Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Building The Matinicus Double Ender- Part 14

I'm quite behind in my blog posts. There has been some progress over the last month, but I just haven't gotten around to the blog. If there's anyone left out there, I'll catch us up...

Decking the Matinicus has proved to be one of the easiest and most straight forward jobs on the boat yet. I bought two sheets of 6mm ply as I was not sure how I would cut them out. But in the end, I decided to make the deck in 4 large pieces, with seams down the centerline at the ends and an additional two short fillers amidship, which I attached with typical butt blocks fitted between the sheer clamp and carlin. Consequently, all of the decking could be gotten out of one sheet.

I used cardboard for my templates. I get a couple of 4x8 sheets every time I have a plywood delivery, and its useful in many ways in the shop. And recyclable.

The cardboard template.
For the cutout around the stems, I hot-glued thin ply scraps to the patterns (my motto is- if you don't know what to do next, plug in the hot glue gun). I then traced off the shape underneath, inside and out, cut the patterns out with a utility knife, and laid them out on my occume ply.

Thin ply is hot-glued to the template to define the stem cut-outs.
The patterns are laid out on the 1/4" deck plywood.   
I cut the deck pieces out a little oversize, fitted them to each other and around the stems, then marked them out from underneath. Even when finish-cutting them I left my line, not wanting to worry about bevels and what not. I would plane the edges flush after gluing them on. When everything fit nicely (including the butt blocks amidship) I sanded and epoxy-coated the underside. It should not be left raw, of course, and nobody wants to hang upside down to paint the undersides after installation, least of all me. 
The rough cut decks are fitted together.

Two coats of sanded epoxy are applied to the deck's undersides.
I fastened the deck pieces temporarily with small screws. Actually, I drilled for and put in most of the screws prior to marking the panels. This way, the pieces will go back on exactly as they were fit dry. I also supplemented the screws with lots of blue tape clamps, pulling the edges down in between screws.
Butt-blocks are used to join the pieces of deck together amidship.
Toothpick fillers.
 I was able to do half of the deck each evening after work, and on the third evening, I removed all of the screws and plugged each hole with glue and a half a toothpick. I used Titebond 3 for this. The next morning, I cut off the toothpicks as far below the deck surface as I could, planning to fill up the void with epoxy filler. The deck seams (between each panel section) were also filled and glassed. Before filling though, I took a small grinder and cut a shallow trough down the length of each seam, to give a little hollow for the glass tape to lay into, without projecting too much above the faired deck surface. While I had some epoxy mixed, I dripped a little into each toothpick recess, to seal everything up.

Deck seams were hollow ground to make room for glass tape.

The seams are taped.

Here are a couple of views of the decks. I'm pretty happy with the whole thing, except that I wish I had put in just a little more crown. The coamings, when they go in, will help the appearance.

I'm now at the stage of fairing the deck surface, prior to coating with epoxy. For this, I thought I would try some of the System 3 "Quick Fair" two-part epoxy filler. The stuff is expensive, but I absolutely love it. The consistency is just right, every time, with no need to mix up a bunch of different dry fillers into liquid epoxy. Its a simple two to one mix, and I use various sized kitchen measuring scoops for the quantity needed. It feels like "spreadable butter" and doesn't tend to roll up under the knife, and doesn't have stray bits of grit and crap to mess up the coat. What makes it cost effective for a commercial yard is it's cure time. Four hours to machining! I'm hooked.

System Three Quick-Fair filler is applied and sanded fair.
So that's where we are now. I plan to hold off on the coaming, and install the rub rails next. Then, I'll flip the boat and do my outside finish painting! Can't wait.


EyeInHand said...

Straightforward for you. Not so much for the rest of us.

Looking great. Wet soon.

Jimbo said...

Yes, we'll launch soon, at least for rowing. Spars will be a little later. I'd like to get a look at your 'seeds sometime. Maybe St. Mikes in the fall.

Brandon Ford said...

Looks great! Nice work.


JotM said...

I think it's impressive and I expect it to show its beauty even more with a coat of paint on it.
I - and I guess a bunch of others - will be patient until you find some time to write about in your blog, it's well worth to wait. :)