Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Fixing the bulkheads

New, big fat bulkheads made: 12mm thick, with 20mm softwood edges and a ring screwed and glued in place for the paint-bucket hatch covers. I screwed in the edges - chines? - fillets? - while the glue hardened, and realising that the screws add nothing to the strength of the joint, removed and filled the holes afterwards with epoxy.

Then to working out where to put them. I calculated that my lamentable inaccuracies of craftsmanship would o'erwhelm any calculations, and settled on placing the deck, and then fitting the bulkhead, and gently tapping the two towards the pointy-end until contact was made along all the edges. The decks needed a bit of chamfering for this to work: the front fifteen inches is chamfered, nothing more.

Then I drilled and screwed the deck in place starting from the pointy end. And then drilled and screwed the bulkhead in place.

Naturally I made a mistake, not pressing the bulkhead firmly down against the floor of the hull before applying screws, so a certain amount of removing screws, repositioning, and filling the holes up had to take place.  But as Palfrey once told me, the art of woodwork is that of hiding your mistakes.

And then I unscrewed and removed the deck, leaving the bulkhead where it would eventually have to go. From there is was a simple matter to remove it, apply lashings of glue, and screw it back into the self-same position.

While I was about it I removed all the brass screws from the deck and filled the holes. I can't think they will add any strength and the screws can get themselves recycled for all this extra fixing-things-in-place. The brass is soft and a good many of the heads get munted and now I wish I'd used steel ones, since they're turning out to be only temporary.

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