Another FL14 started!

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Mike Adams
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Another FL14 started!

Post by Mike Adams »

Well, it’s finally happening - I’m building a boat! I had hoped to spend all of today on the FL14, but most of the time was spent clearing up the yard and reclaiming half of my garage from my son, Sean, who is renovating yet another old car…..! :roll:

However, I finally got everything set up to go! :D I taped builder’s polythene to the floor to keep the area clean and free from epoxy spills. I've started a new album and posted some pics in my gallery - see
http://gallery.bateau2.com/displayimage.php?pos=-2797 The table at the far end of the garage is also covered with polythene to protect both the table and the FL14 plans beneath.

I was unable to get marine plywood in Canberra, so since I plan to completely cover the hull with biax fabric, I decided to go with external structural ply. I picked through the pile to find the best sheets I could and they seem to be reasonably free of any defects. Couldn’t get 6mm and 10mm though - these sheets are 7mm and 12mm. The 7mm will be used for the bottom and sides and the 12mm for the frames.

I drew the sides and frames on the plywood tonight and I found this quite a tiring job - it took me about 4 hours of carefully checking and rechecking measurements against the plans. I also had to experiment with the nesting of the frames on the plywood to avoid one or two knots and faults in the exterior ply. Got a bit tight, but I managed to squeeze it all in!

While on holiday last week, my wife picked up a very useful gardener’s kneeling frame, which I’ve now ‘borrowed’ to make things easier on my old knees! Turn it over and it becomes a comfortable stool for the jobs that can be done sitting down. (Pics in the gallery).

BTW, I got my wife interested in boats while we were on holiday - she came with me to a training course for a Recreational Shipmaster’s Licence (that’s what they call a power boat driver’s licence in Queensland). She enjoyed the classroom work and passed the written exams without any problem, but was a bit worried about doing the practical training and driving test (it was done in a fast planing hull boat on the Noosa River), but in the end she did just fine. So now I’ve got a ‘first mate’ (or maybe a back-seat driver, we’ll have to wait and see…!). :wink:

I am planning to spend at least the next two days full time on the FL14 and I’m ready to start cutting tomorrow! Should have some real progress pics to post by this weekend. :D


FL14 "Lake Dreamer" built.

Mike Adams
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Post by Mike Adams »

Well, the end of a fun-filled day - and now I've got aches on my aches! :D

Took a big deep breath and started cutting plywood this morning - it took me about three hours to cut out all the frames and the side panels. I remeasured everything before cutting and again after everything had been cut out, and was very pleased to find that my measurements and cutting were accurate to the plans - only a few dimensions were out by 1mm and just one or two out by 2mm - nothing larger than that. :P

With this major hurdle out of the way, I relaxed and joined the side panels with butt blocks - I chose to cut out both sides at once, which made it easier to get accurate mirror sides and eliminated the need to mark each side separately with the frame positions, as I had drawn these in right across the ply sheet to cover both sides before cutting.

Image

I'm using West System Epoxy - I gave the panel joint area and inside face of the butt block a coat first, then mixed in some filler to get a good consistency of epoxy glue paste. A couple of old batteries my son had lying around in the garage are providing the necessary pressure to the joint while the epoxy cures. It took me about an hour all together to get this done and clean up.
Image
I have to wait a day or so now for the epoxy to cure properly before I can start assembly. :( However, I did a little more work on the DE23 model (see separate post).

More pics to come soon. :D
FL14 "Lake Dreamer" built.

Mike Adams
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Post by Mike Adams »

She's starting to take shape! :D
Image
Bow stitched, mid-seat frame and transom installed. I used a ratchet cargo tie-down strap to help hold the side panels in place while I stitched the transom.
All frames installed and diagonals checked - all within 5mm or less. :D It is great to watch the sheerline appear - just as Jacques said it would! 8)
Image

Cutting the bottom panels - my son Sean (pictured here with me) and his girlfriend stuck this 'Captain's cap' on my head as a joke and insisted on taking a photo...!
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Bottom panels cut and laid loosely in position.
Image

Unfortunately, my holidays have come to an end and I have to go back to work tomorrow! :( :roll: I hope to get the bottom panels joined and stitched before next weekend, so I can start the fillets then.
FL14 "Lake Dreamer" built.

Mike Adams
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FL14 Build update

Post by Mike Adams »

Bottom panel stitched:
Image

This is the 30mm error I made at the transom edge when measuring the side panels :x - but it's not as bad as I feared it would be and should fill easily with scrap ply and epoxy fillet:
Image
Seams taped:
Image
Hull flipped:
Image
Before turning the boat over, the diagonal measurements were accurate within 5mm. After flipping, the upper measurements showed a consistent 15mm error in the diagonals between frames. However, the diagonals from transom to bow are spot on, so I think the problem might be that the frames are not quite straight across. Too tired to think about it any more tonight - I'll recheck tomorrow and try to reduce the diagonal error before filleting (scheduled for Saturday).
FL14 "Lake Dreamer" built.

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Steve_MA
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Post by Steve_MA »

Mike - Looking good! You boat looks just like mine did at that time. After measuring, my bow to transom to msmt was right on as well. I measured diags from transom to frame 5, to frame 4, etc....all down one side; the did the same for the other. I did this for 6 hours :idea:

You are closer than I was to start; I think having 3 ties in your frames helps keep them square to the hull side; or at least keeps them in place better than 2. Now that I think about it, I should have used 3 as well.

Good luck....

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Post by Deltaskipper »

Are you covering your ties with the filet material?
Please keep posting as you build. This is a good tutorial on bulding the FL-14. 8)

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Post by Steve_MA »

I did initially, but sometimes they get in the way. So I started tabbing the joints with left over epoxy. Once its hard, you can take out the ties. This is what I do now. Its hard enough to get the fillets to look good without those ties being in the way.

I think Mike is just getting to this point as he just flipped the hull.

Also, from what I have gleened, the size of the fillet only needs to be big enough to transition the tape smoothly from one surface to another. You can do this easily with a plastic teaspoon. I used 1 1/2 PVC initially. I got nice smooth fillets, but they were bigger than necessary I think and the pipe isnt as flexible as a spoon for getting in corners. Plus, as the fillet firms up, you can shape it with your fingers. Dont "set it" and "forget it".....

Mike Adams
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Post by Mike Adams »

Deltaskipper wrote:Are you covering your ties with the filet material?
Please keep posting as you build. This is a good tutorial on bulding the FL-14. 8)
I have yet to start the fillets, but I have positioned the ties as close to the edges as I thought practical, so the inside fillets should in most cases easily cover the ties. If not, I will tab the joints like Steve did. I also decided to use wider tape than specified (6" biax) so that what is left over from the roll can be used on the DE23.
When the inside fillets are complete, the remainder of the ties projecting outside will be cut off before completing the outside seams.
Happy to keep posting progress reports. I read every new post on this forum and I am really impressed with the way not only individual builders but also Jacques and his team are willing to take the time to answer questions and help out with their expertise. :D

Incidentally, you might have noticed that I have not rounded off the top corners of my frames yet. I have done this deliberately as I have some ideas for fitting a folding canvas top and some rod holders in the sides. Not quite sure yet if or how I will do this, but I decided to leave the tops of the frames square for the time being in case I need them as supports for a narrow gunwale. If I change my mind, I can always round the tops of the frames off later.
FL14 "Lake Dreamer" built.

Mike Adams
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Post by Mike Adams »

Steve_MA wrote:Mike - Looking good! You boat looks just like mine did at that time. After measuring, my bow to transom to msmt was right on as well. I measured diags from transom to frame 5, to frame 4, etc....all down one side; the did the same for the other. I did this for 6 hours :idea:

You are closer than I was to start; I think having 3 ties in your frames helps keep them square to the hull side; or at least keeps them in place better than 2. Now that I think about it, I should have used 3 as well.

Good luck....
Well, Steve, I'm sure not closer than you were now!

I spent a couple of hours tonight trying to correct the diagonals errors, but only succeeded in making things a whole lot worse. :( Using three ties certainly keeps the frames in the right place and I think it was the right thing to do - but I made a major mistake when I assembled the frames and sides by tightening up all of the ties before ensuring that everything was perfectly square. The whole thing was so rigid I couldn't alter the structure enough to achieve a change to any of the diagonal measurements.

I eventually figured out what was wrong by running a string line from the centre of the transom to the bow, and laying a draftsman's T square against the transom and the string line to check that they were at right angles to each other.... they weren't, even though the diagonals from transom to bow were almost spot on!

This clearly indicated that the structure was assymetric, so I then checked the measurement from the string line in the centre to either side at the forward midseat frame and found the boat had an error of over an inch wider to port than to starboard..... 8O

After thinking about it some more, I realised that since the side panels follow the line of the bottom panel, we must have scribed the bottom panels to an off-square frame before cutting it out. (This shows a potential flaw in the method used for the FL14 of scribing the bottom panel to suit the frames and sides you have stitched together instead of drawing the bottom panel out on the ply sheets from dimensions given on the plans. This method will only work if your frames are nice and square before you mark out the bottom panel).

[ :idea: Jacques - may I suggest that the dimensions of the bottom panels be inserted in the plans, so that builders have a choice of either transferring these dimensions to the plywood, or scribing the outlines of the bottom panels using their frames, if they are satisfied that everything is squared up.]

Another error I think I made was to tighten the stitches all along one side then the other - I think it would be better to do this like tightening the nuts on a car wheel - diagonally across each time, to avoid distortion.

I'm now going to have to cut the bottom panel loose, reassemble the frames and sides, adjust the fit of the bottom panel and square everything up before I can start the fillets. :x

Two major lessons I have learned from this experience that I will pass on to others are -
1) Make absolutely sure your frames and sides are square before you scribe the outline of the bottom panels. Better still, draw the panels out using the dimensions (if given) on the plans.
2) Don't tighten the stitches too much, and keep them loose until you are sure everything is square and in the right place.

I'm learning - I guess that's why Jacques tells us to build a small boat first.... :wink:
FL14 "Lake Dreamer" built.

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Post by Steve_MA »

Mike, Sounds like your knee deep into it. I was puzzled too about what portions of the design, frame, bottom, etc have the primary impact on how square it is. One that seems obvious is that if the sides arent exactly the same, it will never be square. I I think this is why they have you cut one side based on the other. I did it in a slight different order than specified hoping to improve my results.....instead of cutting both sides and then doing the butt blocks; I cut one side, did both butt blocks, then traced out the second side and cut it. What might be even better is to cut the 1/4 lengthways in half, butt block it, then cut both sides together.

I dont know how much the bottom has to do with it because the bottom floats underneath the sides. Now, *if* the bottom is not true and you tighten up the sides to it, thats a problem, agreed. I also left my ties somewhat loose, and I every once in a while the bottom would shift so much one side would fall over the edge.

THe other concern I had was whether or not my frames where square to the sides and how much effect that would have on the outcome. Even more specifically, *which* frames where key.

In the end, I took out all the frames, but left the bottom in. I tried to make sure the bottom was positioned the same way as when I cut it. With no frames you can check for square at the pencil marks on the full where the frames go.

Shouldnt it be square with no frames installed? Seems to me it should.

Then I added frame 3 and checked for square. Then frame 1, check for sqaure. And so on. I even started using duct tape to hold the frames since I was running low on cable ties. The duct tape is OK for temp fastening, but one I had it positioned, a tie is more secure.

PS> The other thing that could make you out of square is the transom. If the side angle on the transom is off, and you tighten the side to it, you will be out of square. This is one thing I did *not* adjust which maybe I should have. I had the sides tight to the transom and never moved them. That may be why I go never get better than 1/2".

PSS> Finally, I found my support system could have an impact on my measurements of square. I dont recall the details, but I changed it several times before I was satisfied.

Again, I dont fully understand *exactly what* effects how square it comes out. Probably everything....

Take your time and have fun with it. Hope this was of some use....

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