Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Cockpit, washboards and hatch

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all.

With school holidays again upon us work in the shed has been slow.  But I do have some progress.  I figured out that to finish the seats properly I should sort out the quarter deck and seat backs.  As usual, before I can do what I was thinking I need to do five other things.

So I procrastinated and decided to finish the washboards and hatch at the same time.

First off, the side deck and seat back supports.  These are 9mm ply which will have solid wood on the leading edge to support the seat back in 9mm ply.  The seat backs also continue up above the deck to become the inside face of the combing.  They will also create storage space for long items accessible from the main cabin, I've yet to cut the access through.

And looking aft, note the notch at the front for 20mm x 20mm and the drain hole in case there is a leak somewhere so I will hopefully see the water.

Once I had cut both sides I epoxied them in place, they are epoxied to the frames (upright bit) and the under deck supports, and have epoxy fillets both sides at the bottom where they meet the seat top. Also note the 20x20 now screwed and epoxy filleted as well at the front:

Due to clamp issues it took a few lots to get them all in place, then I epoxied the seat top and the ply leaving raw ply at the front for the solid wood seat supports yet to be attached.

Then it was down the back for more quarter deck work.  Once the first 6mm layer was cut to shape I could mark out the cut outs for the Delilah posts. Apparently that is what smaller posts on a boat that already has a large Sampson post (the bit up the front to tie off to) are called.  Who knew? I am still shaking my head over some of these terms.

The hardwood 80mm x 60mm post notched to go over the quarter deck beam.  The post will be coach screwed through the beam, and also into each of the stringers.  It will also have a hardwood piece braced across the front face to the transom frame, and be epoxied to the deck (12mm ply).  Hopefully strong enough.

There is a 9mm ply covering piece that goes from the seat back to the transom frame so any water can work its way back and out a drain hole I will drill each side.  Below you can see the insides of them being epoxied, and also the Delilah posts.

And a close up of the posts showing the rounded edges for rope.  I have yet to drill the holes for the stainless steel rod to go through each one.  The dry wood are the locations of the frame notch and also where the bottom will meet the stringers with thick epoxy glue.

The washboards in the plans are quite large, I decided to go for a greater number of smaller ones. Don't know why, just felt it looked better to me and allows a few more options for ventilation in rain or heavy weather (not that I am close to worrying about that yet).

First I cut a 9mm ply one of each board, I used left over 200mm wide hull planking which I have almost run out of.  Nice straight edges for me to work with and no gaps when they rest on each other. Better than I could have cut!  There was another one on top, but not in the photo.

Once I was happy, they were epoxied to another layer using the left over lead ingots (and my son's hand cast) to hold them together:

With the two layers in place, I cut strips of wood for the bottom of each board which would overlap the join to divert water:

And glued, nailed them on covering the nail holes.  Don't worry, they got a layer of epoxy on the outside as well later.

This shot shows the inside on the left (note the amount the board below is covered) and outside of a washboard:

I checked the plans and decided how to seal the outside, this required gluing in some wood with a space that the top of the washboards could meet against.  Imagine the hatch the other way up, and the top of the washboard cut so it just slides under the edge of the front piece of wood.  The second and third layers inside rest against the inside of the washboard and the overhang protects it from rain/spray.

Below shows the hatch as you see it from the cockpit.  This is the starboard side.  On the very outside is a cover to stop water and at the front the handle to open and close it.  Inside on the right is the outside of hatch support which meets the deck with an epoxy fillet, glued and screwed inside it is the hatch runner with an aluminium piece to prevent wear.  Under the screw you can see the vertical hatch side which forms the runner for the hatch.  The ply on the bottom left is the top washboard, notched to allow the runner to come out over it and just under the hatch which slides over the top.

This is the hatch from the side, I will make a solid hatch cover (some call it a turtle??) for the hatch to slide back into shortly.

And a distance shot of the washboards and hatch closed.  The outside will be painted, the inside I am going to leave as just epoxy as a feature.

More cockpit work to come.

Monday, 9 November 2015

Transom on (and I am still working on the cabin!)

I now have a complete hull shape.  Bit of a milestone I suppose and I can tell you it looks different.  Not finished because I still have to glass the transom and finish the quarter deck/side decks.  But I can see it floating on the water when I look at it.  It's a nice feeling......

In our last instalment I had trimmed the excess hull edges and sanded the transom frame ready for assembly.  With the quarter deck beams epoxied in place previously I could no longer climb easily into the cockpit, may as well close it up then!

While I was thinking about it I was still working in the main cabin.  I put latches and handles on the storage doors, put hinges on the desk top and fit out the head and sliding door into the forward cabin.

I mounted the gimbals for the alcohol stove, had to put a hardwood blocking on the forward side but is very strong.

Then it was a simple matter of screwing the stove into place.  There is enough space for it to swing freely, and it can be lifted and moved forward onto the top of the sink to open for filling of the burner reservoirs.  I've yet to connect up the sink water, but the cassette toilet is all connected and ready for use.

Then it was back to the transom.  I have been stalking on Mr Charlie Wipple's old blog as I go along checking and had made allowance for an 18mm thick transom (same thickness as the sides).  After reading the building guide not sure if it was only supposed to be 12mm.  Too late I had built the keel to suit 18mm, and I like the idea of even thickness all round.

There was also a cunning benefit to having two layers.  Imagine you had to stand on a stool and try to hold up a piece of ply with one hand while simultaneously clamping it to the transom.  Would you rather it was: (a) 12mm thick and heavy; or (b) 6mm thick and light?  I was surprised yet again how much more 12mm ply weighs, it was almost a full sheet for the transom.  6mm first then!

First I screwed the full sheet to the outside of the transom and traced around the outside edge of the hull sides, climbed inside and marked all the solid wood supports:

Then I took it off, cut the outside extra off, put it back and marked the holes for the cockpit drains. Took it off again and cut out the holes, put it back and adjusted them with a wood rasp.  Below shows the PVC tube exiting the transom:  

I had two screws at the top and three across the horizontal support just below the drain exit to hold it in place at this stage.  Then I dusted off the tiller, which was one of the first things I made a lifetime ago!  Stood it up on some scrap, forgot that I left the keel slightly deeper but after checking Mr Whipple's photos it looks not much different.  Then I marked out the centre of the tiller on the transom, took it off again (I told you 6mm was the thickness to use!).

Googled a nice oval shape I could print out and cut it.  This is what I was left with, you are looking at the inside of the transom and note the markings for the solid wood.  

After taking the above photo I realised I had not cut out the hole for the water exhaust, back on it went for marking, off again for cutting.  Then I epoxied all the areas that would be under the seat beam, leaving the ply raw where it would later be glued and screwed to the frame.  

Then I had the first layer done.  I lay it on the 12mm ply, used the two screw holes at the top and the three horizontal ones to hold it and marked out the edges and cut outs.  Quick attack with the jigsaw and it was ready to epoxy together.  I used the screws I mentioned earlier and the cut outs to ensure the two layers were in the right place.  Clamps around the edges, left over lead ingots to hold the 6mm down on two saw horses.  I put a prop underneath and checked with a level to make sure I wasn't causing a bend in the 12mm with the weight.

This is the exhaust exit and stb side drain:

And looking over to the port side, note the pre epoxy coated areas I mentioned earlier: 

This is what it looked like after, 12mm sheet on the left and 6mm on the right:

I had previously marked the screw hole locations on the inside of the 6mm layer, and drilled them through:

Flipped it over, nearly giving myself a hernia, and counter sunk all the holes.  This is going to have a heavy rudder partly supported off it, lots of screws but I don't mind!

Then it really got interesting.  Applied epoxy with glue powder onto the transom and the frame, then managed to lift it up onto a small platform and into place using the top screws to locate it.  Applied a couple of clamps, checked positioning with the bottom screws and the PVC pipe and fully clamped the top.  Then it was 1 1/4" screws all round 1" into the cross pieces and uprights followed by fillets of epoxy/glue on the inside edges except the top of the curve frame, there is a top to go on first.

Outside looking across, with the screw holes filled:

And looking straight onto the transom, I couldn't get any further back because the shed was there:

Next up will be sanding the excess epoxy off the screws, trimming the edges ready for taping and then glassing the transom.  I will fit the missing section of the cockpit seat that covers the smelly locker/drains as well.  Then I will have seats all round!

Friday, 16 October 2015

Transom framing

With the main cabin nearing completion I had moved all the accumulated tools and materials into the cockpit. Seeing I had them all there, I decided it was time to get serious about closing off the cockpit which will be a milestone of sorts for me.

Just as I did with the cockpit floor I sealed the edge of the seats to the hull with wood and later carefully epoxy filleted them.

At the rear of the cockpit is a storage locker for smelly items (stove fuel, cheap camping stove and gas bottle, paint etc) that you don't want to allow the fumes from into the cabin.  It will drain into the cockpit and then out through the transom.  Below shows me constructing it from three pieces of ply, with doubler on top for an access hatch.

And from underneath with wood to screw the hatch into:

Below after the epoxy set.  The hatch is just sitting there and the front is yet to be trimmed.  It was also not glued to the supporting beams so I could remove it for further work in the cockpit until closer to transom fitting.

After removing the smelly locker lid I dry fit the transom laminated beam (further most one) and the quarter deck front beam.

I marked out notches for a 90mm x 20mm hardwood king plank, and epoxied it all in place.  The other wood each side of the king plank is just to hold the beams in place until the epoxy set.

Below is the final result, this will have two layers of 6mm ply on top once the transom is in place to complete the deck.  Love the curves!

A final shot from outside looking across the transom support frame (Frame #10).  I dusted off the electric plane and took the hull edges back flush with the frame, next is to dry fit the transom and finally complete the main cabin!

Main cabin crawls on

Again I have let the team down with updates, my only excuse is that I don't feel like I have much to show for the work I've done!  My kids were also on school holidays, so lots of motorbike riding and activities non-boat related.  Managed to slip in a few days in Tasmania, somewhere definitely I want to spend more time. I would like to make it to the wooden boat festival in 2019 maybe, it is on every two years in Hobart.

The main cabin has taken most of my time, but I am happy with progress to date and it is almost finished. Before I could paint the main cabin I had to finish some final construction.  Below you can see the inside of the front of the cabin.  In the middle from left to right run the deck beam (bottom) the deck (2 x 6mm ply) and on top another laminated beam.  You can see a vertical bolt holding all the beams together, and one running horizontal through the beam, 12mm ply doubler then cabin front (there is another 12mm doubler on the outside as well).

 Below is the cabin side (2 x 9mm ply) which goes down as far as the carlins for the side decks.

 The deck beams were covered with a ply strip matching the curve, this also leaves a space about 45mm wide which will catch any condensation that runs down the cabin sides.  Below is the cabin front in the galley.

On the cabin sides I screwed timber underneath the carlins to cover the ply cabin side ends, leaving 20mm out into the cabin.

Resting on top of this I stood a piece which I had cut/sanded on an angle at the top.  This was screwed from below up through both pieces and clamped onto the cabin side with glue.

Below is what it looks like from a distance, this provides a hand hold to grab onto as you move about and will also act to catch condensation and prevent drips onto the seats/berths in the main cabin.  I cannot claim the credit, it was in the John Welsford plans!

A closer shot on an angle showing the hand hold/drip catcher.  There will be port holes above these on both sides of the cabin down the track.

I also put some dressing timber edge on the end of the galley, filled screw holes and sanded surfaces.

Below is where the head/desk is pre painting:

And the main cabin storage areas:

Final step was coating the cabin sides and roof with a couple of coats of epoxy wet on wet. Below are the cabin side and some of the roof, including curved beam:

I was getting ready to paint looking around and thought I liked the look of the epoxied ply.  I was thinking of leaving the cabin sides and roof exposed, but it felt like a bit much.  Compromise was the two cabin sides which will have port holes and the laminated curved beam.  I taped up the edges and gave the whole lot a coat of oil based sealer/undercoat.  If you look closely you can just make out the tape between the epoxied ply and the painted bits.

And looking forward including the cabin roof:

Then it was two coats of water based exterior house paint, including the doors to the storage lockers:

And other bits and pieces including the pieces of the desk:

Once it was done I peeled off the tape and attached the doors to the storage lockers.  Once in place I added catches inside and brass handles.  Below is starboard looking forward, ignore the toilet it is just sitting there while I fit the desk and seat to hide it!

Below is the port side with the galley to the right out of shot:

And the galley with the sink in place and hand pump fitted.  The black fitting will allow filling of the water tank in the cassette toilet without trying to climb under the galley.  Bottom right is the start of fitting the gimbals for the spirit stove.  It is two burner and will face the sink, parallel to the centre line.

Still some fit out to do in the head/desk and galley but getting there.