Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Scamp Camp

Today was a Scamp Camp day for me. Up and out early for the 90-minute drive to Eaton Rapids, MI.

Four Scamps, including Howard's Southern Cross, in various stages of completion:

Four Campers (Howard, Dave, Mike and me) caught up with each other, told stories and worked on Mike's Scamp.

As always, I learned a few things:
  • Eaton Rapids is known as the Island City because it is an island in the Grand River.
  • Epoxy mixed with Fast Hardener goes off quickly and smokes in 80°F temperatures.
  • Sometimes, you just need a bigger hammer.

It was a good day… The paint of Gardens' sheer planks sat undisturbed for another day. The yard blank cured another day. And since I wasn't home, there was no temptation for me to do anything I might have to re-do tomorrow.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Back to Work Following a Weekend Road Trip

Following a quick week-end trip to Springfield, MO, work resumed on Gardens today:
  • Plugs for the yard were cut and fit, slathered with thickened epoxy and installed as part of the final assembly of the yard.
  • Main mast was epoxied; a few minor gaps in the glue lines were filled with thickened epoxy. The rollers the mast is sitting on made rotating the mast a very simple matter. Varnishing will begin as soon as I can sand and finish fairing the mast. Probably Thursday.
  • Gardens was vacuumed out - to make room for (a bit) more sawdust.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Sheer Plank Paint and Other Stuff

It's green, really, no matter what it looks like in the photo.
The lighting in the boat cave is not good - very dim - and there is no way to step back and get a good look at new paint on the boat. But the second coat (pictured) looks better than the first one and, I suspect a couple more coats will look even better. So far, I am pleased with the outcome.

In other news, the starboard half of the foredeck has been rough cut. I found it encouraging that the port side half worked as a pattern for the starboard side half - no reason why it shouldn't have, but I'm glad it did. The foredeck will be installed once the lower trim piece is installed on the sheer planks (better for clamping than just the lower edge of the plank).

We also partially glued up the birdsmouth blank for the yard. I'll take it apart (glued in halves), fit the plugs and finish gluing it up early next week. After that, I'll plane and sand it round and add FG sleeving.

I'm still figuring out how to best install the supports along the hull for the seating and platform decking panels.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Painting the Sheer Plank... and Thoughts on Green

The sheer planks are epoxied and ready for paint.

I decided sometime last year I wanted the sheer plank to be a dark green and my choice was "Hunter Green." Last October, when I did a story board with the Hunter Green for the sheer plank, "Fired Clay" (brings to mind a dark terra cotta, doesn't it? It is more of a soft cream color) for the hull and strips of DF representing the rub-rails and trim (the real ones are mahogany), I thought the Hunter Green might be too dark. But I wanted to see what it looks like in bright, full sunlight… It still looks dark - nearly black. So we began sampling other greens. We discovered two things:
  • There are way too many shades of green; and
  • There is a wide gap between the Hunter Green we began with and the next darkest shade we could find.
We did pick out a green we like: Benjamin Moore's "Forest Foliage" (where they come up with these names is anyone's guess) and it contrasts nicely with the Fired Clay of the hull. The first coat of Forest Foliage went on late this afternoon.

The near-term sequence should go something like this:
  • Paint the sheer planks
  • Install the trim pieces
  • Install the decking
  • Install the rub-rails
Of course, there is a multitude of other work to be done - some of it before the decks are installed.

But we're getting there!

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Rub Rails

The trim pieces came off the jigs to make room to steam bend the rub rails. Both rub rail went into place without incident. The poly-tubing has been removed from both rub rails, which are clamped in place to dry.
Next step for the sheer plank is to tape off the edges and begin painting.

Next step for the rest of the boat is to get the bilges painted and the seating & decking panels installed.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Rub Rail

We worked on the first of two rub rails today. The port side trim came off the jig to make room to steam bend the rub rail, which went into place without incident.
The starboard side trim piece is still drying in place so we'll have to wait another day or so (it has been very humid lately) before steaming the second rub rail into place.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Steam Bending the Trim Pieces

We set up bending jigs on the hull for the two lower trim pieces using jig-sticks and a simple L-shaped height guide.
The height guide was used to place the bottoms of the jig sticks 1" above the bottom of the sheer plank.
We put the pre-soaked trim piece (19mm x 32mm x 6m; 3/4" x 1-1/4" x 20' mahogany) into poly-tubing, hooked up the steam generator and waited about an hour. When the trim piece was ready, we placed it under the jig-sticks and clamped it tight against the sheer plank with stick-clamps.
One wrinkle in the process was the end furthest (20') from the steam generator cooled a bit too much (we were concerned it would crack) before we could clamp it in place. So, we moved the steam generator, hooked it up to the other end of the poly-tube, turned the generator on and steamed that end. It bent right into place. We did the port-side yesterday and the starboard side today using the "steam from each end" process for both trim pieces.

These two pieces will stay clamped in place to dry until Thursday, when we'll steam bend the rub-rails, which will pre-soak until then.

Port-side trim piece out of the tubing and clamped in place to dry.
Using the poly-tubing, instead of a steam-box, is very convenient and effective. Being able to clamp a piece into place while still in the tubing makes it easier to re-heat the piece if necessary.