Page 1 of 5 12 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 35 of 141

Thread: Building a Welsford dinghy

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Building a Welsford dinghy

    Everyone has told me: "Start small, see how you like it." A boat builder in Richmond (CA) talks about how he recommends building a dinghy to guys who tell him they want to build a boat. And how, a few years later, they come to him and ask him to finish the dinghy for them.

    So prior to digging into Welsford's Sundowner, here I am launching a dinghy build.



    That's the dinghy's build jig half-completed at the rear of the Sundowner build table.

    The Project Supervisor is checking out the build table.



    My workshop is conveniently located. Note the strategically located moaning chair.



    My build site is just behind my workshop.




    At the moment, I've cut out the transom, the bottom panel and two of the three internal frames. Below is the bottom panel. In the process of being sprung onto the build jig.



    The bottom panel has been on the jig for three days now. Today I was able to persuade it to come down to Profile #4. It's still 10mm above Profile #5. That's some mean twist you've designed, Mr. Welsford. I expect to be able to bring the panel down to #5 in a few more days. Patience, patience.

    I'm beginning to realize that I probably should have started building boats right out of school. I love this stuff. I really would like a "do-over."
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-15-2017 at 11:29 PM. Reason: replacing photobucket

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Houston
    Posts
    1,059

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Which dinghy? Tender Behind? Welcome to the forum!
    “It doesn’t matter how slowly you go -- so long as you do not stop.”
    -Confucius

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Hey, MoMan

    It's JW's Tender Behind.

    Much fun

    Bill

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Been remiss on posting. By the end of September, it seemed as though I had accomplished nothing. At least it seemed that way -- I had nothing really photo ready to post. Yet I've been busy. The following pics show most of the interior pieces.

    Here I have some gluing in progress....


    And here are most of the other pieces, getting ready for gluing...



    As I indicated above, I've been remiss on posting. I'll attempt to bring this build up-to-date.

    I had originally allotted myself 6 weeks to build the dinghy. As with all projects, it takes twice as long.... Now tomorrow I'll need to put my shop back into storage, clearing off the back porch so I can take a 3 week hiatus on the build.
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-15-2017 at 11:32 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    SF Bay Area- Richmond
    Posts
    15,186

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Looking good! Keep the photos comin'...
    "The enemies of reason have a certain blind look."
    Doctor Jacquin to Lieutenant D'Hubert, in Ridley Scott's first major film _The Duellists_.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Well, a month seems to have gone by with little to show for it. It would appear that I've been slacking off. Not true, however. Just not much to show for the work. Mostly just cutting. And re-cutting....


    I think I can understand how and why some would-be amateur boat builders give up and tell a pro “Here, you build it for me.” I don't think I'm going to go there. As I see it, these guys make mistakes, let them slide thinking they can be fixed later, and thus add mistake upon mistake until the build becomes impossible. Or else they just don't want to face the growing list of mistakes that they've made. They can be embarrassing.


    I've been making my share of mistakes. One frame re-cut due to a “measure once, cut twice” error. On one frame, the joint between it and the spine is embarrassingly sloppy. My mistake there was in thinking “Oh, the 20 x 20 piece on the spine will go right here,” without actually fitting the pieces to see exactly where the 20 x 20 actually would fall. I've had to re-cut the rear spine because, again, I hurriedly assumed where the 20 x 20 pieces would fit, and cut all the notches normal to the wrong edge. Actually, I was willing to settle for sloppy notches, but another mistake, made by not fully grokking the drawings, caused me to have to re-cut the whole thing.


    I feel that I'm learning from my mistakes, and am becoming an improved builder as a result. I've had to cut the forward spine three times. My first mistake was in cutting the spine to the dimensions given on Sheet 2, never mind that my intent is to build a sailing dinghy, and should therefore have cut the spine to the dimensions on Sheet 3. My first thought on realizing this mistake was that JW should revise the drawings to include a note to this effect on Sheet 2. As I write this, I note that my set of drawings do not contain my own hand-written note to this effect. My bad! The second re-cut was due, again, to not fully understanding JW's intent on the drawing. I had worked out a fix for this in my head, one I was almost prepared to live with. But then the perfectionist in me (or maybe my Aspergers) caused me to need to cut the damn piece correctly. My cutting of wood is becoming more accurate, my glue joints are getting neater. I'd like to think that I'm acquiring some skills.


    I did slack off a bit, though. I went two days without doing any work on the dinghy. On the third day, I felt the urge to continue to let the build slide even stronger than on the second day. But I forced myself back to the yard and began working again. Interestingly enough, that was enough to fire up the urge to build again. As a life-long procrastinator, I have become adept at identifying break points in any task, and allowing myself to stop at them all. Now, in the build, I find myself identifying the break points, but instead I'm adding them to my “to do” list, and feel driven to check off as many items on that list as I can.


    As the following pix show, I've finished gluing the frames. The spines still require more work. The centerboard case needs painting inside before I close it up, and my hiatus is too near now, so I won't be able to order the paint until next month. I hope to be able to finish cutting and gluing the aft spine tomorrow.

    Much gluing the past two weeks:




    The spines, fore and aft, will have to wait until after the hiatus.
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-04-2017 at 09:37 PM. Reason: Replacing Photobucket

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    SF Bay Area- Richmond
    Posts
    15,186

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Building here in the Bay Area is so tough, isn't it? I'd say you've made a lot of progress.
    "The enemies of reason have a certain blind look."
    Doctor Jacquin to Lieutenant D'Hubert, in Ridley Scott's first major film _The Duellists_.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Honeoye Falls, NY
    Posts
    128

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    "As a life-long procrastinator, I have become adept at identifying break points in any task, and allowing myself to stop at them all. Now, in the build, I find myself identifying the break points, but instead I'm adding them to my “to do” list, and feel driven to check off as many items on that list as I can."

    Identifying your personality type and working with it instead of against it is a good skill. I'm easily distracted and now clean my shop of all projects which helps keep me on task. I also find setting goals on a white board challenges me.

    She's looking good!
    Take Care,
    Steve W

    Honeoye Falls, New York
    Building a B & B Core Sound 20 Mark III "Jazz Hands"
    Spindrift 11N Suzy J Build Pictures
    A little video of the Suzy J and my youngest son

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    The hiatus (12 days worth + extra travel days) started in St. Lucia and ended at St. Martins.



    Please note: This is not the dinghy.

    Upon returning, I finished the forward spine.


    And then I started putting things together.
    Now, I have actually glued these pieces together, including the #2 frame.



    Unfortunately, on the night of 19 Dec I fell, chipping my ankle bone and fracturing my fibula. All work is now covered with tarps. Yesterday I graduated from a soft cast to a hard non-load bearing cast. The good news is that if all heals well, in 4 weeks I may be placed in a partial-load bearing boot. Work has stopped for now, but I expect to be able to start (slowly) on some of the small stuff in a couple of weeks. But first I need to order a workbench for my back patio workshop.

    More later.
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-15-2017 at 11:42 PM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Brisbane QLD,Australia
    Posts
    493

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    All the best for a quick recovery. You are much neater than I was. My only advice (more of a criticism of myself) is take plenty of time getting the sides even and fair. Lets just say I'm calling mine a workboat finish!


    Mal
    Quest

    Moving slowly towards a Welsford Sundowner.

    Hobart Wooden Boat Festival 2017, or maybe 2019ish??

    http://forum.woodenboat.com/showthre...undowner-build
    http://sundownerbuild.blogspot.com.au/

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Annapolis, MD
    Posts
    123

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Best wishes for a swift recovery. Very glad to see a build thread for this dinghy, I've been coveting the design for years but oddly it seems like there are very few build logs online. Here's hoping, selfishly, you can get back at her soon!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Finally, I am done with the walking boot. I'm still limited to not lifting more than 10 lbs in either hand for another 4 weeks, but that only slows me a little bit. Ankle is sore, stiff and still a bit swollen. But I am finally liberated. Working on the back patio at this time of year is especially wonderful: our orange tree is in bloom, and the aroma is SO much finer than the smell of freshly cut wood.


    I'm back. Today I finished shaping the tiller. Tomorrow I'm heading over to the Bay Area to have dinner with my son for his birthday, so Sunday I will finish gluing the centerboard and begin laying out the rudder. I'm deviating somewhat on the construction of the centerboard. I'm gluing 20 mm strips of Doug Fir on the leading and trailing edges, as I have a dislike for leaving plywood edges exposed. I also will need to cut out the profile template for the centerboard.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    dfw
    Posts
    1,008

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    JW is a MASTER when it comes to designing JIGSAW PUZZLES that end up looking and behaving like BOATS!

    SUGGESTION, get a secretary's roll around desk chair to replace the lovely wooden one

    you'd be pleasantly surprised at how much work can be accomplished from a seated position, keeping weight off that limb...

    sw
    "we are the people, our parents warned us about" (jb)

    steve

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Norwich,United Kingdom
    Posts
    4,916

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    If you pace it right,there's no better therapy than wooden boat building.The visible progress is a great encouragement and its surprising how the mobility and strength return.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    After cutting and laminating the dagger board, I next assaulted the rudder. Focusing on the small stuff. The orange blossoms faded, but then the lemon tree came into bloom. The aroma in the back yard continued through last week. My lifting limitation is still in effect for another two weeks, but other that than, my strength is returning, and I no longer need a cane for walking mobility.

    This past winter was not a good winter for us. The magic I made last year -- daring the weather gods to give us rain -- worked. We had several storms that did damage to house and yard. My wife's pot garden -- her cactus collection -- had been arrayed on the back yard picnic table. The one with the glass top. The pots collected enough rain water to break the glass from the accumulated weight. As a result, her cactus garden now resides on the west end of my build table. That will be ok as long as I am working on the dinghy.

    I took the tarp off of the dinghy proper, and found some more weather-related damage. (I already knew that the tarp had blown off during one storm, and I had been able to work the walker around to replace it -- still a bit of discoloration from the water.) The weight of the tarp has bent the upright "wings" of the second frame, as shown below.



    My first reaction was to scrap the whole build at this point and start over. (At least I would not need to repeat the same mistakes I made during the last build.) But then I got to believing that I could pull the frames back into position as I was gluing up the side panels. Perhaps all would not be lost.

    Next I examined my handiwork with the dagger board and rudder. Not so good. It looks like I failed Lamination 101. The rudder's cheek-plates are specified as 9 mm ply, so I'm going to cut all the pieces from the 9mm. Let's see: 3 x 6 mm = 2 x 9 mm, with only one gluing. Looks like it could work.

    And finally, I can show some serious progress. Look, I am progressing, somewhat: new wood on the boat!



    Everything fits as I now have it, but the new wood is not yet glued down. That I'll tackle tomorrow. (And as for neatness, Mal, I'm still learning how to do fillets, as you can see.)
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-16-2017 at 11:51 PM.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    new zealand
    Posts
    2,783

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Neat fillets - mix you epoxy and filler thick enough that it wont sag, use a spoon or a spatula with a rounded end to form the fillet, then scrape the messy bit either side of the fillet straight away - dont wait for it to harden. There is no reason the scrapings cant go straight into the next fillet, so it is win/win.
    The other way is to put a strip of masking or packing tape either side of where the fillet is going to go, but personally I find it easier to just clean up as I go.
    If your filleting mix is a bit on the thick/dry side, you might want to consider wetting out the ply with neat epoxy first, to ensure a good bond.

    Pete
    Don't underestimate the power of stupid people in large numbers!

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Hamilton New Zealand
    Posts
    4,010

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    You're doing fine, those frame arms can be braced to hold them in position, run a couple of pieces of scrap ply into strips and fasten to the inside edge of the frame arm up at the top and run the brace back to the seat top of the next frame back.
    You'd be surprised at how much you can massage plywood into shape.
    Keep up the good work, remember that this boat is a learning experience, and look after that foot.

    John Welsford
    An expert is but a beginner with experience.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Taking a light day today. Got the #3 frame and after spine glued up on the bottom now.

    Epoxyboy: thanks for the tip/encouragement. I had mixed as much filler into the epoxy as I thought I dared, but as shown, it still slumped badly. In the rear section, I shall follow your advice, laying wet(?) on wet, mixing the filler beyond my comfort zone. We'll see how that works.

    John: thanks for the encouragement as well. By the end of the week I should be offering up the first of the side planks (or at least that is the current fantasy). My ankle is still a bit stiff when I first get up on it, but it walks out ok. I try not to ask too much of it..

    Bill

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    new zealand
    Posts
    2,783

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Quote Originally Posted by webishop14 View Post
    Taking a light day today. Got the #3 frame and after spine glued up on the bottom now.

    Epoxyboy: thanks for the tip/encouragement. I had mixed as much filler into the epoxy as I thought I dared, but as shown, it still slumped badly. In the rear section, I shall follow your advice, laying wet(?) on wet, mixing the filler beyond my comfort zone. We'll see how that works.

    John: thanks for the encouragement as well. By the end of the week I should be offering up the first of the side planks (or at least that is the current fantasy). My ankle is still a bit stiff when I first get up on it, but it walks out ok. I try not to ask too much of it..

    Bill
    Hi Bill, yes to the wet on wet, but this shouldn't be needed unless you go really overboard with the filler and have a brew that is so dry that there is nothing left to soak into the surface the fillet is being applied to.
    Stiff peanut butter consistency is pretty close to what you are aiming for, which should have minimal slumping. I used one of the little plastic scoops that came with our laundry powder, for measuring out the filler - that way you can come up with fairly repeatable "recipes" once you find a ratio of epoxy to filler that works.

    If the plans call for fibreglass tape over the fillet, it is actually easiest to lay that straight on top of the wet fillet, and wet it out right then too. With the fillet being tacky, the tape stays where you put it, and you only have to clean up the whole mess once. You might want to wait for the fillet to just start to kick off and stiffen up a little the first time, just to get a feel for it.

    Pete
    Don't underestimate the power of stupid people in large numbers!

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Today I've reached a milestone. Make that: a Major Milestone.

    The framing of the dinghy is done. Now I can move on to planking the boat. The lemon tree has finished blooming, sadly, but seeing the build progress is heartening.

    Please note that it is not wishful thinking holding the front transom in place



    Now I can move on. Today my ankle even feels (almost) healthy. I am able to walk on it without pain or soreness; it feels almost happy -- so long as I don't push it.
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-04-2017 at 09:56 PM.

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    I've had the sawdust collector running for about two and a half hours this afternoon, cutting the new rudder and cheek plates to shape. The second lamination was not perfect: I'd give it a grade of about B+. But I'll certainly use it, and I'll use the additional learnings as I laminate the dagger board. And for a more personal touch here,...


    Here I am preparing to transfer the line of the bottom plank onto the mast step. My wife couldn't resist the pic. We had rain last Friday and Saturday, and we're expecting more in a few days, so I opted to leave the tarp mostly in place. Efficiency/sloth will prevail most of the time. But I must say now I have a much better understanding of what Mr Welsford meant when he wrote "offer up the bottom plank." At this point, I think I will work of shaping the rudder and not attempt the bottom plank until after the rain.
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-16-2017 at 11:52 PM.

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Now that the rains have passed for a while, time to start "offering up" the bottom panel(s). JW notes in his build instructions that both bottom planks should be worked up together.

    I started on the port plank, using gentle persuasion -- my usual method. Set a staub of wood under the plank, forcing said plank into the desired position. Takes time. This is the same method I used on the bottom panel at the start of the project. After a couple of days at this, and with rain forecast in 4 days hence, I began to become impatient. The gentle persuasion approach has a fundamental limit to its effectiveness: the weight of the boat and building jig. Apply more pressure and the panel will just lift the whole assembly off the ground.

    So I decided to increase the weight of the boat:



    This proved slightly more effective. Just not enough. Time to email JW, to learn how he persuades his planks.

    When the Master responds "Mu," or in English: no reply, it's time to free the brain from its box and roam as needed. So, no more Mr. Nice Guy. It's now time to do some serious (lever) arm twisting. It's now Tuesday -- the newspaper is promising rain again on Thursday, but my weather sense says Wednesday. It's time to get real:



    Now that's more like it. JW writes that I should use a screw and washer to attach the plank to the transom. I'm ok with the screw and the (fender) washer, but given the force on the plank, and the plank's reaction, I just don't trust the screw threaded into the edge of 6 mm plywood. Especially if I drive the screw in normal to the face of the plank. So I chose to use a scrap bit of 20 mm stick to screw into. As with the holes in the bottom of the boat, the holes will be filled and glassed over -- these extra holes are right in the taping zone when finishing the connections. So, here's the rest of my solution:



    and the clincher:



    OK, now I can get on with "offering up" the bottom plank. I'm expecting that stitching the plank to the bottom will deal with the remains of that gap. I like this. I like this very much.


    And this makes me very very happy. Progress is beginning again. I set the starboard panel up on the assembly and checked the location of the angles on each frame. I then set the plank on the build table and ran my trusty batten around the points so picked up. I then returned the batten to its home and returned with the jig saw to cut the finished top curve on the plank. That's when I decided I should listen to me inner voice telling me I should measure twice, then cut. So I relaid the plank onto the boat, and saw that I had mismarked three different points. After redrawing the curve, the plank is now ready to begin it's journey around JW's tight curves.

    EDIT NOTE (7/8/17): I have not been able to locate the original photos from the beginning of the build. I leave the Photobucket notices in place as an anti-advertisement for their heavy-handed, no-notice attempt at blackmail. I will not pay $399 to have them host my photos. Photobucket kindly permitted me to download a small handful of pictures from their site, but the remainder are locked behind their pay-up notices. May their servers fry in server hell. An additional note here about the build: at this stage of the development, I was still deluded in thinking that all I needed to do was to layout and cut the perfect lines and everything would fit wonderfully. I was still afraid to take a plane or surform (I still lack a bow plane) to work a plank to fit. I wasted way too much time and plywood chasing this delusion.

    As noted, this makes me very happy. Seeing the weather develop, I then wrapped boat and build table up under tarps for the next rains. Now the radio is predicting rain before noon tomorrow. Just as I had predicted!
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-15-2017 at 11:46 PM.

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    uk
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Looks good so far.

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Time passed. Spent a weekend moving a friend from the Bay Area out to the Valley. Then proceeded to find that I had made a few mistaken assumptions. Like trimming the top of the bottom planks to their finished line, based on the assumption that the bottom curve as taken off the drawings was correct. (Correct is probably the wrong word. A "good fit" is probably more likely.)

    I have (what I believe to be) the solution to cutting the side planks: heavy cardboard, matting for photos or paintings. Spliced together to get the proper length. Taped in place where the planks lie, and pick up the points of the frame angles and the curve to mate with below. The heavy cardboard will bend as the plywood, but is much lighter and is easier to persuade around the frames.

    Finally I can say the bottom planks have been placed. Tomorrow I''ll move on to taping the seams and commissioning my drill press. I took delivery of a set of forstner bits, and I have the mast step block shaped and ready to drill for the mast step.

    Where the build is at the moment:



    and....



    Then again, I may take tomorrow off. I feel the need of a break.
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-15-2017 at 11:50 PM.

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Having taken a break, I decided to return to working on the rudder/tiller assembly. Laminate the rudder -- 18 mm = 3 x 6 mm. My first lesson in laminating failed. I did not adequately clamp the sandwich, resulting in unacceptable voids. Since I had some 3/8" marine ply on hand, I decided to use 2 plies, resulting in a 3/4" sandwich (19 mm). Clamped these properly, resulting in an acceptable blank.

    I decided I wanted to add a little bit of class to the dinghy, so instead of using 9 mm ply for the cheek plates, I cut them from 9 mm maple. The plan is to apply a light stain to the maple and then varnish. This will complicate the assembly a bit, but I usually will go out of my way to complicate something simple. I'm thinking of using a maple sheer strake as well to match. The tiller is also cut from maple stock, as is the mast step.

    I cut the cheek plates proud, having first cut a plywood template. Screwing the template to the maple blanks; I trimmed the maple to the template on the router table, then added a 1/16 radius to the outside edges. I followed this by shaping the rudder itself.

    Here I have gathered all the parts for the assembly:



    Next I need to wrap the shaped edges with fiberglass tape and epoxy, leaving the upper portion clear. I plan to then paint the lower portion prior to further assembly. The upper portion of the piece will remain whole until I fit one cheek plate. The holes in the rudder are for dowel pins for locating the pieces. When I have the holes transferred and one cheek plate clamped in place, I plan to fit and cut the gap in the rudder stock where the tiller will live.

    Planing the rudder today took more out of me than I had expected. I think I'll rest up by gluing up the edges tomorrow.
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-15-2017 at 11:51 PM.

  26. #26
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    After a long pause, I have more to report. My silence here masked an intense learning period as I worked to learn the dinghy and boat building. It also included a vacation, where I spent a week in San Diego at the annual gathering of another organization. And I'm about to leave for a 5 day weekend for a family reunion. I could accomplish so much if I didn't have a social life. The time was also spent working on stuff that really doesn't show well. But I've progressed to the next stage in the rudder-dagger board build. Here I've applied epoxy to one side, the other side will have to wait until I return.



    I also have some "see what I've learned" educational pics to show.

    The first edupic shows something that I knew -- it's more for anyone new to working with epoxy. I was surprised at how quickly the reaction set in. Here we have the result of truly exothermic chemical reaction. I was working on a side project for the wife, and was just filling a few voids on the edge of a sheet of plywood. The cup holds 8 oz. I had filled it with 1 oz of hardener and 3 oz of resin. I then added about 4 oz of fairing compound. I was able to apply about three pinches of the stuff when it went off:



    Notice how even the normally concave bottom has become convex. I'm impressed.

    On another note, epoxyboy had made some suggestions, which I was able to follow with great success. Pictures of this to come. My second educational presentation will have to wait until my next post. I do need to get moving full time on this build, however. More next week.
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-15-2017 at 11:54 PM.

  27. #27
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    "Lost" a weekend to a family reunion. Great weekend -- Lake Almanor in Northern California was as full as it has ever been. I hope to sail my dinghy here next year.

    I promised another educational post. Actually, more of a full-disclosure posting. My original intent was to document the build, so here are the gory details. The first (bottom) of the side planks are not easily placed. Thanks to my bull-headedness, this step turned into a very expensive educational experience. FACT: the bottom panel has a very sharp upturn at the stern. This translates to a very sharp bend in the side planks. My first attempt was dismal, producing a 12 mm vertical gap at the stern. I told myself that I could fill it with fiberglass and epoxy. My better judgment finally prevailed. This part of the build requires patience and persuasion. I modified two of my laminating beams to turn them into persuaders:



    No problem, I thought. I'll just hack out the slot on my band saw. I slipped the beam over the tail of one of the planks: it curled the plank very nicely into place, until:



    The bender failed rather loudly. My fault -- from long experience as a mechanical engineer, I knew that square corners increased stress. Still, I just had hacked out the slots:



    I had grossly underestimated the forces I was dealing with here. In the face of this set-back, I retreated to work on the rudder and dagger board while I thought about the next assault. My wife asked me to produce a table top to replace the one that had shattered during a winter storm. This task took me away from the build for a while, but it also provided me with some useful off-cuts, thus providing me with plank-benders 2.0:





    Any other novice boat builders looking to build John''s dinghy please note: the hook at the forward end of this plank lands right at the front end of the bottom panel--and there's a lot of plank left after the after transom. John doesn't spell it out, but he's left this extra to give us something to grab hold of when bending the plank. DUH!!!

    He also recommends working both Port and Starboard planks into place together. This is critical, because if you only run up one side, it will pull the forward transom off-center. This I've also learned. Now, for something more: when stitching the plank to the bottom panel, nylon cable-ties work nicely wherever the fit doesn't require any more persuasion. But if you're looking to pull the side plank down to the bottom panel, the cable-ties can't hold the tension. This is where I used copper wire:



    Granted, I went to the extreme, using 8 Ga wire. I think 10 Ga would be better. I went with large diameter wire because given the tensions involved, a thin wire could become a knife-blade and cut through the wood.

    A side note here for anyone contemplating this build: At the first and last profile planks I have attached off-cuts to extend the profile. Were I to build another dinghy, I would cut these profile pieces an extra 20 cm on each side. When first offering up the first side-planks, the shorter profile pieces tended to obstruct the plank as it is first placed. Having the pieces extending out makes it much easier to bend the plank under the mid-ship frame while still holding the plank at its intended level fore and aft.

    Meanwhile, the rudder and dagger board are progressing. The rudder had suffered from an over-eager electric plane in three places, and I need to fill the resultant hollows. The dagger board has moved on to receiving a layer of fiberglass on one side. The current fantasy calls for glassing both sides, and then wrapping around all the edges with 50 mm glass tape. Once sheathed and sanded, I'll paint.

    My workdays end early these days -- by 2:00 pm, the temperature in the shade was 40 degrees. (That's 104 in Murican, and that's when I throw in the towel.) As always, more will be revealed. Later.
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-16-2017 at 12:00 AM.

  28. #28
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Nothing to show today. Not that I did nothing. I just quit for the day, with the temp at 39 degrees. But I did accomplish a few tasks:

    1. I built the bevel gauge JW sketched in the plans.

    2. After gluing and clamping the bevel gauge, I set to work on the rudder and dagger board again. These are formed from laminated plywood, so the forming of the water foils results in exposing a great deal of end-grain. Because of this I have chosen to sheath both pieces in fiberglass. Between the glassing, sanding and prepping, I expect these to be ready for paint in about two weeks. While sanding the first sides today, my mind wandered to a somewhat philosophical question for the senior boat-builders: As an experienced long distance runner, without pride or arrogance, finds joy in the act of running – simply enjoying the act of putting their skills to use; just so an experienced boat-builder finds joy in the act of building a boat. The finished product is almost irrelevant: it will simply be of top quality. So does he work towards building a boat which cannot, when finished, be differentiated from one built by a machine? Or does he strive to build a boat which is unmistakably built by hand? Some societies believe that only God is perfect, and in so believing an individual skilled in a craft will inject a subtle error to attest to man's fallibility. Is that the mark of a hand-built boat?

    3. Having finished sanding, the glue on the bevel gauge had set, so I went to work marking the bevel on one side of the dinghy. It was 2:00 pm by the time I finished, and the temperature (in the shade) had reached 39 degrees. I called it quitting time.

    More gluing and sanding tomorrow. More of nothing to show for it.

  29. #29
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Houston
    Posts
    1,059

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    When I'm mixing a batch of epoxy for something that is likely to be time consuming, I found I can extend the working time of the epoxy by putting it on ice. Think of a double boiler pot system; instead of heat, you are cooling it: just put your mix cup inside of a larger container full of ice water. As long as your batch is properly mixed to begin, it will set up just fine after you apply it.

    --Mike

    Quote Originally Posted by webishop14 View Post
    The first edupic shows something that I knew -- it's more for anyone new to working with epoxy. I was surprised at how quickly the reaction set in. Here we have the result of truly exothermic chemical reaction. I was working on a side project for the wife, and was just filling a few voids on the edge of a sheet of plywood. The cup holds 8 oz. I had filled it with 1 oz of hardener and 3 oz of resin. I then added about 4 oz of fairing compound. I was able to apply about three pinches of the stuff when it went off:



    Notice how even the normally concave bottom has become convex. I'm impressed.
    “It doesn’t matter how slowly you go -- so long as you do not stop.”
    -Confucius

  30. #30
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Starting another day in the trenches. Much work, no photo-ops.

    Not that it's not rewarding. I have the second side panels clamped "somewhat" in position. This to persuade them to adopt their final curves with less resistance when it's time to hang them with more serious intent. I figure to let them set for a couple of days while I continue working elsewhere in parallel. I do want these panels to go up more quickly than did the first panels. (I'd like to get them at least ready for gluing before the next hiatus begins.) But rushing into yet another error is not on my want-list either.

    Elsewhere in parallel is also coming along nicely -- the second sides of the rudder and dagger board have been glassed, and I'll be sanding them today. I may even get to taping the edges today as well. Then there will be the issue of the rudder cheek-plates: carving out the pockets to receive the pintles, then staining and varnishing them. And I still have to cut out and finish the hilt for the dagger board. Tarting up the trim pieces -- a lot of extra work, but I hope it will be worth it.

    Now back to work.

  31. #31
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    My 'Seafaring Advisor' has bailed on me. Upon seeing the two garboard planks stitched to the bottom panel (upon seeing the holes I had drilled in the bottom of the boat, he announced that I didn't know what I was doing, and that I had made so many mistakes that the build was beyond salvage. He also opined that he could build a boat himself just from the wood in my scrap pile. Oh well.

    So far I am avoiding any blood stains on the dinghy. I do obsessively observe what I believe are safe practices when using my power tools, but when planing the garboard panel, I got a bit over-zealous and ended up trying to plane the edge of the panel with the back of my knuckles.

    It's really a pain having to maintain blood thinners on board. This makes any bleed an event that must have my complete attention for a few minutes. Oh well.

    The pile of scrap wood I am building represents for me my continuing education. Each morning when I wake up, I find that my right ankle is not as stiff as it was the day before. Actually, I can only notice it by comparing it to how stiff it was a month ago. Progress is slow. Both for my leg and the build. But I am acquiring a modicum of wisdom as I am learning to go slow. I also find that I am acquiring experience and skills as well. I now see that I had been dreading attempting to plane a bevel for a lap-strake panel. But as I was placing the port-side middle panel, I came to understand that while the task did require some care and attention, the task was really not as difficult as I had imagined it to be.

    So now the port-side middle panel is now place permanently on the dinghy and the starboard side is currently dry-clamped in place. This morning, I had initially thought that I could get this panel epoxied in place today, but as I was fitting the after-end of the panel, I realized that some patience was required. These panels feature a truly wicked twist at the end, so I've clamped the panel in place and left it to bake (to accept its new shape) in the afternoon sun. Epoxy tomorrow.

    I have pictures:



    and



    JW writes in his building instructions that the panels should be screwed into the edges of the 1/4" ply frames. He says the key to this is accurately drilled pilot holes. Drilling into the edge of 1/4" ply does not fill me with warm fuzzies. I have chosen instead to deviate slightly: I have screwed solid wood 20x20 (mm) cleats along the edges of the frames into which I then screw the side panels. At the stern, because of the forces needed to persuade the panel, I have had to resort to an even beefier cleat. The cleats will be removed once the panels are glued in place. More holes to fill. Oh well.

    Tomorrow I will glue the starboard side panel in place. I have already cut the blank for drawing the port-side top side panel. I will also measure and cut out the blank for the starboard side top panel. At this point, it appears to me that I may even be able to cut and even glue the two top panels in place before the hiatus. Oh joy.
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-16-2017 at 12:02 AM.

  32. #32
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    I need to explain my rather cavalier dismissal of my former Seafaring Adviser. My wife and I met him about seven years ago, and he became an acquaintance, despite the fact he lived 100 miles from us. As time progressed, a friendship developed.


    The man was a graduate of California's Maritime Academy, had his Ship Master's papers, and had sailed at times as Third and at others as Second Mate on freighters plying the Pacific Triangle.. By his own admission, however, his only experience with the building of wooden boats had come while he was in Sea Scouts, when he helped in re-caulking a 60 ft. wooden, carvel-planked hull which the Navy had donated to the Troop.


    For a while, he had been a friend, but after a few years he seemed to have developed a hidden agenda, which included the continual subtle denigration of me and my abilities. This behavior pattern became clear after a few months, and I ceased to consider him a friend.


    The first time he saw the dinghy build, his first comments (to others) were that he could simply not understand why anyone in his right mind would intentionally drill holes in the bottom of a boat. When told (by others) that the stitch and glue method was an accepted form of boat building, his immediate response was that even were that true, my attempt at it was still terrible.


    I am readying the boat for the laying up of the top side panels. The hull is beginning to take shape, and I am beginning to be able to assess the finished form and state of the boat. As to my former friend's comments regarding the mistakes that I have made, I can only say this: were I a “social conservative,” I would now state that mistakes have been made. However, being what I think of as a “Christian Socialist” (cf. Paul Tillich), as well as being the lone builder, I will say the I have made my share of mistakes. As I look back over the entire build, I have to admit that I have learned a great deal. There are many things I would do differently were I to build a second Tender Behind. And at this point, I cannot say that I am disinclined to attempt a second build of this dinghy. Yet many of these lessons are transferable to the building of other boats. Fortunately, the majority of my worst mistakes remain on my scrap wood pile. The mistakes which I have made on the boat have for the most part been correctable. A few will remain enshrined within the boat's hull, but will not detract from either the boat's looks or performance. And I do expect the boat will be water-worthy and lake-ready when I call it done. On the other hand, I am becoming fairly adept at shaping the planks to fit (and enjoying the doing of it), and at laying down an epoxy fillet, thanks to Epoxy Boy's suggestions.


    I continue to exercise as much care and skill as I can bring to the build, even though the finished boat will not be perfect when finished. In the beginning as I laid out the bottom panel and frames with much precision on my build table, I was still unrealistically optimistic in my thinking about how all these pieces would fit together. Today my greatest regret is that the hull shows some noticeable unfairness at the middle frame. As the panels were laid up they seemed to want this frame to be 6 mm wider on each side. I have chosen to accept this flaw as the mark of a novice boat builder. I still want the boat to be as well-built as I can make her.

  33. #33
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    dfw
    Posts
    1,008

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    take a tall stool & sit back from one end or the other and decide how she would fit your personal dream image by being that 6mm wider @ the point in question

    would a 6mm wedge resolve your eyeball issue?

    even in such a small craft 1/4" or 6mm is not a tie breaker and wil not affect the performance to a point that you could measure/detect it, one way or the other

    ease the stitches and see if the lines fair out to your liking and if they do use a bit of extra thickened POX to fill the gap and just make the fillets to cover...

    1/4" or 6mm gap filling is not a detrement to the integrity of your little girl w/ this buiding method

    i had some 1/4"+ gaps in my PORTUGUESE DINGHY build this spring and the above method was employed in order to obtain fair lines(fair to my eyes)

    i towed the dinghy 150± miles up the Texas coast during the TEXAS 200 and she shows absolutely no structural stress issues

    KEEP ON KEEPIN ON and build your own boat as your time & skills allow, the building method will become your best friend and tha nay sayers can go suck a bean

    what you learn on this build will enhance your next...

    btw, keep the pics coming

    sw
    "we are the people, our parents warned us about" (jb)

    steve

  34. #34
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    Hi, Steve --

    Yes, I did consider -- not wedges, per se -- but rather sistering the frames to get the fullness needed. I also did consider that this unfairness would likely not impact the sailing performance of the dinghy. Ultimately, I chose not to sister the frame. However, as I lay on the top panels, I would very much like to see a fair curve at the shear, so I may take an extra step there. Thanks for your encouragement. More pics to follow soon.

    Bill

  35. #35
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    744

    Default Re: Building a Welsford dinghy

    As promised, more pictures. More progress, as well. It seems all I need to do is to continuously apply myself to the project, and more and more things get done. I'm amazed at how well that works.

    In the pictures below, I've hung the panels for taking off the marks for cutting the top side panels, on both sides. The Port side panel has already been through one rough cutting; the Starboard side still needs its first pass at its finished shape. I'm hoping to be able to cut both panels to finish shape in the morning. However, in sizing up the build to date, it has occurred to me that I was almost about to rush into a serious (but not fatal) blunder: the two bottom-most seams need to be closed over with glass tape and epoxy. At 6' 3" I could probably get up on a step stool and lean over the gunnel to reach down to the bottom of the boat -- but it really seems to me that it will be easier if I seal off those seams now, while I don't need to reach over the top panel. SO: my next task will be to tape and glue the two bottom seams. Then I'll hang the top panels.





    Even at this stage of the build, I can see what the finished boat will look like -- and I like what I see. I'll just have to continue applying myself to the tasks. I'll tape up a bay or two after I cut the two panels. Then, it's off to hiatus again.
    Last edited by webishop14; 08-16-2017 at 12:04 AM.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •