Was going to go with mechanical fittings on SS lifelines, but they wouldn't fit into the gate tubes, so we just relied on our local rigger, Jonathan Blanchard to do the job - came out great. Our perimeter system is complete, and Wili will breath easier now when I go forward.
The bulk of our time for the past week was spent doing the final install on the fresh water tanks and related below floor plumbing required for the upcoming galley install.
June 20th - still picking away at bedding deck fittings
June 14th - Set back - interior paint job isn't meeting spec - lucky we caught it while the boat is still in the paint shed. Means going back inside with a sand blaster and reblasting down center, and redoing bilge. Have to protect great exterior job - painful, but again, heck of a lot easier to deal with when the boat is still here.
We have started re-installing deck fittings that won't be harmed by blasting - using Sikaflex 291 as beeding compound. Medium strength, quick cure.....and it's the only one that I can find in grey. Will go to 3M5200 for a few critical applications.
June 6th - all exterior paint done above the waterline - though some touch up required on the hull itself - crud in airline in a couple places needs cut polish. Deck/non-skid came out beautifully. All Awlgrip - Hull = Claret, Transom/deckhouse/deck = Whisper Grey, Non-skid = Medium Grey
May 23rd - dry paint darkened up just right. Not all is perfect - the dark colour does highlight every little defect - interesting how the eye can pick up what the fingers can't feel.
Mostly we need to deal with a couple places where something got in the paint.
May 22nd afternoon - Hull is not totally dry yet in these photos - expect it to go just a touch darker yet. Awlgrip "Claret"
May 22nd morning - big day - the hull is ready to paint, finish coats should go on this weekend - then deck & transom, then non-skid, so still a week away from being done - but the sanding is finished! The gentleman sitting and masking the waterline is Ko, master Awlgrip painter - and boat finishing artist.
Deck masked off - Ko will spray hull colour first, then come back and do hull stripes/deck/transom colour in another pass.
May 17th - Final (final final) sanding. The pros that are doing this sprayed the awlgrip prime coat, then wiped on bluing to show ANY defect - they long board/hand sand till there is no blue. Picture doesn't do colour justice - the hull area that isn't blue is bright white, and silky soft to the touch.
May 14th - 1st colour! Just a teaser for us - inside aft propane lockers and on bowsprit, just to doublecheck colour choice - it's "Claret" - think red wine.
May 5th - another milestone - Final prime coat going on deck. Hull prime coat apparently needs to be tinted, or our hull colour of choice (Claret) will take 6 coats to achieve 100% hide over the standard white base coat - hmmm, pay few bucks and wait a 2 days for the tinted primer, or buy 3 extra coats of Awlgrip.... think we'll wait.
May 2nd - spray, spot fill, longboard, longboard. Cut in waterline too. 1st overcoat on keel
April 25th - spray sand sand - getting closer!
April 18th - sand sand sand
March 26th - inside sandblasted and primered - 3 coats Interlux epoxy - Looks great! Of course going over everything I've found two small areas that need some more work before finish painting outside....
March 18th - prepwork done, boat stripped, and handed over to sandblaster - yeeeha!
March 16th - saved by my son's buddies - Wili & I were struggling to get all the last minute details done and flapper the seams we couldn't do out in the yard (those fiberglass guys get strange when you shower their plastic boats with steel dust :) - out of town son heard, and had a couple buddies drop in - 2 young guys for a day pulled us ahead of the yard crew - flappered what remained of the upper sides of the hull and almost the entire deck - beautiful.
March 14th - prepping for paint, drying out the hull - and doing the million and one things that I just hadn't quite finished yet.
- vent holes, windshield wiper holes, tacking the acorn nuts (every where), tabs for planking on bow spirit, for center divider in anchor well, stripping deck fittings, welding in mast base (yea, I know that's a biggy), radar arch base, cutting in dorade holes (2 fwd, 2 aft) - and flappering the hull every where we welded inside, 'cause it all shows. Have two big infrared heaters inside shed, shirt sleeve temps - and it was snowing outside Friday! Love being under cover.
Wili spent the entire day vacuuming every nook and cranny to get any free standing water (and a bunch of other stuff) out - gotta love a great wife. Bought her dinner at a greasy spoon as a reward, then dragged her back to help me pull all the windows. :)
I have a couple helpers lined up for tomorrow - bits' and pieces to weld, grind, fit and then remove now that it's out of the weather. Have two big infrared heaters on the hull plus 4 lamps inside - but still want a couple days to ensure the hull is really dry. Sand blaster is just a waitin' in the wings. YEEHA!
March 6th - Started to empty boat - wife, Son Nick and a couple of his buddies showed up to grab at ruck load of misc loose stuff - G.O.D. and my buddy Jeff helped with the heavy stuff last week. Lotta room in that boat!!
Still working up in anchor locker - Wili templated center board for me, now need to carve out of plywood, and weld in tabs to really secure. Fitted/drilled tapped flanges for bolt on top on the 2nd integral fuel tank. Cut out the engine room exhaust outlet on stbd side of pilothouse, covered opening with louvered Sstl plate. refitted modified rudder tube top bearing/seal - went to a double lip seal at the top. Pain to get on, but clearly a better seal arrangement. Tacked in under deck Sstl acorn nuts on the deck fittings.
Feb 27th another decent week - welded in second integral tank top with fittings for pick-up, vent, return, level indicator and fill, another 1-1/2" thru hull with doubler for septic pump (almost forgot that one!), located and drilled aft deck railing bases (yeah Bruce, I'm not welding those either). Rented boom truck Saturday and removed motor (REAALLLY tight now that door lip was added) and a couple other heavy lifts - getting boat ready to blast. Also ordered Dive'n Dog 6 step dual tube telescoping ladder - looks like it will just fit, and yet get deep enough to actually easily access from water - that sugar scoop transom is a long way up.
Finished up pilothouse floor longnitudinals, figuring out how engine hatch will be integrated with main hatch stairs, finishing up keel tank tops (had porosity in some welds, had to redo)
Feb 14 - Happy Valentine's Day! - had to work Saturday, but today, I spent the day doing what I love - and remembered to bring something to home to the one I love to boot = a great day. - no huge visible progress - moved motor, more holes (couldn't get to frames behind motor before) welded in a few more floor longnitudinals, positioned engine room exhaust & exterior louvers for same, cleaned up bits n'pieces in aft cabin, figured out some tricky wood work framing in aft, punched holes to suit - MORE HOLES - wonder when that stops??
Jan 30 - Finally finished punching the frame holes!! Well ..... there might be a couple left to do behind the motor (stored inside the pilothouse right now), but hundreds are done, and I can picture how I'm going to secure the cabinetry pretty well every where. Working on frames beneath pilothouse floor, stiffening, setting up for fuel tanks. I know there's more details, but the end of the list is definitely in sight - feels great.
Jan 28, 2010 - Belated Happy New Year!!
The Blog bug held off updates till now - not alot to show photowise - welded in forward floor longnitudinals, fitted forward floors, punched hundreds of holes in forward frames - forward 1/2 of boat is ready to blast, center bit needs some sub-floor work, back half needs more holes. Also discovered SS Tek screws - really simplified securing plywood floors and panels.
Dec 10th - missed week - but no great work. Inside doing details - stiffeners, tabs for bulkheads, holes for mounting furring strips, holes for raw water piping, holes to mount strainers, holes to secure floorboards - you get the idea. Have switched from titanium nitride drill bits to cobalt - the titainum coated bits were bending too easily.
Should mention that the rainwater that snuck into the bilge was frozen this weekend......
Nov 21st - wind and rain has been pretty well continuous for the past week - quiets down for a few hours, then 50 mph and pounding again. Flooding, power outages, things flying. Can't open up tarp on boat, so crawled in on my belly - vacuumed water out of bilge, and worked on installing large door on forward collision bulkhead. Hull is too wet to work on integral tanks - unlikely to get a good seal weld.
Also looking for a piece of land to stick a Quonset hut on so I have someplace dry to finish the boat in. Should have done that when I got it here.
Nov 14th - finished up fitting water tanks (nice to have 60 gal down in the keel), tacking the deck T-bar nuts in place beneath the deck, started in on the bottom plate of the cockpit cubby hole (using a curved section of SS pipe) - and ran out of SS wire. Switched back to mild steel, started top of 2nd integral diesel tank in the keel - not a lot of room left to work in down there!
Got blown out on Sunday - steady rain & winds gusting past 50 made opening the tarp up an impossible task, so I wormed in under the tarp, just to find power out - worm back out into the storm, down the ladder, reset the power, back up, ran shopvac (+lots of halogen lights) and kicked out the breaker...fortunately it was the inline breaker at my power bar, so I stopped vacuming and tweaked a few other items before calling it a lost day - everything including me cold and wet.
Back to lesson 1 - build the boat undercover someplace where you won't have to move the beast till you're ready - I have wasted more time wrestling tarps/water......
Nov 7th - new tarp worked, very little new water inside - phew! Back to doing more, pumping out less. Picked up a length of used SStl pipe - about 30" dia - and hacked into it - curved SS bottoms for two deck lockers and one cockpit locker. Figure I'll add a valved drain off the bottom of the deck lockers so I can deal with any water that gets in. Both deck lockers will be big enough to handle about 4 jerry cans each. Welded up the 2nd water tank base down in the keel.
Oct 31st - Happy Halloween! Beautiful clear day today - pulled old leaking tarp back, and slid newer tarp beneath - primarily to keep the pilothouse (whose unsealed windows leak like shieves) area dry. Kept old tarp because it's well secured at the bow (all around the bowspirit) and everything will survive the incredible wind storms that rip up the coast this time of year.
Finally had a chance to get a decent shot of a primary winch base too - done up in stainless 'cause I figured it'll get chaffed by loaded lines.
Rest of time - I'm inside working on water tanks bases inside keel, tabs every where for bulkhead mounts, dual raw water strainers (1 for main engine, other as back-up and all else - genset, salt water handpump in galley, etc)
Oct 25th - 1 good day, 1 bad - Sat was okay weather wise, and I tided up some SStl welding outside, prepped the water tank brackets inside, generally cleaned up - and pumped a whack of rain water out . Sunday I got to see how the rain was getting in - my old tarp just isn't cutting it anymore, a rip is allowing the cabin top to get very wet, and that in turn is coming thru the big windows - which can't be sealed until we blast and paint...then after pumping out the hull (I use a shop vac with a built in water pump - works great), my wet foot slipped climbing out of the bilge, and I had a good tumble - caught myself 1/2 on a frame and 1/2 on one leg - picked up the pieces and took some shop work home. Need to get this beast inside the sand blast shed, where it was supposed to be last month. Boat infront of me being faired is now on it's 3 rd coat - something like 1/2" thick most surfaces, and still not winding up. Nice mess I'm in.....guess I'm going to have to slurge on a new tarp.
Oct 18th - Only got one day in this weekend - positioning new 30 gal water tanks inside keel - bought two, nice fits. Laid out SStl angle as tank base, but am wrestling with maintaining access to the nipple I installed into the sealed lid over the lead - want to pour some tar like material in there after I sand blast and paint.
Oct 11th - Stole a page out of the Ovenden's blog, and rented a manlift for the longweekend - oohhh this is nice on the knees! Cleaned up aft port holes, flappered up stbd side of aft cabin, tried one more time to deal with wow in deck beside vertical seam - better, but still not perfect.
Oct 3rd - Damn, I'm getting old - knee froze up and I'm hobbling on the ladders, can't kneel on the SOB - which is a heck of a limitation when you're boatbuilding! Doctor tomorrow - worked more small stuff this weekend - still fitting bulwhark stiffeners, 2nd integral fuel tank top, sized up & ordered two plastic water tanks (30 usgal each) that will also fit down in the keel.
Fairing crew arrived and is working OT on the boat ahead of me - peeking in, appears that they have one side done deck to waterline, other plastered up (the boat needs ALOT of fairing) - looks like they're taking 3x12 hour days per side, which is way faster than I expected. Will wait to see how fine it comes out. Mine will be way easier :)
Sept 27th - took the time to go visit a couple friends - one wrestling with cancer, the other a 'good bye' for a fellow that left the company - both providing more motivation to get the beast finished.
So Sunday - a year older and STILL have not painted my boat - heard from the yard that the boat in front of me has decided to be faired, and it'll add another month to the shed time - so that's another month before mine can be blasted......rrrrgh. Not that I can't use the time to get more detail done, I just do not want to be painting when it's cold.
So I took down the filmsy summer tent I had rigged over the cockpit, and put my tarp back into 'winter high wind' mode - it'll be nice for another week, but 50 knot winds will hit before the delay is up.
Spent rest of day detailing aft cabin - going back over welds, added a couple tacks, found a pin hole in a late cockpit addition, added a vertical stiffener to the bulkhead behind my steering gear, added a few tabs to aid in wood work framing - still need to cut & weld in the engine exhaust thru-hull, but need to go scrounge the SS pipe - week day job. Going for North Sea exhaust - a exhaust thru hull in either side of the hull, about 3 ft forward of the transom, cross connnected - does away with concerns about following seas backing up the wet exhaust system - will also let me tie the generator in to the same header, so there's no net increase in thru hulls.
Sept 20th - finished steering gear base - mostly just fab & welding the cylinder mount surface out of a 6" heavy channel, then cleaning everything up with a little grinding. Followed by more of the never ending hull flappering - you think you're done below the waterline, then scanning one last time, you find another spot that just needs a touch up...
Sept 14th - Ran center bar (trimmed to facilitate fitting transom, and never did put it back in...), then fitted and welded in base for steering gear. Bit finicky due to angles and matching cut-out for circular flange that I built in to the top of the rudder post - but it is skookum! Had to cut slots into partial bulhead to provide clearance for the rods coming ou the backside of my hydraulic steering rams. Glove just helps protect the rudder shaft from welding/grinding. Began fabbing deck bulwhark stiffeners.
Sept 6 - More small stuff inside (cleaning up, misc welds, laying out steering gear & base) and cutting/fitting/welding in 3 starboard aft porthole insets - and as always - more hull flappering....
August 29 Geez, another month flies by!!
I thought with the skeg nose & prop strut done I was finished below the waterline (except for the never ending weld hump flappering) - and when I stood back, I realized I still have a couple zinc locations to add. Going with a 6 zinc layout, (+ rudder and prop) 2 big main bars on keel, 2x 4" round zincs up forward, 2x 4" aft (on skeg), all bolt on - there is no way in h... that I'm welding on the hull to replace zincs after all the effort I'll be putting into white sand blasting/priming within the day, and adding 5 odd coats of paint - main zincs are on 2 nice big SS bolts seal welded to the hull - all rest are bolt ins via SS acorn nuts inset & seal welded. Anyways - I need to weld in 4 acorn nuts, 2 forward, 2 on the skeg. Then I'll find one other 'last' detail - but it feels good getting this close to blasting.
August 22 Had to work Saturday - small stuff Sunday. Boat yard relocated me, so I spent 1/2 the day re-running power lines, air lines, re-organizing all the stuff around the boat - then fit skeg nose piece, finished off profiling prop shaft strut & fit that, and did another round of hull grinding - flapper work under the waterline port aft up to the transom.
Gett'n there, but it's a good thing the boat in the blasting shed right now is going slow - 'cause so am I. Figure I need to wrangle another week off to get the beast ready.
August 15th Re-work - I didn't like how it was tough to open the side window sliders, and that was due to the curvature to match the pilothouse side - so we pulled the two side windows, and I split the pilothouse side where the window sits in a horizontal strip 1" above and below the opening, with a short vertical split at the midpoint - then clamped an length of angle iron that covered the length of the window along the strip, flatening those surfaces. Zip disc left a nice mig welding clearance, welded it back up - 1/4" inset at mid point, flush at ends - few minutes with a flapper disc, and it looks decent, more importantly, the window now sits flat. Only one done, gotta leave town on business for a couple days.
Bits n' pieces - picked up the prop strut today - started with a chunk of 5"x5/8" mild steel from junk yard, laid out angles to get it to fit where I wanted - and just could not see myslf getting any sort of decent looking profile in a reasonable amount oftime with a grinder - so took it to a local machine shop, and had them mill the leading and trailing edges into a nice profile - came out looking right.
Later same week - well I didn't get everything I wanted done, but did make decent progress - SS cap rail in both sides, and bulwark edges nicely straightened - fitted conical fairings to SS primary winch bases, they look awesome - set up SS angle inside aft deck hatches so I can now fit the water tight interior boxes to match - now working SS bulwark braces, to allow me to set stanchions on top of the bulwark without bending/breaking some component.
Main side cleat came back sans bent bolt, refit to deck - laid out prop tube strut, started with a chunk of 5" wide x 5/8" thick mild steel - now into machine shop to get the profile roughed in - need to finish up 3 starboard side porthole frames (ran out of 2" SS strip, but that came in yesterday) and fit my sail tracks - and then - aside from some clean up flappering - the exterior is done, and ready to blast!!!
Week of August 3rd managed a week off - boat work week!
I started by pulling out the trusted stick welder, and going at the stainless bulwark lip - and straightening out the bulwark edge in the process. Slow work, but it's great to see the bulwark straightening up again (got pushed in a couple crane lifts/boat moves, so there were some big wows up by the bow).
Then my sister and her Beau surprised us with a visit - her first ever view of the boat - and they celebrated with the first ever beer in the cockpit (damn that was fine - an icey cold one after 6 hours on a scorcher day - hope she comes back!) - yeah I know, 1 sprained wrist and a couple pops in the cockpit - it was a relatively slow day, but it felt great.
August 1st Fishing break - G.O.D. and I went off the west coast of Vancouver Island to an incredibly isolated location - with phenominal fishing. We limited out on any species we cared to - beautiful big chinook, huge halibut - and so many coho flying around snapping at everything in the water that it was truly hard to get down to the other fish! Of course those were the ones we're not allowed to keep right now.....also great to see lots of feed everywhere.
Good fishing in BC everywhere up and down the coast this year, nice to see.
July 25th - Lots of small stuff. Welded up a mis-placed hole in deck, top framing of integral fuel tank #1, couple of deck gear braces, cleaned up bilge mouse holes, cut & fit 2nd aft deck hatch, laid out interior box for same (steel frame & bottom, likely wooden sides). Unfortunately one of the main side deck cleats bolt seized (SS on SS galling??) Anyways, after trying an impact wrench then a 4 ft bar, bent bolt, but got enough exposed threads to plasma off 1/2 the bolt (3/4" SStl beauty), and the 4ft bar torqued off the rest. At least we got it off the deck so I deal with the rest in the workshop.
Deadline time - booked sandblasting & painting slot - should be in the shed in two weeks, blasted and primed inside and out before the end of August. Looks like I'll get a week off in there - wish me luck!!
G.O.D. (good old dad) has taken a shine to grinding the exterior weld bumps - and I tell ya, for an 79 year old, he puts me to shame - he ground for 2 days steady, and wants to come back for more.
July 18th - out of town wedding, staying with some very good old friends - guess ya gotta spend time or lose'em, right? - good weekend, but little boat work. picked up matching aft deck hatch, and the special short winch base screws - plasma cutter trigger finger is a-twichin'
Lined up for sandblasting - figure I have leass than 1 month to be ready.....it'll be close.
July 11th - Lots of small stuff - finished drilling & tapping the SStl base plates that will act as winch pads (did you know the older winches don't have their anchor holes on consistent angles around the diameter of the base? always one offset to fit between gears). Last deck cleat mounted and reinforced. Main side cleat reinforced belows decks ( and anchor bolt is now truly stuck - !) Burned drain holes thru bulkheads inside keel. Moved passageway from pilothouse area into galley sideways 1 ft (more galley counterspace) - which meant burning and rewelding a section of bulkhead. Positioned and installed manual bilgepump into main bilge sump. And good old Dad ground pretty well all the bottom of the hull's weld 'bumps' - the small humps that result on the exterior of a steel plate when you get a good weld on the inside.
Not a lot to take pics of - but trust me, it's pretty :)
July 4th - it is so easy to lose mometum - so I picked easy tasks to get moving again. Drilled holes - lots and lots of holes......pretty well all for deck hardware. Secured deck hatch, positioned cockpit winches (not bolted down - SS sub-plates will be welded to deck, but I needed those placed so I could line up all else), cleats, footblocks, rope clutches. Had one last main cleat midships that I'd never got around to, one seat drain modification - all now done. Feels good.
June 21st - Zippo - the world intrudes as work & life combine to thwart my therapy again....
June 14th - 3 portside portholes in - these are actually the inset SStl frames I made up last week, portholes will mount inside the frame. Really opens up the aft cabin for both light & ventilation.
Also added a deckhatch to access what will become a water tight jerry can++ storage locker. Was wrestling with where to position this- everything was getting jammed up on the aft corners - cleats, pulpit mounts, radar arch - finally figured out moving the locker forward between the two aft portholes will allow me to get it away from the crowded corners - inside, I'll blend it in with the internal clothes lockers - won't know it's there.
June 6th - Time to get the aft porthole frames in - 6 SStl frames that inset the Lewmar Ocean portholes in 1-1/2". Looks good, protects portholes from physical damage, and allows the portholes to stay open in most weather.
I'm setting these relatively high in the flush decked aft cabin - will have to be in significant weather to submerge the ports, so hopefully that will have triggered me to close them.
Backing plates might look a little rough - tried having a local machine shop fab them, and clearance around porthole was mis-read - I torched them apart and re-used the nicely NC machined mounting plates.
Was too hot inside boat Sunday, so I did a little clean up on the inserts, then installed a deck plate to allow direct access to the chain locker. Sails will have to go in thru the large foredeck hatch and the the watertight sail locker bulkhead hatch - but at least I can grab lines and some bumpers without going inside now.
May 30th - Good weather again, so more outside window work - this time the port and starboard pilothouse windows. Incredible difference from inside boat.
Rectangular side windows are sliders, so we have 3 opening windows, the entry doors and sliding hatch, and one 16"x16" hinged hatch (over interior steering station so we can see main sail from inside) - so lots of glass, but with lots of ventilation too.
trimmed and fit interior wood spacers. Bit's n' pieces afterwards - Ground stbd midships deck seam (long over due) - fitted foraward stbd midships deck cleat (2 to go) - trimmed aft cabin deck beams for 6'6" passage way (okay 6'-1", but I have a taller buddy)
While I was plasma cutting Dad grabbed the drill and finished up the anchor windlass base, then finished the 20 odd holes required to secure the propane locker cum transom step lids - SStl piano hinges use lots of screws.
May 17th - the clouds parted, sun came out - and I enjoyed working out on the deck - actually on the propane lockers cum sugar scoop seats/steps. Never quite finished those, and I did have stainless trim on the lids, so I cut, braced, trimmed, trimmed, welded, trimmed - and finally drilled to secure the SStl piano hinge. Repeat all for other side. Face looks like I got some sun today
Looks pretty good, strong like bull ( I KNOW my 6 ft son and his buddies will be bouncing up and down these) - but camera battery dead so no photos today.
Also got tired of having to do all welding at the boat - can't weld in garage for cars/smoke etc - so I picked up a fabric garage (10' x 20') that just fits down the least used/viewed side of the house - figure I'll use my stick machine here, fitting up the SStl porthole frames (all fitted, just need to be tacked then seal welded), and also practice my aluminum techniques on main hatch & steering pedestal - so I'll pick up some welding time after dinner a couple nights a week. That'll help me hit this year's goal - sandblast and paint inside and out when it's hot this summer.
May 16th - loaded SStl wire in the mig and starting catching up on the backlog
Got back down under the pilothouse floor and welded up a stainless flange backside of my bilge shelf, tacked in the MS side flanges for the tank top, and seal welded in the SStl pipe that runs thru the tank to the central bilge sump.
May 9th - another new job and busy studying thru weekend for Monday review - sometimes seems like life conspires to keep me away from the boat!
Did get back under the pilothouse floor to work on the tank - here you can see hole thru floor and welded in vee'd shelf - this will serve as bilge for both flow from aft and drain this section. Pipe to main bilge sump will run thru fuel tank from this point.
May 2nd - fighting set up of aft integral fuel tank - laid out everything using 1-1/4" angle iron - found that I couldn't see top corner to weld - so I knocked everything apart & started again. Flange has to face inwards to be able to weld properly. Did cut/bore 2" SStl angle to serve as aft face of tank, and allow SStl pipe to run from that point thru to central bilge.
Cut/die ground good path for bilge water on aft keel floor/bulkhead
Short Sunday - had to take wife to play bridge - ( her hobby - definitely cheaper than mine!)
April 25th - working a couple projects
Engine raw water intakes - had two threaded doughnuts made up out of 316 SS to match the strange metric thread that came on the Vetus 1-1/4" SS intake scoops. Cut holes in hull where I'll be able to reach the shut-off valves without having to open up the pilothouse floor (that the engine and generator will live beneath) - and with a little helping hand to hold the doughnut in place, will weld the doughnut to the hull inside & out - will then have a wonderfully strong base to thread my scooped thruhull into, with great support for the ball valve that will be threaded on from the inside - and if something ever does manage to smash off the exterior scoop, the doughnut & valve will stay with the boat. The larger unthreaded doughnut is an insert I plan on welding into the hull parallel to the waterline, then insert the depthsounder sensor thru - will give me a better clamping surface while aligning the sensor vertically.
April 18th - no pics - worked forward floors, fitting floor stringers, straightening frames, basically tidying everything up prior to fitting floors. Also did some more fitting on the aft integral fuel tanks; fitted SS drain pipe running from engine bay thru to main sump, thru the fuel tank, plasma cut drain holes thru frames to allow what ever does drip in to work it's way around the sides of the tank to the sump.
April 11th - Up in bow fabricating the internal base for our two anchour windlasses - one frame just under the leading edge of the windlasses (where the highest down force will be) with the lengthwise members tied back to the next frame.
Also beginning set up of 2 aft keel compartments as an integral diesel fuel tank
April 4th - wanted a couple easy projects - install opening ports in deckhouse; set-up main sump bilge pump; install bilge pump thru-hull; install engine and generator raw water pick-ups.
March 26th - all keel floor sections in place, and incorporated a SStl sump at the lowest point.
Also decided that I will turn the aft two compartments into one internal diesel tank (project for later)
March 19th - still cutting & capping
March 12th - Keel Floors - not quite the right term - I'm adding a steel plate to cap off the top of the lead poured inside the keel. Painful area to work in - confined quarters with nothing square, compounded by my desire for these caps to be angled both towards the center line and to one deep compartment where the bilge pump will pull from. First compartment had the most complex shape - made an undersized rough template, used a templating finger to develop accurate plywood templates (I like using doorskin - thin & stiff), finally transfered to steel plate, cut, fitted, & welded in place. Pipe nipple in starboard side is so I can pressure test after welding to ensure I have a good seal, and then it gives me the option of pouring a sealing layer of tar or oil over top of the lead as a secondary seal.
Exterior photo of keel shows bilge floor weld lines - profile of drainage within bilge, leading down from either end to the central sump. 7 tons of lead fits beneath that line!
Will be turning the last two aft compartments into internal fuel tanks - figure about 30 gals total. Compartments forward of the sump will fit two plastic water tanks, then I'll be looking at a plastic shower sump - steel is good for diesel, want non-corrosive tankage otherwise.
Designer: Bruce Roberts
Above is what it will hopefully look like when I'm all done - below is what it looks like today (Dec 2009)