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    Richmond, VA
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    Scratch built plank on frame

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  1. Hi Jim - The house is a 1914 row house. We bought it 2 years ago and did a down to the studs remodel including replacing all the knob and tube wiring. The basement floor was one of the things we put off when we decided we'd gone far enough down the slippery slope, and it was time to stop. The asbestos got missed (or maybe ignored) by multiple inspectors and contractors. Both are things we genuinely regret not taking care of when the house was empty and crawling with contractors.
  2. John - thanks! My build is on hold for about a month. We found some asbestos in the basement that needed removal. Needed to clear everything out of the whole basement (first floor of the house is a nightmare with everything moved upstairs). In the interest of never having to do this again, we are having the 60 year old peeling floor tile removed from the rest of the basement and the floor painted. Asbestos is done, and the tiles are up and concrete getting patched. Hoping the paint goes down this week so we can move all the stuff downstairs and set the workshop back up soon. Will be a month from starting to take things down to being moved back in. Has made me appreciate how important getting into the workshop a few minutes each day is for my mental health, especially during COVID. On the bright side, I've never been more academically productive, and have quite a few of my work projects finishing and getting submitted for publication.
  3. Looks like we were posting at the same time Congratulations on your son completing his Eagle project - that is a huge accomplishment! My son was an Eagle Scout, too. Dave
  4. I can't speak to Triton, but Echo was a great project. The framing seemed to cover all the different frame types that I will need to make for the full ship model I hope to build someday. My build took eons because I did two house moves and have a job a lot like yours, not because there was anything overly difficult about the model. David and Greg were incredibly helpful, and there seems to be a lot more reference material (TFFSM in particular) for Echo than Triton. Echo is just different enough from Swan class that it felt like there was adequate reference material, but not quite straight out of the book building. The monograph is really helpful. Unless you really like building cross sections, not sure there would be a lot of incremental learning in building both Triton and Echo. Dave
  5. Small update. I've built the rudder log and lower stern framing, mast step, and removable floor boards. Nothing has finish on it yet. Not sure where they grey tinge in the wood in the pictures is coming from.
  6. Jim - many thanks. I'm looking forward to building the stern. I have a plan for how to do it, that will be a little more straightforward than the monograph. I plan on building the frame first, then doing the vertical planking as opposed to the monograph, which planks first (unsupported), then fits the framing. I mostly need to figure out the shape of the upper framing along the shear. Need to figure out whether I can draw the projection from the top view of the plans using turbo cad, or whether I should free hand it with Bristol board templates until I have something that fits. Turbo cad would be the right way, but I'm not very good with it. I'm definitely ready to call planking over the molds a success. I added the bottom planks. I didn't have any problem taking the hull off the mold (no issues with it getting accidentally glued in place). It held its shape off the mold. Not in the pictures yet, but I have sanded the edges of the bottom planks flush, and sanded off the glue on the plank seams that I didn't see until I looked at the pictures. It is pretty sturdy. It took a lot of sanding to get the edges flush, and only one bottom plank got a little loose. In the monograph they plank the bottom before adding the side planks, and use a scroll saw to trim the planks. I didn't think this through prior to gluing the bottom planks. With the angled side planking in place, I couldn't use a scroll saw. It ended up being a lot of sanding. If I was doing this again, would have cut the planks with less overhang.
  7. Planks soaked yesterday, and clamped in place overnight. The glue joints tolerated the soaking without separating, and the planks bent mostly into shape so that only a little pressure was necessary with the clamps for gluing. After soaking, the fit against the molds was also good - the side planking lies flat against them, and I don't have the sense they will bend inward when I take the hull off the molds. I glued everything up this morning. Fingers crossed for when I take the clamps off tonight.
  8. Michael - not sure how I missed your update. Your paint and carving look great!! Dave
  9. Finished the side planks. As they are flat, decided I would glue them together off the model. I thought I could clamp them better and minimize the gap between planks. That part worked OK. The joints look a little irregular in the pictures. I took them right after sanding. After I used some mineral spirits to wipe away the sawdust in the joint, they looked better. I put my right angle blocks on top to keep them flat while they dried. I had used a damp cloth to wipe away the extra glue. When I put the metal blocks on top, I got some discoloration of the wood, probably from some oxidation even though they were only there a few hours. Should have put some wax paper or saran wrap between. I was able to sand it away, except for where it discolored the glue. I was going to redo, then tried reversing the sides, so the side with the spots was now inside, where they will be hidden. I trimmed the fore end and clamped them side planks in place as a test. It is beginning to look pretty boat-like. I need to trim the aft end of the planks. I decided to end them vertically. I’ll trim them this afternoon, then soak the planks and clamp back in place to dry before gluing. The only thing I’m nervous about is whether the glue joints will separate with a few hours of soaking. I used titebond 3, which is waterproof (although it says “do not submerge”). If they separate, will need to redo.
  10. rare woods usa sells real boxwood (buxus species). Castello Boxwood is awesome wood for ship modeling, but is a different species despite the name. For ordering in the US, I'm still really happy with Gilmer Wood in Oregon, which regularly stocks Castello. There is a fair amount listed on their site https://www.gilmerwood.com/categories/38-boards-and-blanks/products?utf8=✓&filter=Boxwood&category= They seem to have more than just what they list on the website, and are really helpful if you call them and tell them what you are looking for. They only sell as billets, but their wood has flat (or nearly flat) and perpendicular sides, which makes it pretty easy to work with using just a band saw and thickness sander. I bought a 6' foot 2x4" 10 years ago, which was enough for Hannah and the Echo Cross section, and should run out as I finish the Sharpie. I've ordered twice since then, and continue to be happy with their quality and service. Dave
  11. I made some decisions and some progress. I’ve committed to planking upside down over the molds. I glued the chines to the keelson and glued three bottom planks in place. This seems adequate to hold the shape for the bottom of the boat. It allows me to take the hull on and off the mold, and gives enough access to the chines to fine tune the templates for the side planks. I modified mold #11 to accommodate the horizontal stem support, and installed the vertical and horizontal supports and the inner stem piece. I didn’t have high expectations about being able to use the planking templates that came with the plans. Seems like very small variations in cutting and assembling the molds would require the templates to be revised, and I’m sure I introduced many. I’m also not planning on painting, so the joints will be visible, and I want them to look good. This is one of the problems with building a model instead of a real boat, where a gap would have been expected and filled with caulking. I started with the pattern that came with the plans, and have modified it pretty significantly to get the right fit along the chine. I started with just the bottom plank, then realized I’d be better off making a template for the entire side planking, then divide it into three planks. I’ve gotten some good use of a set of ship’s curves that have been sitting in a drawer since I got them at an auction a few years ago. The template in the picture is the fourth iteration. I think one more and I’ll be ready. I also need to decide which stern planking option I’m going to use. The monograph gives two choices, vertical and angled. I'll need to decide before cutting the planks because the option drives how the aft edge of the planks get cut.
  12. Hi Jim - The boards aren't on the website. I emailed them with what I was looking for. They seem to have other wood in stock that they don't post, and what they post is aimed at a lot of different interests (wood turners, instrument makers. . .). A lot of other woodworkers want the opposite of what we do - prominent grain in interesting patterns. I emailed them looking for tight grain and nice color, as well as a similar piece of swiss pear. If they don't have anything in stock that is right, they have been great about emailing when something comes in. I've ordered from them twice before, and been really happy with their service and quality. It would be great to be driving distance from them. When I lived near Boston, I used to drive up to Yankee Lumber on the north shore. It was fun to see all the different kinds of wood, and be able to pick out what I was going to buy in person. It wasn't very economic - whatever I saved in shipping got used up in lunch at Woodman's fried clams, which was nearby. Now that I moved south, I don't have any place like that in driving distance, and have to be satisfied with seeing the look on the UPS driver's face as he carries shrink wrapped 2x4's up the steps. Dave
  13. Some progress over the course of the week, none of which really merits pictures: Milled a bunch of 1/16" sheet for the side planking Milled wood for the horizontal and vertical stem support logs. I used the dimensions from the plans, not the monograph, which are different. I think the monograph simplified by using commercially available stock sizes. I shaped the inner and outer stems. The monographs instructions for taping sheet stock to a big block to hold while shaping with a disc sander worked really well. Left to myself, I would have used a plane or chisel, which would have taken longer and probably not been as uniform when done. I couldn't figure out how to get set my tilt table on my table saw to the necessary angle (22.5 degrees, which would require setting the table to 67.5 degrees) I ordered a copy of Chapelle's Boatbuilding, and have slowed down to read it, something I regret not doing prior to starting. It is a great read, and really helpful. 70 years old but a classic. The plans come with patterns for the side planking. I cut out the patterns for the lower plank, which doesn't line up perfectly, but will give me a pretty good starting point for shaping the plank. Biggest issue is deciding whether to plank upright like in the monograph, or upside down over the molds. I'm still heavily leaning towards upside down. To do this I will need the stem attached to the keelson. The jig wasn't designed for this, but will only need a slot in the forward most mold to fit the horizontal stem support log. I'm also trying to decide how much bottom planking to install prior to fitting the first side plank. I need to install a few to keep the chines aligned vertically with the keelson. Leaving the bottom mostly unplanked will give a lot better visibility for fine-tuning the pattern and first side plank. I'm thinking of installing bottom planks at the bow, aft end of the chines, and front and back of the centerboard slot, then fitting the first side planks, completing the rest of the side planks, and finishing planking the bottom, before turning the hull upright to finish. When I'm done overthinking things, I'll start cutting and gluing. Dave

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