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    Midlothian, VA
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    Scratch built plank on frame

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  1. Another six months slipped by. Someplace in there the upper deck got framed, and the main hatch and grating built. In the interim, my wife and I embraced out empty nester status and bought a new shipyard in the city. I’m giving up the yard and commute, and looking forward to an extra hour a day potentially spent in the workshop instead of the car. The house has a full basement, about a third of which will be the new shop. It is a little smaller than my current space, but it is mostly one big room, so hopefully the space will be more usable. It is a 1913 row house that hasn’t been renovated in decades. We aren’t doing the work ourselves, but just making all the decisions and picking out the materials for an almost down to the studs renovation/restoration has been pretty consuming. We are hoping to be moving in a few months. I’m having a little more time for the cross section, and hope to have the bitts installed and upper deck planked shortly. Dave
  2. Toni - Beautiful work! Sorry I missed your log until now- I'm just coming up for air after a busy month at work, and looking forward to getting back to my build. Somehow this cross section really works well with 'progress in fits and starts.' Mine started about the same time yours did. Looking forward to watching your progress- its great to have some company in the Echo Build Log section. Best, Dave
  3. I just finished the redo. With the elm pump angled, it fits just fine. I cut the openings in the deck planks before I glued them in. Cutting 3 rectangular holes (chain pump and two bitt pins) and an octagon in the same two planks over the space of about 1 1/2" was a little finicky, but I think I have it. will start work on the upper deck shortly. Just checked out your Sirius - not sure how I missed it before - spectacular, as is the cutter. thanks! Dave
  4. Hi Paul - very helpful. I had assumed that the elm pump was straight up and down when viewed from the side like the chain pumps, but I'm not sure why I made that assumption. The chain pumps are vertical, which would probably be important so that the axis for the cranks would be parallel to the deck. This wouldn't be critical for the elm tree pump, where the pump handle could just be angled. Still leaves me with two questions: If this is the case, it seems like the pump shaft would have been angled forward, with the opening between the front of the mast step and front wall of the well, as opposed to behind the step. This is a clearer path and would allow for some redundancy as it seems like it would decrease the likelihood of the chain and elm pumps both being blocked at the same time. The drawing that came with Ed Tosti's Naiad book shows the shaft angled this way, and will be the approach I probably take. When I look at the Swan class book, it says the chain pump opens between frames 3 fore and 3 aft, which is at the corner of the mast step. It still makes me wonder if the pump should end up just lateral to the corner of the step. I have about 5" scale clearance here, and about 3" more would have allowed the pump shaft to be vertical in the fore and aft direction. Your information very appreciated as it gives me a solution that doesn't involve huge amounts of rework and still looks accurate. I didn't have the NMM plans when I installed the well, and may have installed it slightly aft of where it should be. The difference is very small, but has led to being off on the relationships between upper and lower deck beams, which need to be really precise for the bitts to be vertical. Now that the elm pump location is solved, I think I can work with what I have and move forward again, as I can locate the upper deck beams in reasonable locations. The only thing I will need to redo is the upper deck main mast partners, as the upper deck beams will be a few scale inches further apart than originally planned. I built it in boxwood, and want most of the things that would have been painted in swiss pear, so I needed to do this anyways. Thanks! Dave
  5. I'm hoping to get a little guidance on the placement of the elmtree pumps in the fore/aft dimension. I'm about to start my third redo, and don't think I have a solution yet. I initially placed the opening as per the directions, which are 100% in agreement with the NMM plans. This puts the bottom end of the pump on top of the fore part of the mast step (the elm tree pumps are the octagons in the images below). The mast step and well dimensions are as per the plans, and there is not room between the side of the mast step and side of the well. I'm comfortable that the mast step is in the right place - the NMM plans show the elm tree pump just forward of the mast opening, right where the mast step would be expected to be. I moved the pump opening forward to just clear the step. It was great until I started to fit the main topsail bit pins (which attach to the aft side of the beam above the forward side of the well) and there isn't room between the beam and the pump for the bit pin. So - potential solutions: 1- narrow the mast step so that there is room laterally between the mast step and well wall for the opening of the pump in the location indicated on the plan 2- seat the topsail bit pin on top of the beam instead of behind it, like the jeer bits (not what is indicated in the plan) 3- put the pump where it is indicated on the plan even though it sits on top of the mast step given that you can't see into the well anyway None of these seem right - any suggestions? thanks! Dave
  6. Hi Cliff - There are around 7 plan sheets available for the Echo class, which can add up. Information from a number of them is already in the tutorial, and some are of part of the ship separate from the cross section (e.g. the stern decorations). The plan I have found by far the most helpful is the inboard profile, which detailed things I could not visualize or wanted more detail on, for example the spacing and position of lower and upper deck beams and how the bitt pins attached to the beams. Also, the NMM ordering system charges separate shipping for each plan. I emailed them, and they put all the plans in a single tube, which greatly reduced the shipping cost. I'm still waiting for 3 plans they left out of the shipment. I emailed and they said they would send. Dave
  7. Toni and Michael - many thanks! Great suggestion about practicing on the less visible side. I went ahead and ordered the National Maritime Museum plans for Echo. I'd like to build the whole ship next. They sent me about half of what I ordered, and I'm still waiting for 3 of the plans. I wish I had ordered them at the start of the cross section. The inboard profile is incredibly helpful in understanding the relations between the beams and bitts, and really adds to David and Greg's great instructions. I may have a little redoing now that I have a better sense of where everything is supposed to end up. Dave
  8. Lower deck done. I had to redo part – I put the opening for the elm tree pump too close to the mast, and it didn’t clear the mast step. The outer pump tube clears everything now. I have the upper deck beam and main mast partners done, and things seem to align. I got some new pillar files, which made creating the openings in the redo much easier than first time around with a regular file. I regret not putting the carlings and ledges on both sides. I had thought it wouldn’t be visible, but it is really easy to see under the deck. I will install them on both sides on the upper deck, which will only be half planked like the lower. I’ve made the hanging knees for the upper deck, and will do the lodging knees next.
  9. Dave- Model looks great on the stand. I had the same problem with not catching a slight from dead vertical on my Rattlesnake. I have some brass shim under one side of one of the pedestals. It has been there around 8 years. I think no one has noticed. You've definitely compensated perfectly. Dave
  10. davec

    First Resawing Adventure

    Michael - I got my boxwood from Gilmer Wood, like you did. Would definitely suggest not relying on the pictures on the website, but calling them and explaining what you need. In the past, I had just picked my pieces from their pictures on the website. The last time I needed boxwood, I called and explained what I was looking for, and they told me that if I didn't mind waiting, they would get me better pieces. About a month later I got a call from them, and got some 2x4" lengths of extremely tight grained, uniform colored Castello boxwood - nicest wood I have ever gotten. They were tremendously helpful - I was very impressed. Dave
  11. Ryland - Looking forward to seeing your progress. I used Dave's filed down nail technique on the Hannah windlass - worked well. Best wishes for the New Year. Dave
  12. davec

    First Resawing Adventure

    Cliff - your wood looks great! I'm looking forward to your Echo cross section build. It will be great to not be the only one. I milled my own wood for the cross section, too. Even though the framing and fitting out kits were available, I figured I had bought the table saw, thickness sander, and band saw, so was obliged to use them. David and Greg were very helpful and let me buy the plans and a cannon barrel separately from the wood. I haven't had any problems with pear, holly, or boxwood billets warping, although my wood has sat on the shelf for a few years prior to being cut. The big problem as been when I cut the billets into strips. Not a big deal for planks, but some of the strips cut for spars and masts for Hannah looked like modern art. The beauty of having the tools is not having to mill everything at once. There are tons of different sizes woods after you finish the framing. Best wishes and happy modelling for the new year. Dave
  13. Michael - Not sure how I missed this - Halifax came out beautifully. Case looks great, too. I finished Hannah with rigging a few years ago. Harold Hahn's plans were amazing. I think we have all gotten so used to the incredible things that can be done with CAD that we forget how well someone could do with old fashioned pen and ink. The schooners are truly beautiful. Hope you had a great Christmas. Best wishes and happy modelling for the coming new year. Dave
  14. Hi Greg - many thanks. My understanding is that the pumps were installed during the fitting out, after the frames and decks were in place. The well is in the contract, so it also must have been built before the pumps were installed. Some ships probably got converted from the older type pump shafts (bored logs) to the Cole type shafts, which were bigger. I wonder if this happened to 1780's shipwrights? Your picture was really helpful. Plan is to make the upper deck partners, which will set where the pump shafts should be, move the carling to the right place, then make the lower deck partner. It may leave me with extra notches in the beam on the nonplanked side, which I will patch as best I can. It looks like the carling fits into the space between the two shafts. I can figure out the path of the brake pump at the same time. How did the Cole pump shaft work? My understanding is that they were built of planks, as one of the big advantages was a plank could be removed to access the mechanism and fix the chain or clear problems. The saucers that lifted the water were still circular. Did they just have large leather gaskets that made good seals between the round washer and square cross section? It wouldn't matter on the down tube, but on the up tube they would have needed a good seal. thanks! Dave
  15. I’ve had some workshop time over the holidays. Lower deck framing is now in place. I had put it in place about two weeks ago, then when it was time to put the waterway in place, found that despite test fitting multiple times, the middle beam was higher than the others on the side I was planning on planking. Not sure what happened, but it is fixed now. I had made a lot of pieces over the summer, and it is nice to have them installed. I added the waterway and last part of the lower deck inner hull planking. I’ve been puzzling out next steps, particularly the course of the outer pump tube. It looks like the well size is from the contract, and inner carling placement per standard practice. I think I took the carling location right from the drawing, but I may be off a little. There are only two completed cross sections here, and it looks like Maury and Greg might have run into similar issues. The tube is 11” square, but the space between the carling and well wall is only 8-9”. Maury solved this by having the shaft pass through the well wall, and it is hard to tell from the pictures, but it looks like Greg may have ended the shaft at the deck level. I’m only going to install the pump on one side, and trying to sort out what to do. The inside of the well won’t be visible once the mast partners are in place, so I may end the pump shaft at the deck. I could move the carlings in, but it would require either having visible patched notches on the beams, or redoing two beams. Not sure what the original builders would have done: wider well, moved the carling in towards the center, notched the carling, or had the shaft pass through the top part of the well wall. Plan is to do a full Echo someday, and will need to solve it then. After the first forward progress in months, I'm not really up for a major redo for something that won't be visible. Hope to make the hatch coaming, mast partners, and plank the deck prior to heading back to work. Hope everyone is having great holidays. Dave

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