The Naiad Voyages

Mark Austen

2016.08.14 - No Mistakes Today

Another fairly early start and although the main task today is to get the foredeck started, I have to finish the bridge deck first. Nothing major, just glueing pieces of wood in the gap between the bridge deck and the hull. Although this was a perfect fit when it was first cut, it proved too difficult to get in and out of the hull due to its length. So I cut a small pieces off each end until it would just go into the hull without having to distort the hull. Now that the bridge deck has been epoxied in place these gaps need to be filled.

Then a break for a coffee.

Once done with coffee I made a start on the foredeck. Having cut out the deck and checked it for the fit I realised that I needed to construct the chain locker before anything else was done on the deck or I'd be in trouble. So the four sides for the locker were carefully cut out of my dwindling supply of hardboard and once I was happy with those I cut out the sides from 6mm ordinary plywood that I have. It's not a good grade of plywood but I need the thin stuff to take the curves. Three of the sides, the fore, port and starboard sides will rest against the hull so will not need to be strong for support purposes. The aft side, which rests in part against the samson post will need to be reinforced as it is not supported anywhere else except by the samson post. The inside will be lined with glass fibre matt and epoxy which will withstand the chain rubbing against it when it is let out for anchoring.

By this time I had been working for three hours and without any errors so I felt it was time for a tea break.

After my break I wedged the four sides in the gap in front of the samson post and epoxied the corners with thickened epoxy. When this is dry I will take it out of the hull, trim it up, put the bottom on and make it into a decent chain locker. It doesn't have to be completed before the foredeck is fixed but enough so that I know that it can be removed from inside the boat once the samson post has been removed. I'll leave the glass fibre matting and epoxy on the inside until later.

I was going to use a bucket like Shoal Waters but I decided that it was going to be a lot of effort to wedge the bucket in the tight space, was also very wasteful of the space in front the of the samson post and would also require the construction of a skirt from the anchor pipe to the bucket to prevent the chain from missing the bucket and to restrict any splashes from getting onto the bedding. Using a chain locker like this, the pipe will direct the chain into the locker and little or no splashes from the chain should get on the bedding, there only being a small gap between the locker and the underside of the deck.

After yet another break, this time for a late lunch, I started my CAD program and looked at the lines of the Fairey Falcon to try and determine how I was going to cut the side decks out of the sheets of plywood. I fiddled around for a bit and found that I could use 3 1/4 sections 10" wide x 48" long from the plywood to construct each side deck. I then went back to the workshop and cut out the templates from a sheet of 6mm plywood that I have.

Having clamped the templates in place I noticed that once the side decks are on I will have to find another way to climb in and out of the hull. At present I'm using two 12" sections of tree truck, on each side, as a step and I can reach the hull inside with one leg whilst standing with the other leg on the step. Mind you, only just. I'm always very careful getting in or our of the boat, one slip and I not be a happy boy. No sir, indeed not!

But with the side decks on, I won't be able to straddle over the decks. So another way to step in and out will have to be found. I'll think about it.

A piece of Sapele cut to fit the gap between the bridge deck and the hull.


The gap on the other side has already been filled.


I did not have a piece of hardboard big enough to create a template for the entire foredeck so I made one for half of it and even so, it was in two pieces.


The template was flipped over to check that it also matched the other side.


The template was used to draw the required shape on the marine plywood (not easy to see in this photo but the lines are there).


And the deck cut out.


In order to ensure that it would be sufficient, I cut well outside of the line drawn from the template as you can see here.


The deck was clamped to the hull and the fit checked.


While I had the deck in place I reached under it and with a pencil drew the position of the samson post.


And also drew a line on the deck where the hull ended. I'll cut close to this line before the deck is fixed but I'll still leave a little more than required and plane it off when the deck has been glued and screwed in place ensuring a perfect fit.


The aft end of the chain locker from inside the hull.


The locker sides epoxied together. The chunk of wood in the middle is wedged in tight and is the only thing holding the locker together at this point.


Cutting the blanks for the side deck templates. These are 12" x 48" in size.


The banks clamped to the edge of the hull. The outer edge of the hull was marked on the underside of the blanks.


The template now cut to fit the hull. Now the inside edge of the side decks was carefully marked on the templates.


The side deck templates now cut and clamped to check the fit. No, your eyes are not deceiving you, the forward end of the side deck is wider than the after end. For most of it's length the side deck is 9" wide but the front end where it meets the foredeck is 12". The curve increases from about 2' 6" back from the foredeck.