31 May 2019

Dinghy progress on Target.

Today the laying down of the ply strips was completed and gave a certain measure of of achievement. The task was more arduous than expected. Almost nine sheets of 8' X 4' marine ply was used so I have three and a half sheets left over. Turning her over  will happen in a few days time but there is the keel band to fit and rubbing strakes at the bilge.
I plan to add stub floor timbers across the hog that will taper to a feather edge and support a light removable floor. The seats will be of Cedar  and backed with a laminate of  some surplus 3mm ply to prevent any splitting .
I shall use some contrasting timbers to edge the seats with - Sycamore or American Walnut ,depending on availability at Beech Bros.
The sheer is to be stiffened by an inwhale and  tapered stub timbers extending down ten or twelve inches. For this I may use some of the larch strips recovered from the mold.
I am careful to avoid using screws or nails prefering to use dowels or trenails of bamboo instead.
The nails will be cut from green bamboo, dried in the microwave oven to remove as much moisture as possible. I have used the microwave before on knees made of green timber and the method is quick and very effective . The wood is put in rough cut and during cooking it shrinks and distorts. Final shaping is completed after this drying is done. The wood reaches a temperature where the water content boils off
Yet to be done are the rowlock cheeks and seat risers. I am getting useful tips from watching You-tube videos by the legendary master shipwright Louis Sauzedde.
Talking of shipwrights reminds me of John Leather and his book that describes in a final brief chapter the construction method of this cold-molded craft and inspired me to begin it. He does say it is a more expensive method and says it requires less skill than the equivalent clinker craft. My findings tell me something to the contrary.

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