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dmalcolm72

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  1. Wow! I must apologize; I had no idea it had been over a month since my last update. Not to worry...I have been working on the skiff, albeit at a very leisurely pace. Still, much has been accomplished and I can see the final steps for completion. I got the centerboard installed before called out in the instructions. It seemed to me it would be easier to insert the hinge pin with the thwarts out of the boat. I then added the centerboard rope. As I mentioned previously, I added the thwarts and the decks. After several coats of paint I also added the end caps. I elected to make the caps out of scrap mahogany and I think It adds a nice contrast to the decking. Below you can see the thwarts with the foredeck and bow cap: And the stern cap: During this time I've been painting the hull and decks. I'm using gloss acrylic paint for all the painted surfaces. The stained and sealed surfaces are coated with Minwax Polycrylic Gloss. I'm using an off-white color for the decks and hull above the waterline and "engine red" below the waterline. The painting has been long and slow with several detours. Having thinned the paints with water to help in smoothing the coats, multiple coats were required. Then, I had to sand them for smoothness. I found a couple of imperfections that meant sanding off all the paint and adding wood filler, sanding that, and seeking a smooth surface. It's not as good as it could be, but I think it will be alright. I still have to do the actual black waterline, but the picture below gives a good idea of how it looks so far (the black line is masking tape I'm using to paint the bottom. In the meantime, I got the mast and sprit sanded, stained and coated with gloss. Part of that endeavor was to paint the block and the cleats. I got some gold paint and painted the cleats. I then used a VERY thin flat black wash to try to give them a worn patina. I'll let you judge my success. Below are the cleats before and after the wash: I painted the block a flat nut-brown color and also washed it with the thin black. I added a couple of small gold-colored spots to simulate the pin through the sheave. Once this was done I assembled the cleats and block to the mast with CA using the plans as a guide. If I could do it over I would have raised the cleats 1/4" to 1/2" higher on the mast (I think they're going to be just above, and too close to, the foredeck. During this time I also dyed the rigging line with Minwax Golden Oak stain. When it was dry I drew the line through beeswax to give it some body and to "defuzz" it. I think It will be fairly easy to work after that treatment. Next up: Finish painting the hull: waterline and final overcoat with clear gloss; Lay out the sail and coat it to give it some body. I'm leaning to a very thin PVA wash add the needed body. I will probably also lay it over a towel to dry so it has some billow to it; Finish laying out the rudder and get it painted to match the hull. I'm going to try to complete it before my next dive trip. I've got two weeks....so....I'd better get going...
  2. Well, quite a bit done since the last update. Again, I've diverted from the instruction book sequence for the sake of ease of construction (at least in my mind). I am delaying the installation of the foredeck until after I have installed the centerboard. But to do that, I need to have "other things" done first. So, here goes: I went ahead and installed the false stem and stern post and sanded them as instructed. You'll notice the addition of some wood filler to correct some imperfections in the assembly and to facilitate fairing the sides. Below is the false sternpost (unfinished): Finished false stem and sternpost: You can see a small "step" that I left on top of each. This is to accommodate the fore and aft decks (1/32" thick). I dry-fitted the aft deck and discovered that there was not enough overhang forward of the aft bulkhead (supposed to be 3/16"). A quick trip to the hobby store for a sheet of 1/32" x 4" basswood and I was able to cut a replacement deck. I decided to hold off on adding the stem and stern caps until after I have painted the two decks. The instructions call for painting these with the decks but I elected to cut them from mahogany scrap to provide some color contrast. I'll glaze them with clear gloss after installation. I test fitted the gudgeons on the false sternpost and adjusted the bevel for a good fit. Then I installed the skeg. This took quite a bit of careful sanding to get the curve to meet the curve of the bottom. The instructions showed the skeg flush with the back of the sternpost. To make it match better I sanded the back of the skeg to match the bevel of the post. I'm not sure if this is correct or not, but it looks smooth. I then cut out the rudder and marked it as the instructions indicated. A light coat of paint and it looks pretty good. Also at this time I made the tiller per the instructions. Again the pieces look pretty good. I'll stain and glaze the tiller before assembly and finish the painting on the rudder before assembly. During this time I also finished the display stand: That's it so far. I've actually done a little more on the centerboard and the decking but don't have any photos yet. I've gotten the bottom painted so I should be able to install the centerboard, thwarts, and foredeck in the next few days. In the meantime, I'm still working on the Longboat - adding planks...one small victory at a time...
  3. OK, well now that I've completed the travelogue... I've been busy with the Skiff since I got back: I elected not to install the fore and aft decks until after I completed the chine batten and the frame installations. As it turned out, this was a good thing. Most of the interior of the skiff as well as the thwarts had all been coated with the clear glaze. I had assembled the king plank and forward thwart with PVA glue that did not penetrate adequately to give me a solid joint. Same with the centerboard case attachment and the rear thwart. So, live and learn. This also gave me pause to consider the installation of the centerboard, the chine battens, and the frames. I think it will be easier to install all of these BEFORE I lock the thwarts and the decks in place. After these pieces popped loose it was relatively easy to trim and fit the chine battens. In retrospect, I could have spent more time in sanding the battens to fit flush on the bottom. There is more more gap than I would like in some places. Hopefully most of it will be masked by the forward thwart. I used a little thin CA glue to insure the centerboard case was firmly attached. And then I went off the rails with some personalization: I cut some 1/16" x 1/16" strips from the leftover mahogany. I elected to use it in lieu of the basswood pieces in Step #57. I also added two endcaps to the case, also in mahogany. I then proceeded to use install the first run of frames using CA glue to attach the frames to the hull. Again, a little more care could have been exercised in insuring the frames were perpendicular to chine batten and aligned with the pre-scored marks on the inside of the hull. The frames were all pre-stained to match the hull but were not glazed. Because I didn't glaze the frames I felt confident to use the PVA glue to attach the second row of frames to the first. I then let them dry before rough trimming. I used a clipper to do the rough trim of the frames: And then I used an emery board to sand the frames down flush with the top of the side: Finally, there's some scoring on the bottom of the skiff, but there does not appear to be a reason for it in the instructions. I'm considering adding a false floor to the skiff and use the scoring as a guide for location of the supports. I expect it will look something like this: Any thoughts on this? Is this appropriate, and reasonable from a practical (real world) perspective? More later as I get further along...
  4. Well, I decided to come back to the States a couple of weeks early. The Commodore was not able to make the trip so I wanted to get back before the start of the Holidays. The weather was beautiful, but a bit chilly some mornings with lows in the low 50's. And the diving was great! A friend took a camera on my last dive. The picture of me below was taken inside a small grotto inside a shallow reef. The statue is of the Virgin of Guadalupe, Patron Saint of Mexico. I've already removed a hull plank since I've been home and re-installed. I'm going to try and focus more on this project over the next few weeks...before I head back to Mexico for another round of "therapy."
  5. Well, I decided to come back to the States a couple of weeks early. The Commodore was not able to make the trip so I wanted to get back before the start of the Holidays. The weather was beautiful, but a bit chilly some mornings with lows in the low 50's. And the diving was great! A friend took a camera on my last dive. The picture of me above was taken inside a small grotto inside a shallow reef. The statue is of the Virgin of Guadalupe, Patron Saint of Mexico.
  6. Which "Hornblower?" The movie with Gregory Peck or the BBC program with Ioan Gruffodd? Both are excellent. I will bring mine down next trip. Hoping things go well with the Admiral Don
  7. Got the thwarts, king plank, and centerboard case glued into place. Now it can cure while the Commodore and I are relaxing in the sun...
  8. Well, I kind of slacked off this week. But I did get some work done. I'm actually working on a second boat concurrent with this one. It's a Chesapeake Bay Crabbing Skiff by Midwest. I spent most of the week working on the skiff. I did get two more planks on the longboat, though. This will be the last work I get done for a while; the Commodore and I are taking a much deserved long, tropical holiday. Sun, sand, tropical breezes, and for me: lots of diving.
  9. Well, I kind of slacked off this week. But I did get some work done. I'm actually working on a second boat concurrent with this one. It's a Chesapeake Bay Crabbing Skiff by Midwest. I spent most of the week working on the skiff. I did get two more planks on the longboat, though. This will be the last work I get done for a while; the Commodore and I are taking a much deserved long, tropical holiday. Sun, sand, tropical breezes, and for me: lots of diving.
  10. Got the thwarts, king plank, and centerboard case glued into place. Now it can cure while the Commodore and I are relaxing in the sun...

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