Clipper's Vera Cruise Build

Clipper's Vera Cruise Build

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Small Update

I've been continuing on the frame initial fitting and gusset construction. Frames 3 and 4 have been been completed as well as 5 and 6 completed last week. I'll be starting on frame 2 either tomorrow or Tuesday. I've added pictures to the construction gallery.

Not much new to see other than the shapes of those frames. Frames 3 and 4 do not have top pieces, therefore I have braced them with 1" by 4" pine temporarily. Frames 2 and 1 will be the same way. These braces will remain in place until the hull structure is completed and the hull has been flipped upright. Without the bracing, there would be a risk of these frames being damaged as I fit the longitudinal pieces into position.

There are a couple of shots of my garage in the gallery as well. This is mainly to show that it is not necessary to have a full blown workshop. In fact, I have several photos of boats being constructed in garages as well as numerous other tight fitting areas. To be sure, a larger workspace is desirable, but with careful planning and patience, a smaller space will work.

While constructing gussets for frame 4, I ran into an additional snag, which while unfortunate, is not a show stopper. The 3/8" plywood I purchased for gusset construction had a fairly sizable delamination between the layers comprising the plywood. Approximately one fifth of the board is unusable because of this delamination. I know this wasn't there when the wood was purchased, but it must have been weakened when I transported the lumber from Houston. Fortunately, most of the lumber is sound and I double checked the parts I had already made from this sheet. However, to be safe, I am going to subject a test piece to some stresses such as flexing and nailing to see if the part has any glue failures. If necessary, I will purchase another sheet and remake the gussets.

Finally, I will be ordering epoxy glue and the boat nails this coming week. Assuming, the plywood passes the stress testing, I will begin assembly of the frames in approximately two weeks.

So that's it for now.

Update 6/10/2015: I've decided to add a small tidbit about the patterns. Because of paper shrinkage, they are a bit smaller than the measured dimensions in the plans. I learned this in October of 2012 (see "Bit Of A Setback To Deal With" in sidebar). I resorted to laying out the measured dimensions on a large layout board and then using that to aid in getting the frame parts correct. Rather than repeat all of that here, it is suggested that you read that posting and subsequent posting to see what I did.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Back On Track

Well, I've completed the corrections to Frames 5 and 6 and they are ready for final assembly. This puts me back on track and at the point when I first discovered the issues with the frame parts.

The parts needed minor corrections and this was accomplished by gluing small strips of mahogany on the ends of some of the pieces. These strips matched the amount of shortage on the parts. Care was taken to insure that the thickness needed for the various strips was the correct amount. The strips were glued with epoxy and then the glue lines cleaned up afterwards.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Frame Contours Completed

After two days, I have completed transferring the frame contours to the layout board. This entailed quite a bit of time standing up or getting down on my knees while I lined up the various patterns with the measurement points. Needless to say, my legs are rather tired.

But I can now do the initial assembly and fitting of the frame parts with confidence that they will be the correct size when completed.I utilized a different approach for transferring the contours to the board. On my first attempt at this, I had used the original patterns, cutting small holes in the patterns and lining up pattern lines with lines drawn on the board.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

New Layout Board

My second attempt at a layout board has been completed and the measurements added for frames 1 through 6. Frame 0, the transom, is not on there yet because that frame is going to take some additional thought before laying out.

That is because, the transom is mounted at a 12 degree angle from vertical and the drawing has some notes about the transom being shown true size and having to adjust for the angle. Since I haven't studied that part yet, I felt it best to wait until I understood better where the measured points will be.

At this point, I am ready to start re-doing the initial fitting of Frames 5 and 6 and make the corrections necessary for those frames. Then I will examine the other frames and also make any corrections needed for those. I will not be able to do Frames 1 and 2 because I do not have enough lumber to complete them yet. Probably later this year or after the holidays since mahogany is fairly expensive.

Here is one photo of the layout board. There are a few more images in the photo gallery (link in upper right corner of the blog site).


The line at the bottom of the photo is the baseline where all vertical measurements are taken from. The layout board is actually two pieces of plywood connected together. You can see the joint in the center of the picture. Just to the left of that are two vertical lines. The one closest to the joint is the centerline (the other was the first centerline but it was too far left). The centerline is used for all horizontal measurements.

The center line is 90 degrees perpendicular to the baseline but looks a bit off when compared to the joint because the baseline is not exactly parallel to the edge of the panel. This is fine as long as the center line and the baseline are exactly perpendicular to each other. I took great pains to insure this was so. The other marks are the chine, sheer, keel  points as well as some other reference lines that will be needed later.

The various points are determined by measuring up from the baseline and left or right from the centerline. All points are labeled for later use. So until next time.......

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Bit Of A Setback To Deal With

I began work on the third frame last weekend by laying out the frame outlines on my plywood layout board. When I went to match up the pattern to the layout, it didn't match up. Further checking of the pattern against the plan measurements showed that my assumptions about certain points on the patterns were wrong and were actually short of the mark in some cases.

What this means is that some of the parts were made too short. The shortage is not a great amount, but it throws off the entire frame if not compensated for. Being suspicious about this, I decided to go back and check the frames that I had already worked on. I found that they too were a bit off.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Odds And Ends

This will be a short update in the middle of the week. Just enough to cover the other steps I'll be accomplishing on the frames before final assembly. I'll be saving finally assembly for a later post. It's more than just putting parts together so I want to be able to devote more time to it.

First off, I decided to delay cutting notches for the keel, sheer, chine, and battens (don't worry, I'll explain what these are another day - suffice to say they are the lumber parts connecting the frame and giving the boat it's shape lengthwise).

The location of these notches are somewhat dependent upon how the frames sit on the building form and how the wood that connects the frames bends and meets the frames. The depth of the cuts as well as the angles of the cuts are very dependent upon how the connecting lumber meets the frames. So better to wait until I have a better idea of that instead of cutting the material incorrectly.

But there are several minor steps that need to be taken with the frame parts. The inner edges of the frames will eventually be the work surface I have to kneel on when the hull is flipped over (If I haven't mentioned it, the hull is built upside down initially). Since I don't want to wreck my knees, I will be slightly rounding all the inner edges of the frame parts.

The gussets have to be nailed as well as glued when assembling the frames. To avoid splitting the wood, and to insure that I put the nails in the best locations for each part, I will be spending time laying out a nail pattern on each gusset and then drilling a small dimple at each location. The dimples will allow the nail pattern to still be visible after I final sand each part for smoothness.

Each frame part will be final sanded to remove any roughness and then re-marked with the frame number and location information. Before assembly, they will be encapsulated with epoxy resin to make them waterproof  Actually, only the attachment points will be encapsulated initially because those areas will be harder to insure complete coverage with epoxy after assembly.

After final assembly of the frame, any holes created in the parts during layout and manufacturing will be filled with epoxy resin and sanded smooth. The the next phase will be to encapsulate any remaining areas with epoxy.

Because I have quite a bit of frame work to accomplish, the next few updates will be a little shorter and perhaps not as often, unless I have something else I want to discuss.We'll see.

In the meantime, consider this. If you feel like you want something or want to try something, but are afraid of failure, look yourself in the mirror and convince yourself that you can do whatever it is you want. Taking on a boat build is a daunting task, and I have had self doubts many times. But ultimately, I want to be able to say I accomplished this so I am going to go through with it in spite of doubts and any obstacles.

Okay, so I'm off my soapbox now :)