Trailer work!

Yeah, finally some nice progress!

To get the boat finished and to the water, we have to get it on the trailer. If you recall, I bought a used trailer last year, but it was going to take some modifications. Beyond removing the "upper rack" that it had, we decided to beef up the side rails a bit to hold that larger boat.

Yesterday my Dad and I spent several good hours getting the doubler/truss pieces welded in place. Came out pretty well (my status as a newbie welder not withstanding).

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The addition is that upper rail, including the sloped pieces tying it into the lower rails at the back (stern?).

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Time = 4 hours

The Marine Installer’s Rant

>>> The Marine Installer’s Rant

Bill Bishop has a nice little blog running with some good tips and tricks. Much of it geared around reworking/fixing some of what commercial builders get wrong.

All the bad things boat builders do that cost you money. Also tips and interesting bits from Raymarine, Garmin, and other GPO chartplotter and marine electronics vendors, and general items of interest to boaters.

Pull the plug

No, not pulling the plug on the project, pulling the plug in the boat.

Most "plug" stories I’ve ever heard about boats revolve around the drain plug most trailerable boats have. It seems that everybody at one point or another tries to sink their boat by launching it without putting the plug in.

Well, in my case, I needed to remove the plug. Long ago I drilled drains around the aft cockpit area so that any water or whatever that got in there would have a place to go. When you are getting rain by the inch (regularly), this water adds up.

I stepped out to check on the boat (and pump any in the bilge out) the other day and found that the aft cockpit was fuller than it should have been. At first I thought the floor was sagging down and just collecting water, but then looked a bit closer. Both of my drain holes had pretty much stopped themselves up with trash washed in their path. Stick a screwdriver through and watch the water drain away.

So, if you have a boat in storage for a time, especially if it’s out in the rain, make sure the various drains are really draining.

Forest Stewardship Council

>>> Forest Stewardship Council

If you are into boating, its quite common for you also to be a supporter of the environment. Not many of us want to loose our great boating sites, rivers and coastline. The material used to build your boat can become a concern for some. Wood has its pro’s and con’s and I’ve seen different views on whether its good to use a sustainable resource like that, or if you are using up the last of the world’s old-growth forest.

Anyway, the Forest Stewardship Council is (among other work) labeling wood produced from "100% from well-managed forests" when applicable. Apparently the big orange (Home Depot) often carries wood with such labels.

The FSC Principles and Criteria for responsible forest management

The FSC Principles and Criteria describe how the forests have to be managed to meet the social, economic, ecological, cultural and spiritual needs of present and future generations. They include managerial aspects as well as environmental and social requirements. In fact, FSC rules are the strictest and FSC’s social and environmental requirements the highest.

Plastic Plywood

>>> Plastic Plywood

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Some interesting products showing up on the market. Mostly made from recycled plastics, these "plastic plywood" products could definitely have some applications in the boating world.

I’m a bit unclear on how they would be structurally where "creep" or slow sagging/migrations might be an issue (a problem that plastic has), but there are plenty of places a pretty much rot-free substance would be just the thing.

S&S Type Plans

>>> S&S Type Plans

Sparkman & Stephens, a long time maritime design firm, has placed quite a few of what they call "Type Plans" available on their web page. These are small detail plans of various features on boats, say bunk board mounting or sail rigging designs, etc.

Looks like there could be some great ideas to use here if you are building or modifying a boat.

Over the years we have created a catalogue of typical details which might be found on any yacht which we refer to as "Type Plans". These were delivered to shipyards along with the plans and specification when building a new S&S boat to assist them and to attempt to standardize many of the details that can be found onboard an S&S boat. While many are somewhat outdated we include them here as they are extremely interesting. We hope you enjoy reviewing them.