Erik W

HM Cutter Cheerful 1806 by Erik W - 1:48 scale

278 posts in this topic

Thanks guys!  I definitely feel like I'm in the groove with the intricacies of how to get good results planking.  This section of 5 strakes above the keel came out the best yet.  I still have finish work (sanding) to do where the strakes meet the keel and stem, but will save that for when the hull is fully planked. 

I glue the edge of the strakes a few bulkheads at a time, and use these clamps to hold the strakes tight against one another while the PVA sets:

Image result for dewalt small clamps

I wait 20 minutes or so, and then move on to where the strake sits on the next several bulkheads.  I was thinking of taking some in-progress photos of this procedure if you folks are interested.  How I'm clamping the strakes has, out of necessity, gotten pretty creative!

Erik

Stuntflyer, Canute, Cathead and 4 others like this

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Since I've been getting compliments on my planking, I thought I'd show you all how I go about gluing and holding the strakes onto the ship while the glue sets.  I'm using PVA, since CA sets too fast for my liking.  The first set of photos show the typical clamping positions on the top belt of strakes.  All the clamps are test fit on the formed strake before I apply glue.  You can figure out the best angle beforehand that way.  The ideal clamp location is one that holds the strake firmly against the bulkhead as well as holding it to the edge of the strake you're gluing it to without bending or warping the plank, if at all possible.  The clamping I'm doing is to hold the strakes tight while the glue sets, not to force the plank into place.  I have edge bent them with heat (no water) and face bent them around a jar without heat to get them as close to the correct shape as possible.

 

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This next photo shows the clamping at the bow of the lower belt of strakes.  The clamps are positioned for even pressure across the edge of the plank.  On this one I couldn't get the clamp positioned to my liking at the very bow, so I did it the old fashioned way . . . held it tight with my fingers and sat there for 15 minutes.

 

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Now a short tutorial.  I just glued this strake today and took photos of the process.  The strake was shaped, had the edge beveled, and was pre-bent, before it was glued on.  These next two photos show the first gluing session.  I only glued the 3 left-most bulkheads and the edge of the plank between two and a half of those.  The clamp on the right is up against the bulkhead where that side of the plank's edge is glued.  I've found that when gluing a strake in sections, it works best to split the sections to be glued midway between bulkheads.  I let this set for about 20 minutes.

 

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These next two photos show the tool I use to apply glue, and how I do it.  I've been able to bend the boxwood and get in there with the curved sharp blade in order to get the glue as close to the previously glued plank center.  I think it gets to within 1/8" or so on the plank edge. 

 

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This shows more of the same in the center section of the strake.  Again, notice that at the edges of the clamps on either side, the clamps are up against the interior bulkheads.  I really try to make sure that the plank edge only half glued is snugged down tight.  I also let this sit for about 20 minutes.

 

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And finally the last part of the plank.  Testing the clamp position was essential on the very end of the plank because the shape is changing, so the clamp angle has to be adjusted.

 

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One thing I'd like to point out.  Though this is only my second build, I don't feel like I necessarily have an aptitude that's greater than anyone else.  I have noticed over the years that being patient and going slowly yields better results, always, than when rushing through things.  Part of my ability to get the planking looking the way I want it is because of the time I've spent thinking how I'm going to do certain processes before I begin cutting wood.  My goal is to build a ship, rather than to have a finished ship . . . so if the process takes me a while, that's fine.  Lastly, some advice, don't ever look at the builds you admire on this board and think, "I can't do that."  I'm convinced that taking your time, and spending the effort to think your processes through . . .  and practice, practice, practice, will yield great results. 

 

Erik

 

Mike Y, Engelmann, hexnut and 29 others like this

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Well done, Erik! If you want, as you do those final strakes on the upper belt, you can place a small block of wood on top of the bulkheads near the inside edge of the hull. This might help you get the clamp into a better angle. It also prevents any damage to the hull due to clamping directly onto it.

 

Mike

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I need some advice.  I'm about to start planking the last row of strakes on one side of the lower hull.  I've planked the top 10 rows of strakes under the wales, and 9 rows up from the keel.  So, the last row are the strakes is a row in the middle.  So far I've had success with clamping the strakes to get them nice and snug, see my last post above.  Do you guys, particularly those of you who do planking well (Chuck, Druxey, Stuntflyer, etc.) have any tips on how I should go about this last row of planks.  I'm a bit concerned I'll wind up with gaps.  I plan on beveling both edges.  My thought was that if the plank is ever so slightly oversized, with beveled edges, it will force any slight gaps closed as I press the plank snug on the bulkheads.  Does this sound like reasonable thinking? 

 

Thanks,

Erik

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Erik,

 

I would not do it that way. Gaps will remain gaps no matter how much you try and force the wood into place. This is especially true since boxwood is not going to conform to variances in shape beyond a certain point. Take your time to get a press fit, though not too tight. The glue will swell the wood slightly and you definitely want the wood to go into the space as far as possible. I would only bevel the wood ever so slightly, Too much and there is a risk over thinning the edges during final sanding. You might end up test fitting numerous times in order to get it right. However, I think that the process will go quicker than you might expect.

 

Mike

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This is only my opinion, but.... I never plank a hull as in full-size practice, where you end up with a 'whiskey strake' in the middle of the bottom planking. Installing this, as you anticipate, is awkward to do. However, you need to do this now. I suggest that the edges of the planks be bevelled in such a way as to (lightly) wedge them home. I would not make them a force fit. Hopefully this will go well for you.

 

Next model, consider starting at the garboard and working up to the wale. As long as you keep to your mark out (which you are now expert at!), it will go much more easily.

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I guess I just need to make sure I take extra time to get the plank shaped correctly.  I looked at my longboat photos, where I planked it in the same fashion, and can't tell from the results which was the last plank . . . so I must've done something right.  I'm probably worrying for nothing.  Since it looks good so far, I don't want to screw the planking job up on the last row!

 

Erik

Canute, Stuntflyer, Nirvana and 4 others like this

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4 minutes ago, Erik W said:

I don't want to screw the planking job up on the last row!

 

Erik

You won't, Erik. Just keep doing what you do best!

 

Mike

mtaylor, Nirvana, druxey and 2 others like this

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Erik:I hesitate weighing in with such an august group but here goes...... This may help you given that you are infilling a strake area. Bob Filipowski gave me a tutorial that uses "scotch" type tape, the frosty kind, layered over the opening. He then rubs the tape at the edge of the upper and lower planks defining the opening. He carefully lays and removes the tape so as not to distort it. He then tapes it to card stock and cuts out the pattern. He then lays the pattern on stock and cuts it out. This leaves the fashioned piece a bit fat which then can be sanded to fit.

Joe

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Joe,

 

I hadn't thought of that.  I used the tape method to determine the edge bend of each plank.  I finished the second-to-last row of planks last night, so forge ahead with the last row tonight.  I'll probably do what I've been doing with the other rows.  Using digital calipers I transfer, from my tick marks, the plank width to each plank where it sits on the bulkheads.  Using first an Xacto blade, then a 180 grit emery board, I remove material on the plank down to my marks.  I'm sure I'll test fit it around a million times to try to get it perfect.  :)

 

Erik

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Erik:

 

Were I you I would proceed as you have been it is such an excellent execution! Just a nudge, maybe if the fit your way gets to you, try the tape method to see where the plank needs work. Just A thought.

 

I have begun planking my Cheerful at the wales after ripping my planks.That was a learning experience as well until I made a jig to do so.

 

 I have a long way to go in number(of strakes) and results compared to you. Nonetheless you give me a "target" to shoot for. Keep up your good works.

 

Joe

Erik W and Canute like this

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I reached a bit of a milestone today.  I finished the planking on the starboard side.  That last row of planks was a bit tricky, but I managed to avoid any gaps.  I gave this side of the hull a once over with 120 grit emery boards.  This is what I've done all my sanding with so far, and what I shape the planks with:  https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00CX9R0E0/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&th=1  They're flexible, so easily contour to the shape of the hull as I sand.  I cut them into smaller shapes for detail work.  Cheap and effective.  This is a bit of a rough look since I'm waiting to get the hull fully planked, and the stern post attached, before I do any sanding near the stem and keel.  I'm happy with the results so far.  Lets hope the port "display" side of the hull turns out as well or better.  I included a closeup shot of the planking to show the variety of pattern and color of the boxwood I'm using.  I like the variation.

 

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Erik

 

 

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