Archive for September 2021

A day after my last post I cut the first bulkhead for the new yacht. Not daunted by the size of the frame I started with the largest which is 3.8 metres wide. This is the bulkhead at the aft end of the cabin and inside it forms the entry to the quarter berth. In just in time fashion the communications with the naval architect arrived agreeing on the width and location of the quarter berth opening and as soon as it was cut correctly a drawing arrived in perfect agreement. In similar fashion I have worked from the transom to the cabin adjusting cut outs for the wider yacht and leaving more meat in the frames to allow for the wider spans. Once the scantlings are completed there may be scope to trim back some of the frames but I am pretty happy with the sizes as they look suitably proportioned for the larger interior.
As of today I have five frames cut and on some the process of adding reinforcing has begun. Based on the current rate of progress it is possible that in three weeks all the bulkheads could be completed but there are some roadblocks. I need to get my head out of the sawdust and epoxy resin fumes and order in some essential supplies. You would thing this an easy task but when one is addicted to the smell it is not so easy.

Five bulkheads at various stages of construction shoehorned into the garage

As we are more than 5 km from any water sailing is out of the question. For the first few months of the Delta wave we were permitted to do maintenance on the yacht. On the water at Greenwich was a pretty civilized way to spend an afternoon and several useful jobs were completed including improving the finish on the vanity in the head. As for sailing gear I did install roller bearing cheek blocks for the mainsheet instead of the plain bearing organizer and am keen for a race in earnest to see how effective it has been.
As the virus has been getting more out of hand in Sydney we have been told that even moving in isolation to the yacht and doing maintenance in isolation is not allowed.
Fortunately I had started on plan B for our next yacht and accelerated the program. That has given me hours of pleasure pouring over plans and alternative designs to finalize the brief and get the design started.
At this stage as reported last blog I have finished the winch bases and now with the passage of eleven days completed laminating all the cabin beams.
With the arrival of 1.4 tonnes of plywood on Thursday I have painstakingly set out the garage floor ready for mass production of bulkheads. I was surprised how easy it was to lift the chipboard floor we used for Passion X, turn them over and refix them with clean faces upwards. The first step was to practice setting out frames and making the tool that would make the process less time consuming. Chief among these are a 3.9 metre straightedge and similar length timber batten for marking out deck crowns. A large plywood square with a 55 degree angle for setting out the cabin sides will also be a useful time saver. Finally a clear plastic template for marking stringer cut outs speeds up the process.
One day of practice and one day to lay out the real thing has resulted in the largest bulkhead being laid out ready for cutting and gluing the sections together. I suspect it will take up to four days to a week to complete each frame so I have quite a length of runway ahead before anything emerges into the open.

Cabin Beams produced one per day and very short days at that.