Tag Archives: Caledonia Yawl

Caledonia yawl project: bevelling the stems

Today my brother Maël helped me with the beveling of the stems. This will create a bigger mating surface for the planking. This will provide a mating surface for the planks.


We did the bulk of the work with the power planer and then finished with the block plane and the spokeshave. I did notice that because the laminated stem has alternating grain, it is important to have a sharp blade to avoid ripping out any of the grain.


I also managed to do the glue up of the rudder assembly.

Next up will be setting up the station molds and getting ready to bevel the keelson. This boat will soon finally be taking shape.

Caledonia yawl project: rudder assembly 

Today with the help of my children we tackled building a couple shelves to make more room for tools. We also started working on the assembly of the retractable rudder. The plans show a little guide or sheave for the line that rudder pulls the rudder blade down. Figuring what to use for this  rather unique spot took a little creative thinking.

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Caledonia yawl project: final shaping of rudder and centreboard 

Experience in working on gyprock and mudding all the joints and corners and having to then sand them down to a fair blend to the straight board stock, is that it is worth spending a little more time sanding even if to the eye and to the fingers it appears to be smooth. 
  
Once I add the unidirectional carbon fibre and epoxy I will certainly discover new spots that are not quite right for the centreboard and rudder NACA profiles. Sanding down epoxy is much harder than bare cedar.

I’m feeling fairly confident about the shape now and I’m looking forward to adding the epoxy and carbon fibre.

   
 

  
This beautiful cedar will soon disappear behind layers of carbon, Kevlar and graphite. The only part of the boat I felt would benefit from additional strength beyond just wood fivers.

Caledonia yawl project: final shaping the centreboard

Last night I got back out to the boatyard and spent a couple hours planing down the shape of the board to the depths I’d marked with the kerfs I made with the pull-saw. This technique is really helpful to keep tabs on the progress as I was using a power planer then a block plane and finally a random orbital sander with 60 grit paper.


 Once I got the taper cut for the leading and trailing edge I worked on rounding out the leading edge with the sander as well as the two ridges on each side.

The next step is to get ready to put some uni-directional carbon fiber on the sides and some kevlar fiber on the edges.

Caledonia yawl project: Buying the keelson lumber and preparing the centreboard 

Back out to Fibertek to buy more epoxy with my assistant.

The apron and stems took much more expoxy than I had anticipated. This time I splurged and bought the gallon of resin and hope that I won’t have to make a trip back here soon.  Note that the 15′ 2×6 douglas fir on the Larry vs. Harry handled fine.

Continue reading Caledonia yawl project: Buying the keelson lumber and preparing the centreboard 

Caledonia yawl project: planing the bow apron and stem

Having access to a thickness planer makes this activity much easier and more precise. I was able with relative ease to plane the whole length of both the apron and stem down to the specified thickness on my own. I did spend some time fretting about keeping the angles square and not ending up with a weird parallelogram that would give the bow a weird twist. fortunately the thickness planer coupled with a square and some judicious hand planing kept everything progressing smoothly. When planing the apron down to the right 2″ thickness i was sure to keep checking that it was square.

Continue reading Caledonia yawl project: planing the bow apron and stem

Caledonia yawl project: gluing the bow stem

When I ripped the strips for the bow stem I was not sure what the appropriate thickness would be so I played around with everything from 1/8″ to 3/16″ and up to 1/4″ most of my strips were 1/8″ thick.

Which meant that to create a 3″ thick stem I needed nineteen strips. Each strip needed to be buttered with epoxy and with so much surface area that turned out to be about 850ml of epoxy  or nearly a whole can. If all my strips were thicker I would have used much less epoxy. The lesson that I learned is that when laminating use the thickest strips that the mould will bear.

 

Nineteen strips of Douglas fir waiting for the epoxy

 

Then Fortunately Patrice came out to help me with the laying out of the stem on the mould.

a fair bit of epoxy squeeze out

Caledonia yawl project: planing the stern apron and stem to size 

I started this morning with a borrowed thickness planer, which allowed me to get the apron down to the specified 2″ thickness and the stem down to 1 3/4″ width.

running the apron through the thickness planer

checking that the edges are square
  
good view of the alternating grain pattern in the wood strips

The challenge was to keep checking the length of each piece to make sure it was square.  I had to use the hand planer a couple times to get it nice and square the whole length so that the thickness planer did not perpetuate the wrong angle.

bow apron all glued and clamped

Once I finished the getting the stern apron and stem to the right width, I started on the bow apron glued up with epoxy and microfibres for better gap filling in the lamination and strength.