Jump to content

Boothbay Harbor One Design 1938 by Jond - 21' racing sloop - RADIO - 1:6 - Finished

Recommended Posts

This build is to be a prototype for potential group of RC boats to race at the Boothbay Harbor Yacht club.   First let's discuss why this might be a fun and useful project.



LWL:18' 9"

Draft:3' 6"

Beam:5' 6"

Sail Area:227.00 sq ft

Displacement:2,100.00 lbs


From Wikipedia

"..Geerd Niels Hendel (14 January 1903 - 30 March 1998) was a naval architect and native of Germany. He found success in the United States becoming a prominent yacht designer who had a hand in an America's Cup victory in 1937.

In 1935, Hendel became chief draftsman for the legendary naval architect Starling Burgess, who at the time was living in Wiscasset, Maine, and working on various projects for the Bath Iron Works, in Bath, Maine

In 1936, Harold Stirling Vanderbilt engaged the Bath Iron Works to build the America’s Cup Defender Ranger, the greatest of all J-class yachts. Geerd Hendel worked with Starling Burgess and a young Olin Stephens on putting together the working drawings (see Olin Stephens’s book, All This and Sailing Too). From his work on Ranger’s aluminum masts, Hendel became one of the early advocates of the use of aluminum in yacht building. That summer, Hendel became a US citizen.

In 1938, Hendel designed the 21-foot fin keel sloop known as the Boothbay Harbor One Design, the culmination of almost a decade’s work of designing, building, and then testing his ideas for fast racing sloops. Geerd Hendel and Starling Burgess actively raced the Hendel Racing Sloop during the years leading up to World War II. ......"




There is more history available through the Boothbay Harbor One Design association, which is hosted on the web site for the Boothbay Harbor Yacht Club.. http://www.bhyc.net/bhoda.html 


The short version is the wooden boats were built in the local area through the 1940's and 50's.  In the 1970's fiberglass hulls were made. My understanding is they were using cork within the glass element instead of cold forming method . Starting in 2007 two wooden 'original' design were built through the Brooklin boatworks. They took the original design and rebuilt the documents and molds.

post-9397-0-68947100-1443991575_thumb.jpg The first build boat was named  Eight Bells and she is in Boothbay Harbor. the second build included much work at wooden boat school.  She is named Osprey and is easy to find on the internet as it is looking for a new home.  



Since 2009 a few wooden boats were skinned with two coats of 1/8 cedar veneer and resin. There is a practicum on this process for the boat Bittersweet, No 20, done by the Brooklin boat yard. Finally David Nutt has built a few cold mold form, [4 layers[, at his boat works in Edgecomb Maine.  All together there are between 50 to 60 of these boats still sailing and many are still here.  There are also several very similar ' sister' boats including the Hodgdon 21 [built by Sonny Hodgdon]  also wood hull keel boats, and the Christmas Cove 21 all fiberglass. A similar 21' boat class also the Great lakes 21 lives in Ohio. 


I am now the proud owner of Bittersweet No 20.  I am hoping to learn more of its History. I am told it was owned for many years by the Reed family.  post-9397-0-59727200-1443991540.jpg  .  I found this photo on line and see the extra long fore-deck and after deck, an option in the 1938 design, that matches Bittersweet, so I think this is the same boat.  


post-9397-0-67486700-1443991555_thumb.jpg...Here are before and after images by Brooklin boatworks showing the 1941 built Bittersweet getting her new skin. Note the white transom?  Part of my research will be to understand when was that changed from the original Mahogany design. 


post-9397-0-66932500-1443991554_thumb.jpg ...Here is the post skinning look at Bittersweet.  Still lots to do.  The new owner decided to make her a beautiful dark green.  He sailed her a bit but she currently is in a barn ready for more work.  The plan is by next summer we shall see a new white interior and rigging all ready to resume racing. 





As to modeling,  this project is not a complicated whaling ship, bark or multi-masted fishing schooner, but it is a real classic Maine sailing design.  There are many families with long histories of this boat and a thriving youth sailing program all in the same place. Races are Wednesday afternoons and 5-6 weekends through our short summer.  They are perfect for fun sailing in this great harbor.   My goal is to show up next June with two working radio replicas to race at the club. The first two will be proto types.  Ultimately I need to have a choice of either a wood design with wood mast or the fiberglass [ same lines] with an aluminum mast. For now that is shape the spruce and paint "aluminium" but we'll see when we get there.  They are also great for a foggy day dockside. :D 


The first step in the build is to get plans. Fortunately the Maine Maritime Museum in Bath has a complete set dated 1938.  I am aware that new drawings were created for Eight Bells a few years back and I am looking for them too.  I also have Bittersweet and a dozen others to photo and copy.  A big challenge for Radio sailing is the fact the jib clews trail aft, past the mast and shroud. Most radio sailors are modified and jibs are redesigned to be a ' self tacking' style so like the Main sail it is only in and out, geared by one pulley to be 50% of the main and can therefore share the same servo.  We shall get into that as I have the same issue on the other boats I am working on, Charles Notman a 4 master with a flying and outer jib and the Dancing Feather a Boston Pilot schooner with Jib and flying jib.

I took the plans to Staples to get scanned into PDF's.  I then took the image I want ....say station lines .. and saved them as a jpeg.  I can then open it in Adobe Photoshop Elements  where I can rotate by fractional degrees and using the grid get a plumb image.  I then save as a new PDF.  I open the new PDF , take snap shot image and paste that into Turbo Cad Deluxe 20. 


post-9397-0-04267800-1443991552_thumb.jpg  To build the model, I take the section lines and tweak them to align with the Keelson / side view section lines.  I then added the detail framing section and align it below to take on the detail and better understand the build. Similarly I include the framing sections in scale to the lower right. 


post-9397-0-61222500-1443991553_thumb.jpg Now I need to build the ten station sections and transom.  I go to the  station lines and add layer by layer, tracing the line and then using mirror copy to complete each station mold.  I then add common legs to attach to the building board and cut outs for the keelson. I set up a page for each station with its unique named view in the model and viewport on each page.



Finally I offset inward the equivalent of the planking so when I finish the planking, we are back to at the final shape. Here is what gets printed out and glued to the luan plywood.


Keelson assembly planning


Now we have all the stations we need a keelson assembly.  This approach takes us away for scale modeling replication  to building a model that will sail.  To understand please look at the image of the boat framing including the 'floor' sole and keel attachment.  


post-9397-0-36126000-1443991541_thumb.jpg  One can see in this framing section there is nothing but bilge under the floor except for the floor timbers.   For building a static model there is no problem, but to sail we need to transfer to load from the hull into the keel.  It might work but since we can not see below the floor, we shall use that space for structure [ nee the keelson].  We will discuss more as we build out the detail in the open cockpit.


The keelson assembly....post-9397-0-36585200-1443991544_thumb.jpg  

We need floor timbers to support the flooring but also we need to add and extension to the keel.....keelson.. that goes stem to stern.  due to scale and size of printer we need to make this in three printouts and then attach.  


post-9397-0-74862300-1443991550_thumb.jpg  here is full scale of the aft section of the keelson


we are ready to start the build

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You've chosen a classic, lovely subject.  Fair winds !!!



Current Build: US Frigate Confederacy - MS 1:64


Previous Builds :


US Brig Syren (MS) - 2013 (see Completed Ship Gallery)

Greek Tug Ulises (OcCre) - 2009 (see Completed Ship Gallery)

Victory Cross Section (Corel) - 1988

Essex (MS) 1/8"- 1976

Cutty Sark (Revell 1:96) - 1956

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I enjoyed following your Charles Notman and now another interesting RC build. 



Every build is a learning experience.


Current build:  SS_ Mariefred


Completed builds:  US Coast Guard Pequot   Friendship-sloop,  Schooner Lettie-G.-Howard,   Spray,   Grand-Banks-dory

                                                a gaff rigged yawl,  HOGA (YT-146),  Int'l Dragon Class II,   Two Edwardian Launches 


In the Gallery:   Catboat,   International-Dragon-Class,   Spray

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks guys.  I enjoy the project and putting together the log.   I am going fast on my first hull to get to the hard stuff that needs planning and figuring out.   The second boat will be better in all ways.   I will include it as part of the log and hopefully it will fix things.   I can share some lessons learned to as hope in the end to encourage some folks here to build one and race.


then I need to figure out how to make a replica fiberglass with no ribs and aluminum mast.


thanks for your support

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Building hull # 1 stage 1  get ready to plank


Well here we go again. I thought I could go  quickly through these steps as they are similar to other builds in many ways. I want to note where we may find differences because of the unique large scale or other aspects of this boat design.  One example will be the unique rudder profile where it " nests" onto the aft edge of the keel.  I need not to rush too much though, because at this large scale the crisp lines of the bow stem and transom are key to a successful build. 


off to the shop


  • post-9397-0-56294000-1444075409_thumb.jpg  here I took all the stations and set them up so their legs would have nice square cuts on one sheet of $5 luan.  It is nice only having 10 stations this time. I also prefer having the gray shading added to the printout to make them more visible.


  •  post-9397-0-86021400-1444075410_thumb.jpg  Here I am going after scale as well as practicality.  The typical fir 1/4 plywood is actually thicker than that.  if you laminate three of them you get to 7/8.   it's OK for a large fishing schooner, but we are looking to hold 4 inched in scale.  


  • post-9397-0-71431500-1444075411_thumb.jpgThe birch plywood at .19 is better to sandwich the .26  fir ply and give us 5/8 thick keel. Therefore we keep the strength, straightness and stability of 3 play and honor the tighter scale.  Also the birch finish is nicer to work with to get sharp edges. I chose to keep the center fir sheet as it will house the attachement for the lead keep which hopefully shall be integral.  In this photo I screwed two together using one printout to cut them out just smaller than the center plywood in most areas and bigger for the concealed rudder detail. [  hold for later]
  • post-9397-0-74274900-1444075412_thumb.jpghere all three are together for fit up.


  • post-9397-0-67700400-1444075413_thumb.jpg  Now we cut out the stations. We cut close and then dress with a side disc sander.


  • post-9397-0-53308800-1444075414_thumb.jpg  Here is a lesson learned from my past.  Use the CAD to offset a line to cut them out smaller by the planned thickness of the planking, so that after planking we are back to the boats true lines.   This step saved much filing.


  • post-9397-0-24035500-1444075415_thumb.jpg  here is an old friend.  We need a building board , so I took the one from the recent big schooner Charlie.  wow 21 stations on that one.   We shall reuse the blocks and with a little light sanding layout on this old board is fine.


  • post-9397-0-37127800-1444075416_thumb.jpg  This is the standard method to set the block square and then attach the station leg and work progressively from one end to the other.


  • post-9397-0-31133000-1444075417_thumb.jpg  Here we have all ten stations set and the bow blocking fit up. I am holding on the transom for this step.


  • post-9397-0-66542700-1444075428_thumb.jpg  Here we add temporary blocking for all the stations.  Simply glue and set in place. they all get knocked out during planking.


  • post-9397-0-57281900-1444075429_thumb.jpg  Our first glue up.Due to my previous experience I glued the laminated keelsons and the spacers. I did not fill the station slots with glue.    


  • post-9397-0-53929700-1444075430_thumb.jpg  The next day we rip out the clear cedar planking.  As before I cut down 1"x 6" stock to 5/32 by 3/4 and then split the 3/4 as in this photo.  Doing them myself on the light duty saw they still have some deviation and I need to figure out how to avoid it.  One of the club boats is cedar and I will eventually need to plank one exposed, so I must get access to a cabinet maker saw to make them perfect. the other alternate is make them thicker...say 3/16 and then get a gauge sander.


  • post-9397-0-67420700-1444075431_thumb.jpg  Here is my new stock.  I believe for a fiber glassed solid color hull this is just fine. I cut 5/32 so I have a true 1/8" thickneww which allows good sanding for shape before glass.


  • post-9397-0-72676600-1444075432_thumb.jpg  this step is not complete but is the final step before planking.
    •  I have rough carved the bow blocks.  Spanning some loose planks I see I have more to do.
    •  the sub ribs are 1/32" strips of birch plywood.  They are glued to the stations below the floor line where the remaining stations shall become the default floor beams.  
    • see the drill holes to facilitate the cut out and removal of the stations[ forms].
    • I also saw cut that floor line about 3/8"  into the station to help with the break out.
    • the blue masking tape is to separate the sub rib from the station when it is knocked out.  I will then add fake inner ribs to theses sub ribs and then in between to replicate the design.
    • I need to remove paper from all lower stations and keelson that shall remain before planking.  it is much easier now then later.
  • lesson learned is the keelson was not perfectly located as to height in the transom area.   I could have sanded and fixed but chose to carefully remove two stations and deepen their cut outs, so the keelson could lower to the right position for the planking to come right over. That is why on the first glue up I did not glue the station slots.  Now that all is set, I did glue them.

I've definitely got some more work but soon I hope to set some planks and final align the bow blocks and stem and then set up the transom  prior to planking. 



Edited by Jond
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hello Jon I will definitely come along for the ride, I do like this scale although a tad lager than my preferred one of 1:8.


A wonderful subject for a model the deck configuration seems uncannily familiar ;)



Current builds  Bristol Pilot Cutter 1:8;      Skipjack 19 foot Launch 1:8;       Herreshoff Buzzards Bay 14 1:8

Other projects  Pilot Cutter 1:500 ;   Maria, 1:2  Now just a memory    

Future model Gill Smith Catboat Pauline 1:8

Finished projects  A Bassett Lowke steamship Albertic 1:100  


Anything you can imagine is possible, when you put your mind to it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Thanks for your comments.

I am enjoying working on both a real 1941 boat and making a sailable model at the same time.

One challenge will be to keep it simple, so I can encourage others to build one. For me simple is OK but I want it to be accurate too. I will be struggling to make bronze fittings.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

To all those who some day would want to build your own model BHOD ,  I hope you find the planking step as much fun as I do.  


We have had a busy week here in the harbor as work day came at the club and the final club boats were tarped up for winter as more friends left for warmer climates.  I even put our little pond dock to sleep for winter today as well.  The chase boat is on its sleepers almost ready for a winter nap. Despite all of this. I want to get come progress on this build before a few trips take up our time.  The good news is we have spectacular color in the foliage again. Funny though  that means we are into fall clean up too.


Building this hull I remind all this is a proto type.  I am trying to build it in a way that others can follow. That means others who are not experienced museum quality builders as so many are in this forum.   The  materiel is accessible and reasonable to work with. That being said there are definitely a few tricky areas.  I learned some good lessons going through this step.  These lessons will be a challenge to hopefully solved and avoided in the second hull to be started next month.


here we go


step 2 Planking


Picking up where we left off, the first need was to carve up a transom with blocking and get the bow blocking properly aligned.  to do this one needs to extend the shear plank and test the alignment and sand and get it right.  


  • post-9397-0-95369200-1444769035_thumb.jpg  here I had sanded and re-sanded the blocking as I fit the planking to the forms about four times, but I think we are there..... See the nice fit of the planks at the tip of bow...ha ha  stand by for the lesson learned.  


  • post-9397-0-71402900-1444769037_thumb.jpg  the transom went pretty quick. I like soft pine for the blocking like the bow. It is easy to sand, glue and drill into for screws and toothpick pegs.  For this prototype I plan to have a painted transom. If one chooses to have mahogany, this would be the same but it must be about 1/8 inch further forward to stay inside the boat length.  [ the mahonagy would go on after planking.   I would use 1/8 planks glued together., similar to those planned for cockpit combing later.  the edge would be exposed and real ones are also laminated.  I will try it on hull 2.


I said I would move along and only record things that are different or unique to this build.  That requirement did not take long.

  • post-9397-0-01956900-1444769039_thumb.jpg  There is quite twist in the planking. The planks will be visible on the inside of the cockpit, so I chose to run planks all the way through as long as they ran off the transom and needed only one cut end.  Due to the multiple twists as well as side bending, I ended up having to use temporary screws to hold the wet planks to dry to shape.....that is another reason for solid blocking at the bow and transom.  I did cut the planks when I got below the floor line.


  • post-9397-0-39507100-1444769040_thumb.jpg  we have a concave..."reverse curve" at the bow.  Very quickly I found a need to use several screws on each plank. The planks are tight on the inside due to the curve and  loose on the outside.... that is fine.  The outside will be filled before fiber glass. Using the 5/16" width gives a good enough curve I found on previous hulls and so far so good here.     Again this makes this an easier process to build.   Checking the plans the planks are about 5 inches by 1/2" cedar.  that would mean 3/4 wide and just over 1/8 thick.  I am not sure what material could bend at that scale. i wanted to use cedar, so I do not apologize for just under half size planks.


  • post-9397-0-00965700-1444769042_thumb.jpg....OK  here is our first  lesson learned :huh: and possible oops.   The reverse curve pulled apart the three planks at the stem as I screwed in tight at station 0..  
  • post-9397-0-06434600-1444769043_thumb.jpgThe fix was to file and insert a 1/16 plywood cut to form of the stem.  I then ran the piece all the way to the keel, so each plank would end on this piece.  This  trim piece should give a crisp line after sanding.   the oops was not knowing its need and not having it all the way around the bow before planking..  hull 2 shall have it!.    I had assumed i could achieve that by sanding......we'll see.


  • post-9397-0-99221800-1444769043_thumb.jpg  here we are progressing.  3 or four planks are glued and drying while the next 3-4 are being installed, secured and hopefully drying to shape.


  • post-9397-0-50507700-1444769045_thumb.jpg  here I  have installed a filler piece as well.  I always planned this one as the dimension across the keel is perfect at two planks plus 1/16 inch center trim piece.  

post-9397-0-98069000-1444769046_thumb.jpg  well here we are all planked and one rough sanding done.  There are a few  items loose and then we need to figure out how to dress up the bow.  where the trim piece was added it seams simple. controled sanding and filing is my approach. what ever we do gets covered with cloth and glass then filed sanded filled etc.  we'll fix it.   


post-9397-0-51879300-1444769048_thumb.jpg  here we have cut and sanded planks back to the transom.  If we were going to use mahogany I would use 1/8" solid boards. they would be added to this structure as one wants to cover the ends of the planks.     One would need to shorten the placement of the transom that 1/8" *** part of the planning.



OK  cheers


Edited by Jond
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Jond


I love that second last photo of the 'cut and sanded' hull. Ain't no doubt about the beauty of a planked hull, especially with the symmetry of the planking. For me, it's one of those moments that reminds why I admire it so much when art and practicality come together to produce a sweet looking hull.







Edited by Omega1234
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Hi All.  During the final surface preparations and completion of the hull, it is important to start figuring out how to make or procure all the items needed either to replicate the boat or to make it sail. If you follow the number sequence of the photos, one can see I bounce back and forth from hull production to fiddling with the fittings.  I think that is normal, but it would make it harder to follow this log.  Therefore I am making two postings.  As stated I am doing these to help demystify the process to encourage more entry level participation. That way maybe we can build a fleet.


My full size boat named BITTERSWEET is the template for hull one of this two hull build.  So as we are heading into winter, plans are being finalized for the completion of restoration to the real thing.  To help figure out the modeling we shall be using BITTERSWEET

  • post-9397-0-82052200-1446131820_thumb.jpg My first challenge is to make three winches in the classic bronze material to the older 1940ish design.  Here is the starboard jib / spinnaker winch on BITTERSWEET.  Oh the stainless jib track and unmatched jib block are also going away.  all tracks and fitting will be aged bronze.  This requirement means finding different way to achieve that.


  • post-9397-0-56301300-1446131821_thumb.jpg  As part of our work, we shall add a third winch to the foredeck to better facilitate crew handling the jib sheets from that position.  To do that we need to procure three fittings, one winch and two jam cleats as well as to make Mahogany bases.  Here you can see I have procured Honduras Mahogany and am making the real size plates.  

Now to make the scale winch I chose to mock one up.  Look in the photo and you can see my first attempt.


post-9397-0-59790900-1446131822_thumb.jpg  Here I turned a 1/2" dowel to the shape of the winch barrel and used brass washers to build up the base and body.  While at the NRG session in Mystic last week, I discussed options with many folks.

  1. make a mock up that someone could use to make a mold and then use resin
  2. make a mock up that someone could use to make a mold and then a second mold to use Britannia medal...$$$$
  3. work on my CAD skills to progress into 3D.  then down load a model and sent it off to a printer.  again in resin..ok  but in nice bronze..$$$$$
  4. get someone to turn the barrel in brass and continue to assemble as the mock up.......this is my first choice. Oh an I also want to improve cad to be able to do 3D

post-9397-0-59034800-1446131823_thumb.jpg  In the mean time I chose to make up three as place holders. Hopefully they won't have to go to sea.


post-9397-0-65831100-1446131824_thumb.jpg here they are raw and ready to finish.  


post-9397-0-59237500-1446131825_thumb.jpg  finally   here they are with a quick attempted finish.  per recommendation of Nic from Blue jacket , they are painted the red brown [ called leather brown on the can] and then covered with a green wash. i see here they need more wash, but again " place holder"


post-9397-0-98508500-1446133100_thumb.jpg  I am sure we are coming back to these.  Good news is other boats may not have the same type of winch as racers like the more modern efficiency of sleek black and chrome Harken fittings.






Link to comment
Share on other sites

Milestone..ready to remove from the building board and mold! :D


During the past few weeks we have been starting fall clean up, attending the NRG conference in Mystic, and trying to get progress on hull one before travelling.   I just made it...sort of any way.


Here is the process I followed to get a rough sanded cedar hull smoothed up, fiber glassed and painted. During this time we need to design and  install the running sailing rudder and keel systems as well.

  • post-9397-0-40919500-1446134602_thumb.jpg Here I have laid out the proposed display and sailing rudder as well as the sailing keel.  I am not following a design but on this proto type making the first stab using former experience and a few principles.
    • the rudder.  the sailing  attachment will use wood peg inserts into the display rudder, so unlike the Notman schooner,[ my first attempt] there are not two brass rods permanently projecting aft. During the building of this proto type, I feel the use of cedar for the ' pegs' was wrong and the next one  will be hardwood for strength.
    • the keel.  first I have to calculate the center of buoyancy and mark it. it was 7/8 inched behind station 5. second I needed to understand the center of gravity for the intended keel weight.  I knew from a marblehead design bulb that the CG of the carved wood mold in the photo and lined it up under the CB. 
    • The weight.  This hull only displaces 8-9 # of water.  That almost cancels out with the full weight of the boat I suspect to be about 5-6#.....we'll see.  A marble head displaces a few more pounds.
    • The issue for me is overturning not matching the waterline.  So here is guess work that will sort out next summer with sailing and most probably adjustments.  I have a classic pond yacht which has 10# lead for 50 inch length  and 800 SQ IN sail area.  The depth is about 11 inches down. My Marblehead pond yacht had 10# about 15 inches down and also 800 SQ IN sails,   This boat is 42 inches but carries 850 inches of sail if I build them to full scale.
    • all three items will be in play
      • sails may need to be cut down
      • lead keel weight will likely be reduced
      • position of weight below boat may need to be adjusted
  • post-9397-0-29941800-1446134605_thumb.jpg  here we apply epoxy glue  for the brass rods internal of the rudder.  I set the outer 1/16" ply wood skin at the same time making the rudder 1/4 thick.  This is clearly a compromise as the design has a very sleek rudder that I can not replicate as it needs the extension to sail.


  • post-9397-0-91850100-1446134603_thumb.jpg  here we go.  I had used water putty on the cedar for final faring before glass.  at the NRG session I was advised not to do that because the ate putty is harder than soft cedar and it actually could have cupped....I will reconsider next hull.


  • post-9397-0-47988200-1446134606_thumb.jpg  Here is first coat of resin over 6 oz glass.fiber. I did three coats and vigorous sanding between.I chose not to do the keel with fabric as it is plenty strong.  I did a coat of resin only.


  • post-9397-0-63099000-1446134607_thumb.jpg  here is the first attempt sailing keel set on the real keel. I chose 1/4 OD brass insets to accept No 8 threaded rod.  I assume the weigh will be leass and that size comfortably stays within the keel without too much stress.  I chose not to glass the keel itself but may review that on the next hull if this become a weak point.  Unfortunately I had cut it out before aligning the CG to the CB and  it rides forward a bit.  Once we figure it out this sailing  keel will be reshaped to better compliment the form.  


  • post-9397-0-01532800-1446134609_thumb.jpg here is bondo on [ light gray] and sanded and finish puttly [ red] on to fill all pin holes and scratches.  I stopped at 240 paper, pros go on to 400 grit.


  • post-9397-0-38797700-1446134610_thumb.jpg  here is gray finishing primer also form car body store. I like the affect and it is good to see and apply more putty etc.  It also gives good sight for adding water lines.
  • post-9397-0-58170900-1446134611_thumb.jpg  Here I set up the building board and template to lay out the waterline and boot top. I must admit it took two full tries to get it right. 


  • post-9397-0-56161500-1446134612_thumb.jpg  Being a genious I put 1/4 masking tape over the water base enamel boot top because I like to spray the first construction coat on the bottom.


  • post-9397-0-53969700-1446134613_thumb.jpg  Here we are with our bottom paint sprayed on.   I did not choose this color scheme.  Historically I understand BITTERSWEET was white with light green bottom and no boot top.  The previous owner had it done in dark green with boot top and a racing black bottom paint. My rear admiral wanted a green boat....so guess what?    I sure hope it is fast but I am not in love with  a black bottom.


  • post-9397-0-12286400-1446134633_thumb.jpg  Here is big oops.....While i was taking off the blue masking tape and paper, some of the boot top masking came with it, and it pulled the water base enamel right with it.



  • post-9397-0-04920800-1446134634_thumb.jpg  Finally here we are....remember this boat will sail and get bumps.  I therefore choose to brush paint my topsides, because it will be repaired many times with a brush.  


So we are off to Arizona to see the kids and when i get home...off comes the mold and we turn her over.






Link to comment
Share on other sites

great progress Jond, look forward to seeing her the right way up.



Current builds  Bristol Pilot Cutter 1:8;      Skipjack 19 foot Launch 1:8;       Herreshoff Buzzards Bay 14 1:8

Other projects  Pilot Cutter 1:500 ;   Maria, 1:2  Now just a memory    

Future model Gill Smith Catboat Pauline 1:8

Finished projects  A Bassett Lowke steamship Albertic 1:100  


Anything you can imagine is possible, when you put your mind to it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Michael  thanks...FYI I lived in Edmonton for a year and truly loved it.  I am still an Eskimos fan 


Mike  thanks.. I visited Switzerland a few times and wow...it was gorgeous too. 


I am learning too as I quietly review both your building logs.  this big scale is daunting as the fittings need to look good but also in some cases work.


cheers I am off for a bit

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

Hi all


I wanted to update as we are heading into more holiday breaks.  In general I am proceeding to figure out how to build the first hull and simultaneously start the second hull.


This is a procurement stage. 


I have  been successful working with a local builder of BHOD's to  copy drawings produced as recently as 2006 for building a new BHOD in Maine. These drawings add many details that will be important.   also I am field measuring as one of these first 2 hulls is indeed intended to replicate my real boat.   I will identify a few examples as I get the assembly of the items as there are variations.



So what do we buy and what do we make?


1.       Masts and booms....I bought Sitka spruce blanks.  It is accurate for the class and wonderful to work with. I have used it on my previous boats too.


2.       Planking:  we are back to ripping down clear cedar to 5/32" by 5/16".  A little more care and the results are a little better.  Practice is important. It is still too much load fo r the mini table saw and I need to consider that aspect too.


post-9397-0-64890900-1448222088_thumb.jpg here I have shaped two of the masts and inserted the brass main halyard sheaves.  I have also stockpiled the planking for hull 2


3.       Mahogany...I am buying Mahogany for work on my real boat and am using some scraps from that.  I also found some 1/8" craft wood strips that is perfect for cockpit combings, cleat plates, splash board, mast step  etc..



4.       Teak is an upgrade option included in many if the newer boats. My real boat sole is needing replacement, so I am upgrading it and thus this model needs teak. Several people have told me not to try to cut down teak.  I may anyway as I have scrap to play with .  In the mean time, I found Jason Clark for Crown Timberyard and he recommended and is providing so Paduak for the sole flooring. 



Hardware for traditional design


these boats are alternately rigged with traditional bronze of the newest high end Harken fittings. there two hulls will be traditional.  


5.      post-9397-0-45680600-1448222083_thumb.jpg Gooseneck and Turnbuckles: they need to work, so I went to a real pro Roger Cousineau.  The fact he was a Mainer before relocating to Florida is just that much better. He remembers the BHOD class well and was helpful getting sizing right.  I will need to add wings to his goose neck and will discuss when I do it.



6.      post-9397-0-58899800-1448222087_thumb.jpg   Cleats and chocks.  I am trying to stay in brass so that I can then treat all to get that 40 year old bronze look.   Al from Ships N things sold me several sizes of the Wet Goose brand and they really look great...but shinny.



7.       Winches and CAM cleats.....for the traditional look, I am still working on it...see  mock up winch earlier post. this will expand to include Cam cleats for main sheet and halyards.  little gears I guess


8.       post-9397-0-86871900-1448222084_thumb.jpgSheaves.  We have two: one main halyard and one mainsail out-haul.   They are proctor airplane sheaves.



9.       Blocks:  here we have two sets.

a.        For the running rigging I have a combination of the fair-leads and a smaller proctor  ' airplane pulley" . The idea is they will mostly be under deck and be actually sailing the boat.  

b.      For the visual lines like halyards, jib sheets etc I have a combination of Bluejacket blocks that I shall paint and wash for affect.  They are replicating the shell blocks of classic design.   


post-9397-0-25622900-1448222081_thumb.jpg here i have Britannia metal to deal with. I will be painting brown and then washing green to get the look ....I hope


10.   Stem Strap...this is a critical piece as it takes the load of the fore stay that is doubling its duty as a jack stay for the jib.  My first plan to be sure we get sailing is to use a strong eye for the stay and smaller eye for the jib clew and then the strap is more for show.  Ultimately I need to learn to solder a strong combined double eye and bent channel to complete the assembly


11.   Sails...I have made my sails for the old schooners and small scale using muslin.  One option for the 1938 sails was egyptian coton but they quickly went to Dacron.  Modern sails are all Dacron with a higher tech revised class design, and that is truly the norm. This time I am trying to have race boats that look good and also perform.  Rod Carr makes great racing sails for many classes in the AMYA and was gracious to bend a few norms to make sails for us in scale. 


post-9397-0-19784100-1448222080_thumb.jpg  here my second mate is helping me as I draw up and then scale down the sails for the sail maker.  I will have a whole post on this issue as there is much trial and error going on.



12.   post-9397-0-01795200-1448222091_thumb.jpg Servo's and controls.  I am no expert, but following the lead of others as well as a little success with my other sailing, I focus on using Hitec sailing servo with  3.5 turning drum on the sails and 90 degree swing for the rudder. I like to use two batteries harnessed, to allow weight balance and removability for recharging.  There are many options foe receivers and radio equipment.


13.  ballast...this will be a long story for future posts


14.  tracks and carrs etc.   like bales and other misc i will make most of this from brass stock and rings 







post-9397-0-15718100-1448222500_thumb.jpg  here was a fun day.  I have removed hull one from the molds, added the ribs cleaned it up and painted out in white.   I simultaneously progressed resetting the molds on the building board for hull two.


post-9397-0-29759800-1448222082_thumb.jpg  Interesting issue.  I bought 24 x 48 sheets of Luan, birch and fir plywood for  these builds.  I formed up hull one right after bringing the supply home.  Sitting around for a month or so there was a slight bow in the luan that did not come out as I reduced size by cutting the individual molds.   To fix this I had to add two more rows of braces to square up the molds.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Hi all


I thought I needed to update the log as progress is being made despite many interruptions.   Progress is moving on three parallel fronts.... hull 1, procurement and preparation of spars, sails etc and hull 2. I am working on all three so please excuse some confusion as I go back and forth.   We must remember this build is meant to include two boats, so they can race.


Ok  last time I left out a step or two on hull one interior.


1.       After cleaning up the interior I needed to install ribs.   To get the best look I chose to use 1/16" bass because with ammonia water it was easy to bend and shape.  In scale it should have been 3/32". So to get the right look, I chose to mount them proud onto the coat of sealing resin.  This method gives more of a  shadow and makes it work.   A problem to resolve is the building method included placing a 1/32 strip of birch plywood on each form.   These sub ribs were separated by tape so they would easily come off the form and remain in the boat. They are at each 3rd rib line.



2.       There are two problems or lessens to consider in hull 2.

a.       Oops the boat is 1/16th too wide because I did not take consider the 1/32 sub ribs.

b.      The sub ribs are located every 3rd rib and are 3/16" , just wider than I wanted for the ribs.  I ripped some 1/32 strips later to compromise and they came out OK. see painted photo.

  • post-9397-0-70188500-1449954523_thumb.jpg here the wet ribs are set at one third points betweeen the formed ribs and left to dry.
  • post-9397-0-06502600-1449954439_thumb.jpg here the ribs are marked and stored until the inside is coated in resin
  • post-9397-0-51259600-1449954440_thumb.jpg here I have coated the inside with resin to seal the boat . i laid the ribs on the resin to accentuate the shadow line.


3.       My first attempt to place the servos was to consider a removable cigar box approach.  I assembled the items and then set in the box.  It did not take long to decide that was not the way.


  • post-9397-0-69286700-1449954445_thumb.jpg all RC equipment to be set and secured when sailing then removed.   I chose not to pursue this option at this time.


4.       The only place that gets wet when sailing a pond yacht is typically the fore deck.  Thus one does not penetrate that deck ....after a lot of thought I decided to break that rule and make a full forward hatch so I could bury the servos and stuff.

  • post-9397-0-84225100-1449954446_thumb.jpg  here is the new  foredeck hatch for access to servos.


5.       The rudder also needs access, so a smaller aft deck hatch is made.


  • post-9397-0-28385000-1449954448_thumb.jpg  here is the aft deck hatch for access to the rudder.



6.       Several folks at the NRG conference recommended to me that I should use Paduak to replicate teak.  I bought it and yes  it is beautiful.  Here it is resting in the boat.   I will think more about this as my boat is really teak and I have that material.  This issue is not solved yet.


  • post-9397-0-86987300-1449954449_thumb.jpg


7.       I was up seeing my real boat and found that we are using special hard bilge paint which is gray.  Even though most is below the teak sole, I chose to paint it as it should be.  The 3 center sole boards should be removable for bailing and I need to do that too.   It will be nice when the right color is there to greet us.


  • post-9397-0-27364300-1449954525_thumb.jpg  here you can see the common progress.  As I was painting out the bilge in hull 1 and I was starting hull 2


8.       Completing all the hardware blocking under the deck and building the six chain plates is the final activity before adding the deck.



9.       For the back stay I chose to put a simple L bracket on top of the keelson and screw and epoxy it in.


  • post-9397-0-29284700-1449954527_thumb.jpg


10.   For the head stay I need a stem strap.  After a lot of thought,I  chose to cantilever a brass bar. It will be in a bed of epoxy and have the deck plywood holding it down.  I then glue down shaped brass flanges on the deck and pin a brass angle on the bow completing the fitting .   I will show it against the real thing when it is all installed and cleaned up.


  • post-9397-0-29890700-1449954526_thumb.jpg  some day I will learn to make a jig and silver solder a strong fitting.  lets see how this looks though.


11.   The shrouds plates were really hard for this boat. 

  • The normal design is a single shroud bolted to the floor. The option is to have the turnbuckle below deck and only the shroud penetrating the deck or to install a twisted bronze chain plate, bolted to a link through the deck and have the turnbuckle above the deck.  
  • In the 1970's the new boats have aluminum masts and a double shrouds.  The approved class design allows upgrading the wooden boats to include this added shroud. Its purpose I will show in a later post. For now I am replicating my real boat. we are simultaneously upgrading it by adding this second shroud to stiffen the lower mast.  
  • In my boat there is a OAK plank securing the floors before and aft of the shroud to average out the uplift.  There will be two twisted bronze bars with links and that is what I am doing.  A big lesson learned.....I learned that I need to sort all that out next time before I build the deck frame . That way I can get my fingers in there and make the actual bolted connection etc.  I needed to use a copper wire and that I bent to hold it down.  Fortunately it will not be visible.



12.   The after deck is now glued down with epoxy to the deck frame.

  • post-9397-0-45979300-1449954531_thumb.jpg here I and securing the after deck..  



Hull 2 starts


13.   Hull 2 can start now we have the building board.  Reusing the marked, labeled station blocks , screw holes etc. meant I could install all the forms in minutes......nice re


  • post-9397-0-67321900-1449954441_thumb.jpg

13 a here as the forms are all set we can see the painted ribs on hull one.  note the issue of the bent fomes in the last post. I needed to add double braces to fix it.

  • post-9397-0-54817900-1449954442_thumb.jpg


14.   Here we are with all the planking in place and rough sanded. She is resting next to CHARLES NOTMAN, the downeast schooner I built last winter.


  • post-9397-0-64330000-1449954528_thumb.jpg

15.   Here she is next to her sister getting her 6oz glass fiber blanket


  • post-9397-0-14959300-1449954530_thumb.jpg


16.   Here we are with two coats of resin. 


  • post-9397-0-11506100-1449954533_thumb.jpg




Link to comment
Share on other sites

She's looking good.  Oh what fun you're going to have.



Every build is a learning experience.


Current build:  SS_ Mariefred


Completed builds:  US Coast Guard Pequot   Friendship-sloop,  Schooner Lettie-G.-Howard,   Spray,   Grand-Banks-dory

                                                a gaff rigged yawl,  HOGA (YT-146),  Int'l Dragon Class II,   Two Edwardian Launches 


In the Gallery:   Catboat,   International-Dragon-Class,   Spray

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hello, Jond, Very nice build you have going on here. looks fantastic 


Best Regards,


"may your sails be full of wind and the sun on your back"
Current Builds :





 Future Builds :

N.G Herreshoff 12 1/2 Scratch Build 3/4" = 1' - 0" Scale


Completed Builds :


Volvo 65 Farr Yacht Design

Herreshoff Alerion

Herreshoff Buzzards Bay 14

Volvo Open 70


 Member : 


The Herreshoff Registry                                  Montgomery Sailboat Owners Group       Peter Kunst Sailboat Models 
http://www.herreshoffregistry.org/                       http://www.msog.org/                      http://www.facebook.com/Peter-Kunst-Sailboat-Models-1524464774524480/ 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you everyone for your following along.  I will do a longer post after the holidays but just wanted to share status as we take a holiday break.


We have had very nice fall weather here in Maine, so I was able to  rush a bit to allow me to spray paint the bottom on hull 2 outside.  Once it is too cold for outside spray, I am reduced to normal paints.  I just like that first construction coat or two to be good old rattle can enamel.  So I spray and carry her inside to harden up.  Then out again for coat and back in side to dry.  




I got the second hull ready and painted. Please note she is not yet named.   I chose the paint scheme of my boat bittersweet prior to the re-skinning.  Her photo pre-skinning  is early in this log.   I also plan to upgrade this hull with a mahogany transom.


The masts and booms  are also done, so I set one in for the photo.   I am working on the spreaders and other details that I shall pick up in January. That all needs to be completed off the boat.  I also have received the first sail.


now let's all enjoy the holidays





Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Hi All


We flew home from Florida and arrived in the middle of a snow storm....yippee winter is here.


I got a few days in on the boats, so here is progress as we close out the year.  I had to build more strap stands. they will be color coordinated Later. Hull two is off the molds and rough sanded inside.  Hull one has mahogany combing and hatches figured out. 



post-9397-0-13480700-1451599777_thumb.jpg  Please note the cleaner inside of hull two.  I left out the 1/32" sub ribs under each form and that worked out well.


more later


cheers to all

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Hi all


Well we are moving along and I thought it time to update our progress.  As I am working both boats, I will be going back and forth a bit. In general we have progressed  hull two along in a catch up mode.  As I am working hull one, it take more time as I need to develop things like hardware. After I figure out what I plan to do, I usually have to buy more stuff.   sound normal? 


I make all the parts for both boats as I go. Most importantly I am visiting our neighbor David, the real boat builder as he is restoring the real Bittersweet. He has been building an sailing boats for 40 plus years, so I know we are in great hands.   I shall show some pictures of her as we go along especially as it ties directly to decisions on this project.  The first example is to understand the update to the class design to add strength to the mast via a second shroud and set of spreaders.  This added  strut and shroud does several things.


good stuff

  • it sets up a truss for the lower mast that used to bend. 
  • it doubles security as to point load and sharing tension in a blow.

hard stuff

  • it means doubling the connections to the boat. One method for adopting this upgrade to older boats is for the lower shroud to be attached to the mast just above the deck.
  • The design revision that is applied to any new boats incorporates the double strut as a class standard. In the design they add a plywood bulkhead to rib 10 and grab it on either side for two chain plates.  This point of connection relieves the point load on the floor in the old design. it also makes a very strong diagram at the mast.  David calls it making us " bullet proof"


The 1938 design has one chain plate.


post-9397-0-35494700-1452884259_thumb.jpg  Here is image from the web showing a nicely restored boat looking forward below deck.  Note the nicely finished mast step,  gray epoxy hard paint in the bilge, and sweet bronze chain plates. there is an option.  put the turnbuckle as in the photo , or twist the plate 90 degrees, add a link and set the turnbuckle above the deck.


At the time I built hull one, the idea was to double the chain plates below, to twist them and relocate turnbuckles above the sealed deck. The load was being spread by a heavy floor plank on top of several floors ganging them together..  Therefore I proceeded to model that solution in hull one....Bittersweet junior.


post-9397-0-81488100-1452884150_thumb.jpg  Here is how I built the model to reflect that approach.


While reviewing the real Bittersweet, David [ the builder] found the critical floors were not reattached as part of the 2011 reskinning job.  perhaps an oops.  


post-9397-0-83723500-1452884536_thumb.jpg the two floors holding the mast step were loose with a  gap up to 1/2 inch.   wow!   not too much was holding her together.


David progressed and I after discussion I decided I did not want to try to save the floors. Four had sister beams for attaching the old sole and both had many old fastening holes.  



post-9397-0-05424700-1452884542_thumb.jpg     Since we are changing the sole and all the new holes continue to weaken the old floors new floors are on order.....ouch $$$.



post-9397-0-04535800-1452884824_thumb.jpg  here is the progress. Isn't it great to see a real craftsman.




David and I talked after a long Xmas holiday . After multiple ideas on better attachment of the floors to the two chain plates, we decided to go with the new class design and add the plywood bulkhead and attach the chain plate to that.


post-9397-0-60124100-1452884148_thumb.jpg  I went home and immediately made the bulkhead for hull two.  it looks right.


post-9397-0-97479700-1452884163_thumb.jpg  Here is is later after installation and inclusion of the chain plate bracket.  I fear the new bronze braised brackets for the real bought won't come as easily. $$$$


It was time to glass in the interior of hull two



post-9397-0-57517100-1452884153_thumb.jpg.. here you see the difference from hull one...look at how many ribs I had to prepare since I did not put them on the molds.


post-9397-0-68307300-1452884157_thumb.jpg  Here they are all in.  I think they look much better  and have adopted this approach for an exposed interior going forward


Oh well here is an oops.  not the first one I assure you all


post-9397-0-84065400-1452886637_thumb.jpg  setting the ribs into the resin is a good idea, but there is risk of movement, and here we have two that are off.  They go where the deck beam crosses for the end of the cockpit so I had to knock them out and replace them above the future sole.


post-9397-0-66879200-1452886639_thumb.jpg  here I have added the deck beam and realigned the ribs to suit.   In this hull I will have a larger cockpit which means this frame is the aft end.













Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to comment
Share on other sites



I thank you fully for your support.  trying to make the model sail and also reflect the real thing is the true goal here.   I find doing this coincidentally with David doing our real boat is a one time opportunity that I also relishing.   We have our first association meeting in June and the pressure is on to be ready.





Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi All


We have reached a fun stage.  Here we look at the real fittings and figure our how best to replicate them+ .  I am trying to use as much brass as I can, so it will age just like the real thing.   A little salt water helps too I am told.  we'll see.


At the same time, I am plodding away with details that make the boats sail and catching up with hull two. First example is to work on what can be a nuisance leak....the sleeve and rudder post.  Here the sleeve and post enter the hull below the water line and effectively end at the stuffing box which is technically also just at the water line though inside.  To avoid this natural leak, since I don't have a stuffing box ...... the attack is from both ends.  I hope it works


  • post-9397-0-84948700-1453146613_thumb.jpg  Here we go to the bottom side up and fill the gaps until the they stop draining with resin; it will take a few attempts.  It's a bit messy but this is a working boat, so a little sanding and repaint needs to be understood as an ongoing item.


  • post-9397-0-13790800-1453146615_thumb.jpg  Here we are right side up and again we fill the gaps, again a few times.  I also filled a few slits in the plywood keel. the new floor support and a dip in the planking.  All will get repainted.  I hope we sealed it all up.  


  • The rudder post normally stops at the floor level in a stuffing box.  The photo shows I took the rudder post and its sleeve and continued it up through the aft deck support.  To do that the support is wider than real.  My thought is that the larger support post helps hide the RC fitting turning the rudder behind while the boat is on display.


another fun job was getting some mahogany veneer and gluing up the transom on hull 2.

  • post-9397-0-91112800-1453146019_thumb.jpg there is no where to grab so bow up on a sweat shirt and several lead weights and wedges to hold the veneer down.

David and I discussed mahogany transoms and it being inside planking or aft of planking.  On new cold form boat , he would build the transom in Mahogany and it would be inside the planks  1938- 50 ish would be the same...may be


  • post-9397-0-72183200-1453148934_thumb.jpg.  here is a sister boat Blue Witch.  She was reskinned also by Brooklin yard and note they added a mahogany veneer transom.   I assume the real boat has mahogany under the new skin.  This is the way I shall finish the model as I am also actually adding a veneer over a resin skin.


  • post-9397-0-26017600-1453148699_thumb.jpg  Here she is with stain and one coat of varnish on the new transom....seven coats to go to get the right look.....I hope.I also need to bring the green water line around again on hit the sides with either white or green.

Lets start with the fittings.  David showed me the old halyard blocks that were located below deck.  We agreed to the new design to bring them up on deck and use new cam cleats to hold the halyards.  The halyards could then carry through to a new forward winch that also allows handling the jib from a forward position.  This design avoids leaning over and under to haul up sails...no fun at our age.

  • post-9397-0-77133600-1453147040_thumb.jpg  Here are the blocks as they came off the boat.  I am making new mahogany bases for all the new fittings on Bittersweet, so we shall progress together.


  • post-9397-0-98945200-1453147041_thumb.jpg  Here I have cleaned up the real blocks and stained and one coat to the base.  I was intrigued that the real brackets turned out to be copper. I also prepared the  miniatures.  I used 1/8" brass channel cut down and stropped blocks from Bluejacket.


  • post-9397-0-02704800-1453147819_thumb.jpg  After a lot of thought on methods to get to an old bronze look with Bluejacket Britannia metal, I caved a bit.  While visiting my son he showed me some bronze paint that goes on thick.  I tried it out and for the moment this what I am going with. I may still add the bit of brown and green wash later, but these look OK only for now




Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...