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Sunday, January 28, 2007

Stay fillet, stay!

This weekend saw the beginnings of primary bulkhead installation on the Westsail. As the aft floors are in, bulkhead installation starts there. First is the bulkhead between the engine room and aft stateroom. Measurements were taken with a tick-stick and the bulkhead side pieces were cut out using CAD generated templates as described in earlier posts. The pieces were then glued to the hull using structural adhesive using special jigs to hold them in position and in the same plane as the corresponding floor joist/lower bulkhead (already permanently in). These were allowed to set overnight. The bulkheads will be tabbed in over 1 inch foam fillets. Trouble is, the foam fillets are straight. Here, the curve of the hull is gradual enough that the fillets can be kerfed such that they bend against the hull without snapping into pieces. Whats more, the fillets need to be tacked to the hull before tabbing or they will just spring back to their original shape. So the picture you see here are the fillets set with thickened resin and clamped into place. This is where those fancy one-handed bar clamps are handy. One can never have too many of those. Especially when you need one hand to keep you from sliding into the bilge. I have an idea for a type of jig that will make this easier for future bulkheads. Now, these side pieces for this bulkhead is it for now. The remainder center section will just get in the way as the rest of the stern is built out. Also, it may not be until the deck is attached that it will finally go in. If I keep the center section as one piece, it wont fit though the companionway or the cockpit floor. So I will have to save it till the deck is off. Not a big problem as there is really no cabinetry that joins with this bulkhead. Also this weekend the lower bulkhead sections were tabbed in the bow. But, I ran out of glass tabbing stock. I need to cut more this week. The Seattle Boat Show is going on now. My boat techie wife is working at the show a few days this week so she is a bit frazzled. I plan on attending next Saturday. It is time to start talking to the Aquadrive people about drivelines.