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Thread: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

  1. #1
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    Default Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Dear friends of Woodenboat forum,

    Some may remember a thread I had started a while ago and that was named:" Help wanted: building big schooner in Vietnam". This was in an attempt to help the owners of that boat finding a new boat builder to take over after the departure of the previous one. I have now deleted that thread as it mostly led to useless and not that nice comments but no positive action, but as I thought you guys (and gals) might still like to know about this construction, I now start this new one. I just hope that refrain of pen and tongue will avoid reading the same infantile thoughts we had to suffer in previous thread. Please ask questions, and I shall be happy to reply whenever I have a bit of time in hand.

    So: eight months have now gone, without much progress and without the ideal boat-builder presenting himself. I have then, with the help of my boys of my design office, and only the Vietnamese crew of shipwrights who built this boat so far, taken over in guiding this nice crew for the continuation of this construction.

    But let's start by the beginning:

    Two years ago now, the first part of the keel was blocked up on the yard:




    On it, then, came the deadwood, placed in the mortise in the keel, and made of two BIG parts:






    The stem piece (here: it's template) was actually a super-thick lamination pieces that the builders adjusted with this very unusual scarf to the keel :

    Last edited by Lucky Luke; 06-15-2010 at 05:40 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    LL, it's nice to see this thread back mate and I'm looking forward to seeing the updates. I'm sorry to hear that they haven't found a boat builder, are they still after one - or a Project Manager? Maybe PM me if they are and let me know what you/they are after and now that I am back on the East Coast I'll see if I can get an idea of who is about and doing what, the industry here has slowed down quite a bit over the last 6-8 months so things have changed since your last thread.

    (the first couple of pics haven't shown up (red X's) )

    cheers
    Greg
    Larks

    “It’s impossible”, said pride.
    “It’s risky”, said experience.
    “It’s pointless”, said reason.
    “Give it a try”, whispered the heart.

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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    The "lamination" of this massive stem was done with six pieces:





    and finally the keel laying ceremony saw the complete backbone, with keel, stem, deadwood and stern piece all in place:


  4. #4
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Good luck with this Luke - the process looks amazing. I think it's great that you're leading this project now and I wish you all well. I hope I can see it in the flesh one day soon! Rick

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    The frames were then laminated, from red meranti. Since the laminations were quite thick (16mm), and the turn of the bilge with short radius, it was necessary to first steam them in this very classic steam box:



    A "grill" had been made, onto which the sections were drawn and the lamination put there for two days to cool down in shape. After cooling, they were glued (by pairs) with PU:



    On the keel was added a hog plank, visible here with a different color, and then frames were erected, joined by a floor made of a very hard and dense wood known here as "chicken bone"...!





    This was or course a long process, as four days were needed for the lamination of each frame, meaning over a week between preparation, steaming, cooling, gluing, and finally erection! And there are over fifty of them!

    So...a year later, the planking finally started.

    This planking is kind of a big strip planking, double layer (2 1/2 thick total), in red meranti. It is all PU glued together and to the frames, and then fastened with lag bolts:



    The frames were squared to the planking as it progressed and to the stringers and beam shelf inside:

    Last edited by Lucky Luke; 11-13-2009 at 11:21 AM. Reason: my awful spelling!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Then, she slowly started to take shape as the planking went up:





    Inside, two stringers and the beam shelf were put in place:





    The transom, pierced for four large windows for the massive Master stateroom aft, was planked the same way as the hull, with wider board. The edges of this transom planking were trimmed to be covered later by the hull planking:


  7. #7
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Absolutely wonderful - thanks for the updates! More to come, yes?
    Sometimes you've gotta leave the kibble out where the slow dogs can get some....
    ... Roy Blount, Jr.

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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Can you post profile and arrangement plans?
    If I had a dollar for every girl who found me unattractive, eventually they would find me attractive.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    It's OK Larks: this team is good, and all they need now is some guidance and a lot of drawings, which I now do with my team and also lots of mails and weekly visits to the yard. It would have been good to find a knowledgeable boat-builder, but the few "experiments" were..well...forget it!

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Quote Originally Posted by rbgarr View Post
    Can you post profile and arrangement plans?
    More is coming, more is coming! Patience my friends: you're going to regal yourselves

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    I should actually have showed you those, before the planking started:









    You can admire there the massive lamination that is the transom's structure"


  12. #12
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Now, for those who did not follow from the beginning:

    This boat will be a close sister-ship of the schooner "Tree of Life", designed by good old Canadian chap: Ted Brewer.

    Ted did a wonderful job designing this boat, who has now circumnavigated few times!!! She has proven as seaworthy as comfortable with her fully enclosed "Baltic trader" style wheelhouse (maybe not the top of elegance, but what a comfort!!!) and also fast as proves her first place in the Antigua race (classics).

    Here is "Tree of Life":











    Last edited by Lucky Luke; 06-15-2010 at 05:42 AM.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    That's all folks for today!

    Tomorrow, I have to go to the yard an then to the mill where four logs of Burma teak have been delivered today (5 cubic meters, up to 28 feet long). At least this teak will go on the deck of a beautiful wooden schooner, and not for garden furniture and swimming pool beach
    The mill is not used to cutting "quarter sawn", and I will have to direct the cutting, turn the logs on and again....just hope the wood will be good inside: you never know until you have done the first cut right through the heart! With proper milling, however, one can get the best out of a log.

    Teak wood, happily, is now planted everywhere in Myanmar (Ex Burma - I have been working there), in many gardens, in "sustainable" forests, but practically no more exists in the mountains. It will not be as good as it had been, but we have to accept that. for tomorrow: I hope not to have bad surprises: it's always a "lottery"!

    So, will post you some more this week end !
    Last edited by Lucky Luke; 10-14-2009 at 06:49 AM.

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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    I'm looking forward to seeing the rigging and the systems. Will you use Soectra? Are you going to use turnbuckles/rigging screws or deadeyes and lanyards. I hope she will have a water maker, I'm not sure if I would fit a generator.

    I know you are going to make the traditional "lucky Luke" mistake and fit a vang to the gaff.

    A tout a l'heure

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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Luc.....I would have loved to be back there.....all I need is a couple of spare kidneys and lots of young fresh blood.
    Wakan Tanka Kici Un
    ..a bad day sailing is a heckuva lot better than the best day at work.....
    Fighting Illegal immigration since 1492....
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  16. #16

    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    I'm enjoying the thread. Thanks for sharing, Luke.

    Cheers!

  17. #17
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    Thumbs up Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Thanks for posting the update Luke. I have really been looking forward to this for a long time. It is absolutely incredible!

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Merci mon ami....c'est magnifique

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Your leadership is a wonderful benefit for the client and the boat.

    Finastkind.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    I have been following your progress here (and I think maybe another site?) --- Wonderful project & looks great!! Please keep us updated.

  21. #21

    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    fantastic
    Boat Designer. Boatbuilder

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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    lovely boat.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Thanks Luke. Looking forward to watching over your shoulder. I had a chance to visit the original Tree of Life after she was launched. I think she had a copper bath tub. Very impressive design.

    Russ
    Hove to off Swan Point......

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Wow. Thank you, Luke, and more, please!

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Inspirational thread,thanks for posting.

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Keep those pictures coming...wow!
    1959 "Nordic" (Abbott-built) Folkboat KC36 "Odds n Ends"

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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    PLANKING:
    The planking is, like the frames, of red meranti. This wood, rather soft and not resistant to rot and marine borers is normally not much used in boat building, but as it's porosity in the other hand allows it to absorb glue very well, modern techniques change that. The fact that this wood comes (from Indonesian sustainable forests) in long, clear grain logs actually makes it very suitable.
    The glue used for both frames and planking is Akzo-Nobel polyurethane (PUR D4). West System epoxy was tested, but did not show any better (and far more expensive!).

    The planking is a kind of "double-strip-planking": first planking is 3/4, second 1 1/2:



    The rabbet has to be double too. Along the stem, the first rabbet is made deeper by gluing an extra piece, while the second rabbet, for the thicker planking, is cut with adze and chisel the traditional way:





    After "adzing" the frames to bevel them and carefully cleaning the previous plank's edge (here by Mr. Trung, the foremen), first planking is presented and adjusted to the previous one by running a saw in between both, ensuring a perfect fit (done here by Mr. Nam, the first carpenter, pulling the saw):




  28. #28
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Second planking, thicker, needs a bit more muscle, hydraulic jacks and wedges:



    Finished planking is then glued and fastened with 3/8 stainless steel lag bolts:





    Later, this planking will be impregnated with Wesyt System epoxy, and sheated with three 10oz. fiberglass. The "Tree of life", which has much smaller frames and planking, has a kevlar layer between both planking in the forward third of the hull. This was not deemed necessary on this sturdier boat, and anyway not possible with PU but epoxy only.

    This "double-strip-planking" method could be used for much smaller boats too. The cross grain gluing reinforces the planking, perhaps not as well, but in a much easier way than adding a couple of diagonal veneers.

  29. #29
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    What is the LJB on the back of the workers clothing?
    Reminded me of LBJ prison during the Viet Nam war. Stacks of steel shipping containers where they would put soldiers who refused to fight.
    I love the smell of fresh cut plywood in the morning.

  30. #30
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Thank you for showing this build. It's a privilege to be able to see something like this, and your efforts are most appreciated.

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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Quote Originally Posted by donald branscom View Post
    What is the LJB on the back of the workers clothing?
    Reminded me of LBJ prison during the Viet Nam war. Stacks of steel shipping containers where they would put soldiers who refused to fight.
    Not prison thing at all!!!

    LJB stands for: Laura Jane Boatyard

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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Quote Originally Posted by Hwyl View Post
    I'm looking forward to seeing the rigging and the systems. Will you use Soectra? Are you going to use turnbuckles/rigging screws or deadeyes and lanyards. I hope she will have a water maker, I'm not sure if I would fit a generator.

    I know you are going to make the traditional "lucky Luke" mistake and fit a vang to the gaff.

    A tout a l'heure
    Hi Hwyl,

    RIGGING:

    Standing rigging will either be galvanized or stainless steel, but (normally) spliced and served. Since I shall have to do ....quite some, I hope we can find good galvanized one: I quite hate splicing a 7 x 7 stainless steel !!!

    No lanyards and deadeyes but galvanized turnbuckles!

    Stays which will receive a sail with piston hanks (staysail, flying jib...) will be 1 x 19 S.S. with swage terminals (imported). The jib may be roller furling (???)

    Metallic running rigging will be 7 x 19 S.S., spliced (with the splice served in S.S. wire)

    "Textile" running rigging will be modern platted ropes "spliced" with the special hollow needles. All whipping, "Turkish hat" aso... the old classic way but with modern materials.

    Blocks will be good old wooden ones with stainless steel fitting and bronze sheaves. A LOT of them!

    SYSTEMS:

    Besides main engine, basic toilet system, fresh water and grey water and bilge/ fire pumping, other systems will be installed gradually, as the money comes. Generator (12 to 15 KVA) will be necessary as soon as the air conditioning, and then the water maker will be installed. Then bow thruster, electro-hydraulic for winches, black and grey water treatment, all that will come later.

    A "vang" to the gaff..??????? whatzit? Preventers you mean?

  33. #33
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Later, this planking will be impregnated with Wesyt System epoxy, and sheated with three 10oz. fiberglass. The "Tree of life", which has much smaller frames and planking, has a kevlar layer between both planking in the forward third of the hull. This was not deemed necessary on this sturdier boat, and anyway not possible with PU but epoxy only.
    Luke, what's the purpose of the fibreglass sheathing? I have a splined hull Twister I'm restoring (see Restoration of a Twister thread) and have been debating whether or not to sheathe the hull with glass. I know it's common practice to sheathe a strip-planked hull but what will this do for the schooner? Is it to reduce maintenance, strengthen the hull, improve waterproofing? I'd value your opinion on this. Rick

  34. #34
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    Hey Rick,
    You should have a look at this link which any shipwright amateur or pro will appreciate... (http://1930schoonermistress.com/home)
    Especially look at "Memory Monday 15 - 19 and also read "Covering Wooden Boats with Fiberglass" by Allan H. Vaitses. I'm as tempted as you are...
    Flitch

    PS Lucky Luke - Great Thread! Please keep the pics and commentary coming!
    Last edited by Flitch; 10-20-2009 at 12:45 AM.

  35. #35
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    Default Re: Building 72' schooner in Viet Nam

    That's a really interesting link Flitch - thanks!! Rick

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