board was a great stroke of luck and I'd rather be lucky than good anyday.

Im kinda stuck as to what to do next. Mark the inside radius or mark the outside radius or drill the holes for the screws. I think I will rough cut the outside radius then I can accurately mark and drill the outer screw holes then I can screw everything in place good before I mark the inside radius.
Unfotunately, whatever the next step, its not going to happen until after the weekend. The little Admiral of the boat has other plans for me.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Lumber Mill

I get a lot of questions about what all this costs. Well, here is 260$ worth of custom milled African Mahogany, enough to do the cover boards and king plank plus a little extra.

I had a great experience picking this out. I went to my normal lumber yard down the road, Northwest Lumber, with a couple pictures. We went back and picked out a 12" wide, 17 ft, 1" thick rough cut piece of mahogany. Then they let me go back in the milling area and watch as they cut the 17' board to the 10.5' and 6.5' pieces I need for the coverboards. Next they, re-sawed the 1" thick boards with a 30 horsepower band saw that sits sideways with a conveyer that pulls the wood through the saw and refinished it to two 3/8" thick pieces. This way I can do both sides of the boats cover boards from the same piece of lumber. We then picked out a 7" wide, 8' long 1" thick rough mahogany board that best matched the cover boards for the center king plank. They put straight edges on, re-sawed and finished it to get a 3/8" piece as well. It was really neat to be able to see this happen and way cool that we were able to get all the cover boards from one piece of lumber. Normally, I would have to come back to pick up the order a day later but they were slow today so I got to watch the process and take my order home right away.
I guess I have plenty of work to do now, I'm just afraid of making a mistake with this lumber we took all that time to mill.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Cover Board Templates

The past week on the boat has been small items that dont show much progress. I counter-sunk the sub-deck screws. Did some filling of low spots under the sub-deck. Trimmed the sub deck around the cockpits, motor well and outside edge of the boat.
Now I am planning ahead for the next step, the cover boards. The cover boards will be 3/8" thick mahogany which is cut to cover the outside edge of the boat. The trick is to use as few pieces as possible so there are as few joints as possible. I made some templates out of 1/4" plywood I had left over. These template boards are 10" wide, I think I will make the real ones out of 12" wide material and I believe I will be able to have one less joint using the wider material. Once the real cover boards are fit the inside edges are trimmed to a nice radius similar to the outside edge of the boat.

I think I'll go ahead and order the material for the cover boards tuesday, that should mean it will be ready by weds.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Aft sub-deck rough cut

I didnt get any work on the boat done on sunday since it was Mothers Day. Today, I rough cut the rest of the sub-deck on the aft portion of the boat.

I need to sand around the cockpits, motowell and all around the outside edge of the deck.

Saturday, May 08, 2010

Forward Sub-Deck Rough Cut

Early this week I faired the deck framework and sheer again. Then late in the week I started fitting the forward sub-decking. Its an exciting part of the build and makes the boat look bigger.

To get the curvature at the front of the cockpit corners I used a 5 gallon bucket bottom to trace the radius. The overhang is 1-1/4". Not sure if I will stick with that amount or trim it back a little more. I'll decide once the rest of the sub-deck is on. It appears I may be able to sub-deck the entire boat with just 2 4x8 sheets of ply.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Motor-well Fillet

So far this week I have done the epoxy fillet in all the seams of the motor-well. I also started fairing for the sub-deck and bought a couple sheets of sub-deck material to get my started. 1/4" marine ply. A little more fairing is needed before I start fitting the sub deck.My plan is to finish fairing during the week and be ready to start fitting the sub-deck on saturday.

Sunday, May 02, 2010

One Year

Its now been 53 weeks since I started working on this project. I only worked on the boat 29 hours this month but looking back it was still a good month. Additionally, I spent a lot of time visiting two upholstery shops and the boat junkyard as well as several trips to West Marine almost an hour away.
I was able to get the steering link arm and the quick connectors for my throttle and shift cables to attach to my motor from the junkyard. I was amazed that in the mass of junk (4 acres and 3 barns worth) that the junkyard manager was able to go straight to and find the parts I needed.
In the month of April my boat went from a bare hull with seats and a floor to having a full electrical system with working lights and bildge pump, as well as plumbed for gas, steering and throttle cables. The motor-well is also installed and everything has been encapsulated in epoxy. Here are the finished electrical and encapsulation pictures you can see how the electrical and fuel lines go through the armrests, electrical on the port side and fuel on starboard side.
I also appear to have hired a upholstery guy. He cant get to my project until after Memorial day but thats fine with me. You can see his work on his website here. He works from a shop behind his home about 30 minutes south of here.Next up is filleting the motor well then begin fairing for the sub-deck installation to begin.
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