Sunday, September 18, 2016

Some beam attachment prep

Although my beams are not quite done, I've been trying to also work on other prep work for attaching the floats.   Here is the jig I made for locating the beam bolt holes:

Dry-fitting a part after drilling all of the holes:

So far Fastenal has been my source for all of my 316 hardware.   McMaster has quite a bit too I think.

I tried to mount the forward beam plates today but you need three hands to hold all of the different parts in place while trying to get a nut on there.   So, I'm going to have to draft my wife into helping soon.

The spacer bushings on the lower folding strut pivot pins are a major pain.   I am not sure how tight Ian intended them to be, but the ones I have are so bloody tight that I've practically destroyed one trying to hammer it on, even after putting some light grease on the inside of the spacer.    Ordered some replacement tubing, with a wee bit more inside diameter clearance, hopefully goes easier next time.

Have to say, other builders seem to get through these phases a lot quicker than me.  Guess I am just slow but oh well :).

Tiller fab

Tiller is not quite done but it's getting there.  Here I'm setting the final posture of the last piece:

The plans don't say how far into the cockpit the tiller should go.    I decided to go with the above after looking at pictures of other boats, and also after thinking (guessing) that having it be too far into the cockpit would be a nuisance.   Easy enough to extend later on if necessary.

Gluing the last two parts together:

Getting ready to laminate the uni on all sides of the join:

Getting ready to laminate the final carbon layers over the join:

After wetting out the carbon, I just wrapped it around the tiller in a spiral pattern, then peel-plyed it, then wrapped it in plastic to help get any air bubbles out.   Probably thicker than it needs to be but I think that's okay.   In fact I am thrilled so far with how it's turning out - this thing is very strong and very light.   Tiller is being faired at the moment, more later.

Beam tapping

Some time back Ian offered a limited number of 10mm aluminum wingnet eyes for sale, and I picked up a batch.   After painting the beams it was time to fit the wingnet eyes, first by drilling pilot holes, then the final hole, then tapping, then mounting the eye in an epoxy sealant.    There are approximately 36 eyes to be mounted.

I mentioned in an earlier post that I was learning about tapping - it's not something I've done before.   Here are the first two tapped holes of my life:

Pretty awesome feeling, threading something into that that first hole :).

Here I'm trying to do it for real:

I have been encountering major problems with the backing plates falling off after I remove the tap.   The force required to turn the tap seems to be torqueing the plates more than the 5200 adhesive (used to fix the plates to the inner beam wall, according to Ian) can withstand.     I discovered that I was using a slightly too small tap drill (8.33mm) which seems to have been the primary cause (plans say to use 8.6mm, duh on me).   I used this drill partly because there wasn't any metric drills in my tap-and-die set, and I didn't take the time to figure out what some of the other sizes were for.   Well after doing more research, I figured out that an 'R' drill (.3390" or 8.611mm) was the closest my tap-and-die set could offer to the specified 8.6mm.   Weird - I never knew there was such things as letter-rated drill sizes.

However even after going to the R' drill size, I have still had a couple of plates fall off inside of the beam.  Very frustrating - at some point I am going to have to play a fishing game to see if I cannot recover the plates and get them lined up.   

At one point I tried drilling two small temporary holes to either side of the main hole, just as a means of keeping it in place while I did the main tap:

It worked but was awkward.   

I'll update later on the status of my plate fishing expeditions - I have about 8 or 9 plates to recover :-(.   Not looking forward to that - but I'd rather try than deal with them rattling around.

Beams painted

Beams were all primed and sanded, then ready for paint:

After painting (three coats) and a hi-vis non-skid area (two coats international orange):

Getting ready to paint the beam tops:

Masking off for non-skid:

The can of wood putty you see has been serving as my standard corner-radius template for all non-skid area work.   I didn't think it was necessary to non-skid the entire top of the beam, just the area you see.

I even painted the access plate covers:

Had a few runs here and there, but all in all the beam paint job(s) turned out reasonable decent.