Thursday, August 9, 2007

Bottom panel

Pete came around for a nosey and was soon put to work marking and cutting out the bottom panel. Finaly getting some shape. Have also put some tissue glass on the bottom half of the centre board to protect the wood when we take a mould for the jelly tip.

Srarfed 13mm sheet for bottom panel

Tucked into the 13mm panel using power plane and then belt sander. Used an 8:1 scarf. Wetted out joints with raw epoxy for about 5 minutes so some epoxy could soak into end grain and then applied thickened epoxy. I used a bowed bit of Kahikatea plus some epoxy to apply even pressue to the join.

Centreboard Tip

Decided to glue and shape a foam tip the centreboard and then cover in tissue glass. Then I will cover the whole board in tissue glass so I can take a mould for the lead keel

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Little jobs

Coated all the frames with epoxy before assembly. Also put 1 layer of glass on the transom. I made a guide to check the airfoil shape on the centreboard. It has come out pretty cool. Just a bit of filling and sanding to be done. Then I will glass and take a mould for the lead.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Centreboard continued

Here is how I decided to do my centreboard after trying to find methods using google and not finding many...
The foil shape only goes to about 180mm from the end of the board. After a bit of thinking I decided to rough chisel this area out for the front of the plane. I then tucked in and planed down to about 2mm of the router guides. Penciling in the router marks made them more visible. With the plane on a finer setting and then using the belt sander with 60 grit I got a great foil shape. You can also see the taper towards the bottom of the foil. It has about the same taper as a Cessna-172 wing. decided this would be simpler than trying to make it elliptical. More to come tomorrow. I was dreading this but it has been reasonably straight forward so far.

Thursday, August 2, 2007


Tackling the centreboard now. Have decided to use a NACA 0012 profile for my keel. I printed the foil using a shareware program called MacFoil. I glued the foil shape onto the end of the centreboard and have routered down to the foil as a guide.
More to come tomorrow.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Sunday Session...

My apprentice and I learnt the finer ways of rounding edges using files and sandpaper. We rounded all the frame arms this way as I don't have a router. We also cut all the centreboard lammels and epoxied. Used about 50-60 strokes of epoxy. We used a nothed spreader to spread thickened epoxy and then sash clamped. Not a bad week.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Stem doublers

Also glued on Stem doublers today. I cut out where the stringers will go. I kind of guestimated the angles from the plans and transfered to doublers. To stop items moving as the clamps are done up I have been pre drilling holes and nailing. This seems to work and stops the items sliding around. Also found these cool nothed spreaders at Mitre 10 for spreading epoxy.

Thursday, July 26, 2007


Marked out transom on 13mm Ply instead of 9mm. Am going to transom mount engine rather than internal mount it. This will help speed up constructiom

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Finishing Frames

Finished epoxing and nailing on seat back (coaming) and seat supports onto frames. I decided to try some silicon bronze nails to see if it would speed up construction. Was a little faster. Still had to pre drill 20X20mm kahikatea to stop it splitting. Turned out to be a two person exercise and a bit messy. Any way got it all done tonight.
Will pre-coat frames with two coats of epoxy sometime soon as per West System guidelines.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Frames 2 and 4 continued

Litle helper taking off clamps in morning. Epoxy almost set but still cutable with stanely blade so easier to trim a little now. I am using West System with 206 hardner which is slower acting. Great workable time for a project like this.

Frames 2 and 4

Frame 2 and 4 ready to assemble. First put down wax paper over MDF template where epoxy is likely to dribble. Then clamped sidearms to template. Then attatched bottom panel and top panels.
Presently days are spent making final adjustments to side arms and panels. Also marking, cutting out, and pre drilling floor supports. Then after dinner epoxing it all together (then updating blog). In the morning will tidy up and notch for stringers Then work on next frames.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

First two frames complete

Frames 1 and 3 complete for now. What a messy job epoxing is. Will need heaps of rags I reckon. Pretty pleased. Had to do a quick mock up with the stem. Gives an idea of the dimensions.

Hopefully will have all the next frames made this week as long as I am not called to work. Will glue up frames 2 and 4 tonight.

Little helper

Nothing like having an apprentice. Pat is screwing side arms onto base. This is done over the template to keep in alignment

Epoxing frame 2 and 3

These frames happened to be the ones I decided to tackle first. The side arms are separate from the base and need to be screwed and glued to each other This was done by placing pieces over template for alignment and clamped.

To prepare a joint for epoxing both pieces of wood are pre coated in raw epoxy to wet out the area and left for a few minutes to soak into the wood. Then glue powder is added to the remaining epoxy and added to one side only. It is then placed in position and clamped or screwed together. Not so hard that all the glue is forced out of the joint. This method avoids dry joints.
(From the Gougen Brothers book on wooden boat building. These guys make the West System in the USA)


So far have used saw's, No4 plane and small hand plane, fine and coarse files, Jigsaw, skil saw, hand saws and clamps.

1st few days work

This involved getting cheap 4mm mdf and marking out frames as templates. This was great for the kids to learn about measuring and using rulers. These were $10 sheets. Then transposing them onto the $100 sheets of Australian Hoop Pine Plywood to be cut out.

Concept Drawing

Here is the Concept Drawing of the Yawl. Pinned up to admire.

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Shed Build

Having decided that I needed a decent 'boat shed' we decided to bowl the old brick shed that was dark, dingy and damp. In it's place went a a Versatile Garage with heaps of pink batts, flouros, power, sleep out and epoxy coated polished concrete floor. This was all complete by about May 2007.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Pathfinder Build


Welcolme to the build of my John Wellsford designed Pathfinder.

From a simple stack of plywood aye?

I decided to get my stringers, chines, packers, lammels etc. machined by Halswell Timber. I don't have a thicknesser etc. It is a mixture of kwilla and Kahikatea (white pine).