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Problems Planking the Swift

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I'm work on the Swift 1805. I am at the point that I am planking the hull. The instructions say the start at 3mm below the top of the frames. Everything is good up to the frame #3. This is were when I go to #2 there is a bulge in the wood.  I can't figure it out both sides do the same thing. I am using lime wood, it is dry. Any ideas!! 

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Let me start by making clear I'm no expert. But perhaps that helps me better appreciate your confusion.


You must never try to bend the planks in more than one axis. You can bend them like to cover a cylinder, you can rotate them across the axis - like the plank that becomes the gardboard, but you must not try to bend them in both directions.


What I see in these pictures is the bending of the plank to follow the bow curve as well as a rotation to try to follow the vertical curve of the bow. The thin strip can't do that - perhaps it can if it gets steam soaked but it would not be right anyhow.


Once the planks reach the bow curve, they need to get tapered to the point that the front end is about half the width of the original plank. You must not try to fit the planks at full width as they curve and reach the bow end. Took me a while to realize how to do it, I now know how but that doesn't mean that my first build started like that or that I completely followed the good practice.


One question. I see you are planking with really thin strips. As far as I've seen some builds and kits, they either come to be single planked - with the final wood that is rather thicker, or to be double planked, where the first layer of strips are softer and thicker, like 1,5mm, and the second layer is thin veneer strips (0,6mm). What is the planking structure of your build?


And a suggestion: I see you have filled the gap between the foremost bulkheads. I would suggest you fill the next one as it has a significant curvature. It will help a lot.


Of course, other, experienced builders may correct me if I'm wrong.

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The structure is a plank on plank. So when I follow the directions they should not have me keeping the front at 3mm like on the sides. Let the wood follow it's own course ,is what that what you are saying? I have the simple hull planking guides from the site but it is different from the instructions. Should I follow those? thank you for the help.

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Please do yourself a favor.  Go to the Articles Database section.  There you will find a section on Planking and Framing.  There are several excellent articles on hull planking.  Also, I hope you do not plan on leaving the nails in the planks.  Even though this is a double planked hull (I presume) it is very difficult to file down those nailheads without causing damage.  

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  • 1 year later...

Hello Briny

Welcome to ship modelling and msw.

Have a look here.



I haven't been to this site since I did my swift 4 1/2 years ago, I just went and had a look.

I think it is safe, clicked on a few links and nothing bad happened.

I don't know the person and what he does but he includes other links to books ect.

There are instructions to download but they are old ones, my swift was an old kit, so fitted for me.

But remember there is no need to rush, relax and take it eeeeeaaasy.

Cheers Chris


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