2680Hrs – Pack Up Your Troubles
I’ve had a really productive day today. It’s a little strange because visually the boat doesn’t really look any different but I’ve ticked off another potentially tricky job and its taken me all day to complete it.
The job I’m referring to involved getting the beams sitting correctly in their troughs.
You may recall that I was reasonably happy with the way the beams had dropped in with the exception of the aft one. It seems I was less than successful setting the aft troughs square to the hull and as a consequence the beam was a bit tight in four places. Before I could tackle that job though I had to make sure that the hulls themselves were sitting in exactly the right positions and that they were dead level to one another and dead level both fore and aft and athwartships individually.
It took a bit of time with the trolley jack, packers, laser level and spirit level before I was happy but I got there.
Once that was done I jumped up on the aft deck and marked the beam to show where it needed to be eased, after that I fetched the fork truck round from the yard and lifted the beam out so that I could work on it.
I used the electric plane and set square to shave off the tight areas before lifting it back into position. This time it fitted far better.
Next on the list was to fit the packers under each beam where they protruded from the beam troughs. On the plans this is done with hardwood but I’ve opted to use the same UHMW (Ultra High Molecular Weight) PVC that I used for the keel protection strips way back when.
Here’s my playskool sketch of where they go, I’ve omitted the beam troughs for clarity
Basically I’ve cut one piece to fix into the beam trough and another to fix to the beam, the plan being that everywhere the beam touches the hull will be UHMW to UHMW which will mean less friction, no rot and no squeaking.
The UHMW that will be attached to the beam is just a rectangle but the pieces that will be attached to the trough needed a little more attention. I cut a groove on the underside to allow water to drain away from the trough, chamfered the edges of them slightly with the plane to accommodate the epoxy fillets running down the edges of the trough and chamfered them slightly to accommodate to sloping floor of the trough.
In a few places I had to make up an additional hardwood packer to take up some slack but generally everything went swimmingly.
I worked my way forward lifting each beam with the jack to allow me to insert the spacers then lowering the beam and repeating the process on the other side.
After each beam was done I checked for level fore and aft and athwartships before moving onto the next. It’s important that the bottom of all the beams are level to each other as this is where the decking will be attached later.
Tomorrow I’ll tackle the spacers that go in from the top of the beams that deal with the slight unsquareness of the troughs.
Here’s a close-up of showing the packers in place.
And one showing all the beams nice and level.