28 November 2016: After class I went out to the shop and did the same to the port side that was done to the starboard side yesterday.
Trimming and fairing down the entire length of the boat both top and bottom had my arms screaming. Especially the bottom or what will be the top of the boat; this is because I had to hold the saw, planer and sander upside down.
While I was out there today and lost in my head working; I figured out how to close up the hull and prepare for the outer keel. I’m going to clean up the keel area (trimming the excess sheeting) and cutting long plywood strips from my scrap to emplace over the inner keel. These two layers of flat stripping will make a much easier fit for the outer keel to the inner keel (or so I think). Copious amounts of epoxy and some screws should help seal the sheeting and keel strips of plywood in order to have a pretty good and solid seal.
My order of refill epoxy and cabosil should arrive Thursday, and we shall see what I can get done before drill this weekend.
A tad bit slower morning since we all had a pretty rip roaring time with Tony and Miranda. Pretty sure either I or others may end up paying for it though lol!
I decided at the behest of my wife to take all the girls to the shop with me this morning. Savannah needed a break from the girls so she could get some much needed homework accomplished.
It began in the shop by turning on all the heaters and lighting a fire in the stove so we could bring up the temp. Since the epoxy needs 55 degrees to properly work; I and the girls spent a bunch of time bringing in firewood. Within about an hour we had the temperature right at 55 degrees and since it was before noon, I figured it would warm up slightly anyways and thus decided to start sheeting.
Samantha was once again a massive help much as she had been the day before. I figured that we would this time get up all the big sheets of plywood before I cut and attached stop-waters inside the hull along the seams. This helped speed things along because I wouldn’t exactly need Samantha’s help should she decide to go with her sisters.
The other three girls played in and around the hull as we worked. Acting often as if they were selling peanuts from a concession stand. Between them playing and us working, I don’t know if the shop had truly ever been any louder. Also it would difficult to determine who was louder, my tools and us working or the younger three playing.
Once the hull was sheeted along the port side, the younger ones went inside and I mixed up more epoxy and installed the stop-waters. That effectively finished off this order of epoxy and cabosil.
My wife spent the morning and a good part of the afternoon “saving” money during her black Friday outing into town. Yet when she returned it was apparent she kept true to her word as the truck bed was loaded with the requisite plywood to continue sheeting the hull. She had some other cool stuff that I asked for as well like a thermometer for the shop and a new six gallon shop vac.
My oldest daughter and I started out measuring the height needed for the plywood pieces along the starboard side. I showed her how to read and measure with my tape measure and had her do all the marking. Once she had figured out how to use my drywall square she was off to the races. I was so proud looking down as she was spread out over the plywood using a tape, square and pencil to draw the lines. I however cut the pieces with my new battery powered circular saw from Porter Cable.
She was also a massive help and a great assistant as we moved the pieces into position over the hull and epoxied and screwed them into place. Sometimes that was a bit of a dance and required shimmying and whacking with my mallet. Samantha’s favorite part was helping me mix the epoxy; I let her squirt the resin and hardener into my bucket so I could mix it. She also enjoyed inputting the cabosil into the epoxy mix; often remarking how weird it felt even through the gloves.
Ultimately the day ended in the shop with the construction complete on the starboard side of the hull. Later that evening though Tony and Miranda came over for dinner and drinks much like we do every weekend. Tony came out to the shop to help me check temperature and how the epoxy was setting up. He remarked just how impressed and ultimately how cool it was that I was actually building a boat. Needless to say that was a big boost to the old morale!
November 23 2016: My older kids are down here for Thanksgiving, so we put the turkey and ham on the smoker for 24 hours before heading to the shop.
Kayleigh was first out to see the boat and immediately exclaimed how impressed she was by her. She wanted to help with the build but I had a project I was trying to get done for Thanksgiving supper. That being a new table that would replace our old MDF board table. I was getting ready to apply the next layer of polyurethane when she asked if she could do it for me. Handing the task off to her was relatively simple and soon she was spreading poly.
Samantha my oldest came out shortly after and professed her pleasure at seeing the progress. She helped me measure the sides of the port bow area to help me cut and emplace the plywood to the bow. She was standing at the end lifting it somewhat up so we could get the max coverage possible while I epoxied and screwed the plywood starting at the stem.
Both girls helped me mark and get ready to cut the second piece of hull, but soon followed Savannah to assist her with a project of her own. Thus I cut that piece on my own and figured a way to emplace it being only a single person. I rigged up a primitive pulley type system that went around a rafter and I could use to pull the plywoood
into place and secure it while I epoxied and glued it into place. The seam between the two pieces was horribly uneven and bowed. I therefore used a smaller piece of plywood on the inside epoxied and screwed to both pieces along the seam to help fair the overall shape of the edges. It worked rather well and the forward part of the hull along the port side looks great.
Unfortunately I am out of plywood and my wife is forbidding me to go before black Friday to purchase more. Instead she insists she will pick up the requisite pieces of plywood on black Friday as she does her Christmas shopping. I of course have no desire to engage in said black Friday madness and reluctantly agreed to her terms.
November 21 2016: Got ahold of my epoxy and hardener; the three to one stuff recommended by the US Composites tech. Also got the shop somewhat ready for the colder weather by plugging up some holes in the tin with duct tape and readying the stove and chimney. I further brought in two space heaters as well as some clamp on lamps that I can hang over the hull. All of this should help keep the shop in the daytime around 55 degrees which is essential for the epoxy to set up.
Yesterday evening my wife after she returned from her shopping trip and myself went out and began emplacing the next layer of sheeting on the hull. A little bit of give and take was required but it was all emplaced by 8:45 in the evening. The shop at that time was relatively warm; I’d say easily into the sixties. Pretty remarkable since it did not get much above forty the whole day. Yet that still meant I had to keep the temperature in the shop up for at least another two hours; so at 11:20 I called it a night.
I figure the next big task will be fairing the edges around the sides and preparing to sheet the sides of the hull. My older girls will be down here around that time so hopefully they will want to help lol!
Hey there shipmates. Well I contacted US Composites today concerning an order that I had placed which was the wrong order. Turns out I have been using the wrong type of Epoxy and resin. The technician stated that the 1 to 1 epoxy system (which the 1 to 1 system can only be used with the thick epoxy resin) was the wrong system to be using on the boat. Turns out the thick epoxy resin is to stiff and rigid to be ideal in boat construction. He recommended the thinner stuff with a three to one ratio as that seems to be the best choice for boat builders. Using Mark’s plans and tips for the boat, he called for a one to one epoxy and hardener ration; thus when I saw that US composites used the one to one only in their thick stuff, I naturally chose that. Anyways the thin epoxy system I have is what I will be using from here out and the tech said not to worry as using the thick stuff thus far would not be a deal breaker.
On the subject of temperature, the tech enlightened me that the three to one system requires at least 55 degrees to set up and cure for at least the first two hours. Good to know as it should stay in the sixties and fifties around here for a bit. Also he suggested that in the colder months, heat lamps could be used to ensure that the epoxied surface will be at least at fifty five degrees. So I have an infrared thermometer and several heat sources I can em-place around the boat to ensure this happens.
So bit of an enlightening day and glad I called and got the info.
November 13 2016: Yes I know this is becoming a bit of a thing with me posting for a few days’ of work and taking forever to catch everyone up. What can I say things are busy and when I am on the laptop I am doing school work! If anyone knows how much it sucks being an adult and responsible it is I.
I have tweaked the port side of the bot with more epoxy and screws and began fairing her down. The Starboard side of the bow was sheeted again in much the same fashion as the port side. I happen to think it looks a little better than the other side but maybe that is because I found a few tricks to help.
Since it is getting later in the year and as one might expect; it has cooled down a good bit. With temperatures at night getting into the thirties. I think this is starting to wreak havoc on my epoxy as I have had the bow planking strips begin to delaminate when I pull the screws. A judicious amount of epoxy and more screwing has seen the remedy of this problem. It is somewhat curious because before I never had a problem with things delaminating like they seem to now. I can only assume it is because that it is due to the cooler temperatures.
If it is because of the temperatures, I am going to have to figure something out. If the epoxy will simply not set up during the cold I will need to either wait for warmer weather. Or I will need to find a new adhesive I can use that will do the job just as well be darned the temperature. Perhaps an email to US Composites is in order!
November 8 and 9 2016: Well on election day I went ahead and began emplacing the second layer of plywood on what will be the port side of the bow. That actually turned out to be somewhat harrier than the first layer. A lot of creaking and groaning happened and a few of the strips actually began to split! I figured that could be dealt with by adding a healing layer of epoxy. I used a lot more screws as well because the strips had a hard time wanting to hold shape. Further I figured out that the splitting actually lessened when I walked the curve up with the screws. Installing them every few intervals on differing sides of the strip. I also used copious amounts of thick epoxy to ensure a good amount of stickum was spread for safety sake.
The next day after coming home from school I discovered that both layers of sheeting I had applied on the port bow actually sheared away from the chine log. Needless to say I was almost in full panic mode. Yet I assessed the situation carefully and decided I could use one of my bar clamps to move both layers of sheeting back to the chine. I did this in intervals and applied 3 inch deck screws for extra grab and hold. That seemed to work fine but I also decided upon actually spreading a large amount of epoxy along the inside and outside edges for extra stick. I also figured that this may happen to the starboard side when I go to sheet the second layer over there. Thus I applied the same technique on that chine to reinforce it as well. So far it appears to seem that it will set up rather well (or so I hope).
After that calamity was averted, I went ahead and trimmed the excess from the second layer of strips. Looks pretty sturdy!
November 7 2016: Sorry for the delay in getting back and updating everyone. It has been a very busy few weeks with a short turnaround for drill that was exceptionally long as well as school being a bear. However I have made some pretty good progress on the boat.
As promised more Epoxy and cabosil did arrive which was used to fill in gaps between the pieces of plywood and finish the transom area to get her closed in. I had to extend the keel as well as cut smaller pieces of pine to create fill in between the four ply transom and the bottom of the hull. They were cut and epoxied into place relatively easily and secured further with screws. Next came the encapsulation of the stern with the plywood for the bottom of the hull to frame J and another enclosing layer of plywood over the four ply piece. In essence the actual transom that the motor will mount on ended up being five pieces of plywood. Yet all this was epoxied and screwed into place to seal up the stern.
Looks pretty good all things considered and I think we are ready to emplace the second layer of plywood sheeting to the underside of the hull.