Saturday, May 31, 2014

Second ama glued!

Six more hours today to glue up the second float (ama). First, though, I wanted to check the distance between the two holes for the ama bolts which should have been bored after, using a gauge on the completed hull. Luckily enough, the distance turned out to be exactly 88 inches as specified in the plans, so I suspect that the suggested procedure is a precaution against sloppy building.
The sequence to glue up the second ama was mostly the same used for the previous one, so here are just a few photos. Here I am planing down the bottom stringer with a power plane

After the preparatory work, here's the hull ready for the glue

and here's the hull glued at last with another milestone beer.

Last, here's a pic that shows how the hull looks from the inside

Total work time to date: 124 hours

Saturday, May 24, 2014

First float glued!

Six hours of work today.There's quite some work to be done before glueing the hulls. We first faired the bottom stringers at bow and stern, mostly with the power plane. Here's a pic at the stem

After quite a bit of adjustments, we closed the hull "dry", i.e. with screws but without glue. Here's view of the stem, which requires some pressure to close. Moreover, the plywood here shows some twist, so several screws are required for an even contact pressure.

And here's a view of the transom, for which we needed some mechanical help

This boat does not go together as a jigsaw puzzle. All the pieces need some adjustments and fairing here and there. Nothing terrible, but be prepared with files, Surforms, planes and the like.
Anyway, in the afternoon we judged that were ready for glueing and prepared a relatively thick glue (epoxy+microfibers). Here's how the putty looks like

Following the instructions, we started from the bulkheads. We used a couple of sticks to keep the hull sides open while unscrewing the bulkhead, spreading the glue and screwing back, making fillets with the squeezed out resin. We then glued the stem and finally the transom. Here's a view of the hull from the transom

and here's one from the stem, with the "milestone beer"!

Total work time to date: 118 hours

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Stems, and going 3D

Five hours of work today. We first cut the 3 stem pieces from 4 cm thick lumber, following the dimensions given on the plans. All those operations are straightforward but slow since we do not have a  table saw and have to do everything with a circular saw, a jigsaw and a handsaw. Neverthless, here's a photo of the three stems

We then cleaned the table and started to assemble the first of the two floats, a.k.a. amas.

The instructions are quite clear, however one has to do with those panels which are not easy to move around. Here's a pic taken at the beginning of the operation

First indication is that the table is too high to work comfortably, so we'll have to decide whether to remove it or to use platforms around it. This became evident when we tried to put the second side panel on: the space at the floor is very limited and the hull is quite deep. This will be worse for the main hull...

Another issue to be solved soon is that my old trusty Black&Decker drill weighs a ton and is really a pig to drive screws in a limited space. So, I'll have to buy a new tool to do the job. There's also some fairing to be done here and there, mostly along the stringers, but nothing major. Here's a first partial 3D view of the float:

Total work time to date: 112 hours

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Ama bulkheads

Four hours of work today. We prepared the bulkheads and transoms for the amas. The ama bulkheads are somehow more elaborated because each of those supports one of the 12 mm bolts which connect the amas to the akas. The bolts are epoxy bonded to a substantial wooden frame (total thickness of 6 cm) screwed and epoxied to the bulkhead.

This photo shows the phase of cutting to size such timbers

The 12 mm DIA steel bolts are epoxied in 15 mm dia holes in the frames. Here I am drilling one of such holes.

At the end of the day we discovered, to our dismay, that those holes should have been drilled on the half-assembled amas using a template to make sure that the distance is exactly 88 inches. However, the drawings also report the exact distance between the center of the bolt and the bulkhead face! Well, we'll see how it goes while assembling the ama hulls. If the bolts turn out to be at the wrong distance, we will fill them and redrill new ones. 

This photo shows all the pieces ready for epoxy

And here is the completed work

Total work time to date: 107 hours

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Press stop

We have been in Vienna (Austria) for a scientific conference from April 24th to yesterday, and I have had a flu in the last two or three days, so no work on the boat since the last update. In the meantime the 4 bolts for the floats have arrived (special order). In metric sizes, ours are 12 mm diameter, 180 mm long (see photo). I should have bought 4 more large washers... See you soon for the next real update!