Tuesday, 8 September 2015

The Inner Framework

A foam fillet was glued to the inside of the hull using contact adhesive and the plywood ends to the stowage compartments trimmed to fit before sticking it all together with thickened epoxy.

A cardboard template was made to simulate the inboard face of the quarter berths, shaped along the bottom edge with a shallow curve to meet the bilge. The cardboard shape transferred to the plywood and we have the makings of two bunks with stowage space under.

And finally, the carbon mast collar has been broken out of it's black plastic bag having baked in the sun for two warm days...

Sunday, 6 September 2015

Odd Job

The centre section of the lazarette has been filled with polystyrene foam...

The hole in the middle will be enlarged and circular to take a stowage drum, I intend to make a lid to keep it all in place should water ever fill the compartment.

The base of the mast has been wrapped in 5 meters of carbon tape, a combination of uni-directional and biaxial. It's the first step in making a socket for the foot of the mast instead of the original galvanised steel tabernacle.

I will need to lay up a flat plate to form the base, as yet I haven't decided whether or not to make a mast base organiser to lead cordage back to the cockpit, do I want to reef at the mast or not?

The hull deck joint that was filled with thickened epoxy has now had a coat of paint.

It was never going to look immaculate but it's tided things up.

The curved ends of the main stowage compartments have been glued in place with epoxy fillets, just the aft end panels to be fitted to complete the job.

Sunday, 30 August 2015

A Lick of Paint

The waterline was taped up and Betsy has now had two coats of two part epoxy based primer.

The dog house has had a fill and fair, having been tabbed to the coach roof.

After a vacuum and a wipe round with acetone, the same two part epoxy primer was rolled on.

Following the dry fit earlier in the week, I have filleted the first two panels of the main stowage compartments whilst holding it all square to the bulkhead with an assortment of clamps.

Friday, 28 August 2015

Turning Cardboard in to Plywood

Two plywood sheets have been cut from the cardboard template to match the curve of the hull, sheathed in biaxial glass cloth and checked for fit...

Some lengths of foam have been cut to form a foam radius fillet that will sit between the inside of the hull and the plywood, just the same way the bulkhead was laminated to the hull, reducing any hard spots.

I have checked both sides by way of a dry run to make sure it all fits neat and square, the piece of cardboard between the stowage compartments is purely for support whilst I measured up.

Monday, 24 August 2015


Having laminated the buoyancy in to the extremities I am now building the main stowage areas either side and immediately aft of the main bulkhead.

Many moons ago a curved laminate of foam and fibreglass was cured to conform to the radius of my dry stowage containers.

Running out of sandwich panels to create the remainder of the main stowage areas, I have resorted to marine ply strengthened with biaxial glass cloth to support the weight of water and food that will be concentrated in these areas.

Carefully measured, cut and balanced sandwich corners were used to then measure up for the marine plywood.

The ply clamped in place against the bulkhead, the corners clamped to the ply and I now have yet another cardboard template to create the remaining two ply panels needed to complete the task.

Once the stowage is complete I can build the remainder of the quarter berths with stowage under and a battery box under the companionway.


Making Betsy unsinkable has been an ongoing project.

Having tabbed in the new bulkhead under the carbon beam I set about filling Betsy, both fore and aft, with polystyrene foam and boxing it all in to create several watertight areas.

The theory goes that buoyancy is most useful and least intrusive to stowage when spread about to the extremities of the boat whilst leaving space for all the weight (water, food, equipment etc.) in the middle of the boat where it impacts least on pitching and rolling.

To that end, no pun intended, here begins the story...

Polystyrene foam has been shaped with a hot wire to fit the bow in an effort to leave as few voids as possible.

A lid laminated from two pieces of foam and fibreglass sandwich was cut to size using cardboard as a cutting template.

An aft end bulkhead made from the same material was tabbed in place using two pieces of 450 gm biaxial glass cloth, the first piece 60mm wide overlaid by a length of 120mm wide tape to give a generous overlap.

With the polystyrene foam back in place the lid was glued on, filleted round and taped in place using the same cloth ratios.

Moving aft, the rather dead space under the cockpit sole has been treated to the same process. First the small void at the root of the rudder keg was filled with a two part polyester expanding foam, pour out equal volumes of each part, mix and pour "quickly" to avoid disappointment!

The excess foam that mushroomed out of the top was cut off with a long arm and a long saw! Various holes in the original plywood either side of the space were filled to create a watertight area. Then, more polystyrene foam...

Various gaps were plugged with wedges of polystyrene and more expanding foam, particularly the awkward space around the old stern tube. A plywood bulkhead was shaped to seal it all in but not before a seacock skin fitting was sealed to the end of the stern tube.

The buoyancy exercise continues with the two relatively shallow spaces beneath the after end of both quarter berths.

More cardboard templates were made, to minimise waste, before sandwich bulkheads and lids cut. All laminated in using the method described earlier.