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Thread: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

  1. #701
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    I'd plan spaces to bolt in lead chunks, not so big as to be able to lift them out without getting injured.
    It can be useful for getting out of tricky groundings. Overboard, into another boat or skiff, or just up on deck on one side to heel the boat over,(reducing draft).
    Its not something done often , and maybe never, but it has saved a boat or three.
    Cemented bilges keep bilges clean. I've seen cruising yachts have not had the ballast out in a LONG time ,gets funky down there.

  2. #702
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
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    Northern NSW Australia
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    66,554

    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    Ingots cast in sections of 4'' angle stack very easily and neatly. Draw a picture .One 12.5'' long weighs 40 pounds.
    '' You ain't gonna learn what you don't want to know. ''
    Grateful Dead

  3. #703
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    Mar 2015
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    Granby, Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    O dear God I hope we never have to shift the ballast to get us off a grounding but I can see how it could be a very useful option should a tricky grounding occur.

    Peter, thanks for the dimensions and weight! We are planning on pouring a bunch of long angles and then cutting them down to size. Now the guess work on size/weight has been taken out, that will be a great reference point for when we get there.


    Got the results back from my blood level test.
    I am currently 7 ug/dl
    US Dept of Health says for adults levels should be kept below 10. They don't believe any negative symptoms occur below 40 and they don't do Chelation Therapy until it's over 50.

    I have certainly absorbed some lead through this process, but so long as we are reasonably careful wrapping up the keel and don't make a habit of pouring big keels I should be completely fine. Can't wait to post that on those YouTube comments! ha!


    We also got contacted by the second owner of Victoria!
    We are waiting to hear more but it seems we will learn the majority of her history. A doctor had her built for cruising and made a few trips to South America to source all the mahogany and her spars came from Oregon, as guessed no expense was spared.
    Rick is pretty upset to find out she fell on such hard times (they parted ways in the 70's, Rick knew the doc and bought her from him) but seems very happy that she has landed with us and he is even contemplating flying from Arkansas to come and see her and to tell us the tales. It is so wonderful to be able to learn her history and it is a relief to know that we can incorporate her into Arabella with Rick's blessing. I don't know what we would have done if he wanted to buy her back or was adamant she be restored, I don't know if we could have told him no.

    That's it for now from the Arabella boat yard
    ACORN TO ARABELLA
    For additional info on this project:

    www.acorntoarabella.com
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCAi...WB1xCp6uuUo0VA

  4. #704
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    (I hope Steve doesn't chide me again for this!)



  5. #705
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    A video about pouring a 9500b lead keel goes up on their build thread, who days later, there are no comments and it's 1/3 of the way down the SECOND PAGE? What's going on?
    Great pour guys. Tell us, what else did you learn about pouring lead and what else would you do differently if there were to be a next time?
    If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
    -Henry David Thoreau-

  6. #706
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    Mar 2015
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    O jeez,

    Well for starters defunct sailboats were the best bang for the buck in terms of quantity of lead. If one is a little choosy it should not take too long to hunt down one or two boats with a big lead keel on them. Cutting up the fiberglass SUCKS!! If possible do it when it is cold out and a sawzall with carbide demolition blades cut the best. Skillsaws work but the blades don't last nearly as long. The chainsaw works for a minute then the chain is dull. A carbide chainsaw chain would probably work really well.

    A sharp and powerful chainsaw cuts up the lead easy enough. Keel bolts and fiberglass dull the chain quick though! Chips fly EVERYWHERE! If possible doing the chainsawing in a empty room with solid floor, walls, ceiling would be good, otherwise lots and lots of barriers to catch the chips. We made probably 60 gallons or more of shavings cutting the keels up.

    Wheel weights produce a lot of excess waste with the clips and weights that are not lead. They are probably more hassle then they are worth unless they are free or from really big trucks.
    We asked around and posted on Craigslist, both netted us a decent amount of lead. Tell people what it is for and they are more likely to give you a deal or just give it to you.

    The mold was decently simple to make, if I were to do it again I would make the bottom much more robust. It was roughly 2.5" thick and would have been better if there was another 2" down there. The sides did not bow out at all with the steel framing and tie rods but the bottom deformed between the steel framing. Not terribly but I think another 2" thick board down there would have stopped most if not all of the deformation. With the steel framing across the bottom it was impossible to pack the sand under there enough to fully support it. Flat straps instead of angle iron across the bottom could have stopped that issue as well I suppose.

    Part of the plywood liner came up, I would use the liner again but I would glue it in place and use more screws to hold it down. The glue bonds on the plywood held, I think the pounding of the molten lead dropping into the mold (the pounding could be a big issue with a sand mold) and the bottom deforming let the lead get behind the bottom liner. Once behind it I think it weakened it enough to break some free. Same with the corner molding that came loose. The liner on the sides stayed completely intact and worked like a charm. Maybe just leave the bottom a flat board and save the ply just for the sides. We had an extra few inches of height on the mold and it was good to have, I don't think it was required but I would leave lots of wiggle room at the top if I did it again.

    The lifting arms I put in worked very well for jacking it up and out of the ground, a oak 7"x6.5" was the cross beam and even that beefy beam was bending under the weight.

    I don't think I would change a thing about the tank set-up. It worked like a charm and I have zero reservations about it. Having a lid that closes would be a requirement if I did it again. We had a few things pop in the first pour and throw things up and out of the tank. With the lid shut it should contain any little explosions like if there was moisture trapped inside some lead pipe or something for example.

    I think the shavings helped us get a molten pool going and I would layer them in the bottom again like we did.
    Keep a tight eye on the tank, the lead in the tank went from slumped a little to all molten very very quickly! Once it starts to melt it goes fast!

    I think if you let the dross cool a little bit it would be easier to skim, we tried right away and gave up. If we waited a little bit we might have been more successful.

    Keeping the top of the lead open and liquid on a pour our size would be very very hard to do. I think the best course of action might be letting the dross solidify a little and then try to push it to one end and scoop it up. After that I would let the top cool and solidify until you could not push through it with a steel rod. At that point I would use the acetylene torch to open up some holes like we did, making sure to be as close to the nib ends as practical and use a propane torch to help keep them open.

    The propane is hot enough to keep the lead liquid but it was hard pressed to turn solid lead into liquid. I would be sure to have a acetylene torch on hand, it's a must in my opinion since it is hot enough to melt the lead quick, unclog a pipe.... I would beg, borrow or steal one if I had to, I don't think would pour without one on hand.

    The four holes were easy to keep open and gave a great reference point to see how much the lead level had dropped. We added over 100 pounds of lead to the keel after pouring and will need to add another 100 or so to fill in the 4 openings we made. The fore end being thinner and narrower closed up first and it worked it's way aft.

    At first pushing a steel rod into it felt like pushing a buoyant stick into water, then you could feel the bottom and sides slowly harden, it would feel thick like pudding, then thicker and clumpy and finally turn to hard lead. It cooled from the bottom, sides and top towards the middle. For most of the time after the pour if we dropped lead into one hole the liquid lead rose in them all. The holes stayed connected until the bitter end, it reminded me a lot of ice fishing.

    Once we felt there was not enough liquid in the forward most hole to be able to add lead we just kept it liquid and moved aft to the next hole and so on until it got dark and we ran out of propane, roughly 6 hours post pour. The holes dropped some more after we stopped adding lead and I am fairly certain we did not end up with any major voids in the keel, it's impossible to say for sure but it seems like it drew from those holes until the very end.

    It took a couple days to become fully cool and it was a bugger getting it out of the ground and moved but certainly not impossible. The lifting arms were key in the process, I would make sure there was some way to solidly attach some beams to put jacks under. At 9,500 pounds it's easy to underestimate the weight of it, if you messed up and it landed on you it would pop you like a over ripe tomato. The cribbing shifted and it toppled over a couple times, thankfully we kept shoving dirt and blocking under it so it could not go far. Even on pipe rollers it took an incredible amount of force to get it to move.

    The wooden cross bars across the top were a pain once the pour was done so once it started to solidify we removed the wooden ones to have better access to the top of the lead.

    We poured as close to the boat house as we dared and the spot was pretty narrow, more room to walk, work around the pour would have been nice to have.

    Packing the open nib ends full of sand worked very well, the lead worked it's way into the seams a little but that was a piece of cake to clean up later.

    The dross cleaned up easily enough but I would make a more concerted effort to remove it if we did it again.

    I would also get a lead level test done before, during and after the process. Do a lot of reading on lead poisoning, it's real, it's nasty and it can mess you up for life. The dust is the most dangerous part! Loading the tank, flatting the top, cutting up the keels... are probably the most dangerous parts in terms of poisoning. Buying a HEPA vacuum like a Festool that is rated for lead dust is probably a wise investment, we ended up buying one for finishing and fairing the keel.

    After all the lead handling, some being super safe, some being super stupid and unsafe and I have a lead level of 7. Adults are recommended to stay below 10 so I should have no ill effects but if I was more careful I am sure it would be lower. With that said I have been exposed to lead all my life so I could have started at 6 or 0 I have no idea. Without health insurance it cost me $110 to get the test done, if for nothing else it's peace of mind to know. Knowing where I started would be interesting and testing mid way through would give a idea of how much one absorbed. Considering the cost of the build and the medical cost if you got lead poisoning never mind the misery the $330 for the three tests would be well worth it in my mind.

    Pony up and buy a full face respirator, the small ones cost us $55 and the full face $120, the full face seals MUCH better, was more comfortable and comes with a built in face shield omitting the need for the extra face shield.

    Last thing is I would do it quietly! People online have gotten very angry and we are waiting for the EPA to show up and fine us, I don't think they will but we are sure at least one person has called to report us.

    If you have any questions just ask =)

    I really hope this info helps someone else out!
    ACORN TO ARABELLA
    For additional info on this project:

    www.acorntoarabella.com
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCAi...WB1xCp6uuUo0VA

  7. #707
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Lake Champlain, Vermont
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    Great job of reporting the process, Steve.

  8. #708
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    May 2002
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    Deer Isle, Maine
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    " Last thing is I would do it quietly! People online have gotten very angry and we are waiting for the EPA to show up and fine us, I don't think they will but we are sure at least one person has called to report us. "
    Double-edged Sword, this social media stuff, ain't it? Ain't nuttin' free!

  9. #709
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Searsport, Maine
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    Ha! Good thing you guys didn't decide to make a depleted uranium keel! And yes, that was done a few times. Not by home builders, though.

  10. #710
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    I'm sure if home builders could access the depleted uranium there would be more of them around. If tungsten was cheaper I'd include it in mine. From his description of how it cooled, adding in the tungsten instead of lead as it's cooled from the bottom up would be the time to add it. I'm not sure it would add that much weight to the project which would be the intent but it would add some. At the cost of tungsten, it's a moot point.
    If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
    -Henry David Thoreau-

  11. #711
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    Mar 2015
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    Granby, Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    Logging with a skidder is much easier than with the farm tractor!!

    Here is all the White Oak for milling round two, the pine and spruce are stacked on the landing as well but I don't have pictures of them. Got two big hemlocks to drop and load for use as staging lumber and such then we can get the sawmill in here.
    We have enough dry oak from the first round to put in all the floor timbers and then some, we will use a bunch of this greener stuff for frame stock and by the time we get to installing deck beams and house sides it should have had enough time to season.

    All the timber for Arabella came from about 1 acre of the 50 acres we own, it hardly made a dent. We did not even clear cut that acre, just did a selective harvest. We are two very lucky lads to have access to the trees and that Peter lent us his skidder!!! =)

    The biggest oak is over 100 years, the smallest about 80.

    ACORN TO ARABELLA
    For additional info on this project:

    www.acorntoarabella.com
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCAi...WB1xCp6uuUo0VA

  12. #712
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
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    Providence, RI USA
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    1,289

    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    Double-pirate emoji for you two.

    Keep up the great work, stay safe and have fun!

    Mike
    "near it, a small whale-boat, painted red and blue, the delight of the king's old age."

  13. #713
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    Awesome. So.... does that mean you've got 49 acres of boat wood for sale to anyone who will come in and selectively log it for themselves?
    If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
    -Henry David Thoreau-

  14. #714
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    Quote Originally Posted by Sailor View Post
    Awesome. So.... does that mean you've got 49 acres of boat wood for sale to anyone who will come in and selectively log it for themselves?

    Possibly

    It's a long complicated story but the nuts and bolts are
    - A family trust owns the property so it has to be essentially voted upon but it's not really that formal.
    - The property HAS TO be logged every once in a while so it can stay considered forestry land and stay at a lower tax rate. Some sort of $$ has to be made in the deal. Typically we have sold 10-20,000 BF of pine every 10-15 years to satisfy this requirement. Loggers love it cause it's fast easy and profitable.
    - The cut has to be approved by the state forester and deemed beneficial to the overall management of the property (not hard to do).
    - Getting a logger to come in and selectively harvest some trees is tough. There is little to no profit in that between moving machines, fuel and paying a operator.
    - Trucking to a mill is expensive and truckers don't like doing just a couple loads, they want bulk.

    If someone was serious about it, it could be set up but probably only as long as I am here, so the window closes in 3-5? years.
    I could convince the family/forester it's better to do a select mixed harvest then a huge pine one, especially since we could get a lot more per board foot that way and give fewer trees the chop.
    The key is- I know a couple folks with skidders that trust me and I could probably rent/borrow one real cheap and they are local so trucking ain't too bad. Same with milling, could just have a portable one come in and only pay to truck the finished boards out.

    If I organized and arranged it and there was a profit for the family and it kept us at the lower tax rate for some more years it's possible. The last cut was around 10 years ago and unless I cough up a bunch of cash for the trees I harvested a sizable cut has to be done in the next handful of years.

    Once I leave good friggen luck! The family won't want to be bothered and they will just put the property out to bid per usual, but the pine is really starting to get hammered after all the years of that.

    The same principle could apply to another woodlot though. At least in the States a lot of property has to be logged from time to time, just gotta find the right owner. A local forester could probably point you in the right direction.

    I took the cream of the crop but there is enough to build 2 more Arabella's without damaging the forest here.

    Sailor- I got your email and will reply, it's busy round here!
    ACORN TO ARABELLA
    For additional info on this project:

    www.acorntoarabella.com
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCAi...WB1xCp6uuUo0VA

  15. #715
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    Thanks. I can wait until you're not so busy (like that's anytime soon. LOL) I was curious about that but really wasn't asking for myself since I'm North of the border and it's a bit out of my way. I'd love to find a lot nearby that had some decent boat wood on it but there just isn't much around. Hoping for a lot with some black locust on it, that's about as good as I'll get. (And I know how awesome that is) White Oak is rare as hen's teeth these parts, not sure there are any in fact. There are plenty of red but nothing as big as you've got there. In short, if I build here in NS, I'll be importing my wood in some manner. Maybe I buy land in Ontario and haul it back... still likely cheaper than importing from the US.
    If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
    -Henry David Thoreau-

  16. #716
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    May 2016
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    Ottawa, Canada
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    Hi Sailor (thread side note) - It is funny that finding lumber in Canada can be tough. We just purchased a pile of white oak and ash from a guy that logs 300 acres for firewood, but puts aside the "saw logs". I'm sure if you found somebody like that you could flag all the nice curvy bits on the property and get what you needed. The guy we met has a few white oak logs waiting for the spring.
    Have you popped up the road and seen the Schooner Lena Blanche folks ?

  17. #717
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    Default Re: Building Arabella (An Atkin Ingrid)

    I just commented on a FB thread about their boat, no I have not yet. I did stop by the cousins in Stewiacke a few years ago. Katie Belle was her name. She's still in Halifax Harbour as far as I know. My brother's in Ottawa and might be looking for some boat wood soon as well, you guys should get together.
    Andrew?????
    If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
    -Henry David Thoreau-

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