Well, I’ve just had a big day up at Duck Flat Wooden Boats doing some work on the 3 PDRacers they are building for the nationals at Goolwa in March.
I’m not the only person working on them. Robin Badenoch has been in and more or less finished the masts and is on his way with the foils (centreboards and rudders). He had also made a good start with precoating the plywood sheets with epoxy.
The picture right shows the blank with grooves routed with grooves to provide a guide for an accurate hydrodynamic profile. The second shows Rob sanding the foils down to the routed grooves after coarse planing. Normally you use a template that is supplied with our plan – but I made up the router jig for use at Duckflat – they can supply routed blanks if you want to save time and effort.
Duckflat are aiming at keeping their boats for the long haul and minimising maintenance – so a full three coats of epoxy over the panels makes a lot of sense – that way they will be less maintenance than a fibreglass boat.
My job was to get the hulls underway.
I was up there yesterday and laminated three pairs of chinelogs – here are one of the pairs pic right. Basically to make up the total of six I used the same lamination setup as in the plan but just clamped more chinelogs to the jig with the brown packaging tape between them to act as release tape – glue won’t stick to it.
Then I started to mark out the hull panels on the plywood. Duckflat have made some templates and I decided to use them as guides for a power router. The router is a very impatient tool – but used carefully I was able to produce side panels and deck panels for 3 PDRacers in an afternoon.
I tried first to cut the panels out completely with the router – but it was just too slow – too much material for the router to remove and a lot of smoking sawdust! So I ended up rough cutting the panels a little oversize and then running the router round the outside to produce the shape – I could do one of the long cuts with the jigsaw in less than a minute then follow up with router – taking another couple of minutes to create 3 identical panels each time.
I actually think it would be pretty possible to cut most of a PDR approximately to shape and attach the pieces of timber framing. Then use the timber framing as a guide for the router – or use the router to trim after the boat is part assembled using the adjacent panels as a guide
But in this case I made completed panels for three boats in an hour or so. The biggest advantage is all the panels are very close to identical. The picture rightshows the results of a couple of hours labour. About half the time was involved in working out the best way to do it.
I’ll be up there again next week to do some more. I hope to get the boats to 3D stage next week before I head up to Sydney for Xmas. That means they can be registered.
This will double the current number of registered Australian PDRs to 6 and bring the worldwide number to 123!!!