Now that the frames were seen to align, I started the process of putting them all together.
First was to glue the false keel to the keel. Rather than try putting a strip of cartridge paper between the keel and false keel, I used the old trick of running a pencil at an angle to the the joining edges of both parts. That gave the satisfactory impression of a filler.
I then made sure the keel would stay in place by gluing two ply offcuts on the base board to either side.
I could then fix the frames to the keel with epoxy adhesive and clamp them firmly using an old oak floor tile.
Then came the filling blocks to keep the frame spacing constant and to add rigidity. I made two sets – a set for the narrow spaces, and another for the wider ones – then sanded each one carefully to the exact width of each space, labelling them in the process.
I added the gunport lintels as follows:
A HEIGHT JIG
I tested the overall heights of the frames by making an extremely simple jig cut to the correct heights. A steel ruler (on its edge) was then placed across the frames on the height jig to test the frame heights.
Needless to say there was some variation -- about half were the correct height and half were 0.5mm too low. I had a choice of either sanding down and then adding a strip of wood to achieve the correct height, or simply sanding down by 0.5mm to achieve the correct height throughout. I took the easy course and lopped 0.5mm from the frames that had the correct height – in the supposition that it won’t make much difference to this learning exercise.
I cut the first limber strakes using the table saw for the indentation. I finished the edging off with a scalpel and file.
The angled cover
I then thought for a while about how to make the angled cover that lies between the keel and the first limber strake. I made the necessary measurements with TurboCAD.
Limber strake measurements_annot.jpg 263.66KB
I settled on trying to angle the cover with the disc sander, as by chance the length of the strakes is almost exactly the width of the sander.
I cut a carboard template to the correct angle and used that to set the angle on the disc sander.
Then, extremely gently, I angled each side of the cover strake.
Before I get on with laying the limber strakes and continuing with the build, I have a serious decision to take.
I’m still thinking about this, but while I was sanding the frames down I found that not only were the frames quite uneven (so that it would take a lot of sanding to achieve a really smooth and even surface from fore to aft) but that in my vain attempt at narrowing the frames towards the top I had not noticed that I had sanded the top half of a lot of frame 5 far too much on each side, and some of frame C on the port side.
P1020340 F5 Port_annot.jpg 127.25KB
P1020341 F5 Star_annot.jpg 141.28KB
P1020342 FC Port.JPG 135.41KB
I was on the point of abandoning the work so far and shared my thoughts with my wife. I think she was horrified at having to endure the noise of all that sawing, scroll sawing and sanding again, and she suggested I should continue even if it meant some imperfection – especially as I was supposed to be doing this as a simple learning exercise.
I’m still not really decided about this.
Argument for starting again:
Polish the skill by making the frames again.
Arguments for just continuing with the existing frames:
(1) it means ordering more wood.
(2) it might end up with another set of mistakes.
(3) in reality a little bit of unevenness will be masked considerably by the planking.
(4) I could lop off the tops of the end of frame 5 and after planking fill in any gaps with filler.
(5) I have in reality learned a lot about making frames in the process, and am likely to be more careful when it comes to my next build.
(6) The greater part of the build is yet to come, with more skills to be learnt about placing beams and other structures, let alone planking and finishing.
On the whole I’m leaning towards just continuing, and cutting off the tops of the rear parts of the 4th futtocks of frame 5 -- leaving a flat rail without the higher curled rail. I have noticed that some builds have done this anyway.
By the time of my next log (and leaving time for comments on how to proceed from any interested parties) I’ll be sure to let you know.