Rybka - Launched March 2004

Rybka is an OD18 designed by Jacques Mertens at Bateau.com

5,50 m
Max. Beam:
2,15 m
Hull draft:
12 cm
Hull weight:
610 lb..
220 kg
Recommended HP
(max 70).
Stitch & Glue

The vital statistics about her are that she took me approximately 250 hours to construct, that is from start to launch.  I was being VERY VERY careful. The hull cost me AU$3628.80, that's for a 5.5metre boat! How you outfit her and power her are up to you. Previous builders report that they get on the plane with a 25HP with 2 people on board. The bonus of building a boat? A great sense of achievement

OD18 Chine ViewOD18 Deck View OD18 Profile

On this page you will find a step by step description of the construction process including any tips I discovered.  A diary if you will.

Please Be Aware This Is A Very Detailed Description Of The Building Of Rybka. On a 56Kbps Modem Download Time is 4:46 minutes Approximately

I ordered the OD18 plans on a Monday and they were delivered to my door 7 working days later - not at all bad considering the chaos the US Postal Service must have been experiencing back in October 2001. They are clear, precise and well worth the money in my opinion. I found that if you read them, read them, and read them some more, after a couple of weeks of it filling your thoughts it all falls together, all dimensions found and most questions answered. Well done Bateau!

I was extremely careful at first with use of the epoxy and materials - and a little scared I must say. Now of course, I can throw together an epoxy fillet, shape it and leave it to set in 10 minutes flats - Figjam
 Clear out the garage and organise Your Space -well I did anyway! Tools and equipment have their own little spot and everything gets returned to that spot.

I started the OD18 back in late December 2001, but due to the hottest summer Brisbane has had for over 100 years (30+ degrees Celsius and high humidity every day for over 4 months) working in my purely metal shed just wasn't a pleasing prospect. It did give me the time to study the plans, I'm saying REALLY study the plans - I think I knew every measurement by heart when I actually started.

If you can, definitely laminate the plans - not cheap, a little over $80 at Officeworks, but you can scribble notes and just wipe them off when your done with them (if you use a whiteboard marker of course).

So here goes...

April 28th 2002

Scribed, measured, remeasured and cut the bottom, 2 sections. Scribed, measured, remeasured and cut mould B. Scribed, measured, remeasured and cut forward hatches.

Getting Ready To Cut

May 6th & 9th 2002

Scribed, measured, remeasured and cut the upper panels, lower panels and chines - port and starboard.

May 10th 2002

Scribed, measured, remeasured and cut the complete sole (floor) 4 sections, all transom braces, moulds C and D and the remainder of the bottom, 2 sections.

May 11th 2002

Cleanup day - all that cutting generates a lot of sawdust! Worked out the base to build the hull, using existing bits of wood.

A boat in bits... still missing the transom and mould E. The long panels have not been joined yet. On a personal note - THE BITS ALL LINE UP, YEEEHAHHH!!!!

Most Of The Bits Cut Out Most Of The Bits Cut Out Most Of The Bits Cut Out Most Of The Bits Cut Out

May 12th 2002

Made up frame and levelled. Laid out the bottom sections on the frame and clamped them together. Made up dowel lengths to check fairness; when the dowel is bent around the ply it should be a nice clean line. Damn it, a little bit of fairing to do - little bumps and hollows. My cutting was not as neat as I thought it was. Oh well, who said this was going to be easy.

May 13th 2002

I did spent a bit of time remeasuring the bottom sections (that can't be done too often), placing the moulds on the bottom sections at the required distances and I'm ohhh so pleased - the largest gaps were within 5mm!! And I was worried that the circular saw was too big a tool for plywood. I also used my $50 electric planer from Kmart for the first time to even up the edges on the chine and lower panels. So far no questions for the designer (Jacques), it's going together pretty well. The raised frame off the floor is going to be very handy to get underneath when it comes time to epoxy the edges and the stitches.

If I can make one comment to all the would be builders who are monitoring this site - TRUST THE PLANS - when it comes to putting it together, all those little curves and notches suddenly make sense. Measure it and cut it because Jacques said so!!

Going fishing tomorrow - hopefully the last time off the beach. Back Thursday to epoxy the life out of the ply.

May 16th 2002

Fishing was great, thanks for asking - the whiting didn't stand a chance. Didn't actually do any construction today as I spent nearly the entire day sourcing my stringers, hardwood clamping board and other odd bits  - picking out 2 lengths of 50 x 150mm wood and 4.5 metres long that is STRAIGHT is really, really hard!! But after going through bundle after bundle I managed to find two that suited my needs. Hired a trailer and picked up the wood, a little bit of marine ply for the transom and mould E and did some shopping for paint trays etc and the day was over. Thank god I found my suppliers all within 10 kilometres radius of the garage. I did spend the evening setting up the garage for night work - lots of light and hopefully no shadows.

May 17th 2002

Scribed, measured, remeasured and cut out the transom and mould E. I love the job I did on the rounded edges of the transom (inside of the motor well).

May 18th 2002

Scribed, measured, remeasured and cut both stringers.

Stringers Ready To Cut Stringers Ready To Cut, and transom Stringers Ready To Cut and frame

May 19th 2002

Started today on the epoxy! I must admit to you that I have been scared to mix this stuff up as it is the basis of the vessel but it also costs a fortune. I applied the initial coat of epoxy with some TPRDA mixed in to help it soak into the wood. I did the bow, half of the next section, a stringer (top only) and the forward part of the chine assembly - this amount of coverage was achieved with 150ml of mixed epoxy. Not bad!!

May 20th 2002

Continued with the epoxying (is that a real word?) tonight. Finished the first coat on all the bottom sections including edges.

May 24th 2002

Well after 3 nights of getting home a little late after work I managed to do some more epoxying tonight. I finished the first coat on the entire bottom section (the other side) and the complete chine section (one side). I am using brushes, not a roller, as I find it is really hard to spread; I'm hoping that subsequent coats and the laminating will be a bit easier.

It's the weekend tomorrow so I plan to do a bit of glassing and more, much more, epoxying.

May 26th 2002

Saturday was a washout - literally. I had to work in the morning and lunchtime, and it was a bit rainy and damp to do any work - I've read too many posts about trying to epoxy when it's damp. However today was bright, sunny and warm. I managed to complete some edging, one side of the transom. and started on the other chine. There seems to be a lot of ply left to do yet.

May 27th 2002

Tonight I finished the chine, 2 complete sides of the stringers, and two panels of the upper panels. Epoxy holds no magic for me now - it's become a chore

May 28th 2002

Tonight I completed the other side of the transom, the other side of the two upper panels and some of the other side of the stringers. I'm powering through it now - I'm only mixing 150mls of epoxy at a time.

June 9th &10th 2002

Ok, the weathers got back to being fine again and over the weekend I completed all of the panels and after the curing tonight I might be able to start the fiberglassing of the long panels tomorrow. Just a tip for you future builders - I know the plans do not call for an initial coat of epoxy but my supplier, who happens to manufacture the stuff, recommended to me to do a first coat with some TPRDA. This, when mixed with epoxy, allows it to soak into the marine ply to a greater depth than it would without it, this is not necessary if you are not using some form of soaking agent. All of the ply has this deep golden colour now - except for the moulds of course.

June 22nd 2002

I was able to get back to it today, at last. I forgot all about epoxying the sole section (the floor) with its first coat. I completed both sides of 3 sections, including edges, and one side of the last section.

June 23rd 2002

I just keep finding marine ply to epoxy! Today I finished the last of the sole and did one side and edges of the transom braces that are going to become part of the two wells at the stern on either side of the motor well.

July 4th 2002

Garage is full of work stuff at the moment - had to put a halt to the building. I will be back to it this weekend. All plywood that is going on to the boat has had it's first coat of epoxy mixed with TPRDA except for mould E, butt blocks and mould B.

August 3rd 2002

Oh my god, a month has gone by - well at least the epoxy has had time to cure lol. No it doesn't take THAT long to cure, I have been busy this month with work, goddammit! However I'm back...

Today I did my first fiberglassing - I've attempted to join the long panels together. I will see tomorrow morning how I went and whether or not I've done a good job on it. I used the "wet" method - I placed some epoxy on the ply and let it just start to cure - I then placed the fibreglass on this wet layer and, using a brush, completely saturated the glass. I have still got two long panels to go - I only mixed up 150ml. The bricks are in place to keep the pieces level and even.

If ever you are doing this please take note which side of the panels the fiberglass will be facing - ensure it faces the inside of the boat, not the outside!

How to make a long panel How to make a long panel How to make a long panel How to make a long panel

August 10th & 11th 2002

The first fibreglass splice last weekend went well - it went hard and all - ha-ha. However, keeping in mind my comments above on which side the splice is on - presumably the designer has said this so that you have a "flat" panel to lay the fabric on, the splice folded when picked up!

During the week I received a couple of emails (thanks Charles, Steve and Sarah) informing me of just this problem. If I only put it on one side of the join I get an angle - not a smooth curve when the panels are bent, there was also this annoying "crack" when I did try to bend it lol. Soooo - I spent yesterday and today laying a fibreglass splice on the reverse of all of the panels.

August 12th 2002

The long panels are now one!! The fibre glassing went well and it is very strong. I have sanded the edges of the splices so that they are flush with the ply. I have joined the bottom panels using good old gaffer tape (a good quality cloth tape) that will keep the panels together during placement and gluing of the stringers and butt blocks.

August 17th 2002

Got a problem! My first real dilemma. I think I mentioned above that when I purchased the wood that was going to make up the stringers, I had a very hard time finding two that were straight. I thought I had...there was a little bow but I incorrectly assumed that when placed it would be a simple matter of shaping them. Unfortunately after doing all the measuring today the stringers have a distinct bow to the right. I have purchased some heavy duty clamps but all I achieved was to properly space them - but it stills bends to the right. Bloody physics. I have to do some serious thinking about how I am going to rectify this problem as it will move all the moulds therefore warping the shape of the hull. I have a couple of options open to me so I will keep you updated... (Thank God I love a challenge).

October 10th 2002

Ok - sorry everyone about the delay in updating the page - no, I haven't given up on the project, I have had to do a million things! The garage is all mine again, for the first time since '99. All the work equipment has gone. It is all the "boat " area now. The office has moved out of my home as well so home is now home. The carpet has been replaced, new fencing installed, gutters replaced, back deck redone and I also formatted my Pc. During this time I have also been working on the boat...

Thanks to all who contacted me about the stringer problem (that's you Steve and Sarah) but I got around it by placing a strong support between the stringers at the required width and clamping them together - I have never heard of a sash clamp before! They are now glued to the bottom. The butt blocks have been glued also so the base of the boat is now one piece! The boat was then placed on two saw horses so that the whole thing is at waist height - I really hate bending over.

Installing the frames Installing the frames Installing the frames Installing the frames Installing the frames Installing the frames Installing the frames Installing the frames

I am going to stitch as little as possible and use gaffer tape (cloth tape) as the support. This will help hold the epoxy putty in and hopefully mean less sanding. So here goes - install the transom and moulds E, D, C and B using clamps and some crate planks I salvaged.

Looking good!! I then attempted my first stitch - the chine panels. It worked!! haha!!

Attaching the chines Attaching the chines Attaching the chines

Next problem - the stringers get in the way of the chine panels. Is this correct and I have to fill in the gap? Or have I mucked it up?

Problem with fitting the chine

October 11th 2002

Thanks to everyone at Bateau Tech Support for all the help on the above problem - I took Jacques and a couple of other helpers advice and trimmed the stringers so that the chine panel will fit on the base ; just gotta love that circular saw.

I also built my epoxy putty fillet along the base of the chines to the bottom of the boat.

October 12th 2002

The chine section has cured - my first fillets worked well. I used a Glad freezer bag as a pipe to ooze the epoxy putty on the joint and then shaped it with a rounded piece of plastic (bought at Boat Craft Pacific for just this purpose).

Today I fitted the lower panels on both the port and starboard chine sections. I need to do a little trimming but it has stitched up a treat. I now have a pointed end - the boat is really starting to take shape.

Attaching the lower panels Attaching the lower panels Attaching the lower panels

October 19th 2002

I have trimmed where I have had to to avoid those "hard spots", that is, the ply should not be touching each other. I then applied my epoxy putty fillets to the joint between the chine and the lower panel. The vessel has very nice lines.

Attaching the lower panels Attaching the lower panels Epoxy Fillets Epoxy Fillets Attaching the lower panels

October 20th 2002

Today I fitted the starboard upper panel, measuring the overlap and marking where I must place the epoxy glue. All was going well and just on 4pm I realised I was out of cable ties - have to buy more. I had already visited my favorite hardware store to buy some clamps (the last of them) so I was a annoyed at running out of ties.

Attaching the upper panels Attaching the upper panels Attaching the upper panels

October 21st 2002

Well I bought some more ties! Tonight, after work, I fitted the port upper panel. I then spent about 1 hour (ha-ha - too bloody long) working out how I was going to epoxy glue the panels and fit them back on again without scraping it all off, I think I have worked it out and if tomorrow isn't too late getting home, I'll try and glue the upper panels to the lower panels.

October 23rd 2002

I must of expected to work late last night, or I bought it on myself by predicting it! However, today I glued the starboard upper panel to the lower panel. It was not as easy as I thought it would be - I had to use a few more stitches than I wanted too, but the panels are flush. For those interested - I stitched the upper panel panel first and achieved fairness with the shape, making sure there was a 150mm overlap. I then took my carpenters pencil and ran a line along the panels where they joined, both inside and outside. I then cut all the stitches except for the stitch holding the panel to the transom.  Using my trusty paint brush I liberally coated both surfaces with the epoxy glue and then restitched the panels together using the predrilled holes. Simple!

October 26th 2002

Today I epoxy glued the port side upper panel to the lower panel - no problems, went together a treat. Still a few too many stitches for my liking but that's life. I also built the epoxy fillet on the starboard side. There are no panels left to attach ... the boat is now a boat ... at last, what a buzz -.

October 27th 2002

The starboard upper panel has dried so the entire hull is complete now except for the installation of the rub rail that is used to strengthen the sheer line before rolling over.

This evening I joined the bow! I used a 25mm length of dowel to place in the join so that I can form a nice rounded shape on the bow.

After the bow was stitched I measured the vessel from bow to stern and it is exactly 5.50 metres in length, and 2.1 metres beam - exactly as the plans said it would be - good on ya Jacques!!!!

Bow formed Bow formed

November 3rd 2002

Well, tomorrow took longer to come than I expected! It has been a busy, every night a late night, week. Sadly I worked all day Saturday so I have been unable to source my rubrails - hopefully this week. Today I went and bought some more g-clamps to fasten the rubrail to the hull - isn't that a great term - the hull,

November 16th 2002

It's Saturday and today I sourced my rubrails - 4 lengths of 6 meter 20mm x 40mm clear hoop pine. I had to pick them up from the Gold Coast and it was a sight going up the motorway with these strapped to the car; thank god it's a wagon with roof racks (thanks again Burt!!). Last week was a wash out for me as someone gave me the flu - the real flu, not a cold and it has taken a week or so to get over the bugger.

I did manage earlier in the week to build the epoxy fillet on the bow. It has been my thickest fillet to date and it was as easy as the small ones.

Talking about clamps - this afternoon I epoxy glued the starboard rubrail to the hull. The boat is on a funny angle because I needed to reach the base of the bow to make its' fillet; so Richard, Rohan and I removed the front sawhorse holding the hull up of the floor. The port rubrail is ready to be epoxy glued tomorrow. That's a hell of a bend on the wood but I chose it carefully - a little bit more money but there was no need to steam it.

Installing the starboard rubrail Installing the starboard rubrail Installing the starboard rubrail Installing the starboard rubrail

November 17th 2002

The starboard rubrail has cured and is now part of the hull!! You gotta love that epoxy glue.

Today I epoxy glued the port rubrail. I had to use of all my huge bulk to bend it but I put it into shape.

It's looking good!

Installing the port rubrail

November 18th 2002

The port rubrail has cured and it too is now part of the hull. The hull was raised back onto its saw horse so it is nice and level again thanks to some teenagers who had the misfortune to walk past the house just when I was contemplating who I could nab and help me with this.

I trimmed the rubrails to be level with the bow in preparation to fill and sand it to a smooth round shape.

I also purchased some chandlery today during a break - important stuff like nav lights, bungs and some large U-bolts. Basically anything that will need holes drilled to fasten them.

Next step - a big step - the hull is ready to be rolled over. All I need now is some strong fellas to help me! Until I can, I am stymied. I could always start the console you may think - but I need my sawhorses for this.

November 20th 2002

The big step has happened. I was sitting at the office with Richard and Rohan and it was just before 6.00pm when it occurred to me that we could do it now! We came home and I grabbed Scott from next door; in 10 short minutes it was rolled over and bum up - lol. Only one small problem - I got so excited about it being rolled that I neglected to make sure everyone was clear when it was placed on the floor - all of us had stacks of room under the boat - except Rohan!! His hands were stuck under the bow, I'll have to make it up to him somehow, his hands looked a bit red and raw when he extricated himself - poor bugger. Big tip - if you want help to roll it back again, make sure you take care of your helpers!!

Then everyone left....

I then removed all the stitches from the hull and sanded.

November 23rd 2002

I have started the bow fillets (outside of the bow) and the transom fillets, also the starboard seams.

I have also cut out all the parts for the centre console including the inserts.

November 24th 2002

Today I stitched up the console. The seat side (that's the lower part) faces the bow. Of course it being a console means that the wheel and throttles etc. are on the flat side. Nothing epoxied as yet, just stitched up.

I intend to put storage under the seat, maybe even an esky. The fuel tank sits in the cut-out (don't you just love the curved edges). Access to all the electrical and steering cabling is done by means of a removable panel - the one above the seat.

Console Construction Console Construction Console Construction Console Construction Console Construction Console Construction Console Construction

 I also filleted the seams on the transom (levelling now), the bow (shaping), and the seams.

Boat Flipped and applying epoxy fillets Boat Flipped and applying epoxy fillets Boat Flipped and applying epoxy fillets

November 30th 2002

Today I hopefully finished the last of the filleting on the outside, bow and transom. We shall see tomorrow after I sand it to a smooth finish (hopefully).

I also started the internal fillets on the centre console.

December 1st 2002

The sanding went well and all of the vessel has been sanded, including the bow and the transom. Everything is smooth and I'm ready for the fiberglassing.

The bow has a fantastic shape, It took a little bit of epoxy to give it enough bulk to shape but it was well worth the effort. The top of the bow (remember it's upside down on the floor!!) is twice as thick as the bottom of the bow - a nice shape I think.

I also filleted everything - the seams between the chine and bottom, the seam between the lower panel and the chine, the bottom of the overlap between the upper panel and the lower panel and the bottom of the rub rails - there isn't any water getting between anything on this boat! Apart from the seams you may be able to see other spots that have been sanded - they are holes that have been filled and sanded left by the stitching process. 

The fiberglass tape has been measured and cut - two layers per seam with an overlap of 50mm. Then the finished product - fiberglassing done - 2 hours later!

Boat Flipped and applying epoxy fillets Boat Flipped and applying epoxy fillets Boat Flipped and applying epoxy fillets Boat Flipped and applying epoxy fillets Boat Flipped and applying epoxy fillets Fiberglass seams Fiberglass seams Fiberglass seams Fiberglass seams

December 28th 2002

Well I'm back! December just turned out to be on of those months :) Today I completed the seam along the port side chine, the bow and the transom.

December 29th 2002

Today I completed the fiberglassing of the lower panel to the chine on the port side.

The camera seems to pick up a lot of reflection of the fiberglass, it doesn't appear to be completely wetted out (yes that is a valid term). I assure you that there are no air bubbles and it is transparent when I was finished. It may be because it is 300gm fiberglass, I don't know - but it is rock solid and looks great.

 I stopped at this seam because I have run out of epoxy rollers - my supplier has shut down for Christmas, hopefully he will reopen tomorrow, if not he will probably be open on the 6th.

Fiberglass seams Fiberglass seams Fiberglass seams Fiberglass seams Fiberglass seams Fiberglass seams

December 31st 2002

Tonight I completed all of the fiberglassing of the seams, lower panel to chine starboard side, transom and an extra one on the bow just to make it neat. Just to recap - all seams are 6" glass overlapped by 2" on each seam.

Tomorrow I plan to attach the bottom rubrails just above the style line - epoxy glued and screwed - ahhhhhhhhgggg

The boat to this point has been built without a single nail or screw in her, oh well, we'll show up on radar I suppose

January 1st 2003 - Happy New Year Everyone!!

Today I sanded my work from yesterday and prepared to attach the second pair of rubrails on the style line.

I then epoxy glued and screwed the rubrails onto the hull. What a job it was - the screws kept burring, no wonder I'm not a carpenter. With a lot of patience I got the job done, both port and starboard rails are on. Please be aware that I have not finished the rubrails yet - I want to trim the leading edges to the shape of the hull, I don't want any sharp points. My next job is to put a small seam of epoxy on the bottom of the rails just to complete the fair shape and get ready for the fiberglass sheathing of the entire bottom - still waiting for BoatCraft Pacific to reopen after the holidays to get my biaxial sheets and rollers.

Fiberglass seams Fiberglass seams Fiberglass seams Installing Rubrails Installing Rubrails

January 2nd 2003

I have completed the seam between the lower panel and the bottom rubrail on both sides of the hull. I also epoxy filled the holes made by the screws while attaching the rubrails.

Today I sourced and bought my boat trailer! Second hand, yes, alterations needed, yes - but it is perfect. It is hard to find a trailer that has a shallow vee for a flat bottom boat. Swan Trailers is going to do the alterations for me, and they are coming over to the house to see the boat as well, now that's service.

2nd Hand Trailer

Tomorrow could cost me a fortune, I think I have sourced my motor from a boatyard - I am going to have a look at it and probably buy it.

January 3rd 2003

Well today was a red letter day - I can't go back now - I purchased my engine. It is a 1993 Force 50hp, electric start, forward controls with trim and tilt. It is a low profile engine which should suit the hull.

I also finished all the seams on the hull - just a lot of sanding now. I also did a few more seams on the centre console.

Installing Rubrails Installing Rubrails Installing Rubrails Installing Rubrails Console Construction Console Construction

January 4th 2003

I completed the sanding of the hull and shaped the bottom rubrails to a nice shape. I laid and wetted out the first layer of the fiberglass that will cover the bottom. I have only been using 6" tape up till now, this stuff is 1.25 meters wide! I'm glad I've been careful with the epoxy - this stuff is going to eat it up (or drink it up I should say).

Fiberglass Sheathing Fiberglass Sheathing Fiberglass Sheathing

January 5th 2003

The entire bottom is now sheathed in fiberglass! The first half of the hull looked great this morning so I got to it and scratched up the overlap a bit and completed the other half. I also mixed up some more epoxy putty to shape up the lower rubrails a bit more - I wasn't quite happy with the shape. I also completed the interior seams on the console.

Just in case you haven't noticed, this thing is built like a brick ****house. The bow has it's own seam, two layers at the join, 4 layers where the side seams have overlapped and then the top layer. The transom has the same while the sides have four overlapping then the top layer.

The only thing left to do now before the rollover is the fairing and painting of the hull.

Fiberglass Sheathing Fiberglass Sheathing Fiberglass Sheathing Fiberglass Sheathing

January 6th 2003

Tonight I completed all the seams and joins on the centre console - I even tried it out and had a sit on the seat. Strong as a rock! I sanded the bow again to achieve the shape I wanted. I did some minor sanding in preparation for the primer/undercoat. I also visited BoatCraft Pacific, was advised on the procedures for the priming and purchased 4 litres of high build epoxy AquaCote primer. This stuff is complimentary to the epoxy system - BoteCote. I'm told 2 coats of primer, them 3 coats of topcoat. Lets see how we go for the next step...

January 7th 2003

Tonight I completed all of the sanding up to the style line. I then applied the first coat of the primer, it is applied with a roller to achieve a constant thickness. Instead of the usual 2:1 ratio for the epoxy the primer is mixed 1:1 of coat and hardener. I must sand in between each coat. I can apply a coat every 24 hours.

By the way - Hi Julie and Steve!!

January 8th 2003

Thank god I didn't have to spend any money today! The trailer people came over and the trailer alterations are only going to cost $400 - this is to lengthen the trailer, add skids, add tie down points and a new trailer hitch - it will go in next Monday.

I was getting ready to apply my second coat of primer when I suddenly remembered I hadn't installed something - THE SKEG!! I sometimes think I'm an idiot.

I have epoxy glued the skeg to the hull. It was easy to measure where to place the skeg - I still have my centreline marked on the hull, I can still see it under the fiberglass, and all I had to do was measure equal distances from the chine to the skeg and mark it. Voila!

Ist coat of primer Ist coat of primer Ist coat of primer Skeg Install Skeg InstallSkeg Install

January 9th 2003

The skeg is now a part of the hull and better still - it is straight. I sanded it back a bit and then I continued with my first coat of primer. I was only going to prime and paint up to the style line but upon consideration I have decided to prime and paint up to the gunnels. This means that I only have to prepare the top of the rubrails when she gets rolled over. So tonight I applied the first coat of primer to the skeg, the rubrails and the entire upper panel.

January 10th 2003

Tonight I applied the second coat on the entire hull surface. I'm going to have to go back to BoatCraft tomorrow as even though the undercoat is billed as a high build primer,  I can still see the weave. I'm wondering if I am doing something wrong - or whether I am just going to have to put more coats on - well I shall see.

2nd coat of primer 2nd coat of primer 2nd coat of primer

January 11th 2003

I visited BoatCraft Pacific this morning and explained my concerns - I have not been doing anything wrong - I just expected too much of the undercoat. I need to apply some epoxy mixed with sanding filler to add those finishing touches. Even though I have two coats of high build primer, it is not too late to complete this extra step. The next couple of days will be taken up with this process. I also purchased my first batch of topcoat. The first topcoat will be applied to the bottom and up to the waterline (halfway up the chine) - British Racing Green!

Epoxy Filler Epoxy Filler

March 28th 2003

Hi everyone, thanks for all the queries as to the state of the boat, and indirectly - the state I was in. Thanks especially to Wallace from the USA. Yes, I'm fine and I'm back again and ready to do some more hard work

The lighting has been improved also during the last few weeks. I have installed two fluorescent tubes over the boat and my 100watt lights are on either side of the hull so that there are no shadows.

Over the last few weeks I have faired the hull with the fairing compound and applied two more layers of high build undercoat. The fairing was especially easy with the fairing compound supplied by BoatCraft and thanks to the spreader I used it required very little sanding.

Epoxy Filler Epoxy Filler Epoxy Filler Epoxy Filler Epoxy Filler Epoxy Filler Epoxy Filler

April 22nd 2003

Over the last couple of days I applied two more coats of the high build undercoat. It is taking a bit of this stuff to fill in the weave and to achieve the smooth finish that I require. Ok, I'm fussy...

I'm hoping to do the roll over soon so I can get started on the interior. I hope to apply only one or two more coats before I do the topcoat.

It's looking really good hey!

High Build Undercoat High Build Undercoat High Build Undercoat High Build Undercoat

April 23rd 2003

Tonight was not fun - I had to open a new can of the high build undercoat, Part B or the hardener, and the mixture had separated into two components i.e. a liquid and a substance that could only be described as very thick glue! I spent 2 1/2 hours mixing it together to get a fluid consistency. Two blisters later, and about 100ml of liquid on the bench top, I was able to mix Part A and Part B to apply another coat to the hull. I spent so long trying to mix the undercoat that when I got around to actually applying the coat it was 8.30pm - and the hull was completely covered with tiny midges that stopped me in my tracks. I will do it tomorrow...

April 26th 2003

After all the fun of mixing the part b undercoat, I got back to the job of undercoating the hull. This may seem a long and laborious process, and it is, but it is absolutely vital in getting a great finish. The trick is to apply many thin coats and not a couple of thick ones to build up a first class finish. There were also many tiny holes that were not being filled by the undercoat using the roller, so Katia picked up a brush and while I coated the entire hull she filled in every little hole on the hull - and a great job she did too.

High Build Undercoat High Build Undercoat High Build Undercoat

April 28th 2003

More of the same really today - undercoating! Surprise -

High Build Undercoat High Build Undercoat High Build Undercoat High Build Undercoat

April 29th 2003

I've had a breakthrough! I've been undercoating for two weeks now - 6 coats - and tonight I realized what I had to do. I have been sanding between coats, but only a light sanding to provide a good "key" for the next coat, and the coats have been filling in the weave but tonight I got out the power sander and experimented on a small section of the hull and voila! The sanding took off the tops and it made a smooth finish. I used a fine grit belt, 200, and did not apply any pressure on the sander, I just let it do the work. I did about 3/4 of the hull before I thought it was a bit late to continue using a power tool (I like and value my neighbours) so I will finish it off tomorrow.

April 30th 2003

Well, it was a breakthrough - but a bit late. It's going to be a good finish, even an excellent one - but not perfect :(

It's a 1 foot finish - lol. Email me if you don't understand the term...

I know what to do on the next vessel, well this was my test boat to make all my mistakes on! I should have used the fairing filler (Sanding Filler with Epoxy) all over the hull before I laid the undercoat. Tomorrow I will apply the topcoat.

High Build Undercoat High Build Undercoat High Build Undercoat High Build Undercoat High Build Undercoat

May 1st 2003

The topcoat at last. I have decided to do the bottom and the centre rubrail only ay this point - I'm sick of looking at its bum and I'm keen to get on to the interior -  so with the bottom done we can roll it over and I can do the sides whenever I want.

The first coat was applied early today; after it had cured, and after my chores were done, this evening I applied the second coat.

Oh, before you go, I have also been applying the undercoats to the Console - the 2nd coat was applied this evening.

Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Priming the console

May 2nd 2003

Today I applied the third coat to the hull and rubrails - It is looking much better, but I have not been able to decide whether a 4th coat will be required. I'll have a look late this afternoon and decide on this. I do want a great finish to this boat. The instructions only call for 2 coats but maybe it was because it was a white undercoat that it was applied to and thank god I hold to the principle of too much is better than not enough I have enough paint to do the extra coats.

It is now late afternoon and after a quick look I completed the 4th and final coat on the bottom and rubrails. I now have a glossy and fine finish!!

All I have to do now is wait for it to dry and cure for 24 hours and I'll remove the masking tape and I should get a nice straight edge (I Hope).

Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat

May 5th 2003

I have removed the masking tape and even though I did get a straight edge - there was bleeding through to the white undercoat area. I then applied the the masking tape to the green area and painted the rest of the hull with the other topcoat - Off White. Hopefully there will be no bleed through because the paint is being applied downhill this time.

Big Tip: As my friend Katia pointed out, I should have painted the hull off white first and then applied the trim! Ok - I'm still an idiot - but I'm a quick learner -

Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat

May 6th 2003

Today was another big day on the boat. I applied the 3rd and 4th coat, the 4th coat gives it a glossy finish that I like.

I am going to have to do a couple of touch ups where the paint had bled through.

Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat

Then the big moment occurred - the hull was rolled over - again and for the last time. Jack, Rohan, Mark and myself made light work of it. I'd forgotten what the inside looked like! Also I remembered how much work I had to do yet!! After I removed all the spider webs that had made homes there, I removed the frames to reveal a large and roomy vessel.

Hull Finished Hull Finished Hull Finished

May 7th 2003

Now that the hull is rolled over I am able to get back into it. Tonight I used the angle grinder (it's such a cool tool) to trim off the screws I used to attach the bottom rubrail to the hull and trim back little pools of epoxy that had collected on the inside when I was doing the outside of the hull. I then sanded the sides in preparation for some epoxying, I have a few gaps in the fillets. The gaps occurred when doing the initial fillets while joining the panels together around the moulds - the moulds were in place and I couldn't get under them, or between them and the long panels!

May 12th 2003

Tonight I filled in all the little holes and gaps on the inside of the hull with epoxy glue. I also faired the upper side of the lower rubrail - I was unable to do this before as the hull was upside down and I couldn't get to the join properly.

May 13th 2003

The work goes on - the work from last night has set and looks good. All the little holes are gone.

Tonight I formed the bow - that's the pointed end for you landlubbers, lol. My woodworking skills are non existent so when the rubrails were placed on the hull I just cut the ends off - both sets of rubrails. The lower rubrails were easy, I just sanded them to a shape that followed the hull and sanded the ends flat. The top rails are a bit different - I want a pointed bit at the bow. So I made a mould made of tape and I have filled it with epoxy glue. The idea is after it sets I can sand it to the shape I want. It is not a load bearing part so it should be fine.

I have also measured the wooden mount that is to be attached to the transom - that's the blunt end for all you non nautical types, ha-ha. This is the mount that the engine will be bolted too. It also has another function in the overall design - it becomes the support for the tops of the storage bins at the back of the boat. If I get home early enough tomorrow, that is during daylight hours, I plan to cut this block out, sand it and hopefully epoxy glue it to the transom. It is a great lump of wood - but this is what the specs were on the BOM (Bill of Materials).

Epoxy fillets Epoxy fillets Epoxy fillets Bow Engine backing block

May 14th 2003

Hi Katia, Sarah, Paul (go and build one mate - do it) and Mark.

The work I did on the bow last night has worked out very well, however I do not intend to sand it for a few days just to let it go rocklike

Tonight sanded back all the inside of the hull where I had filled the holes and cleaned the inside. I then measured and cut the fibreglass for the inside seams. I was an idiot again - I cannot install the transom mount until the fiberglassing has been done.

The bottom two seams are two layers staggered while the bow and transom have 3 layers staggered.

Fiberglass seam Fiberglass seam Fiberglass seam Shaping the bow

May 15th 2003

No work performed today on the boat - I had to restock. I ran out of fiberglass, rollers, stirrers and brushes but after a quick trip to Boat Craft at lunch this was soon rectified. I also bought a bit of hardware in preparation for the construction of the interior, not much - just some drill bits. 

May 19th 2003

I was back to the fiberglassing today - ye hah :) I finished the transom and bow - remember it was 3 layers  staggered on both these areas. Devlins' book on boatbuilding pointed me to the correct way to do this and I encountered no problems. It is time consuming though - 2 1/2 hours to do the entire area.

Fiberglass seam Fiberglass seam

May 20th 2003

Tonight I glassed in the bottom two seams, two layers staggered. I'm starting to get really good at fiberglassing!

Fiberglass seam Fiberglass seam

May 21st 2003

Well I'm on a roll!! Tonight I glassed in the second seam, two layers staggered, port and starboard sides.

It could be a moment to remember - as far as I know at this point all the structural fiberglassing has been completed, actually according to the lamination schedule I have completed it. The only glassing left to do now is the glassing in of the floor.


Fiberglass seam Fiberglass seam

May 22nd 2003

It has been a big day. I completed the transom outboard clamping board.

I sanded back and shaped the  pointed end I formed last week with epoxy AND installed the towing eye! My first bit of chandlery.

I finished mould E according to the plans - I cut it down and made the cutout - I still love my cutting :)

I also made the internal framing from the moulds that were removed and placed them in their respective positions.

Last, but by no means least, I epoxy glued the clamping board to the transom. You just have to love those sash clamps. One thing I am not in short supply of - clamps.

Sole bracing Sole bracing Sole bracing Sole bracing Bow shapingEngine mounting block

May 26th 2003

Last night I didn't do any actual building - it was a planning session on where I go next and what I need. After a lot of measuring and visualizing the finished vessel I came up with the plumbing required to get all the control cables, fuel lines and electrical cables to the stern and how to do my gunnels.

May 27th 2003

Back to the building tonight. I purchased the bits I need for the internal plumbing, hole saws for the pipes and 2 lengths of clear hoop pine for the gunnels.

The gunnels are my first deviation from the plans. The vessel as designed doesn't call for gunnels at the top of the sides. I want to mount aerials, a bimini top, rod holders etc so I decided to install them. I will use the same wood as my rubrails - 20mm x 40mm hoop pine, 2 strips epoxy glued, except they lie along the 20mm edge. This should give me about 5 inches from the outside of the rubrail - more than enough for my purposes.

I drilled my first hole through the stringers and tested my angles for the cabling etc. I then epoxy glued the first two strips of the clear hoop pine to the inside of the hull and clamped them. I then filleted a couple of the frames to the stringers until I ran out of my batch of mixed epoxy.

Gunnel construction Gunnel construction Gunnel construction

May 29th 2003

After the turmoil caused by the website, tonight I checked the gunnel and it had set. I then worked out the holes that are needed through the frames for the tubing and cut them with my trusty hole saw. I then drilled the other hole on the portside stringer and glued both angled tubes to the hull. I then cut the drain holes through the frames.

June 2nd 2003

I have epoxy glued all the frames into the hull tonight. I adhered to the stitch and glue rule that there should not be "wood on wood" - for the pros that is called a "Hard Spot" - or so I read, so I have placed a small foam spacer between the angled edge of the frames and the hull then applied the epoxy fillet over the lot. I have small drain holes at the bottom of each frame in the EXTREMELY unlikely event of water in the hull and I have to drain it.

I also had a birthday last week and Katia who knows what I REALLY need gave me my first bit of equipment - A Compass!

Console Plumbing Plumbing Plumbing

June 3rd 2003

Today I received the last 2 lengths of clear hoop pine for the gunnels. I cut them to length and, using all my available sash clamps, I epoxy glued the last strip to the starboard side gunnel. The panels have all set.

I have adhered to the golden rule for the plumbing, and also common sense I feel - Electrical and Fuel cables to not share the same pipe. That's why there are two pipes!! (But you already knew that didn't you.)

Gunnel construction Gunnel construction Gunnel construction

June 4th 2003

I have tonight epoxy glued the last strip of clear hoop pine to the port side gunnel and used epoxy filler to fill in the gaps at the transom between the ends of the pine and the transom itself in readiness for sanding and fairing.

Please Note that they have not been sanded or finished, they look rough but I have a cunning plan

Gunnel construction Gunnel construction Gunnel construction

June 5th 2003

The portside gunnel has set, but it is winter here and the epoxy hasn't gone rock hard yet, I can still see a fingernail mark in the epoxy  when I push it in so I didn't attempt to sand it back. However I did sand the starboard side gunnel and shaped the leading edge and it turned out just as I imagined it would. I then applied some sanding filler to the starboard gunnel to get rid of all the little imperfections.

Gunnel construction Gunnel construction

June 8th 2003

Today was another great day for boat building. I sanded back both gunnels and prepared them for the final fairing and applied the epoxy to complete them. I also levelled the internal frames and measured them for the frame supports. I then cut the supports and epoxy glued them to the frames. I then cut the holes required for the plumbing to the bow (this is for any electrical wiring I may want to install, at the moment my requirements are a deck light and navigation lights) and then installed the plumbing. I also cut the hole required for my one and only instrument at the moment - a rev meter, and installed it. I also installed the motor controls on the console and tested them - the little rods moved!! 

Console Sole bracing Sole bracing Sole bracing Sole bracing

June 10th 2003

It's coming together! The gunnels are now finished - sanded back and shaped, both the bow ends and the transom ends.

I then laid the floor onto the stringers to check the alignment. Three of the four sections were perfect, however the last section has an overlay of about 1/2 inch which will have to trimmed - as Katia said, better an overlay than not enough plywood!

Obviously I'm not quite ready to start this step yet - I have yet to finish the hull - I have to coat the entire under section with one last coat of epoxy including the new frames, cut the holes required in the sole (the floor) for the control tubes that have been already laid, and install the foam that will make this thing float if anything goes amiss in the years to come.

On a personal note - please sign the guestbook and say "Hi", the people around me are convinced the 9000 + visitors to this site is me manipulating the figures. I am very proud of the fact that you are keeping tabs on this.

Laying and measuring the sole Laying and measuring the sole Laying and measuring the sole Laying and measuring the sole Laying and measuring the sole

June 11th 2003

Tonight I did some more work on the sole. I measured and cut the holes for both the bow and main tubing for the electrical cables, motor controls and fuel cables.

I also sourced my expanding foam for the hull - you guessed it - BoatCraft Pacific - and it is not expensive, $25 for two litres of two part chemicals. This two litres will apparently make 50 litres of foam! That's 50c a litre - not bad.

I will be posting a support question tonight on Bateau2.com - I have a question has to the actual installation of the sole. The plans call for a fiberglass splice on BOTH sides of the sole sections. Being a basically lazy person, and as to the fact that I'm the only one building this boat, I need to find out if I can get away with placing a fiberglass splice on the topside only and epoxy gluing the bottom of the sole to the stringers. Any ideas?

Laying and measuring the sole Laying and measuring the sole

June 14th 2003

Hi to everyone!! There is going to be a small delay in the progress of the building. I'M MOVING. I'm going to another property closer to town. It should take me about a week to get organized, so keep an eye out, I will be back very soon.

This has been the birthplace of the boat, and a lot of fond memories

July 19th 2003

Well I've Moved!!  The moving of the boat on to the trailer from the garage floor was a breeze - I even accomplished it by myself. As I wheeled the boat from the garage for the FIRST time, I did mutter to myself - "Welcome to the world". It was like giving birth

I then placed everything that was in the garage into the boat and moved it all to the new house. The boat stood up to the move very well and the trailer was very good.

The house is all setup, and the garage has also been done - it is a bit smaller than the one I started this project with. Because we combined two households, the garage has all the comforts not usually associated with a garage - a TV, a Fridge and a Microwave!! YeeHah.

Today we purchased the expanding foam for the floor, a two part polyurethane that apparently explodes 25 times it's original volume in 50 seconds, or thereabouts. I still have to apply the final coating of epoxy to the floor as yet, this I will do tomorrow. So the foam will be early in the week.

So I'm back - keep in touch everyone, I'll have to reply to the Guestbook tonight to all those who left a message for me while the computers were down during the move, thanks for the interest all.

Garage at Harman Court Birth of a boat Birth of a boat New Garage New Garage New Garage New Garage New Garage New Garage

July 26th 2003

Sorry all - a busy week AND I'm having a few Pc problems. Today I did some sanding, thanks for getting me started again Wallace :), and completed one side of the boat. I then poured the expanding foam into the some of the framing spaces. It worked a treat, my only complaint was that it was not as "neat" as I would have liked it to be.

The amount of coverage here was achieved with four litres of expanding foam - technically 100 litres worth of expanded product. I don't think so

Foam Foam

August 17th 2003

Today I started on the sole (floor). The work leading up to this has been getting the tubing right and set in place. I had a small problem when I was completing this task - the cables didn't reach!! I had the cable runs going to the front of the console then down into the deck, however when I placed the cables into place I found I was short about 18". I had to move the cable runs to the back of the console so the runs go straight down to the deck. I didn't want the cables to be seen at all but - c'est la vie

After drilling the new holes I ran the cables through the console tubing and also the bow tubing.

Remember the golden rule - power cables and fuel lines do not mix The power cables and steering cable track down the starboard tubing while the engine throttle, fuel line and transducer cable track down the port tubing.

I then proceeded to install the first section of the floor to the stringers and frames. I'm using a product called Purbond made by BoatCraft for this. I'm also following Jacques advice, as on all things - ha-ha, and installing a butt block between the sections.

August 18th 2003

The first section of the flooring is laid and set. Tonight I Purbonded, is that a word?, the second section.

The bricks and old roof tiles are just to add some weight while the Purbond sets.

Foam Foam Foam Foam Foam

August 21st 2003

The tiles and bricks have been removed from the sole and the glue has set. The styrofoam under the sole is packed under the sections as I am laying them. The foam I used was a bit expensive and I am told the styrofoam will achieve the same result.

I am now at a point where I have to spend some money on some chandlery, a fish finder to be exact, and I have to save a bit so there will be a small delay in the building while I do this. I'm just being careful, and lazy, I don't want to struggle with feeding the transducer cables through the chase tubing after the sole is in place. I will continue posting though - I'm going to do the casting deck now while I'm saving for the fish finder.

Installing Sole Installing Sole

August 24th 2003

The casting deck has been measured and cut. The clear hoop pine supports have been cut as well (this is what the casting deck will sit on). I have faired the rest of the sole and cut the holes for the chase tubes at both the console and transom ends. I have also made the holes in the console for the chase tubes from the transom and the bow!! I then set out and designed, measured and cut my rod holders - yep, rod holders. I got the idea from the C19 plans where the framing has rod holders incorporated in them so it was only natural that I "steal" this idea and do the same on the OD18. It was a simple process and they look very cool :)  It was a good weekend for the boat.

Installing Sole Installing Sole Installing Sole

August 28th 2003

Today we installed the supports for the casting deck, epoxy glued clear hoop pine.

Still saving up for the fish finder!!

Installing Sole Installing Sole Installing Console Installing Console

September 6th 2003

I have the fish finder! Also the steering system, the steering wheel, the fuel tank, the 27meg radio, it's splash cover, the aerial, the fuel fittings, the fuel gauge and the little stainless screw that I can't remember what I bought it for. lol. The project may now proceed...

First of all I have measured and cut all the holes for all the fittings into the console. The aerial lead was then run from the bow to the console in the cable run already placed. I then placed the console into the boat where it will now live. I epoxied the butt blocks for the 3rd section of the floor.

Remember the reason I have done this is so that I do not have to struggle getting all the cables through with the floor laid. I now have to wait until the epoxy dries.

Fitting the cables Fitting the cables

September 7th 2003

The epoxy has now dried so I'm all clear to run the cables. The cables run into the console at the drivers end. We had no problem at all running the cables - they went in smoothly and all are long enough! YeeHah

After a little celebration - lunch - the Purbond was applied and the floor installed. Again the roof tiles are there just to add a bit of weight while it dries, and the console is not in it's correct position. I feel I have achieved the second hardest part of this end of the project.

Installing the sole Installing the sole Installing the sole Installing the sole

September 8th 2003

The 3rd section of the floor has dried and is now attached to the stringers. I then completed the stern end of the cable runs and sized the 4th and last section of the floor. The steering and engine control cables still move freely through the cable runs - a very good sign that the angles are not crimping the cables.

September 9th 2003

Well I have done the final preparing of the 4th section of the floor and epoxy glued it into place. Those roof tiles come in so handy . The sole is now laid

I then got excited and decided to apply my epoxy fillet between the sole and the hull. It's a nice thick fillet - 12oz of epoxy almost did the 5.5 metres.

Installing the sole Installing the sole Installing the sole

September 10th 2003

Ok now, tonight I completed the epoxy fillet on the port side, the transom and the bow. It was a nice warm day today, 31 celcius, so the epoxy from last nights work had set a treat. Another 12ozs of epoxy was used for this step.

Epoxy fillets Epoxy fillets Epoxy fillets Epoxy fillets Epoxy fillets

September 11th 2003

I had better be careful here, at the rate I'm going I'll have this finished soon - and as they said in the last episode of Buffy - "What Are We Going To Do Now?"

Tonight I have completed the last of the filleting, all the edges, around the pipes, around and under the console (I still have to screw it in yet) and the joins in the floor.

I have a lot of sanding to do now!!

Epoxy fillets Epoxy fillets Epoxy fillets Epoxy fillets

September 12th 2003

It was a bit late tonight when I got home after work so it was a bit inconvenient to do any sanding, so I did the last of the fairing on the console.

Sanding and fiberglass laying tomorrow.

Does anyone else think the console looks like a face? Except tonight it has a moustache

Epoxy fillets Epoxy fillets

September 14th 2003

Saturday was a washout - on the phone for work all morning and then had to go do a job in the afternoon that took me through to the evening - however, today was a good day to get some more done.

I completed all of the sanding of the seam between the hull and the sole and also the console. (We have been out and purchased an orbital sander!!).  Then a single layer of fiberglass was laid along the seam on both the port and starboard sides. The transom was also completed except this has an overlapping layer of glass.

The next step is to fiberglass the console in and then a layer of woven glass over the entire sole.

Sanding Sanding Sanding Sanding

September 20th 2003

Today I installed the woven fabric on the sole. It was much harder than the biaxial glass - the stuff was like a bed sheet, all floppy and loose, nothing like the biaxial. I did manage to get it down and epoxied in - but not my neatest job. It will be fine in the long run, but I'm a perfectionist I suppose.

I also cut down the post for the winch and installed the metal thing that supports the winch and the bow roller. I have no idea what it is called

Fiberglass sheathing the sole Fiberglass sheathing the sole Fiberglass sheathing the sole Fiberglass sheathing the sole Fiberglass sheathing the sole Winch Post

September 21st 2003

You guessed it - today I completed the port hand side of the boat with the woven glass on the sole. It was much easier, and a much better job than yesterday - I knew what I was doing this time!

Fiberglass sheathing the sole Fiberglass sheathing the sole Fiberglass sheathing the sole Fiberglass sheathing the sole Fiberglass sheathing the sole Fiberglass sheathing the sole

September 22nd 2003

I installed (epoxy filleted) "mould E" tonight, it is the bulkhead that the rear storage bins are made on. I also installed (epoxy filleted) the rod holders under the gunwale.

I "fastened" the pieces for filleting with good old gaffer and masking tape. Not only does it secure the pieces it prevents the epoxy from leaking out!!

Installing Frame Installing Frame Rod Holders Rod Holders

September 23rd 2003

I have completed the epoxy fillets on all the pieces I did last night - that is, the other side of the rod holders and bulkhead. I also gave all the bits another coating of epoxy.

I also measured the casting deck and worked out how I am going to hold it in place while I install it.

September 27th 2003

I epoxied in the front of the casting deck and the two stowage boxes at the stern. I have only done one side at the moment. I also installed the supports for the top of the casting deck - screwed and epoxy glued.

I then measured the tops of the storage boxes and cut out my hatches from them.

Casting Deck Rear bins Rear bins Constructing the bins Casting deck

October 13th 2003

Sorry I haven't been posting - but I have been working on the boat! A little bit of sanding here, making up some frames there...

I have made my second deviation from the plans - a seat/storage in front of the casting deck. I have measured and cut it out and epoxied the frame into place. The seat is also going to have a lid. I have cut my hatches for getting into the casting deck as well. The stern boxes are also finished and I have made hatches for these also.

Hatches Rear Bins Casting Deck Seat Construction

October 28th 2003

Well, I have been busy over the last couple of weeks. The frames are installed inside the stern boxes - these will support the hatches. The frames are also installed on the casting desk seat and also the casting deck itself. They have all been given two coats of epoxy.

I have installed an ordinary crate on the supports for the casting deck that will hold the anchor rope and chain - why a crate I hear you ask? Well - it will keep the rope and chain tidy, I hate rope getting caught up on things in storage areas - as it usually only happens when you need the rope in a hurry and it gets stuck and it will also let the rope and chain drain and enable it to air.

The fuel tank is now installed as I am now going to glue in the all the tops - the two stern boxes, the console seat, the casting deck seat and the casting deck. (Yes, the fuel tank will be able to be removed, but as with my cabling, I am installing it now while it is still very easy.)

Casting Deck Bum View Seat Seat Casting Deck Bracing Rear Bins Centre Console Centre Console Seat Casting Deck

October 30th 2003

The last of the epoxy fillets has been completed!! YeeHah. All the hatches, console seat and the casting deck (including a little surprise that I will reveal in a day or two) have now been epoxy filleted to the boat. I still have the coats of epoxy to do yet - it will NOT be that sand colour.

Rear Bins Centre Console Seat Casting Deck Rear Bins

November 2nd 2003

I have now completed the installation of the hatch frames on the seat in front of the casting deck, the casting deck hatches and the console hatch.

The little surprise is the triangular section at the bow - this will be the home of the anchor and cross bollard. The rope shown is going around the outside of the boat just under the top rub rail (I still haven't decided if I am going to make little loops or if it just going to be flush yet.) It is installed at the bow because I wouldn't be able to fasten it once the last section was glued in.

I had a small amount of epoxy left after gluing the triangular section in, so I thickened it a bit more and made a ridge on the console front where the removable section is, to provide a seal against water getting in.

Fuel Tank Seat Casting Deck Centre Console

November 3rd 2003

I have now sanded the bow area and I'm very pleased with the result.

So - the hull is finished, with all bits installed!! I just have a little bit of the finicky sanding, paint it, attach the rope, install the electrical stuff, a bit of chandlery, and install the outboard to go now. (whew - is that all?)

My god - it's a big boat

Rear View with hatch installed Hatch Hatch Hatch Seat Centre Console Bow View Cleat Mount Cleat Mount A Really Bad Night Shot A Really Bad Night Shot

November 20th 2003

Well the sanding continues, and I have started applying the undercoats, remember I am using a water based epoxy paint supplied by BoatCraft Pacific.

January 3rd 2004

Hey Hey - I'm still here everyone. Sorry about that...

Over the last couple of months I have completed the undercoating of the outside of the hull, completed all the topcoats, completed the rub rail paintjob and reinstalled the winch post with it's associated hardware and VOILA - The outside of the hull is complete and ready for the water.

I then installed the rope around the sheer, I want that "old look" about the boat. I Like IT!!!

I have completed the last of the coats of the epoxy on the interior and am now ready to paint the inside of the hull.

The hatches are all complete and the hardware installed on them - hinges and clasps etc. I am not going to paint these as I very much like the epoxy on wood look.

I now am going to work on the boat shade as I found the plans for a home made shade on the 'net', I think it will add to the look I want even further.

Epoxy Coating Epoxy Coating Epoxy Coating Epoxy Coating Decorative Roping Decorative Roping Decorative Roping

January 11th 2004

It has been a busy week on the boatbuilding (well, the evenings at least.) First of all I cut the supports for the boat shade and epoxy glued them to the gunnels. I also measured and cut the boat shade blocks and the rods that go into the block.

The following day I epoxy glued my 9mm strips together - I have run out of 18mm marine ply. I also epoxy glued the blocks to the supports on the hull.

I then sanded and shaped the shade supports.

I then sanded the supports back and gave the blocks a good epoxying - take that you blocks

With this completed the hull is now finished, so I gave the entire inside its first coat of AquaCote two part undercoat.

Installing Bimini Bracket Installing Bimini Bracket Installing Bimini Bracket Installing Bimini Bracket Installing Bimini Bracket Installing Bimini Bracket Bimini Support Poles Installing Bimini Bracket Installing Bimini Bracket Bimini Support Poles Primer Primer Primer

January 12th 2004

Not much to mention tonight - it is after midnight! I have applied the second undercoat.

Primer Primer Primer

January 13th 2004

Today was more undercoating! The third and final coat...

I can now proceed with the topcoat - off-white, the same as the outside of the hull.

Primer Primer Primer

January 14th 2004

Tonight I completed the first of the topcoats - It's starting to look great!!

I have encountered no problems, the paint is coping with the heat - I am almost in the tropics after all, and it is tending to mask a few of the imperfections in the finish. I must reiterate that I was never after a production boat feel.

My greatest compliment has been from a visitor to the neighbours next door who said I "was doing a great job restoring the old boat" - I was so pleased by that, just the look I wanted.

Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat

January 18th 2004

Oh My God - What A Weekend - The vessel has been transformed!!!

The second topcoat was applied...and the third topcoat was applied... With all the topcoats completed, on the casting deck at least, I then installed the anchor, the bollard (it has a centre clip that holds the chain in place so the anchor will not slip), and the hawse pipe.

Topcoat and anchor Topcoat and anchor Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat Topcoat

Then it was the transoms turn - I installed the two eyes on the transom.

I then turned my attention to the console...

I installed the electric switch panel and the 27meg waterproof speaker...

then the rev meter, the fuel gauge and the 27meg radio in it's waterproof housing was installed...

I then installed the rod holders and the vent covers that keep the spray out of the holes created for the engine controls...

Last but not least came the steering wheel...

I then installed all the hatches with their locking clasps...

I have measured the area of the canopy cloth needed and I'll be getting that in the next couple of days.

Instruments and Cabling Instruments and Cabling Instruments and Cabling Instruments and Cabling Instruments and Cabling Instruments and Cabling Instruments and Cabling Instruments and Cabling Instruments and Cabling

January 30th 2004

We are almost there now! The launch date has been set - I'll alert the media

The battery has been installed, the first of two; all the electrics have been completed and the steering system finished. I only encountered two problems - the first was that I couldn't reach the wires under the casting deck for the navigation lights so Liza was stuffed into the hatch and she terminated the connections - such a funny sight. The second was the fuel gauge didn't work but the folks at VDO replied very promptly for my request for help and it was sorted out. So everything works...

The day of days came last Sunday when Rohan, remember Rohan? He was the chap that left half of his fingers under the bow on the first rollover - well he came back! Anyway, he came over last Sunday and with Katia's expert eye (she made sure the engine was centre) we mounted the engine. Apart from buying Whitworth nuts for different bolts - try and get them off after you force them on - the installation went smoothly.

Bimini Frame Battery Rear Bin Steering and electrical wiring Engine mounted Engine mounted

On the Monday Katia performed some more magic for me (Monday was a public holiday down here - Australia Day - "Australians all let us rejoice..." ) and not only started the canopy for the boat shade, but she FINISHED it. What a trooper...

Making the Bimini Making the Bimini Making the Bimini

February 1st 2004

It has been a good weekend for the boat - the construction is almost finished...

While I completed the last of the topcoats on the interior of the hull and the gunnels, Katia took to one of her many talents and painted the name on the side. She used the leftovers of the the Aquacote paint used on the rub rails and the bottom.

The finished product was great. I also finished off the console. Katia also painted the website name and "I Built This!" on the transom.

When all of this had been finished I got stuck into the floor and applied the first of two coats of Treadgrip, a rubberised compound that will make the floor non slip. The colour is Sand, and like all my other materials for the construction purchased from BoatCraft Pacific.

Non Slip Flooring Paint Non Slip Flooring Paint Rear view Name Name Katia painting the Name Katia painting the Name

February 20th 2004

The past couple of weeks have been filled with doing all the "little" bits. I have done some work on the trailer, the stainless steel rails are installed on the casting deck and the stern, I needed a bit for my engine - she hasn't even been on the water yet and a relay failed, and I worked on plans for my seat. The boat is also registered!!

Last night I made the box up that will house the esky and I have the struts that will make the seat back. All is in readiness for the launch on the 20th March.

March 20th 2004

The Boat Is Launched!



  Copyright Jeff Fitzpatrick 2001 - 2012