Posted by: Wayne | October 15, 2010

Bow eye

One of the challenges of the Navigator design is the bow eye.  The lower end of the bobstay (line from the end of the bowsprit to the stem) attaches to this point.  The bow eye is also used as an anchor point for trailering.  The reason this is a challenge is that the bow eye penetrates the stem BELOW the floor of the anchor well.  This would make installing and sealing a u-bolt or eye-bolt rather difficult, as it is a LONG way from the access panel in bulkhead 2 up to the stem.  I chose to make life easier for myself by installing a pair of 1/4-20 carriage bolts through the stem.  The heads and shanks of the bolts are potted in thickened epoxy, so the holes are sealed, and they aren’t going ANYWHERE.  I wrapped masking tape around the exposed threads before installing them (lesson learned from gluing up the centerboard case). This way  I didn’t have to scrape the epoxy out of every exposed thread groove.  I will be installing a saddle over these studs later.

Studs installed to hold the bow eye.
Carriage bolt heads potted in epoxy. I don’t plan on these ever coming out.
The bow eye temporarily in place. There will be a thin strip of hardwood installed over the stem before the boat is done.

This evening I glued the aft part of the lower broadstrakes.  This means the lower two full rows of planking are glued into place.  Between yesterday and today I also filled all of the gaps that will be below the anchor well floor.  This evening I started to smear some into a corner between the stem and planking and felt something a bit odd.  I removed this item, and discovered I almost built the SS Stinkbug.  Yes, I gooped a stinkbug up with thickened epoxy.  Tomorrow I will remove it from the pot with the rest of the leftover epoxy.

I narrowly avoided a stowaway.

With two full rows of planking installed, the stem is rigid enough to safely remove the diagonal braces, so I could get some pictures of the bow unobscured.

She looks better without the bracing.
A swimmer’s view of the bow.

I am rather pleased with how she is turning out so far.

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