Caledonia yawl project: preparing the gunwhales

This weekend the weather started to turn through the day on Saturday. In the morning it was wet and warmish. But as the day wore on the forcast bore itself out and the temperatures dropped steadily to -9 overnight. With this in mind I decided to forego any gluing and do more things that would set me up for some productive days of gluing when the temperatures start to rise.


I started by sanding all the fillets I had done in all the interior laps. The last set of fillets I plan on doing are between the aprons (inner stems) and the planking. This will strengthen the bond and present a better surface for painting and keeping clean.


I also cut all the scarfs needed to lay up three laminations od 1/2 ´´ thick Douglas fir that will be  nearly 21’ long once glued up.  I just found that my last pieces were a little knotty with some grain runout and so I could only get 8’ out of them. I will need to get two more lengths of 13’ 1/2” strips to have all the materials ready.

Caledonia yawl project: ripping strips for the chainplates frame


Today I was able to share the project with a couple friends who had not been down to see it.  It was interesting to hear that based on the photos they did not have a good sense of scale and found it to be much bigger than expected.

I also borrowed a table saw to rip the necessary strips to create the 1″ by 2″ frame that will be bolted to the chainplates and but into the gunnels (inwhales).


My little roller feeder guide still works great and I’m quite happy with my strips. All from a 10′ 2×4 of clear Douglas fir that cost me $50.

I now have 2.25″ of 1″ wide strips. It is 0 degrees today so I’ll wait for a warmer spell to glue  it all on the mould.


I also started sanding all the fillets I put in at each lap landing on the inside of the hull.


And at the end of the day I got some help vacuuming.


And they helped with getting a good scale aide for the photos.




Caledonia yawl project: joggle stick and making the frame

The plans drawn by Ian Oughtred are incredibly detailed but there are several rig options to include in the plans and so some details are just lightly addressed. The one that popped up for me was with the choice of the gunter yawl rig the plans show the location of the  chainplates and frame for the gunter sloop rig but not gunter yawl.


I had to do some math to look at the distance of the mast step from the chainplates and frame location and then transfer that based on the location of the three sail gunter yawl mast location on the plans. I guess it is there but you have to work a little harder to get the answer.


I have committed to my approach and now the challenge was to measure the shape of the frame I will have to laminate at the intersection of the chainplates. I read a nice description of the use of the “joggle stick” by John Welsford

Which I liked as a faster process than making a template with hot glue.


Pardon the low quality of images, the protective lens on my cell phone cracked unexpectedly in the cold. I’ve been able to fix it and the camera is back to its old form.

Then transferred the joggle stick points to a sheet of plywood.


I also glued down the floor 2.5 and started to fillet all the laps on the inside of the hull.