Clipper's Vera Cruise Build

Clipper's Vera Cruise Build

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Special Edition: Skinning Milestone Reached!

This will be a short posting, I just feel real good about reaching this point in the build and wanted to write about it. The front of the boat, as I have mentioned many times, is a difficult area to work because of the multiple curves. Ever since fairing this area last year I have been worrying that I got everything right.

It's been a long wait but today I completed mounting the two forward skins and am I relieved. There have been some difficulties along the way and the skins aren't perfect, but they are mounted and basically correct. The few areas of less than perfection, I can deal with going forward. More importantly, I can now begin the final stretch of skinning the boat. I am fairly confident that the remaining skins will be easier to install.

I have been working at this since Saturday and a few days I was pretty beat by the end of the session. But it is worth it. Here I am testing out a method to pull the remaining skin into position without any place to clamp. This mostly worked out but the forward strap kept wanting to slide down the hull so I had to work around that. You can see where I used scarp plywood to protect the skin from the ratchet mechanisms. The force needed to pull the skin down was pretty considerable, even with the pre-bend I did previously.

Yesterday, I completed the glue up and this morning I finished the sanding of the excess material and glue.

In the last post, I mentioned the transition joint at the centerline of the skins near the keel. Here is what it looks like after cleaning up.

I have a few days left of vacation so I will be starting on fitting the next skins aft. I also have to make several backing plates for the butt joints on the skins. These should be easier than the backing plates for the side skins were because they are smaller and there is no curve to deal with.

The backing plates will go between the battens under the forward and center skins.

So that's it for now. Take care.

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