We have finally reached an actual construction phase, and none too soon. It can get a little disheartening when there’s lots of work being done but all you see is an empty hull.
We will skip some work I did to make a cored transom, as it had some gap issues and won’t be used. Next up was the all important ballast tank/fish box assembly. These are 4 feet long, fixed to the stringer, and each should hold about 10 cubic feet of water, or about 75 gallons. That’s 600lbs per side of ballast. Of course, this boat will be used for surfing on an inland lake, so that’s just the beginning of the weight.
Looking forward, you can envision that the engine sits just forward of the tanks. The fuel tanks will sit directly forward of those, between the hull side and the big foam stiffener.
Gluing them in place was a bit of a challenge, as the stringers aren’t the smoothest sided from the factory glass work, and there’s literally nothing to brace against in the boat.
The best one can do is bracing with scraps. Only a boat shop would have clamping setups made of teak and mahogany…
Making frames for an existing boat can be a challenge, especially with stringers, stiffeners, chine shapes, etc. One trick I learned is the “Popsicle Stick” method. Basically you use shop scraps, in this case a pile of lauan plywood pieces, and a hot glue gun. Stick it in a piece at a time until you have the exact shape of the bulkhead, add a few stiffeners so it doesn’t lose the shape, and take it over to be transferred onto your sheet stock. Works like a champ, and only needs very limited fitting when you move to the boat.
Here you can see the glued in finished product. Gaps were between zero and 3/8″, well within epoxy’s gap filling abilities
Today, the bulkheads are hopefully curing to the point that bracing can be removed, and on goes the slow and steady work of glassing and stiffening. Tanks should hopefully be ordered in the near future, and an engine might just find her way back into the hull.
Tabbing in the frames is always tedious but nice to complete. Thanks to the demo process, I committed to a decision on how to build the sole. Pieces of the fir in the hull that held the original sole in place were still pristine, with the stainless screws in great shape and the wood smelled perfectly fresh when cut. This, again, is wood from 1963!
And with everything in place:
These will be large landings for the sole, lots of glue surface area: