Monday, May 14, 2018

Rub Rails and Sanding

I took another trip down to Beaufort NC the weekend before last to attend the annual Wooden Boat show. Got to take a sail and they had plenty of boats to look at. Sorry,  I forgot again to take some pictures. Too much to see and observe. Had a great time, but it takes away from boat building!

This past weekend, I had to get caught up on house chores, but did get to spend some time working on the boat. I had some odds and ends I needed to finish up first.

The fiberglass on the transom needed to have its final coat of epoxy, so I had to do some sanding first before applying it. At this point the topside is done with epoxy and fiberglass. I have a lot of sanding to do.

Rub Rails
This was my big project for the weekend. To start off, I needed to create a jig to cut the rub rails. I purchased the timber package, so the timber was mahogany. The plans call for 3 layers of rails. Each layer getting a little bit smaller with a small taper. I have decided to taper the layers with a belt sander once I get all the pieced installed on the boat.  I have seen on numerous other blogs that this was the method they used.

The manual stated that the rails will be over 16 feet, so I had to do some scarfing. Each piece will be made out of 3 pieces. Two 8' and a 3' needing to be scarfed together.

The manual also states that you should use a 10:1 scope. I used a piece of plywood and another scrap piece to create a a jig on the table saw sled. I drilled holes through the table saw sled and used 2 1/4 inch nuts/bolts to attach. The 10:1 scope was measured out and a piece of scrap wood screwed to the plywood to make the scarf angle.

 Below is a picture of the jig. I just used a small clamp to hold the pieces of mahogany on the sled and cut away.

Below shows the 2 bolts to hold the plywood to the sled.

I only had one problem with this and had to re-adjust the small piece of scrap that created the angle. I first used the 10:1 measurement. Measure 10 inches down and 1 inch up. The only problem with this is the pieces of mahogany are only 3/4 inches.  The result of this is a short scarf of about 5-6 inches. This may of worked, but I remeasured with a 10:"3/4" inch. This created a long scarf which will work fine. Once I got the scarf cut the way I wanted using scrap pieces, I cut everything.

Below are the 3 different size rub rail pieces all ready to be glued.  18 pieces to cut.

Close up of the scarf cut 10:"3/4" .  Plenty of surface to epoxy together.

Now trying to find a place to glue 20 foot long pieces was a challenge in my garage. I finally decided to use my 8' plastic work table with saw horse on each end. This allowed me to glue things up and clamp.

Below is the first piece epoxied together. I think I used to many clamps! :-) 
I clamped both horizontal and vertical. This way the slippery epoxy joint will stay where I want it.

I have two of the rails epoxied up and 1 of them cleaned up. I unclamped the second one tonight and will sand later this week as well as glue the 3rd 2 pieces. I will attempt to attach the first pieces this weekend. I think I am going to use the hot rags and have them soak. I need to figure how how to attach. I may need to get some help. Holding a 20 ft. piece of wood and trying to get is screwed in straight will be a challenge. 

Monday, April 30, 2018

Just about finished fiberglassing the topside of the hull!!!

For the most part, I am finished fiberglassing the topside of the boat!!!!!! Yea!!!!!!
I still have some filler coats to do, but all the fiberglassing is done.

An oh yeah and that dreaded sanding part still needs to be done!!!! 😟 I may do some now and just wait until after I flip it over. I am sure I will have some dings to fix, so no need to make final finish until then.

Hard to believe I am talking about flipping the boat!!!!!

Companion way slide
I finished up the slide with applying fiberglass and 3 coats of epoxy. The corners turned out better on the slide than the companion way hood, so I was pleased. I still have them overlapping, but I didn't have as much on both pieces. I cut one short and then just had the other wrapping around. I think my mistake on the companion way hood corners was just too much fiberglass and it didn't want to lay right.

Fiberglass ready to be wetted out. I have it sitting on 2 - 5 gallon buckets. 

1st coat

All ready for the trim piece and sanding. 

 I still need to install the trim piece, but I will take care of that soon.

Cockpit Fiberglassing

Well this section was a royal pain in the you know what. I still have problems with doing vertical fiberglass. It turned out ok, but I had to fuss with it a lot. I used a plastic spreader on the floor part and tried to pull the epoxy up the sides. I then used a roller and cut off chip brush to apply to the corners and to use on spots. Having to work on your knees leaning down is not an ideal work position, but I survived. I planned to have both cockpit seats done and to do this part last, so I had a place to climb into the boat and work on the area.

Oh and prior to doing the fiberglass, I went over everything with a sander to make sure there were no bumps. Doing the other areas, I had some epoxy runs that needed to be removed.

Ready to be wetted out. 

All wetted out and ready for 2 more coats.
This was the last piece on the cockpit seat area. I had to be careful not to clog up the centerboard pendant hole, but I just took it slow and worked around it. I didn't have to go this wide with the fiberglass, but having 2 layers where you will be stepping into the boat will help to firm it up. 

All wetted out and ready for multiple coats.

Transom Skirt Fiberglass 

I was a little worried about how the fiberglass would lay in this area, but it actually was not too bad. I used some blue tape to hold in place and wetted out the outside of the transom skirt first. I then used a roller and rolled it from outside over the top. I then used a chip brush with the brushes cut to dab the epoxy on.

Once I flip the boat, I think I will climb under and work on that area a little. I need to run a piece all the way down the seam.

I cut a dart in the middle and then a couple on the inside. 

Below is the transom skirt all wetted out. 

I forgot to get a before picture on the piece that goes from the seats up to the bottom of the skirt trim. I used thumbtacks instead of blue tape to hold it upright. This piece of vertical was not too bad. While holding the top, I rolled from the bottom up. I also learned to take it slow. I sometimes would rush and trying to go fast just pulls the fiberglass.

All wetted out. 

Heading down to the Beaufort NC Boat Show this weekend. Looking forward to seeing all the boats and talking with other builders!

Monday, April 16, 2018

Sanding and Fiberglass in Cockpit Area!

I decided to sand some on the areas in the bow and cabin that I have already fiberglassed as well as the cockpit area I planned on fiberglassing this past weekend. Sanding is always a fun task, but I will say the new sander is much nicer and does a quicker job. While sanding I noticed some areas where the epoxy was sort of flaky. I assume it was due to me trying to epoxy in the garage when temperatures were marginal or close to 60. Not a huge deal. I sanded them down and re-applied epoxy over the areas.

I also took some time this past weekend to get my epoxy station back in order. Over the winter, I was using smaller jugs and storing them inside. I think it has warmed up enough, so I have the big 5 and 1 gallon containers back in the garage. I re-primed the pumps so I would get the appropriate amounts.

Slide and Rudder
For the companion slide, I was able to re-apply thickened epoxy over the screw holes and the second application filled them completely. I then had to re-sand everything. The slide is ready for fiberglassing.  I also filled the holes on one side of the rudder and sanded them smooth.

Filling brad nail holes. 

2nd attempt at filling screw holes top and sides.

Below is a picture of the slide sanded and cleaned. I will probably apply the fiberglass later this week. The piece of wood on top is going to be the trim. I have yet to cut it out and fit.

Cockpit Fiberglass

Below is the fiber glass laid out ready to be wetted down with epoxy. As I stated earlier, I sanding the area good and then whipped down to make sure the area was clean. Making the fiberglass lay on the many different angles is a challenge. After some time, I finally got it to where I wanted it or as best as I could get it.

I would estimate that it took me 2-3 hrs. to lay the fiberglass and then mix up enough epoxy. I counted 6 red cups when I was done. I used a plastic spreader on the horizontal parts, but then used a roller to get the vertical as well as a chip brush in the corners.

Fiberglass ready to be wetted out. 

Below are a couple shots of the 1st coat wetted out. I will be applying the 2nd and 3rd coats after work today and tomorrow.

Next up will be the foot area in the cock pit. This is going to be a fun area with the location and angles. Glad it is not that big.  Its coming along slowly but surely!

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Will Winter ever end? and Fiberglassing the Companion Way Hood

Well "Old Man Winter" doesn't seem to want to go away, so I am still sticking with the bench projects. I can't wait until I can do the large fiberglassing. I am over 50% done. I just have to do 2/3rds of the cockpit area and transom and then I can start on the rub rails.

Home chores took over last weekend and I was only able to work on the boat for a couple of hours. Had to change the oil in the lawn mower and cut my 3/4 acre lot! :-( And this weekend we are going out of town again, but I have to keep the boss happy! Oh, did I mention they are calling for more snow!

I was able to sand the epoxy filled holes on the companion way hood, but the holes didn't fill up to the top on the slide, so I am going to have to do another fill with epoxy. Something I didn't mention on the screw holes. I originally drilled the holes with a counter sink bit and it was 1/4 inch in diameter. So my original plan was to fill them with wood plugs, but the 1/4 inch wood plug bit I bought created plugs that were too small. I guess I could have used them, but at the last minute I decided to just fill with epoxy.  They seemed too loose. I didn't have time to think too much, because I already had a cup of thickened epoxy mixed.

Below is the fiberglass ready to be filled with epoxy.

Below is the companion way hood all wetted out. I did have a problem on both corners where the drains are going to go. For some reason each side got a bubble under the overlapping glass. I discovered this after the 1st coat and cut it out and sanded. I am trying to decide how to handle applying fiberglass to a quarter size hole. 

One possible solution is to run fiberglass down both entire sides. I have looked on other blogs and don't see where anyone did this. That option will cover the hole where the bubble occurred and also coat the long side pieces all the way down with glass. I find it interesting that I had a bubble on both sides, but the fiberglass laid perfectly over the small trim piece on the top.

Since I have to redo the plugs, I just decided to coat the inside of the slide with epoxy as I was applying the 3 coats to the hood.

Monday, March 26, 2018

Vacation and New Festool!

I was on vacation all of last week, so needless to say there was no boat building being done.
We went to Charleston South Carolina for the week. While visiting one of the plantations there, I discovered a 1800's boat that was used and thought I would share.  I found it very interesting that it was actually made from 2 pieces or log half's. The boat was about 27 feet long and about 4-5 ft. wide. That had to be some tree! 

New Festool and Companion Way

When I got back I visited the local Woodcraft store in Richmond and decided to buy a Festool vac and sander. While there I talked with the store owner Ed Sontag and he helped me with the order. Very nice customer service and I recommend the place. I plan on going back to get various tools and to purchase the lumber for the boom gallows and rudder handle in a few weeks. Its like a toy store, so I need to be careful! :-)

Yesterday I got the Festool RO 90 DX out and used it to sand the companion way hood. I am very satisfied with it. The model is one of the smaller ones, but it sure does have a lot of power. When on the highest speed, you definitely need to hold on with two hands. Turning the speed down, it was easily managed. I know these things are expensive, but with the amount of sanding that I still have to do I think this will be a definite time saver. I was also happy with the lack of dust that I normally have with my regular shop vac and sander. The Midi vac is also a lot quieter, which will make the wife happy! 

Below is the companion way hood and slide. I sanded everything down and then filled all the screw holes with epoxy. Once they cure, I will sand again and then apply the fiberglass.

Not trying to sell anyone anything, but just showing you what I am using. 

RO 90 sander

Midi Vac

Monday, March 12, 2018

Companion Way and Rudder

Companion Way

After getting the angles planed, sanded and lined up for the companion way framing, I epoxied them in place. Below is the companion way hood being glued up. I used a piece of scrap board on the other end to help line things up.  I also had to go purchase some longer clamps. I got 4, which will do.  I used screws as well, but I find when screwing something together, the screws will sometimes push things out. The clamps hold them from doing that.

After the front piece cured, I epoxied the top piece of plywood on and used screws and wood blocks as to not damage the plywood.  The picture below shows this and also the trim piece, but I just have the trim piece clamped in place as to help form the top piece while it cured.

The companion way hood has been curing for about a week, so I started off this weekend by cutting the extra pieces off the edges. I used a small hand saw. If I would have thought about it ahead of time, I could have just aligned the edge of the plywood with the aft part of the hood. That would have saved me the time of marking and cutting one edge. Not a big deal, but a hint for future builders.

I started to sand the edges, but decided to wait until I fill the screw holes with thickened epoxy. That way I can do a final sanding before applying the fiberglass.

Picture of hood with edges cut off. The edge I was referencing is shown facing you. 

If you recall, I didn't have the correct size of wood in my timber kit, so I decided to use the 3/4" piece left over when I cut the front hood piece. Be sure to save these when you cut them out. They may come in handy.

Below is a picture of the trim piece epoxied on with clamps and a few screws. Instead of making the sharper edges like the manual states, I used a round over bit on my router. I think it looks just as good!

Another picture of the trim piece curing with work lights. It is still in the 50's in the garage. 
I also worked on the framing of the companion way slide. I finished up the edges with a plane and then a final sanding. The piece of plywood fit pretty good. I then epoxied the framing together with screws and then epoxied the top down with screws and a few clamps. I used the clamps in a few places that I saw the plywood not fitting properly. The clamps pulled the plywood down more for a tighter fit. 

The manual calls for you to use a chamfering bit in your router to do the "cheek" edges on the rudder. I didn't have one, so I bought one. Below is a picture of the bit. The only problem I had was the bottom edge of the "check" that touches the plywood. If you can see the little bearing below on the top of the bit. That is used so you don't cut too far into the wood. It also hampers you from a height perspective. For that edge, I just used a small plane and cut the edges down some and then sanded. They don't have the same angle, but look fine.

Below is the finished product. I decided to work outside, since the router blows dust all over the place.

The edge I used a plane and not the router is marked with an X. 

Up Next
I will let things cure for a couple days and then start to sand on the companion way for fiberglassing.
I will also work on the bottom piece of the rudder. Getting that glued on.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

More Companion Way Work and More Glassing

Still working on multiple things at one time.

Companion Way
Once I figured out the width issue on the front piece of the companion way, I temporarily screwed the pieces together to test a dry fit.  I then spent some time working on fitting it better to the cabin deck. I had to sand the front piece and sides to make thinks lay better. I still haven't screwed it to the decking, but will do so soon.

Below I added little blocks of wood and epoxied in place to the side companion way pieces.  I then cut off and sanded flush.

There is also a trim piece that goes on top. ( below top left)  The piece of lumber that was provided with the timber package didn't allow enough to do the angle and provide enough height. I decided to just use the left over piece from cutting the front part. I will deviate some from the manual and use a smaller piece of wood (3/4" vs. 1" ) and I plan on doing a round over on the edges. I will post some more on this once I do it. On the list of tasks todo!
Dry fitted and sides screwed in. Trim piece and plywood is just sitting on top. Trim piece needs to be formed with round-over and all glued together.


With the weather being warmer last weekend, I was able to lay down fiberglass on some of the larger areas. 

Below is the starboard side cockpit area. I cut one large piece that wraps over into the footwell.
This took a lot of epoxy! and took about 1.5 hours to do everything.  This was fun climbing in and out of the boat.

Same piece all wetted out with first coating of epoxy.

I also added another layer of fiberglass to the bow area where the tabernacle will be going. I think this is my 3rd layer of glass in this area, since it has been a trouble spot for some.  

Below is a picture of either the 2nd or 3rd coat. I think 3rd. It was starting to get a little cold, so I decided to use the work lights. I think the garage was around mid 50's, so the lights in this area should warm the epoxy enough to cure.

From a fiberglass standpoint, I still have the port side large piece and then the cockpit foot area. The a whole lot of sanding!! 

I will keep plugging at it one task at a time! I wish it would hurry up and get warm. Epoxy and cold do not mix very well.