Posted by: Wayne | January 6, 2011

Board-dom

It has been a slow month on the boat.  It has been too cold outside for any glue, the family has taken two trips over the Christmas holiday, and I have had to order more epoxy.  I have also not had much to show on the boat.

In that time, I finished foiling the centerboard.  A power planer makes the work go MUCH quicker.

When we originally glued the centerboard up, the bottom was uneven and it was about 5-10mm too short.  This is not a problem, as I was planning on trimming it smooth and then gluing a single capping piece, which would also tie the staves together at the bottom.  Trimming the bottom was fun.  All told, I used a circular saw, a table saw, a pull saw, and the power planer.  Awkward, but ended up with a nice cut in the end.

Yesterday I glued the bottom piece into place.  I used a pair of 3/8″ dowels to keep it aligned while the glue dried.  I simply stood it up and let gravity do the clamping.  I also glued in three additional dowels, one up forward just below the pivot hole, and two aft, to help hold the uphaul ear in place.

Dowels used to align and reinforce the bottom glue joint.

Forward dowel. It will be trimmed flush after the epoxy finishes curing.

Aft dowels. They will also be trimmed.

This evening the epoxy was mostly cured, but still slightly rubbery (cold basement).  Previous experience has taught me that trying to cut or otherwise machine “rubbery” epoxy is a BAD idea (it gums up tools something fierce).  As a result, I decided to cut the hole for the lead.

The centerboard as drawn does not use a downhaul line, but relies on a chunk of lead inset near the tip.  The plans show a volume 100mmx100mmx60mm, which works out to almost exactly 15 pounds.  As I would rather err on the side of caution, I am pouring a brick 140mmx100mmx60mm (20 pounds).  I want to make darn sure this thing SINKS.

The cutout for the lead weight. This will be a heavy board when finished.

Interestingly enough, the cutout ended up trimming the end off of one of the alignment dowels for the bottom.  It is rather interesting to be able to inspect a glue joint that is normally hidden.

One of the bottom dowels where it intersects the lead cutout.

Now I need to shape the bottom piece to match the rest of the board, then pour the lead into the hole.  After that point I do the final fairing of the board and fiberglass it.  Then I simply set it aside and resume work on the mainmast.  Progress continues, albeit slowly.

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