Sunday, April 29, 2007

2nd Annual Pressure Washer Weekend

This weekend is the annual Pressure Washer Weekend(tm), where we rent a gasoline powered pressure washer and hit anything and everything we can find that has accumulated gunk and grime over the winter. Barbeque, gutters, lawn furniture, and of course, the boat. Its amazing how much dirt can accumulate on the boat in a year. And this is the type of dirt that won't come off with a hose, brush and soap. It takes a pressure washer to get it off. The pictures illustrate the difference. Of course, it doesnt help that the 30 year old gelcoat is oxidizing. If it were a nice coat of LPU paint, the dirt would just rinse off. But, we wont get to that for a couple years.
It seems everytime I take a pressure washer to the boat, a bunch of oxidized gelcoat comes off with it. This last picture shows a puddle of water under the boat. The milky white color is from the gelcoat. It looks very much like non-fat milk. I figure if I did this a couple times a year with a higher power washer, I might not have to grind off the deck gelcoat to finish the deck, as it will eventually will have washed off! (yeah, if only).

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Heavy Metal

Received the rudder shoe from the folks at Port Townsend Foundry today. They did a great job. I dropped off the rough pattern to them a couple months ago, but they were so backed up with business, they just now finished it. Good for them I suppose. I hear a lot of foundry/casting business is going overseas. Regardless, with the price of copper going up, the price of bronze is really expensive. Cathy, one of the owners of the foundry, said the price changes weekly and it never goes down. They have cool little operation and make very nice bronze marine hardware.
In this picture, the finished shoe is in the foreground and the pattern is in the background. The pattern was made from a rough pattern from the previous owner of this hull. PTF trimmed it down and rounded the edges, etc.
Still, compared to the original factory Westsail 42 rudder shoes, this one is pretty beefy. 15 pounds total weight, about $1300 in material and labor.
A bit frustrating though as about a pound or two will be lost when it gets machined for the mounting holes and rudder post receiver.
Oh well.
So, if any of you W42 owners out there need a rudder shoe, I have a pattern that will fit just nicely!

More Design and the return of Rhino

As previously mentioned, more efforts are being spent on design. Mechanical desgin in particular. This will involve extensive use of Rhino 3D modeling. With floors permanently in I can use rhino to get a fairly accurate spatial representation of the interior (within an inch). This will greatly help the layout process for things like plumbing runs, pumps, heaters, etc. The picture shown here shows the floor supports with tanks in.

I am not too worried about the accurate representation of the hull. If I can get "close" that is fine. It is not like a hull plug will be generated from this model. The intent is to help get an idea of where there is room for things before they are installed. It is a bit challenging using only 2D CAD.

This will also serve to help get a good visual representation when we start thinking about the finishing details on the interior.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Nifty Find from Strictly Sail Pacific

Is this device called the Filter Boss. It is essentially a dual racor filter system preplumbed for easy secondary filter override when the primay gets clogged. It includes a remote audible alarm that sounds when the filters get clogged. Now one might say there is nothing special about this. Or one might say 'i can make one of those myself'. True, but bi have been thinking about how to build one and where to round up parts. Here they have a complete system ready to go. Simply bolt on and plumb! The only thing I might do is get the system less the racor filters as we can get them at wholesale pricing. The blackbox at the center of the system is the key. It can also be plumbed for fuel polishing.

Pretty nifty.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Second picture

Second picture Originally uploaded by blobbus.
Well, lookslike I can only send one picture with a post. Here is the second picture referred to in the previous post.

Third picture

Third picture Originally uploaded by blobbus.
And here is the third one.

Ideas from Strictly Sail Pacific

Ideas from Strictly Sail Pacific Originally uploaded by blobbus.
Just a report from strictly sail pacific in Oakland. I am sending this entry via my cell phone with multiple pictures attached. So I am not sure if this willl make it. First off let me say that the show is not as big as I had hoped. We saw most of the vendors and a few boats the first day. We are going back today to look at more boats. But here are some nifty things we saw that may affect how we do things with the westsail. First picture. That is a mob ladder on a Valiant 42. It is built in to the stern pulpit attached at a single swivel hinge point. The ladders is held stowed by a snap shackle (not shown). If one were in the water trying to get on board, one would pull a long lanyard attached to the pin of the snap shackle to release the ladder. Simple and easy. Second picture. This a shot of the companionway steps on a Tayana. Note how it is split with the upper half supported on the galley counter which extends aft under the (very) raised center cockpit. This gave an idea with thw Westsail to turn the center sink console into an 'L' shape extending under the companionway steps in a similar fashion. I had been wondering what I could do with the space behind the stairs. This might allow enclosed space for something like a small water heater. Third picture. This is shot of the galley stove on a German Frers Hylas 54. I like the removable matching counterpiece and stanless grabrail. I think we will do similar on the Westsail. That's all for now. Maybe more later.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Strictly Sail Pacific

Strictly Sail Pacific Originally uploaded by blobbus.
We are at the Strictly Sail Pacific boat show in Oakland this weekend. The plan is to get a good look at the new sailboats and maybe get some design ideas for interiors, etc. Also, hopefully talk to sailboat hardware vendors and see what they have to offer. Both IBEX and the Seattle Boat Show were low (if nonexistent) on sailboat hardware. This show is only sailboats. NO POWERBOATS! The photo is the view from the hotel room looking towards Jack London Square, where the show is at.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Hallway and Engine Room Floors are IN!

Well, almost. They are at least framed and positioned. They won't be glassed in permanently until we have a clearer picture of the mechanicals (i.e. plumbing, electrical).
Whereupon, I will be so bold as to make an observation: This marks a milestone in the project. At this point, all floors are in, stem to stern. Yes, the hallway and engine room floors are not permanent, and there are a couple of pads still to be glassed, but, we now know the REAL positions of all floors and bulkheads in the boat. With real data, the next phase can progress which is...
Even though some "mechanical" projects have already started (driveline, rudder, steering, tanks), other mechanical projects can now begin. In fact, we NEED a clearer picture of some mechanics before things like tanks and batteries can progress. Such projects are: Cabin heating, A/C, plumbing runs, and electrical runs. So, more time needs to be focused on design of those systems. We need to start narrowing down what our requirements are and what products will best fill those requirements.
Generally, gather more information on product, and spend more time in front of the drawings is what the work will involve in the next few weeks. So, the next few blog entries may be more design oriented, instead of real construction pictures. You have been warned.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Just How Much Tankage Does a Voyaging Boat Need?

That is the issue we will be facing soon. The original (late model) Westail 42 came with about 450 gallons. 100 fuel, 350 water. The latest tank models using real measurements give a total of about 470 gallons. That includes the necessary gaps between the floors and the floor supports.
One could reason, that, if 100 gallons of fuel was sufficient for the diesel engines back then, it should be sufficient now, what with the increased efficiency of engines. But, engines are more powerful.
Boats did not have water makers back then. We plan on having one on this boat. So, do we need 350 gallons of water?
We could cut down one or both of the center tanks and have a nice space for a large battery bank. Location of the batteries is still being determined. The W42s I have been on have seen them scattered about (under dinette, in hallway cupboard, engine room).
But, we dont have to decide on the tank/battery issue until they have to go in.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Main Salon Floors are IN!

After a couple weekends of cutting, framing and glassing, the main salon floors are permanently in! As mentioned in the previous post, the supports are 1 1/2" coosa board. Framed using structural adhesive and 4 inch stainless tapping screws. For the final set-in, the framed section was blocked up a couple inches on the bilge using a floor jack, and a bead of structural adhesive was laid on the footprint against the hull. Then the section was lowered back onto the hull and adhesive allowed to cure. The vertical right-angle joints between supports were given two layers of glass tabbing on all sides. Four layers of glass tabbing was given to where the supports meet the hull, on all sides. The only thing left to do here is tabbing around the outer perimeter, which won't happen until the end matching upper bulkheads go in. When done, that will be tabbed with four layers as well. Comparing this installation to the one done by the previous owner, these floors should not budge. Recall the original plywood installation done by the PO was set in using 3 inch tabs of single layer of 8oz fiberglass cloth WITH NO MAT. I have a feeling 4 layers of tabs up to 9 inches wide, of 17 oz biaxial glass stiched with mat will hold much better. With this done, real numbers are now available to get started on the fuel and fresh water tank system. On a side note, the floor plan PDF (in the links column on the right) has been updated with some minor tweaks.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

In Search Of A Rudder (Part 2)

So, last week we picked up the rudder design from Bob Perry's office. This visit was a bit different as things were more easy going and we tangented on all sorts of topics after we discussed the rudder. But, Tristan went over the numbers he used with the design. I asked couple pointed questions about the new design in comparison to the original Westsail drawings, which he answered satisfactorily. Questions like how the forces will spread over the rudder, and where the rudder is to experience the most loads. Construction will be of stainless steel, foam, glass, vinyl ester resin and G-10 laminate. Without the big steel plate in the middle, it will be about half the weight of the original. It will also have a bit more surface area than the original.
Aesthetically, in profile, the elliptical trailing edge really compliments the canoe stern of the Westsail. Though one would only see this when she is out of the water. I think Bob's comment was "Yeah, but you will see it. Besides being strong, I like things to look nice." Ok, I can appreciate that.
Tristan also included rudder bearing size and construction recommendations. In particular, one of the self-aligning bearings from Jefa.
When we asked the guys "What makes this design so different, in comparison to the original rudder?" Bob came back and said "This rudder is engineered. The original, most likely, is NOT. Back then, they just guessed at a design, multiplied it by a safety factor, then threw it against the wall to see if it worked. That's how we did things back then. You guys probably have the first engineered rudder for this boat (Westsail 42)."
Remember, the Westsail comes from an era (early 1970s) when slide rules just started to vanish and pocket calculators were just emerging (WITHOUT scientific functions, mind you).
Anyways, we are starting the construction of the rudder. We will probably have the webbing plates CNC waterjet cut shortly. We are waiting on the foundry for the bronze casting of the rudder shoe. The foundry is pretty backed up with work right now (which is good for them as a lot of that type of work, especially production, is going overseas). We need the shoe to verify the real dimensions for the rudder frame before we have it assembled.