Of course, that's in general. Sometimes I can actually identify concrete reasons that things take longer. Oddly enough, knowing why something took so long can be more frustrating than dealing with the now-accepted "mysterious time sink." Unfortunately that's what I've been dealing with over the past few weeks.
After the progress reported in the last post, I had just completed a major step forward, and was looking forward to continuing to move forward. But first, a three week business trip to the UK put boatbuilding activities on hold. Not so that la vie en bateau was on hold. I was hoping to visit the Chatham yards when I was there, but work got in the way. I did, however, get in to London and visited the re-creation of Francis Drake's ship, The Golden Hinde.
|The Golden Hinde|
|The gun deck had less headroom than PocketShip's cabin!|
|I doubt I'll be using this paint scheme on my PocketShip|
Every day that I was in England, I was reading the PocketShip manual, looking at the plans, and plotting my next steps. I had been a feeling some trepidation about some of the upcoming steps, but by the time my trip was over, I was bursting with enthusiasm!
Getting back to work was a little troublesome, though. The jetlag was a little bad this time, and my ability to maintain any level of sentient activity into the evening was severely lacking. The Monday after I got back, I headed into the shop after work, only to look around, throw up my hands, turn the lights back off, go inside the house and crash. Score one for jetlag.
|Outboard upper seatback framing|
There are two long 3/4"x1" cleats/carlins/gunwhales/"shear clamps" (even though they are not at the shear)/whatevers that run from the aft cabin bulkhead, through a notch in the foreward cabin bulkhead, and then meet at the bow. Since I'm thinking about leaving these bright inside the cabin, I decided to make them from mahogany. It took a long of work to get the compound angle right at the aft cabin bulkhead. I then had to work it against the topsides panel forward toward the bow. Since it was still long, it overran the bow and thus couldn't settle all the way down. I pondered a bit, because figuring out how to mark this guy to length was in no way straight-forward. I decided I'd get it close, but still a little long and work in little nibbles from there. So I made a mark at what I figured was about 1/2" too long, pulled it out of the boat, and made my cut. I dropped it back in the boat and found that I had cut it too short!!! By about 1/4". Score another one for jetlag. I threw my hands up again, turned the lights off, went inside the house and crashed.
The jetlag was still in full swing, so I woke up at 4:30am. But, as I was pondering whether or not to try to sleep more or just give up and go into work early, I had some insight. The upper inboard seatback framing was supposed to be square, not beveled! Why didn't I see that before!?!?!?! And, while I'd just wasted a nice piece of mahogany, I could at least use it as a pattern. It had all the angles right on it, just add 1/4" and I'd have it perfect! I jumped out of bed, was at work just before 5:30am, home again and in the shop by 3:00pm. Things were off to a good start. I tried the square cross-section seatback decking and it was a winner. I whipped up a new port-side carlin. Winner again. I set to work on the starboard-side carlin. I got the aft end beveled right and was working my way forward when, snap! The darn piece of mahogany broke. I knew this was a possibility, since mahogany can get a little cranky when you ask it to bendtoo much. I had been working quickly and had been horsing it a bit. Still, I was frustrated and getting tired (it was after all, getting close to 6:00pm :-) ). Another point for jetlag. I threw up my hands, turned the lights off, went inside the house and crashed.
The next night, I was ready to try again. I milled a new carlin, and cut the aft bevel. This time I was really slow and gentle in bending it. Almost there and...snap! Broke another one! Jetlag: 4, Jon: 0. I threw up my hands, turned the lights off, went inside the house and crashed.
|Soaking the starboard side carlin|
Saturday was a beautiful day too. So I went snowshoeing. Turns out, Sunday was astonishingly beautiful.. So, I took a bike ride.
|I met this guy whilst kayaking|
|Aaah, the mountains in winter.|
|Installing the upper seatbackframing.|
|Fiberglass on the foredeck|
Anyway, after three coats of epoxy, some sanding and several days, the foredeck fiberglassing was done. I made up the two cabin deck carlins that run from either side of the companionway to the forward bulkhead. Then it was time to mix some epoxy and go carlin crazy!
|I love to show off my clamp collection!|
The tops of the seatback framing get planed down so that they are flat across the tops, parallel to the floor athwarthships, if you will. Working with plane and chisels was a surprisingly good balm for my still slightly frustrated disposition. The smooth motions of this tools, the feeling of craftsmanship, seeing the long curls of wood falling to the ground...they put you in touch with the basics elements of boat building. So relaxing.
|I found using the surform in conjunction with a block plane made quick work of things|
|This bit of blocking gets cut back to the correct angle to provide a mounting surface for the "transom skirt"|
|Original transom skirt...doesn't quiet fit right|
|A zen moment...the cabin deck pieces becoming one|
In other news, I've purchased a Suzuki 2.5hp outboard for PocketShip. I've also been soliciting bids from local sail lofts for PocketShip's suite of canvas. As usual, more to come!