Sunday, November 29, 2015

Boat Work Resumes

The Boat Cave is 99% complete - figuring out how to install the door panel so I can close off the space and still access it easily is about all there is to do to finish the Cave.

As for the boat work…
  • Two small gaps between the second plank and BH-1 have been filled (the heater box, a shop light and black plastic provided enough heat for the epoxy). Sanding and painting of the bow space to follow.
  • The cockpit seats are being fitted. This process has always been tricky for me but slowly and carefully it is getting there. I am beginning at the aft end as the shapes seem to be more regular and there seems to be fewer detailed-cut-around shapes,
  • The cleats supporting the edges of the cockpit seats need to be fitted and glued. Again, the heater box, black plastic and a shop light will provide enough heat for the epoxy to cure .
  • Three pieces of CVG DF have been glued up for the King Plank. The fit of the 1x pine board template for the Kink Plank is being tweaked to get a better fit around the stem. I plan to leave the King Plank long so there is room to "play' with how the deck will fit (how far aft of BH-2 do I want the deck to extend?).

  • John Welsford's post re laminating a tiller for SEI pushed me to begin the same process for Gardens' tiller. I plan to use some ash we cut on the property two years ago laminated with walnut.

Gardens has fresh recruits all ready to set sail:

And one of those recruits tried out the forward end of the sleeping platform - he doesn't seem to think decking the space is necessary. That would certainly speed up completion of the interior!

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Boat Bay Becomes Boat Cave

Gardens has been housed in one of the large bays of the barn, referred to around here as the Boat Bay.

The Boat Bay has become the Boat Cave.

The space is a little tight but workable. The foil-faced foam insulation panels do block a good bit of the wind that whistles through the barn - and that should improve as I fill gaps and tape seams. A small space heater and several work lights may (or may not) help warm the space.

Time will tell if this project extends my work time on Gardens. In the meantime, I have boat work to do...

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Winterizing the Boat Bay

The winterization of the Boat Bay is nearing completion: Creating a smaller space with simple framing of 2x4s tied in with the barn's posts & beams and lined with 4x8 foil faced foam insulation panels.

Two days ago I emptied the Boat Bay - except for Gardens - and moved everything into the yard. Hard to believe all that stuff was sharing the space with Gardens.

Of course, all that stuff had to be brought back inside that evening - considering the rain in the forecast… Fortunately, we found new homes for most of that stuff elsewhere in the barn.

Three of the four walls have been lined with insulation and the seams taped . Framing and paneling the fourth wall are next, to be followed by installation of the overhead panels. Winterization should be completed in time for Friday's expected cold and snow. I can get back to boat work soon...

I am hoping the smaller, insulated space will give me more work time on both ends of winter. Hopefully, warming this new space (the Boat Cave, roughly 2,500cf) will be easier to warm than the old space (Boat Bay, roughly 13,000cf) - which really is an impossible task. One thing is certain: even without the overhead panels installed the Boat Cave, with its foiled walls, is a brighter, lighter space. The Boat Bay seemed to suck the light out of the work lights I use.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

A Little Every Day

Gardens looks great to me right side up.

There is a lot to do but this new, right-right-side-up perspective is motivating - even if the tasks aren't always too exciting: sanding the interior (prepping for paint), adding support material for the mast step, fitting the mock-up King Plank; gluing up some "left over" CVG DF for the King Plank; and other miscellaneous tasks.

I am hoping to extend my working time in the Boat Bay by installing temporary walls lined with foil-faced insulation panels. The overhead will be insulated, too. A couple guys at Scamp Camp in Eaton Rapids, MI suggested this idea in late September and I am getting the job done now. We'll see if it does let me work later into the winter and earlier next spring.

Nothing spectacular, but following the adage: Do something every day, Gardens is progressing.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Mast Raising Considerations

Previously, I mentioned a couple of issues re the King Plank, the mast step, supporting the mast step and stepping the mast. I spent a bit of time (away from sanding) trying to sort out just what those issues are for me. So, here they are:

King Plank: Pretty straight forward - follow the plans. Except, I have concerns about the position of the mast step. More on the King Plank later.

Mast Step: John drew up a balance lug yawl sail plan based on the 100sf Scamp sail (I want to use my 105sf GIS sail). The mast step is positioned right aft of BH-1. With the mast in place, access to the bow compartment is not possible. I wonder how often I'll need to access that space when the mast is stepped. Fortunately, John did not include a mast box for this sail plan (otherwise access to the bow space would be impossible).

Supporting the Mast: The plans show the step at BH-1 and a hole through the deck and King Plank (creating the partners). (Think of Wile E. Coyote's black holes. The clamps are holding mock support pieces.)

This arrangement supports the mast at the partners but it means holding the mast vertical, lifting it almost 24" to clear BH-2 and reaching about 34" from BH-2 to the partners to place the mast through the partners. Now, my birdsmouth mast is respectably light at 24 lbs but I don't want to be balancing it vertically while leaning forward to reach the partners. I want a different way to step the mast.

What I want is a way to put the foot of the mast in the step and walk the mast to vertical. This would, I thought, mean creating a slot in the King Plank and cutting BH-2 to accommodate the slot. I thought the King Plank and BH-2 could be adequately supported to accomplish this - but I was - and am - hesitant to cut any of the bulkheads.

What I came up with is to cut a slot in the King Plank between BH-1 and BH-2, beginning at the mast location and ending several inches forward of BH-2.

I still think the King Plank will need additional support/structure, perhaps something as simple as a 1x doubler between the two bulkheads. A plug to fill the slot will support the mast.

Raising the Mast: Standing in the boat and holding the mast horizontally, the mast is already above the top of BH-2, which makes slanting the foot of the mast forward and down into the slot and into the step much easier than balancing the mast vertically. Once the mast foot is in the step, walking the mast to vertical and securing the mast with the plug should be straight forward.

I'm still fiddling with details but I think the concept is feasible and doable

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Taking Inventory

Okay, so I'm not sure "inventory" is the correct terminology for listing what needs to be done on a project but that's what I did today. There is a lot to do…

I took time to admire the lines John created and to enjoy those lines lit by the afternoon sun filtering through the barn.

I began work on the king plank - although I am a long way from installing it. Also played with a couple of notions about placement of the mast step (well, not so much as it needs to go where John designed it to go), how to support it based on John's notes (am I interpreting those notes correctly?) and how to deal with stepping the mast. This last issue is critical.

John drew up a sail plan based on the 100sf Scamp lug sail. The front of the mast is 76mm aft of BH-1. This raises the question: How do i bring the mast to vertical, lean/reach across the deck forward of BH-2 and drop the mast through the deck? Not very easily. A mast gate solves that issue - but raises a number of other questions re the entire structure between BH-1 and BH-2 as well as concerns about the integrity/stiffness of the hull at BH-2. So, I have plenty to think about as I work at prepping Gardens' interior for paint (bilges) and laying out the cockpit decking.

Friday, November 6, 2015

That Went Well

Nine of us - including five neighbors I had not met before today - turned Gardens today. The turning itself took less time than it took to explain the process…

When we finished we enjoyed a good lunch - pulled pork sandwiches, coleslaw, baked beans, chips and pop with bear claws for dessert - and fun conversations about farming, weather, where we all went to school and other get-to-know each other topics. Beer was available but these guys were going back to the fields after lunch so no one had a beer (I did later in the afternoon). When the guys left, they said to let them know when I need to turn the boat again or load it on a trailer.

Gardens now rests on blocks just above floor level. It will be very easy to get in and out of the boat to work on the interior.

It was a good day.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Two Things

One, Gardens and the Boat Bay are ready for tomorrow's festivities: the of Turning Gardens.

The boat bay was cluttered, messy and dusty. Before:

I tidied up, put things away and swept. After:

I had four of us (me and three others) lined up to turn Gardens but none of us are as hale and hearty as we once were - more help was needed. Our neighbor, Bruce, is retired but his hobby is driving a tractor for a local farmer who Jan knows. Bruce gave us the farmer's number and Jan called the farmer's wife to explain what we planned to do. Another call to the farmer himself and we have a few (3, 4 or 5) more able bodies lined up to help with the turning. We are providing lunch: Pulled pork sandwiches, baked beans, coleslaw and dessert. A community effort - sort of like a barn raising of days past. Should be fun.

Two, yesterday marked this blog's fourth anniversary. Reading back through the years, Gardens progressed rather quickly and I was optimistic about getting her launched in two years. Life intervened - and I wouldn't change a thing - and the build slowed. Now, I am planning to sail Gardens by next June.

My purpose in starting and maintaining this blog was to create a record of the building and sailing of Gardens for my own purposes. That it is read by, what seems to me, as a rather large audience astonishes me. Thank you - every one who has read this blog.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

A Broken Record...

Yes, almost another complaint about the weather. Rather pointless, really, because this is November in Michigan. It is going to be cool/cold, rainy and blustery. Not ideal boat building conditions. So, no, I'm not going to carry on about the recent weather because right now, the weather doesn't matter.

Having decided to turn Gardens this coming week, my recent concerns with the weather and whether I can get done what I wanted to get done "in time" (whatever that meant) have faded away. My immediate concerns now are lining up the help I think I need and preparing (cleaning up) the boat bay.

Deke's Pathfinder build in the Florida Keys provided some inspiration and encouragement yesterday. He turned his hull over - apparently by himself! I suspect five or six guys ought to be able to turn Gardens on Friday.