Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Still Cold, but working on Rudder

Still very cold, so it is putting a damper on my boat building. Last Friday, I did have a good day and it actually got up to 70. I had the garage door open and was able to put the 3rd coat over the cabin decking. Before I did that I did a rough sanding using 120 grit.  Any large epoxy jobs will definitely need to wait until warmer weather.

After the 3rd coat, I started to work on the rudder. I figured this was some work I can do in the cold and I can get all the parts cut out and ready to put together. Hopefully this coming weekend I can epoxy.

With the rudder, there is a taper going from front to back or bow to stern. This means you have to taper 3 different pieces of wood. The kit comes with the patterns, so you can easily get the rough pieces cut. The others I had to do some thinking and decided to use my bandsaw to cut them out.

So with the picture below, the taper is going from right to left. I just have everything clamped together waiting to be epoxied.

Below, I cut both of these pieces on the bandsaw and fined tuned them with a block plane.
The piece to the left is the long vertical piece and needs to taper down to 1/4 inch,
The one on the right is the bottom of the rudder and tapers from the 3/4 inch to 1/4 inch at the rear.

 Below is the horizontal piece. I just put the template on it and cut it out with the bandsaw.

The large triangle piece was a little more difficult. The manual shows using a grinder to shape the piece, but I don't have one. I decided to use my rasp to take the majority of the wood off after I marked it. I then used my orbital sander with 60 grit to do the finishing sanding. I think it took me all of about 20-30 minutes.

The dry fit looks like everything went together very well. I will just need to do a little bit of sanding once I get things glued down.  I also need to put another coat of 2 on the large plywood pieces.

Friday, January 5, 2018

Too Cold!

Old man winter has definitely put a halt to boat building. It has been basically below freezing for the last two weeks. I am unable to keep the garage at a comfortable temperature to work. It is supposed to warm up into the 40's next week and I can usually with a small heater raise it to the mid 50s to be able to work.

Before it got bitter cold, I was able to do some work. I installed the backer board for the tabernacle. I applied a large helping of thickened epoxy with cabosil. Then I used temporary screws to hold it in place from the inside and outside. I then rigged up a work light to shine on it so it would cure.

The method of a work light works pretty good as long as it is not too cold. The highs have been in the 20's with lows in single digits. I am ready to move to Florida!, but I think a lot of the country has been dealing with this cold. 

Below is a picture of coat number 2 of epoxy. I still need to get the 3rd coat on, but it will need to warm up some. Before applying the 2nd coat, I used 120 grit to do a light sanding to rough up things. 

I rigged up a 2x4 clamped to my work cart to hold the lights. 

I think with this cold, I may need to start working on some bench projects like the rudder and companion way. I can get things all cut out and epoxied using the work light method. I am afraid to do too much large scale fiberglassing until it warms up some. I have plenty to do, but it definitely needs to get a little warmer! 

Monday, December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas, Backer Board and Sanding!

Merry Christmas to everyone. No boat building today, but while I am waiting for my son to arrive, I thought I would post. The Holidays have been busy and I have had limited time to work, but I still manage to do a task here and there.

A couple weekends ago, I bought a piece of Oak from Home Depot. I wanted to cut a piece to act as a backer board to support the removable tabernacle. From viewing the forum, John Harris recommends a 10" by 13" backer board. It took me a while to cut out using the bandsaw. I then had to setup the router table again to cut the 1/4 inch round-over. I then sanded smooth and have already put a coat of epoxy on it. I am trying to determine how I am going to mount it. Whether to permanently or just bolt on?

Backer board for removable tabernacle.

Last weekend we had a nice day in the upper 60's, so I pushed the boat out into the driveway and started to sand and sand and yes more sanding. I actually had a couple of session earlier in the garage. I was getting the boat read for fiberglassing. 

I also spent some time filling in all the holes and gaps. This took a couple of attempts. The lighting in the garage is ok, but working mostly after work it is hard to see. Having the boat out in the sunlight I was able to see everything very well.

The boat ready for glassing. Notice my cradle setup with furniture dollies. It makes it easy to move the boat in and out of the garage. 

I also spent some time on the transom skirt.  I had to use a plane and a bunch of sanding to get the shape to look right. I am pleased with the way it turned out.

After a bunch of filling holes and sanding, I was ready to start fiberglassing. With the temperatures still very cold, I have to use the work lights to help with curing the epoxy. Below you can see the port side cabin deck where I installed fiberglass and did the first filler coat. The top horizontal part was easy. It was a little bit of a challenge to do the vertical parts.  I finally wound up using a brush to get the epoxy on the glass and then a a brush and roller to get it spread out. I think I will do some research on methods to applying epoxy to vertical pieces before attempting any more. 

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Transom Trim and Winter is here!

With Thanksgiving Holiday and work, I have been limited with working on the boat, but I have been continuing to move ahead. Over the last couple weeks, I have been focusing on the transom and filling the many holes with epoxy.

Last weekend I cut the trim for the transom and that took a few hours to set things up, make some test cuts and then cutting the actual pieces. The piece on the left goes on first and then the one on the right.

Below is where I did a dry fit of the first piece of trim, so it would become accustom to the curve. One thing I have learned is that when you are trying to do some type of bend and you are applying epoxy, the part will want to move or slip all over the place. I am not sure you can see it, but I decided to use some screws to hold it place.

I left the piece for the week and finally got time yesterday and today to start installing them. I installed the first piece of trim yesterday and things went pretty good. I used the screws and then a bunch of clamps to hold it in place. Nature decided to bring a nice winter storm late yesterday and today, so the temperatures dropped and we got a few inches of snow. I had bought these work lights and setup a 2X4 to hold the lamps so it would help the epoxy cure over night.

Winter has arrived! 

First piece of trim.

Work lights setup to help the epoxy cure.

This is the first piece of trim cured enough to install the 2nd piece. 

I installed the 2nd piece today and used the lights to help if cure. It went on ok, except for the end of the wood. I just put a screw into it. I tried the same thing on the other side, but split the wood. I still had enough epoxy in the cup to fix that! :-)

Some other work I did was to start filling all the cracks and holes from building the boat. I mixed up a couple small batches of epoxy and applied it with a putty knife.  You can see all the dark spots below. 

With Winter here, I am going to probably work on some bench projects. Unless I can get some warmer days, I am not sure I will be able to apply large areas of fiberglass. I may try to build some special brackets to hold the work lights. 

Monday, November 27, 2017

Sanding and Getting ready for Topside Fiberglassing

Over the pasts couple weeks, I have been cleaning up the edges on the seat back and roofing decks.
I used a router to cut off some of the edges, but was not happy with it. As you know you can make quick mistakes with power tools, so I started to use my hand tools. I did make one mistake, but I was able to stop before it did too much damage. I may need to build it up a little with some fairing compound I bought.  Using hand tools is slower and I spent a few more hours here and there working on things, but you have all the control.

My tools of preference were the Japanese saw, rasp, block plane and orbital sander.  You still need to be careful, but you won't do too much damage. Below is picture of me cutting off the extra edges.

For the most part, I have a rough edge all the way around the seatback decks and the roof decks. After using the saw, rasp and plane, I used the orbital sander with 60 grit. I plan on using a hand sanding block with 120 for the final touch ups and rounding over the edges. 

Below are some pictures. 

Notice I cut out the support, so I can actually walk into the cabin. I will have to admit. I sat in there and drank a beer admiring the boat. Actually it was more like noticing more things I need to touch up! :-) 

I also did the fillets in the deck area. I think I have them down now somewhat.  Too bad, I am almost finished with fillets though! Maybe on the next boat! 

You can see where I painted the lockers before installing the setbacks.

Next up is to finish all the sanding this week in preparation for laying out fiberglass. It is starting to get cold, so I hope I can get this done. I can keep the garage at about 60 degrees, so I should be ok for another month until January when it gets really cold.

I also need to do the trim on the transom. I didn't think I had the lumber, but I found it last night.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Roof Trimming and Seat Back Decks

I removed the screws that were temporarily holding the roof deck down while it cured. I then took my router with a flush cut bit and started to trim off the the excess. A word of caution is that you can't rely on the ball bearing to guide 100%  where it is cutting. The whole roof is attached at angles, so you have to keep an eye out on where you are cutting! The ball bearing is for flat surfaces. I accidentally took a little too much off of one of the dorade boxes. I will have to take a close look at it, but I think I may need to build it up with some faring compound before I start to lay fiberglass. I also may need to buy a grinder to make the edges of the roof deck flush. I have yet to attempt to use a sander to see how that works on sanding the edges.

Below are few pictures of the decking on and first cut at trimming. Still lots of work do be done.

I also managed to get the seat back decking on as well and trimmed with the router. I still need to do the fine sanding to clean everything up.  I used stainless steal nails with my nail gone and that worked very well.

I used the weights to hold down the decking in areas that I didn't want to use the nail gun. The 3/4 " nails would poke through a little and I didn't want them sticking me in the locker. In the other areas the board didn't want to sit down 100%, so the extra weight held things down properly.

Below are pictures of the finished product and after trimming with a router. I still need to sand the edges up.

Monday, November 6, 2017

The Roof is On!!

Well my plans didn't go 100%, but I was able to get the roof on this weekend. I planned to do the seatback tops as well, but when I put the roof on I couldn't get the boards underneath. Not a big deal. I will try and do one night after work this week.

Putting the roof on was a pretty big task and I did it solo. I mixed up a Large batch of thickened epoxy and laid it out using a pastry bag. I then took a brush and spread it out evenly. I then climbed inside the boat and had the roof laying in the cockpit area. I was able to lift it up and laid it down almost perfectly. I used a couple of spring clamps to hold it in place and then drilled and screwed in some screws (with small blocks) to hold it down. Having pre-staged all the needed tools, things went pretty well. Meaning, I didn't have to climb in and out of the boat. It took me a while to hold down the top, drill and then screw things down. I worked up a good little sweat and it was only in the 60's. I could have used some help to hold it down while screwing.

Below are pictures of the completed roof.

I will let the epoxy cure for a few days before removing the screws. I will then use a router and bit to cut off the edges flush. I will have to say it was a nice moment to be able to sit inside and see what the cabin will feel like!!! :-)

This post is a little out of order. Prior to doing the roof, I had to finish up some things. First was to sand the underside of the roof where I had applied multiple coats of epoxy.  I moved outside the previous weekend and sanded things.

One thing you don't want to forget is to drill the drain holes for the dorade boxes. You could do these afterwards, but you can definitely see and access things better. I used the drill-fill-drill again approach on the outside dorade box drains. On the inside dorade drains, I decided to drill a small pilot hole and then used my Dremel tool to expand it to the size I wanted. I then put a couple of coats of epoxy in there to cover any exposed wood. I will probably do more of that when I start the fiberglassing.

Below are a couple pictures.
Used drill-fill-drill method here.

Used a Dremel tool to expand a pilot hole drilled first. 

Next up will be to trim the edges of the roof and finish up the seat back top and fillets in that area.