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Bill H

Unconventional pump boat part II

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Bill H

Once the epoxy had set up, we added the keelsons and began adding the ribs. We used solid Karot wood stock for this and will use it for most of the rest of the boat. All wood will be coated with laminating epoxy to preserve the wood and then the entire boat will be painted inside and out with multiple layers of epoxy paint.


In the first pic you see we've drawn the outline of the keel, on the plywood plank and cut out the shape. I wanted a fairly fine bow so it would run through the water easily and a tapered stern to facilitate water flow to the propeller. In this picture, Alin, my lead boat builder is fitting the ribs to the keelsons. The keelsons have been installed with a set angle so the ribs all have the proper angle from the keel. Keelsons are the first plank attached to the keel in traditional boat building, so I used that term for these members even though it's not absolutely correct if you're a purist about such things.


The local lumber is not well cut. They use a home made band saw, but it has no fence, so the surface of the wood is more like a roller coaster than flat, worse each piece is slight different from the next in both thickness and width. The second picture is our power planner which smoothes out the wood and makes it flat and consistent in size. Wood working equipment costs about twice as much as it does in the States, but this machine is worth every peso I paid for it.


The large piece of wood that forms the basis for the bow is called the stem. The third pic is of Roland shaping the stem which will be attached to the bow of the boat with epoxy glue and fasteners.


Once it's formed, the stem is fitted onto the bow of the keel and trimmed so there is a tight strong fit.


I decided we needed to add some stiffeners to the keel, so we fashioned three to fit on the keel to make it more rigid. This also lead me to give the guys a lesson in limber holes. These are holes in wood which allow water to pass from one section to the next. As these stiffeners are on the keel (the very bottom of the boat) I wanted to be sure any water in the bilge would be able to flow to the lowest point to facilitate bailing. My guys had never heard of limber holes, but caught on quick and in the process learned the fun one can have with a belt sander!


By the end of the day, she was starting to look like a boat!











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