Sunday, 13 December 2020

Prep and launch - Overkill is afloat !

 It has been an up and down couple of months, as you will realise from the time since the last post.  My camera is on the boat, so there will be another post shortly to fill in some details.

But I have launched................... this was taken as we headed off up to the mouth of the Brisbane River to the marina after tying up to the pontoon for engine checks after launch, a beer and photos.

The last few months have been tied up in getting the engine systems installed: fuel lines and filter, water exhaust install, anti-syphon loop, the cutlass bearings (front and rear) in the stern tube and the shaft seal on the inside of the cabin.  There was also a single through-hull installed which was fitted with water strainer high above the waterline so you can empty the strainer easily.  In addition, the folding prop was fabricated and fitted, along with sacrificial zincs on the driveshaft and another one on the keel attached to the stainless steel bottom rudder fitting.

I fitted a mainsail track and block, turning blocks for the running backstays with clutches and a block to hold down the boom (Cunningham?).  I was tying on the mainsail, lashing it to the boom and gaff but it was too windy to raise it enough to lash it to the mast so it was tied down.  I finished the instruments by mounting the transom transducer for the depth sounder on the Raymarine Element 7 plotter. 

Inside I hooked up the engine power and my father and I filled the oil in accordance with the Beta manual and filled the coolant in the heat exchanger.  After putting 40litres of diesel into the take (60l capacity) we bled the engine using the fitted hand bleed pump on the engine until we had diesel ready to go.  The engine bloke said to give the impeller a bit of lubricant as it would be running dry during the first startup until the water got through.

Outside we taped up a boot stripe above the waterline (this was before the final fitting of the shaft and prop) and in some of the hottest weather in Brisbane for a while we suited up and painted on the antifoul.

Below shows us when we got to the last section:

And below from further away, Dad on the roller:

This is finished from the aft starboard quarter:

Once we were ready we had to wait for a slot with the travel lift.  I was in a commercial marine precinct and I was definitely out of place.  So much so they had to use the "small" travel lift which takes up to 65tonne to move it around close to the "middle" travel lift (300t capacity) which could walk it out over the water and lower.

This is waiting for the lift:

And the "middle" 300t lift moving past to lift due to mast height:

Once it was in position and the slings in place it was lifted off the cradle:

And I could quickly antifoul the bits that we had missed because of it.  This could dry while we moved the cradle out of the way and packed our stuff into the car which my mother was moving out of the yard once we launched:

You will have to wait for the launch video sorry (mum took lots of videos and I need to pick a section out) but once ready my father and I, and a mate with lots of experience to captain were lifted up into the cockpit by forklift and we moved back out over the river to be lowered in.  The boat was too light to register on their weight gauge.

They lowered us very slowly down into the water and while still on the slings I jumped down into the cabin, turned on the power system including the engine circuit and opened the seacock.  Dad was on hand as always with the spanners in case he needed to bleed the air out of the lines, but after a couple of cranks with the key the engine fired up straight away.  I am impressed with how quiet it is, and I have yet to fully put the engine box around it.

A quick check for leaks and after finding none we were into reverse and out of the slings while a very impatient large motor catamaran stood off close by to be hauled out.  We motored a short distance to the pontoon and shut down after tying up to check the fluid levels and check again for leaks.  

Mum took a couple of photos, we moved some tools and things we didn't need off the boat and I poured some beer into the river as an offering, christened the boat by pouring some over the anchor and had a little smile.

Dad jumped off to transport cars around to the marina and my mate and I were off up the river to the mouth and across Moreton Bay while we still had daylight.  The weather was rubbish with wind against tide and 1.5-2m swells on the beam in the bay but I didn't care.

We tied up at the marina a couple of hours later after motoring and I had to rush off for work the next morning.  Since then I have been tinkering around, but still have a few blocks, leads and clutches to sort before I can put all the sails up.

I will take a few photos of the fit out etc and some sailing shots.  I was impressed on the initial motor over with how dry the cockpit was considering the sea, how little we were rolling and how safe it felt.  Engine-wise we were making five knots in the river against the tide at about 2500-2750 RPM of a recommended max of 3400 on the 14HP Beta.

But I have launched, after nearly eight and a half years (but take off a year and a half for working away) of what was planned to be ten at the most.  

Thanks to my family and father for the assistance along the way, and for tolerating my continual requests for 10 minutes help in the shed.  They coined the term "shed time" for a 10 minute request for help that inevitably took half to three-quarters of an hour.......

Thanks also to John Welsford for the design and help along the way with email inquiries, along with the Woodenboat Forum where I shamelessly stole ideas and tried to copy them.


Monday, 3 August 2020

Rigging prep and boat transport

I have continued to prepare the mast, boom and gaff along with the rigging whilst I was waiting for a slot to move the boat.  Added some hardware to the boom to attach the sail and hold the boom down:

I made hardwood pieces for the boom (maybe called combs?) shaping them with the drill, jigsaw and angle grinder followed by sandpaper.

Below are the ones for the boom:

And for attaching loops for the gaff halyards to go back and forward through to the block.  I marked out the hole and made six in one go:

And below after a couple of coats of Sikens:

Below is a photo of the bronze deadeye on one of the shrouds (was asked to show one, along with the next photo on how the top of the rigging attaches):

And a photo showing how the shroud attaches along with the loops for the blocks/sails:

I had some hardwood so made a pin rail for the front of the mast with four 8mm stainless steel belaying pins permanently attached for halyards.  It attaches with three 6mm stainless bolts through a metal plate on the front of the tabernacle:

While all this was going on I was going back and forth getting insurance coverage and arranging movement of the boat to a marine engineering works for the installation of the engine (sitting inside already) and drive train/propeller.  After much back and forward I got a phone call the boat transporters were on their way.

They spent a while getting in my tight driveway, and then hooked up the crane:

Lift off:

Heading to the trailer:

And loaded with the mast, boom and gaff ready to go:

And away:

From here it is:
- finish some reshaping I am doing on the rudder and re-mount it;
- once the boat is in the yard, put the blocks and halyards on the mast and stand up the rigging;
- get final quote/measure on the sails and order;
- sort insurance, and berth; and
- launch........

Saturday, 11 July 2020

Proof of life - update of late 2019 to July 2020

Covid has impacted my timelines, but there are plenty doing it worse so nothing to whinge about.

I was intending to try and launch early 2020 but with working away for 10 weeks, restrictions on people being able to work, come to the house and family studying./working from home I was just going with the flow.

Late 2019 I fitted the tiller, which is detachable and wedged into the rudder with a bit of the left over chopping board used to line the anchor chain guide.  Below is from outside:

And inside showing the whipping on the handle I did.

Next up was attaching the mast fittings.  John Welsford chose a traditional style rig with hounds supporting loops of the stays at the top of the mast, and cranes supporting blocks to attach sails.

Below shows the roughing out of the hounds which are 35mm by 30mm Australian hardwood.  I drew them out on the wood, drilled the holes with a scrap bit of wood against it and sawed out the main waste.  Then shaped edges with the grinder and finished with sandpaper.

Below is after the hand sanding, these are for the top of the mast for the topsail (should I get one) and the throat/gaff halyards.  More later which will show it all.

And below all finished.  On the left are the forestay ones which include and extra block for lifting things or later use, middle is the staysail and right as outlined earlier the top two attachment points.

Then I started on the cranes to support the blocks.  I did one first as a trial and then started mass producing the remaining four.  Again Australian hardwood.

Blanks for the others pre shaping.

And a side view of the blanks showing the mark up for hand sawing.  Hole is to make a space for the line to hold up the block which goes around the mast.  Wood rasp to give the gap no sharp edges and a downward tilt for the line to follow.

Once all done they were undercoated (twice)

Then two coats to enamel exterior paint:

And all attached.  Majority were through bolted with 6mm stainless bolts each side of all places were block supports were going through holes (hounds). with some 14 gauge screws on the narrow bottom extensions.  Cranes were bolted as well, with some long coach screws used on the wooden upper section of the mast where there was no need to go all the way through.  When I stood it up it appears the masthead navigation lights might have an issue as they keep blowing fuses.  Will sort it once it comes down again.

While this was going on I was talking to the engine installer, a boat transporter and another shipwright near home who does a lot of gaff rigs about the rig.  I decided to go modern, with 6mm dyneema for the shrouds (and block supports with stainless thimbles) on the mast.  He gave me some instruction, practiced a few splices with me and sent me on my way.  My son and I set up the mast, took measurements to the chain plates and I started (youtube has LOTS of videos which helped!).

Turned out to be fairly straight forward although I was slow but am getting more confident. Below shows the finish shrouds hanging on the mast.  Note the bronze deadeyes.

As the COVID restrictions eased my father came down and we mounted the Harken 15ST winches each side.  When I built the combings I didn't make the hardwood pads so it was easy to attach the winches, so he made a stainless mount for each side, four 6mm stainless bolts through a 20mm hardwood pad on top of the 20mm pine combing top.  Two of the bolts are outboard of the combing and two inside which can be reached from inside storage spaces on each side of the cockpit.  I'm yet to figure out sealing off the storage lockers, it's on the to do list.

And with the covers for them in place.

I started on the bowsprit whisker stays (?).  The one down to the stem is 8mm dyneema, the two sides are 6mm same as the rest of the rigging.  Deadeyes are bronze and 3mm dyneema lashing to bowshackles on the bowsprit end fitting or the small plates on the side of the hull.

I put the rigging on the mast and stood it up with my son. I didn't arrange and secure the shrouds in the correct places so pulled it down and adjusted before putting it up again.  Bit of old Telstra rope holding the deadeyes in place so the shipwright could come and have a look to sort out line runs and hardware requirements/positioning. 

My son and I had got the positioning close, a bit too close to the chainplates.  He suggested reducing shroud lengths by 150mm so we had more space as they had not been preloaded yet.  That worried me, but turned out to be no issue in reversing the splices and resetting them.  Took a few hours while I listened to the football in the sun, not a bad was to fix a stuff up!

Below is looking from forward port side showing the two forward shrouds (end of the bowsprit and the stem head fitting), side shrouds in three each side (middle one is in line with the mast tabernacle) and two running backstays that end in a low friction ring that will be run through a turning block and clutch each side to the winches.  If you zoom in you can see the 6mm dyneema loops through the mast hounds with thimbles where the sails and extra blocks will attach.

That is where we are at as of July 2020.  Boat transporter has been out, viewed the obstacles and had his quote accepted.  Boatyard is waiting removal of another yacht in the next week or so hopefully and this thing will be on a truck for engine hook up.

Sails are being discussed, roller on both front is the intention.

Time to get this thing in the water, but pretty sure I've said that before..........

Thursday, 10 October 2019

Electronics and little bits I missed along the way

With the boat out of the shed I could continue on with preparation for launch.

I started making a box to put on the rear of the cabin to hold the Raymarine Chart plotter (Element 7S) and the radio (Standard Horizon GX1300E).  I was originally going to mount the plotter on some form of swivel so I could move it around into the companionway to see it from the cockpit.  But modern technology overtook me.  The chart plotter can connect to a phone or tablet, both of which I have already, so a permanent mount inside was the go.

Below is the front cover started looking from the inside out.  The bit missing is a ply rear solid piece which was epoxied and screwed into the rear cabin wall (12mm ply).

This is the front which is removable.  The bottom middle piece ended up being removed to allow space for the plotter.

This is the permanently mounted section of the  box.  The top and left hand side are glued and screwed to the rear ply (which is onto the wall before painting).  The radio mount is on the right.  Wires being run through, I also had to run the radio cable (cockpit rear handrail) and transducer (rear of transom) forward.  This was done with through deck fittings to keep out the water, and the wires running under the cockpit seat on the starboard side forward into the foot of the berth, then up into the storage area behind the cockpit seats (long items storage each side back to transom).  The opening to that area is the square just below the wall unit.

And a final view.  The radio is recessed through the end piece, and the bottom piece slots on and is held by two screws.  I drilled air holes under each for ventilation, I will see if I need more.

The linking of the plotter to the radio was not as easy as I first thought, being different signals (NMEA2000 vs NMEA0183).  I wanted the lat and long displayed on the front of the radio as well for calling in an emergency, so needed a Raymarine converter unit and another cable to get them to talk to each other.  Worked out okay, I mounted it in the long storage area where I had to roll up all the extra wire from the radio and transducer, as they cannot be cut to length.

With Dad back to help (again, he had been down to put a stainless plate on the cockpit rail for the radio aerial) we attacked the mast tabernacle.  It sits in a space at the front of the cabin and is constructed from 6mm steel.  Underneath it is a 20mm hardwood pad, then the deck (fibreglass over two layers of ply, then another 20mm hardwood king plank which is supported by several curved deck beams and finally a hardwood compression post.

Below is with it bolted in place, you can just make out the bottom of the radio aerial on the top left.  Wire sticking out is the connection to the wire for the masthead/nav lights inside the mast.

The tabernacle was bedded on butyl rubber, with the bolts being 8mm stainless.  Below shows the starboard side, rear two bolts onto a single 6mm steel plate with spring washers, and the forward one onto a 40mm square 6mm plate with spring washer as it goes all the way through the curved deck beam as well.  It's handy having a fabricator to call on!

This is the port side inside the galley space.  Disregard the bolt to the right, is is reinforcing for the rear curved deck beam.  The forward two are the two rear tabernacle bolts, with washers and spring washers against the 20mm hardwood king plank.  The vertical piece of wood to the left is the kwila hardwood compression post.  The front tabernacle hole has a 110mm x 8mm stainless coach screw that goes down into it.

Seeing we had the mast, we threw it up for a test to see how it looks.  Bit of safety tape for a flag.

I have also finalised the under galley area.  In the untidy photo below you can see the main galley with a gimbled spirit stove, and to the left there is a sink with drain tray.  Directly below the stove is a pull out draw for storage or knives, forks, cooking stuff etc.  At the very bottom is the access to the underneath storage.

I am not permanently putting in water tanks or a grey/black water system.  To the right out of shot is an access door through which the cassette for the toilet can be removed.  Further-est from shot is a 10 litre water tank connected via hose to a hand pump on the galley bench over the sink.  The closer 10 litre will be waste, although I intend washing most dishes in a container in the cockpit where I can throw the water overboard.

This shows how the water container can be easily removed for top up.  The white hose to the left has a normal hose joiner clamped in it (it has an o ring as well, and I had to heat up the tube to get it in so tight fit).  The black attachment is an adapter from a normal hose to a 13mm watering system, again clamped into the hose after heating.  The hose continues down to the bottom of the water, and there is a fitting and rubber seal to stop water splashing out hopefully with motion of the boat.

The black waste hose on the left is a slide in tight fit to the container.

That is the low tech version of how I will start.  We'll see how it goes but little to go wrong.

And finally a gift.  One of the contributors on the Woodenboat forum was away from home and filling his time with some carving.  This will grace the inside of the access hatch into the cabin.  Photo to follow when mounted after some prep/painting/finish of the entry.  It is about 600mm x 150mm carved scroll with the boat name and sail number in hardwood.  Looks fantastic.

A big clean up is underway inside the boat, refitting a few doors in the main cabin and a little bit of paint and then I think it is time for the berth cushions to be put in.


Friday, 13 September 2019

Electrical gauges and out of the shed

I didn't take a photo earlier but this is what the electrical system fit out looks like now.  Below is from the forward side of the cabin looking aft.

And a close up.  Battery selector top right with isolation switch below it.  And the board to select circuits.  Still have to paint the floor after the engine install.

Other progress is we took a few deep breaths and decided to roll it out of the shed.  First off was to double strap down onto the cradle to reduce rocking.

Then it was time to jack up and put rollers under the cradle.

Yep, still surprises me we can roll this thing out on 10mm steel rods.....

Then we were ready to winch, strap onto the cradle and cable run out.

Below we are underway, about half way to the cradle being off the slab.

And a shot from inside:

Plenty of clearance on the 3 metre wide opening of the shed.  There was a little bit more on the other side, about 4 fingers width!

Almost there, about to drop the rear of the cradle off the concrete slab onto hardwood blocks.  We had to keep jacking it up to put new rollers in under the front as they went out the back of the cradle.

And success!  Light fading as I enjoyed a Corona and admired the lines from various angles.

Since then I have attached the bowsprit, still waiting on a through bolt in stainless through the top of the stem fitting.  It is bolted into a socket in the anchor well, with another piece of hardwood wedged underneath it with two bolts through it to prevent the bowsprit moving up or down.  The orange bit is a piece of plastic so no-one drives under it in a truck and snaps it off!

Below is a shot down the bowsprit showing the support for the stainless steel anchor roller, along with hardwood for the chain to run down.  I have a 16kg anchor to go in.

And a shot showing the socket middle top of photo where the bowsprit is attached and bolted.  The chain run is hardwood lined with cut up cheap kitchen cutting boards.  Once they wear I can easily unscrew them and replace for less than $10.

Next on the list is completing the mounting box and running lines for the radio and chart plotter/depth sounder inside the rear of the main cabin, and completing the painting in there.

- rigging
- sails
- engine connection
- transport and launch

But a major step being out of the shed.