This summer I’ve been working on getting the interior of the hull completed.
I started with the thwart and and thwart cleats.
I glued up some 3/4″ reclaimed mahogany that I found on craigslist that had been pulled from hold Vancouver home window and door frames. It was not quite wide enough or thick enough. So I glued two pieces on edge and then onto a 1/2″ douglas fir boards. I then planed it down to 1″ thick which is just over the plan specifications of 7/8″.
The Thwart cleats were a complex piece to put together with a bevel on top of the curve of the hull to shape. It was also fun to figure out how to place it level and just in the right direction. But spending a little extra time on this I believe will bear fruit in the long run as it is such an important structural part.
The next step is to install the forward bulkhead and the deckbeams and kingplank. This part is also confounding me as the plans show the deck following the topmost lap between the sheer strake and the strake below. But this seems to create a curve that does not match the curve of the deckbeams specified in the plans. So essentially I have a choice of which path to take to reconcile the plans to the real world.
For the deck beams I needed more wood, so I made a trip to Jack’s New and Used in Burnaby and found some good old Douglas Fir door frames that were 1 1/4″ thick. this gives me a nice dimension to work with to shape the deck beams. The old Douglas Fir is now super hard and maybe a little brittle but also very solid. So I’m hoping it will result in a durable choice.
And again there are a lot of bevels to line up on this piece. But I’ve been taking my time making good templates first and then transferring the shape and angles to the final stock I want to use in the boat.
I’m close to getting it right, a little more trimming and it will soon be ready for gluing.
Yesterday after consulting Ian Oughtred’s guidance on whether or not to paint the hull with epoxy before painting. He is adamant that it is not a good idea. So I decided to go straight to priming the hull.
My next resource is the small book by Joni Blanchard “Tricks, Cheating & Chingaderos” a collection of knowledge and tips for varnishing and painting wooden boats.
I liked her suggestion of wiping down with denatured alcohol to try and have the surface as clean and dust free as possible. The only problem is try finding denatured alcohol in Canada. You won’t find it in the paint section of the hardware store. I found it as burning ethanol for garden fireplaces and stoves at Rona called Bio light. Otherwise the other option was marine stove fuel or 99% isopropyl alcohol à the pharmacy. But that only comes in small containers.
I also found a neat little tool to mark the waterline in such a way that it would remain visible under the paint.
It comes from our sewing kit. And leaves a nice little series of small bumps.
The process of cutting thin strips for laminations is a reductive one. As I don’t have a band saw, I’m using a table saw with a blade that is just shy of 1/8 thick. So for every 1/8″ thick strip I cut, I loose as much in sawdust.
I have just two more 2×3 boards to rip and I’ll have everything I need to glue up the bow and stern apron and stem.
To be able to get the 2″x 1/8″ thin strips needed to laminate the apron and stem I need nice clear (knot free) vertical grain wood. In my case that will be Douglas fir.
Last weekend I was able to find several 2×3 lengths that if ripped on its edge will give me 2.5″ wide strips that will give me the margin to plane down to the 2″ width specified. To do this you need to rip accurately, and the solution I found is to make a little jig that attaches to the table saw that should help yield consistent strips throughout the 8″ lenth. After each cut you move the fence over until the board stock rests against the jig guide wheel & repeat.
I also went back to the lumberyard to get western red cedar to build up my centerboard and rudder. I’m doing this while the strongback is free of the boat and I have a nice flat surface. That way I’ll get all my laminations done at the same time.
I’ve borrowed from the Gougeon Brothers and tu Gurit Embh. publications on wood foil construction. Ian Oughtred’s plans and instructions in “Clinker Plywood Boatbuilding Manual” are good but basic and as water is so dense small improvements in execution should have dramatic impacts in performance.
Gurit’s guide also suggests that in testing stiffness western red cedar sheathed with three layers of unidirectional carbon fiber had a 67% gain in stiffness over just using mahogany.
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