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Muscongus Bay Lobster Smack by bobandlucy - FINISHED - Model Shipways - Scale 1:24


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I received the kit and paint set yesterday! I had downloaded and read the manual upon ordering and so began to assemble the central spine this morning with the feeling that I understood these steps. I glued the center pieces to the starboard spine using the supplied spacers. Even so, I ended up with misalignment at the top of the spine and on both walls of the bulkhead frame slots. Should have done this under magnification.  I did a little surgery and sanding at the top of the spine, and will defer refining the slots until placing the bulkhead frames. Since the profile of the spine is preserved with char present, I don't think there will be a problem resulting directly from this misalignment. Will be more careful with the other side of the spine.

 

I then freed the centerboard and cleaned and rounded edges. The next step is to form the brass operator rod for an adjustable centerboard, if this is a desired feature.

 

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Posted (edited)

Well. this kit is humbling me. . . 

 

I decided that the centerboard pivot point rod needed to be made into a rivet, although the instructions did not state so explicitly. I did that operation with a greater level of success than I did on the sailing pram, after dimming the lights and heating the brass rod to cherry-red as instructed.

 

I had thought that the curved travel slot did not need enlargement, but after gluing the port side spine piece in place, saw that I did not have full travel of the centerboard. I enlarged the slots on both port and starboard sides of the spine with the new love of my life- the surgical scalpel. What a game-changer! I am sure to hurt myself with it soon, but it is so worth it.

 

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The section of the port side spine adjacent to the operating rod needed some more glue where it met the central piece, as it had curled, and I broke it off attempting to add some CA glue. This area is extremely weak.

Before:

 

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After break:

 

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I think I will be able to attach a  custom piece to the reinforcing piece "B" and all will be good for the install of frame 5. A void is left between the outer spine pieces at this point to allow for moving the operator to a forward locked position with the centerboard retracted (I think). The pictures in the manual seem to confirm this idea, however, the diameter of the operating rod did not allow for this movement in the void area. Maybe if I'd achieved a tighter bend. . . Now, with the outer spine broken, the rod can easily be moved to the forward position. . .

 

Lastly I had some curvature/warping of the spine, probably a result of my attempting to clean up white glue mess with water. which was unnecessary because this will all be hidden. I don't recommend this, but I took a regular clothes iron, wetted the surface and straightened it out, and weighted the assembly to sit overnight. It seems to have worked, and I will buy a small travel-sized iron for this kind of thing  for use in the future.

 

AM update: the spine lays dead flat now! Two steps forward, one back haha. And look a my beautiful rivet! Update 4-3-21: I see now that the rivet was not intended by the designer. . .  see below.

 

 

 

Edited by bobandlucy
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You're off to a great start. It makes a fine display model and  fun to build. Looking a center frames and dagger board brings back memories of trying to get full movement of the dagger board. I'm going to pull up a chair and follow along if you don't mind. If you need some help don't hesitate to ask.

 

 

Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will :pirate41:

 

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Thanks, Will- for the offer of help. I most certainly will need it! I was flying high with the completion of the sailing pram, which came out pretty good, I think. Like I said, I'm being humbled now. But my attitude is good. I did not even swear much when I broke the spine! 

 

Bob

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Posted (edited)

Today I put in Frames 3, 4, and 5. It turns out that Frame 3 had a notch pre-cut on both sides that would have contained the centerboard pivot point rod so the rivet would not have been necessary if assembled correctly. However, on my model the rod is just to one side of the frame, and so might have fallen out over time.

 

The centerboard still has full travel after adding the frames. I only had to shim one half of the two-part Frame 4. I am using white glue on the frames, but as you can see I'm also adding CA glue here and there for insurance.

 

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Edited by bobandlucy
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Looking good Bob and you're right about the centerboard rod coming loose mine did during the build. The hole in the centerboard became oversized due to work and boy is a bit** to get it back. The other day it came loose while moving the model and I just left it off. I'll glue the rod permanently someday.

 

Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will :pirate41:

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Posted (edited)

Kept going and installed more frames. I did remove the char from the slots connecting frames to spine, but neglected to think about the top side. I'll have to clean that up in place as I go, as I did before gluing in the cockpit floor. That seemed like a good place to stop for the day.

 

I'm really pleased that the spine looks to remain straight and the frames are squarely set in the spine. Everything looks symmetrical and hopefully the fairing will be made easier and smooth.  I was careful to check each as I went, and where the frames should be flush with the spine, they are, with only small error.

 

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Edited by bobandlucy
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7 minutes ago, niwotwill said:

Its looking good and square 👋 👍. I dry fit the deck pieces to make sure frames are at the same heights forward to aft and athwartship. Just a thought.

 

 

Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will :pirate41:

Absolutely, Will. I don't want valleys to form and surprise me. . . Thanks for your interest in my building!

 

Bob

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Posted (edited)

I did some light fairing on the tops of the frames and dry fitting of the deck pieces- one frame was revealed to be low on one side. I added a shim piece to the top of that frame.

 

 

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The top of the transom was way too tall and I did some surgery and sanding to reduce it. I took a little too much off, but the forward half of the transom is fine after fairing and where it should be. Since the back edge gets sanded to vertical later I don't think this will be a problem. I don't know how it happened, but the slot for the transom pivot rod was obscured at the top and would not accept a 1/16" rod. I took a drill bit and opened it up. The restored path was not exactly parallel to the stern post, but not too far off, and I will be able to correct by wallowing a broach a bit in the hole.

 

The frame (No. 9) adjacent was very loose when fitting to the spine and I made and added shims at all four contact points. At the top the shim needed was so small it was impossible to place, so I inserted long pieces and then cut them off.

 

The area of the hole and the reinforcement pieces protrudes above the cutout window in the seat back- I don't think this is right as it will cause interference between the tiller and the coaming, so I will sand it down level to the bottom of the window.

 

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Installed the seat bottoms and did not notice that one of the side seats sat below the level of the back seats. I took my scalpel and made a "veneer" piece and glued it on. This seemed to me the best solution (actually, the best solution would have been to remove the offending piece, and adding shim to the top of the seat support), although the thickness of the seats is now different, it is better than the shadow cast by the offset at the junction of the two seats without the veneer. Since I had rounded the edge of the seat, there is now a line when viewed edgewise, but I can correct this by adding some wood dust/glue filler. Honestly, if I had adhered to the instructions, this would not have occurred at all.

 

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State of things overall below.  I'm a little embarrassed to go into all this detail, as it would bore an experienced builder- but I really want this log to be of value to other beginners tackling this model.

 

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Edited by bobandlucy
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Peeking in to your progress, Bob.  Looking really good!  I am getting towards the tail end of my planking process.  You may have already considered this, but I might suggest painting/staining the seat before you put the deck on, as it will be more accessible beforehand.  Also, when putting the deck on, make sure you line up the two halves so that the notches toward the outside of the frames are still accessible, as you will need those exposed when placing the coaming and cabin sides.  Looking great, though, at this point!

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Thanks, Gregg! Yes, I did paint the seats and floor Warm White before adding the deck, and after studying the coaming piece it became apparent what the notches in the frames and the slots on the deck were for. I do appreciate the heads up. I puzzled over this for quite a while. . .

 

I had some mismatch of the deck halves in the aft section, and used some filler to try and correct. I will add some wood dust/glue filler along the rest of the deck joint. There is a little warping of the deck adjacent to the cabin wall frame, I will try some automotive body filler there, but I will wait until placing the cabin door assembly, because it seems that will reveal just how much material needs to be added.

 

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Used yellow glue to add reinforcement fillets, because it would not show in the completed model, and I wanted to see where I might use this glue, rather than white, in the future. I think I would prefer the white for most things. . .

 

I began the fairing and really taking my time with it over several days, as I find that if I do it too long I will tend to rush (also made the switch to decaf coffee!). I had some frames that protruded beyond the deck edge, and carefully used a Dremel flap sanding wheel to take these down somewhat, leaving enough material for fairing. I was really in the dark as to how the bottom part of the transom was to be shaped, until it dawned on me that it should be part of the fairing process, so more work to do there. 

 

I'm really getting a feel for the fairing, as David A. says in the manual, a light touch works best. One can feel the shape smoothing out. I'm enjoying this part more than I thought I would. Still a ways to go, but here are pics of progress.

 

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Hi Bob, I am following your progress closely, as I am just starting my modeling with the Lowell Grand Banks Dory. I continue to go back to your Dory blog to see how its supposed to look! And my plan is to follow in your footsteps to do the Norwegian Sailing Pram and then the Muscongus Bay (which is looking great!).  Keep up the great build logs, as I am counting on them for inspiration and guidance!

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Posted (edited)

Thanks, Iraymo. I would not call my models perfect by any measure, but if the logs help you I am pleased! I am very slow at this, and as Spring is here I have yardwork and fishing to do, so I will probably still be here, inching along when you get to this model. . . 

 

Bob

Edited by bobandlucy
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Posted (edited)

Finally began planking, added the garboard and first strake, and am slightly off the mark towards the bow. This planking style is definitely a step up in difficulty! I will see how number two goes and adjust if necessary. I'm not too concerned yet. The garboard came a little short at the bow, and I trimmed the first strake a little short- so I placed it with the gap also at the bow so that most filler will be added there. From the pictures in the manual, it seems that the finished hull should be smooth and not show the lines of the planks. . . I think that will be impossible for me to achieve without using some filler, but I think that is to be expected. In general, the fairing seems to allow a good lay of the planks so far- I don't see any serious distortion and there is good contact across all frames.

 

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Edited by bobandlucy
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  • 3 weeks later...
Posted (edited)

Continuing with the planking. After my last post, as I readied the #2 plank, I saw that I was way off the mark. I discarded the two kit-supplied planks and made two new ones, using the carrier sheet as a template, and then cutting to the outside of the lines, resulting in wider planks. This corrected the problem, at least for the next two planks. Now, as I prepare the first # 6 plank, I see that it is slightly off the mark towards the stern. It lies very nicely though, and I will install it hoping that my previous correction puts it all within the margin of error provided by the oversized sheer plank at the top.

 

I do have some gaps to fill, but am pleased by the lines viewed from both the sides and from the ends of the boat. Look at the edge line created as I wet-bent and clamped the first # 6 plank in the picture below, to me it looks beautiful.

 

Lastly, I wanted to mention that for the last several planks, I am incrementally gluing the planks across 3 frames at a time, and using fingers to hold the plank in place until the glue grabs. This takes longer, of course, but I am getting better results from this method, as opposed to frantically trying to apply glue and clamps down the length of the boat after gluing one end down. 

 

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Edited by bobandlucy
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Hello, if I may offer a suggestion that works for me....

 

Apply carpenters glue along the plank edge of the previously installed plank with a toothpick.  
 

At the bulkhead a dot of CA.  

 

Install new plank by butting it up against the previous plank from left to right.  Pressing down on each bulkhead in succession from left to right.

 

CA dries fast, holding the board.  Carpenters glue squeezout fills seams, and open time allows adjustments of the edges.

 

More on my USS Constitution build page...

 

Thanks

 

 

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Thanks ERS Rich. That's some shop you have there; you are obviously a skilled woodworker. The albums of your finished models are impressive, and you've also made some beautiful display cases!

 

I am edge-gluing the planks with PVA. I am taking a lot of care when wet-bending, and I let the piece air-dry in place for a few hours, so there is no need to force it into place when gluing. That is why light finger pressure is enough- I just hold it in place for a couple of minutes until the glue grabs. I like gluing incrementally because I can pay more attention to edge alignment in a shorter span. It's working for me, and I am in no particular rush.  Using CA raises my blood pressure, maybe I'll get enough confidence some day. . .

 

Bob

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  • 2 weeks later...
Posted (edited)

As I began to place the #9 and sheer planks I saw that I was below the level of the deck towards the bow. The error was so small that I did not want to fashion a stealer or make new planks. I decided to leave gaps between these two planks, then filled with glue/sawdust mixture. This fill shrinks somewhat, and I will address this with additional filler. I also used this fill method on some other gaps throughout. My fairing was as good as I could make it, all the planks laid well against the frames, my problem was edge to edge, and results were improved as I did a better job with beveling and bending. I won't try and hide in the photo the ridiculous cut I made on the sheer plank at the spine rabbet at the bow. . . 

 

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Edited by bobandlucy
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Coming along nicely, Bob. Some filler is inevitable, so don't sweat over a less than perfect planking job. Each model you build will improve your skills with the experience that you gain.

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