Saturday, December 31, 2011

Last Post

Last post for the year at least. The last month and a half has been pretty crazy and I haven't done much of anything on the boat. The holidays are always kind of a mess when it comes to working on the boat and this year was no exception.  Given that we've had some pretty good weather, I'm kicking myself a bit for not getting out there and forging ahead.  Oh well, I was getting burned out from the constant juggling of boat, family, and job so I took the time off with no regrets.

For the winter, I have 2 main projects; laminate the new toerail and sand the decks fair so once warm weather arrives I can get started with primer and paint.  Today I had some time and decided that I wasn't up for sanding so I jumped into the toerail project (building projects are always better than sanding projects).

I've agonized over how to do the toerail for some time now.  Initially I was going to scarve a bunch of 3/4x3" mahogany and bend it on to the rail, but after talking with a few folks who have done it, I was worried that I would break the rail when bending it on.  It can be done, but I'm not willing to risk several hundred dollars in exotic wood on a chance.  It has to be right the first time.

The method I came up with should look good, will run no risk of breaking, and could possibly be a cheaper solution.  I'm going to laminate 3 - 1" pieces on a form that has the same curve as the bulwark (See bad drawing below).

Anyway, to get started I had to remove the existing toerail.  I left it in place over the course of the recore to serve as a splash guard for the hull, but now that that is about done I'm comfortable removing it.  I had taken out a bunch of the screws previously, but there was still about half left and I had to use a hacksaw to remove the genoa track.  The track was fastened through the entire bulwark and into the cabin where the nuts turned into a rusty ball of nastyness over the years so there was no hope recovering the 5" drift bolts.

Once I had gotten the toerail off I laid 1'x8' pieces of plywood that I had previously cut down on the exposed bulwark and traced the curve of the hull onto them.  I brought them back to my basement shop and screwed a bunch of blocks 3" behind the curve.  Next I test fitted a piece of 1" mahogany to the curve to see how difficult it would be to bend.  To my relief, it bent on without any problem at all.

In the next few weeks or so, I'll take a trip over to Goosebay lumber in Chicester and buy up a bunch of mahogany.  To do the lamination, I'll butt 2 of the plywood forms together (of the 4 total) so I'll only have one scarf in the middle.  I haven't figured out exactly how I'll do the bow and stern because they widen out somewhat. See you next year!

1 comment:

  1. Matt, How did the laminated toe rail work out in the long run? I'm contemplating doing the same thing, as I have managed to get the original port rail off intact. (as opposed to the starboard side, which turned to dust!)
    Was that a good choice for you?