Sunday, May 19, 2013

Slow but Steady Progress

 I have been working on the boat steadily, but it is a project I do in my spare time, so progress has been slow.  My job, snow skiing, a couple trips elsewhere, honey-do tasks, and such come first.  Work has been focused on the boat interior.  I bonded another layer of wood to the inside bottom of the hull.  Where it would show, mahogany planks were used; where it wouldn't show,  6mm. okoume plywood was used; and in the bow where to curvature is very significant, a layer of 8 oz. fiberglass was bonded into place.  I built in five shelves in the cockpit under the side decks,  The instrument panel and the throttle mounting plate were designed and built.  The seats were designed and built; they are sectional  for ease of removal and will be upholstered when we get closer to completion.  I ordered the fuel tank (18 gallon with gauge sending unit) which will be mounted under the front seats and built a fuel tank support platform.  Removable floor panels were built as well as a shelf to go under the foredeck and a battery support for under the aft deck.   Then the inside of the hull was cleaned up by removing resin blebs and
sanding.  Most recently the entire interior has been stained.  Next will be the application of  3 coats of varnish to the interior.   For staining and varnish it is very preferred to keep the shop windows open for ventilation.  We have had snow as recent as ten days ago, so the weather hasn't been warm enough for open windows.  To stall for time, the plywood panels which will be the initial layer of decking have been already cut to exact size and are ready for installation as soon as the interior is done.  Also need to cut the flotation foam which will be under the aft deck around the OB engine.

When you design your own boat, each step in the building process requires finalizing the design as well as the actual building.  You learn from your previous efforts and hope to improve.  Functional parts I design myself, but for esthetics I get my wife's input.  She is not a boat person, so her viewpoint is unbiased by traditional nautical convention.  With a convenient shop space and no deadline for completion of the boat, the building process is very enjoyable; a combination of engineering, artwork, and exercise.  I already am already working on a design for a "next" boat.