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Sunday, October 25, 2009

Hull plating completed

Well, not completely done... but all the plates are now hung and tacked in place. There is still a lot of production welding to do to finish all the seams, but the boat has really taken shape. Jesus and his crew got a lot done this last week. Now that the boat is closed up, we'll be hanging lights and setting up ventilation for the rest of the interior welding. Found some clean galvanized steel tapered light poles that have the right dimension and wall thickness for our masts at a local salvage yard last week. We weren't planning on getting to the masts and rigging yet, but if these work out, it's too good of a deal to pass up. We'll be looking at these again this week. Also started doing the fabrication work on the bitts, which will be made up of two 3" schedule 40 stainless steel pipes connected by a 1" solid stainless round bar. Planning on having 4 of these double bitts on each side of the boat and two singles on the swim step... I hate not having enough proper cleats on a boat. I'll put up some pictures of these next week. I have to give Jesus Romero and his crew another plug here... If you have any welding jobs, from small fabrication work to building a boat give him a call (925-550-0518). Jesus is striking out on his own as "Romero's Welding" and he is currently taking jobs here in the Bay Area. A fine craftsman and great guy to work with... give him a call. You can also contact us through this blog and we'll get you in touch.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Sail and rigging plan.

This is an updated version of the Peter Bailey sail plan. Looks so cool, I thought it was worth reposting... Thanks Peter.

Ready for side shell plating


Quick update from the “boatyard”… A lot more interior production welding has been completed and side longitudinals are in place. The hull shape is completely defined now, and we should be getting started on the side shell plating this week. I have been working on the fuel system fill and supply manifolds and tracking down more of the bits and pieces we will need in the coming weeks. There is still a lot of fabrication to be done for the propulsion and steering systems. I’ll probably be sending out the rudder and prop shafts next week for final machine work. For engine cooling, we are using a set of Fernstrum keel coolers that I bought second hand from a local salvage boat operator a while back. Using one of the keel coolers would have been fine here in the bay area with our cooler water temps, but may have been a little undersized for the tropics so, per the recommendations from the good folks at Fernstrum, we are using both of them in series. This should give us more than enough cooling capacity in all conditions. We pulled them out of storage over the weekend and gave them a thorough cleaning and pressure test for leaks. They checked out fine and are still in excellent shape despite their age. Fernstrum makes a really solid product and their customer support is excellent.

Our former neighbor, good friend, and all around renaissance man, Peter Bailey, was kind enough to work over our sailing rig and come up with a really nice Chinese lug rig for the boat that should allow us to sail the boat with a maximum of efficiency and a minimum of effort. It is similar to the rig on his current boat, The Berti (which he built here in Sausalito). I think it really fits the lines of the boat well. Junk rigs like these are much simpler and inexpensive to build and operate, and put much less stress on the rigging (and crew) than the more typical rigs you see on modern sailboats. More about the rig to come…   -PB

Monday, October 12, 2009

Water Tight Doors

Installed some watertight doors this week for the engine room and bulkhead #9. The space forward of #9 will be our "garage" for general storage and will also have a heavy watertight hatch leading to the anchor deck at the bow of the boat. This will give us a safe way to get up on the bow in heavy weather and also serve as a forward emergency exit from the main cabin. I also imagine that  Sam will try to use 
this, in the future, as an alternate entry and exit from his cabin (which will be directly aft of #9) when he doesn't want to alert us to his comings and goings from the boat. He can be pretty stealthy sometimes...
Much time was spent, in the last week or so, doing final production welding between the hull plate and the frames and longitudinals. This work doesn't show up well in the pictures and is not as dramatic as tacking up new steel, but is really the important part of the job to get right. Its what finalizes the build and makes the boat strong and whole. Again, the weld work is coming out very good and this should be one helluva tough boat.
Sam and I did a little more shop work too, bolting accesories to the engine and designing some of the engine plumbing that we'll be fabricating soon. Next week, I'll be working on fabricating fuel system manifolds (just waiting on an order of ball valves and a few more misc bits of plumbing. Also starting to look for sources for the stainless steel parts that we will need for the fairleads and bitts on deck, as well as the louvers that we will be fabricating for the engine room ventilation supply and discharge openings.

Tomorrow, we are forecast to have a very unusual (early) storm system blow through. Forecast is for high winds and heavy rains for the next 48 hours, so looks like our boat will be getting wet a little ahead of schedule. With the completion of the bottom plating, the boat is braced well against the wind, and with the side shell plating not in place, there will not be much for the wind to push on. That said, we will certainly be keeping an eye on things at the site for the next day or two...

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Bottom plating

While I was away at a conference last week, Jesus and his crew got the bottom plating tacked in place. You can really appreciate the long slippery looking shape of the hull now. For the most part, the heavy 5/16 bottom plate wrapped onto the hull pretty nicely. A few spots apparently took some encouragement to form to the proper shape, but the end result is very nice... at least the fish will be very impressed with the fairness of the bottom.

I have been researching, among other things, what type of sail rig to put up. The design calls for two masts, one just aft of the wheelhouse, and one up forward at a location to be determined by the type of sail plan we end up using. Our budget (or lack of budget) does not allow for us getting the masts and rigging right now, but there are certain things we need to do in building the hull now, that will make it easier to install the masts and rigging later. In particular, we would like to have any necessary welding (mast steps, chainplates, etc.) done now, while the boat is bare steel with no interior. So... need to make some decisions on the rig and/or design in some flexibility for future rig options. Pictured are some initial ideas. One thing that I was planning on to keep the exhaust clear of the sails and rigging, was to route the exhaust up the aft mast on brackets. I have seen this work well on other cruising boats. Until the mast is installed, we will just stub the exhaust out at the top of the exhaust/vent stack at the top of the wheelhouse.
Next week, Jesus will be installing all our interior watertight doors, and finishing some interior production welding prior to the hull side plating going on. Once the side shell plating is installed, we will be limited to climbing up and over, into the engine room to access the vessel interior so this will probably be a good time to get some of the fuel plumbing installed as well.
My list for the next week or so includes fabricating all the parts for the fuel system manifolds and drilling the bolt on fuel tank inspection covers (14 covers in all).
I have to put in another plug for Jesus and his company Romero's Welding. He is doing an outstanding job on this project. He has been very good with the details, while keeping an eye on the big picture and keeping the project moving along. If you want to get a hold of him for future work (he's kind of busy right now) let us know. He is working on getting a website up, but until then you can always drop us a line and we'll get you in touch. -PB