Thursday, May 24, 2012

Total brain-meltdown. Can't think of title.

Its crazy to think that is has been three years since Beth and I were married.  Sometimes I catch myself thinking that it has flown by.  Its easy to just remember the big events and just blur over the rest, but its amazing if you really think back how much life there is to remember in between the highlights.  The last three years have been great, and we expect nothing less in the years to come.

We ended up going climbing and camping in Joe's Valley for our anniversary.  It was pretty relaxing and nice to get away from everything.  This is a big reason we wanted to build the boat in Salt Lake,  because it's just so easy to get away to so many amazing places.

Pristine Joe's Valley sandstone bouldering.

Beth and Rumsy

We were dog sitting Rumsy and Chili, they loved going camping at least as much as we did.

 The Salt Lake spring has been pretty typical, last week it was hovering around 90 degrees and this week its back down in the mid 60's.  But with no A/C or fans in the shop 90 degrees was feeling pretty hot.  We are not the only ones affected by the warmer temps.  At 90 degrees  the epoxy cures around twice as fast as it does when its 60.  But adjustment have been made (ie. working faster) and we are ever moving forward.

This last week has mostly been work on the bow section.  As it has a lot of shape we are laminating it out of three layers.  The fist layer was just two big sheets, here you can see the second layer going on at 45 degrees to the fist layer.

The second and third layer are done in as wide of strips as I can bend onto the boat.  Here I have kerfed(made shallow cuts) into the plywood to help it bend around the more curved sections.

The plywood is glued and fastened with temporary staples and some screws.  The little wood pieces make it easy to get the staples out later. 

It's hard to see, but this is the third layer, which goes 90 degrees to the second layer, a process which is called "double diagonal planking." This ensures that all joints and seams have been overlapped at least once. 

After the sheet is attached to the hull, we take a hammer and tap all over the sheet to listen for voids in between the layers.  The difference in sound between a solid spot and a void is distinct.  I've seen this method used not only to find voids but to detect rotted sections in wooden boats and to check the condition of fiberglass windmill blades.  

Our big baby is moving steadily forward.  A few hours ago Beth and I put the last layer of plywood on the bow section of the boat.  This is huge for us, the hull is totally sheeted now, it's awesome.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

As if one was not enough.

Turns out that building a sailboat requires a considerable amount of money.  This translates into going to work every once in a while.  I spent the last to weeks in Brooklyn working on a climbing wall.  Lots of work and great ethnic food.  But while serving my sentence Beth started a new project to keep herself occupied......

After searching for quite some time we found a Dinghy that we liked, and Beth has been making quick work of it.  Selecting a dinghy seems like an easy decision, but it actually was far from it.  We wanted something we could sail this summer, but something that would fit on the cabin top of the big boat, for easy transportation.  Oh yeah and ease of construction was important, we don't have the time to be building a classic lapstrake dinghy.   This left us with a narrow scope of boats, but we settled on Catspaw 8, from B&B Yacht Designs

The Dinghy is built using the "stitch and glue" method, so Beth first cut out the sides and ends of the boat.  Then she "stitched" them together using wire ties.  
After some beveling, the pieces are ready for stitching.  It is quite impressive, no layout, no tedious measuring, just cut out six pieces, stitch them together and voila, you have a boat.

The topsides and ends are stitched and ready for the two bottom panels.

And here it is.  Beth has the whole thing stitched together and tonight she got all the epoxy fillets that hold it together finished.

The main event is back to full speed, we have been finishing up sheeting the hull with plywood.  All that is left is the bow section, which has to be laminated out of 3 layers of 1/4 ply, as there is too much curve for anything thicker.

Shooting the laser down the length of the hull to check that everything is in line. 

Now for the fist time we are laminating up large pieces of plywood, so we use a notched trowel to spread the epoxy evenly. 

Here it is! Two boats:  one small, one large, one up one down. 
One day at a time.

Ps:  This is Big Cottonwood Creek, which runs right by the shop, usually we eat our lunch on that rickety pallet sitting in that tree.  Its pretty nice.

 These two ducks live in the creek and are quite friendly, I almost had them in the shop one day.  Beth has named them Lin and Larry, after a famous sailing couple.  

Until next time, Cody and Beth