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Thread: Commander 147

  1. #76
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    Jerry, I believe H&L build replacement tillers for just about any boat, and have in stock or patterns for any one design.

    I sent them a pattern of my own, and of course more radical than any they show on their web site.
    Thought they would find a close match to a set up they already had. But I got back was a beautiful and exact laminated tiller of the pattern I sent, rounded and sanded for about 70 bucks.

    There are no glue lines in what they do, so I suppose they use 'plastic resin' glue
    the mix with water powered stuff. Traditional for glue up spruce spars, imco. It's water resistant. But you hardly ever see one of their varnished tillers delaminating. Except down at the tillerhead where the bolts are and people forget to juice the holes through the wood.
    Last edited by ebb; 02-26-2010 at 09:37 AM.

  2. #77
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    Thanks Ebb

    I just did a search and found several people selling their tillers and they were advertised between $60.00 and $100.00 based on the exact tiller you wanted. A very reasonable price based on what I know I have invested in mine.
    JERRY CARPENTER - C147
    A man can succeed at almost anything for which he has unlimited enthusiam.

  3. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by Commander 147 View Post
    I'm not sure who H & L is but I'm guessing they could build it cheeper than I could because they probably have a lower cost of materials and labor.
    Jerry

    Most likely H & L isn't making any money building tillers. At such a low price they are attracting customers with a classic "loss leader" item. I'm sure it's also a way to get rid of leftover scrap materials and keep employees busy. Something more complicated than a tiller from them will no doubt have "market" pricing.

    I make cutting boards out of my leftover scraps mostly as gifts for friends and customers.

    Ben

  4. #79
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    Spent the day working on Destiny today...

    And the pictures below show why you don't use polyester resins to tab in a bulkhead. The first picture is what somebody did for the previous owner when he replaced the bulkheads. It was coming loose and when I pryed on it a little it just popped loose which you can see in the second picture. I had to cut it loose from the bulk head so I can redo the tabbing.

    My current project is repairing and reinforcing the bottom side of the deck where I will later be recoreing from the top. After patching all of the holes I will be putting a layer of 1708 biax and a layer of 6oz finishing cloth on the bottom of the deck to give it more strength before I cut into the top. And once I had talked myself into going to all that work I decided I would fill the toe rail so I could tie the hull and deck together and make a better looking job of the reinforcing. The third picture is a drawing of what I'm doing at the toe rail.
    Attached Images      
    JERRY CARPENTER - C147
    A man can succeed at almost anything for which he has unlimited enthusiam.

  5. #80
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    Hey jerry,
    To stick heavy mat to the overhead you're going to have to figure out a way to hold it up there until it sets. I don't know what.
    But it occurs to me if you have to go to the trouble of supporting the cloth with thick cardboard and a miriad of battens to hold it all up there....

    why not skip the catortionist wet matt stuff and just support the deck with just enough pressure on the underdeck from spring battens to support recoring the deck from the top.

    The argument would be that you are probably going with closed cell pvc foam and epoxy and glass. The green foam I've used has to be considered structural. Marvelous stuff.
    You will end up with a very strong composite. Stronger because epoxy sticks better to the foam than it does to end grain balsa.

    On the Ariel the foredeck has a plank of plywood down the center from the stem to the cabin. No balsa there. And probably no rot because I found the stip had been isolated from the balsa. Effectively separating the balsa into separate islands. If you are replacing that you could do first one side then the other. You could do the same along the side decks. You'd just make sure you married the sections together real good where they meet.

    Glass matt, while very strong, soaks up an extraordinary amount of epoxy. I haven't done it but imco the stuff will be too heavy to stick to the roof, it'll want to pull away, so it will have to be supported everywhere. However, I think you could get away with pasting 6oz glass cloth overhead. Cloth would allow easier filling and fairing too.


    TOE RAIL
    Filling the inside of the toerail will take a huge amount of expensive epoxy. I know - I filled A338's toerail stem to stem. What's that, 52 feet of 1 1/2"X 1 1/2"X 1 1/2" of fill? Plus waste, squeeze out, and pot life fiascos!
    I 'cheated' by jamming one foot long pieces of wood up in there with lots of epoxy gel reinforced with chopped strand. The wood was milled to make a flat bottom inside easy to fair with the deck. In some places you'd never know the hollow toerail was ever there.
    Using wood chunks cut roughly to fit could be jammed in the cove and the squeeze-out cleaned up easy because the pieces didn't need to be braced or fastened.
    Now there is more wood than plastic inside all along the cove which makes it very friendly to screws and thru-fastenings anytime later.

    Just ideas.
    Last edited by ebb; 02-28-2010 at 08:17 AM.

  6. #81
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    Ebb you know I appreciate your ideas...

    One of the best parts of having this forum is that it offers us the chance to bounce ideas off each other. Many times other people will bring up points you have not considered. That seems to be the situation here.

    When I use 1708 biax my procedure has been to wet out the area I want to apply the mat to then wet out the mat on both sides working the epoxy into the mat on a flat surface. Then I pick up the saturated mat and apply it to the surface I'm woking on rolling out any bubbles.

    Now here comes the part (being honest) that I had not considered. I have not had any problem with the mat sticking to a verticle surface when I applied it. So I had not considered that it would not stick to the bottom side of the deck. And your point seems to be a valid concern.

    Being a bit hard headed once I have committed towards a course of action and since you say you have never actually tried it yourself, I think I'm going to try a section in the bow in the chain locker area. If I have to grind it back out in there and do something else it does not matter as much if it is not as attractive of a finish.

    The side of the hull and to a much lesser extent the bottom of the deck both have a lot of bumps and hollows in the glass work. I had already assumed I would fair those areas out with thicked epoxy before I apply the mat. I wanted a nice smooth surface to make it easier for the mat to stick to it without bubbles and hollow spots.

    BTW Ebb, you will be happy to hear that I am no longer using West System epoxy. I found Raka non-blushing epoxy which seems like it wets out better also. Certainly a lot cheaper and it has a good reputation on the plastic classic forum. The other thing that has been mentioned about this epoxy is that is seems to cause less reactions for people like me who are sensitive to it.

    As far as the toe rail goes... my thought pattern went something like this. It is my hope that someday one of my grandchildren will take up sailing and then ownership and care of Destiny. As a matter of fact that is one of the things that drew me to the commander. I wanted a large enough cockpit so I could take my family sailing and we would all be able to sit in the cockpit comfortably. So I wanted something that would never be a problem down the road. And since the rubrail is screwed into this area it was conceivable to me that over time water could get in there and cause the wood to rot if I put wood up in there. Granted it would take a very long time and likely not occur in my lifetime but possibly in my granchildren's. So I wanted somthing water would not affect. I talked to the folks at Fiberglass Coatings in St. Pete and we came up with a polyester putty that they developed called FC8 that is thickened with microfibers and silica that would fill the toe rail area. I'm not asking it to do anything structural I'm only asking it to fill a void that will be enclosed with epoxy wet out fiberglass. For $90.00 I got a 5 gal bucket of the stuff that should be enough to do the toe rail. Then not being one to just take some salesman's word for anything I mixed up a pint of the putty and put it on a piece of plastic that would allow me to get it off in one piece. I wanted to see how strong the stuff was. The putty was about 1/2" thick and when I tried to break it I could not do it until I supported the two ends and took a hammer to it. Then when it did break it broke cleanly into 3 pieces and did not just shatter. Take a look at the pictures below.

    Here is a link to the website.

    http://www.fgci.com/
    Attached Images    
    JERRY CARPENTER - C147
    A man can succeed at almost anything for which he has unlimited enthusiam.

  7. #82
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    Sep 2001
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    San Rafael, CA
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    Jerry, The whole thing for me too has always been feedback.
    We are engaged in Discussions here
    - sometimes not much
    sometimes too much
    - but always with the thought that anybody can join in
    - or read and move on.
    The most marvelous thing about the internet still is that it is about information,.
    every kind, not just product info.

    I've been taken by product hype so many times that I, if I remember to, feel that research, product and other peoples experiences are necessary before I dive in.
    This is about that.

    Be interesting to hear about your experience with RAKA epoxy.

    I also hope you record for us how the rail cove filling goes. Using inexpensive polyester filler seems OK [VENT THE FUMES, they are toxic], but we have to assume you aren't expecting a bond and that you probably will seal the upgrade with, I don't know, light fiberglass fabric and epoxy.
    Given the age of our boats a reinforcement of the deck-to-hull seam seems like a good idea also. The seam is just about where the end of the fill will be if it is faired with the bottom of the deck.

    Really enjoy the exchange and your photo journal.
    Without question the ability to share photos, insights and experiences with others makes this classic plastic website

    THE BEST on the planet!
    Last edited by ebb; 02-28-2010 at 08:20 AM.

  8. #83
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    Sep 2008
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    Started putting putty into the toe rail today...

    Temperature got up to 61 degrees today which was just enough to start putting some of the putty into the toe rail. I'm posting now because I'm waiting for the 3rd layer to cure enough that I can put in another layer yet today.

    This putty has the consistancy of drywall mud. I used to buy old houses and fix them up so I got pretty good with drywall finishing. It helped with this job.

    The first picture below shows how I marked a referance line on the hull for how far down I wanted to go with the putty. This line is about 1/8" below the deck which insures I'm below the butt joint of the hull and deck.

    The second picture below are the tools I've been using today. A round nose trowel, a 3" drywall knife, a 6" drywall knife, a pint mixing cup, a CC cup to measure the MEKP hardener and a plastice mixing board and last but not least a couple of box fans with one blowing fresh air into the cabin and a second one sucking air out from the forward hatch.

    The key to working with this stuff is not trying to put too much in at once. As I type this I have 3 layers of putty in the toe rail and I expect it will take 5 or 6 to get it completely filled. And then I may need to do a skim coat to level out a few areas after that.

    For the most part I used the 6" drywall knife to put the putty into the toe rail. I used the 3" drywall knife to scrape the 6" knife clean so I did not have putty on the knife anywhere but where I wanted it. The trowel was only useful for stuffing some putty into some inside corners where I could not get with the 6" knife. I also used the 3" knife for mixing the material on the mixing board. I would put the putty on the board and dig a little hole in the center. Then I poured the MEKP into the hole in the center and mixed it until it was a consistant color through out.

    The last picture below shows how much putty I would put on the knife before I pushed it up into the toe rail. For most of the filling operation I used the drywall knife perpendicular to the toe rail and would just push what was on the end of the knife into the toe rail and then move over 6" more and do the same thing again. Once I get it full enough I will use the 3" knife and run parallel to the length of the toe rail to get a nice even layer. Then finally I will do a skim coat just filling in low spots.

    The next post will show a progression of photo's showing layers of putty going in.
    Attached Images      
    JERRY CARPENTER - C147
    A man can succeed at almost anything for which he has unlimited enthusiam.

  9. #84
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    Progression photos

    First one is one layer. Second picture is 5 layers and 3rd. picture is 3 layers (sorry I got the photos switched around a bit) which means I will need at least one more layer to get to the point I want to.
    Attached Images      
    JERRY CARPENTER - C147
    A man can succeed at almost anything for which he has unlimited enthusiam.

  10. #85
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    San Francisco - or Abroad
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    Great work Jerry! (this, and your beautiful woodwork as well!)

    I am about to start this 'rail fill' project myself... I decided to do away with the rub-rail, but filling the rail is necessary in order to install the long Genoa track on the rail...

    I was considering using polyester resin along with a thickening agent... but this putty product seems quite interesting.
    I am looking forward to hearing how happy you are with this product.

    C-147 is fast becoming a VERY happy ship. Surely it will last for generations (They already have a great start!)

  11. #86
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    Thanks Rico

    I plan to use an 8 or 9 foot long Genoa track myself on the toe rail and that was another of the considerations for doing this project. And while we are talking headsail tracks, how long is the jib track you installed? I plan to do one like that and any feedback on how long yours was and how it is working for you would be helpful.

    As far as this putty goes, it gets very hard. It should work exactly as I wanted it to in the genoa track area giving a solid surface to bolt through. It is pretty much exactly what you were thinking of using a polyester resin with a thickening agent (microballons and fumed silica) that is already premixed. All you have to do is add the MEKP to activate it and go.

    I should warn you that the fumes are pretty bad. Even with a fan blowing in from the companionway and another blowing out from the forward hatch while I worked in the v-birth area and me wearing a mask that is designed for paint fumes I still ended up with a headache that I blame on the fumes at the end of a 5 hour day of using this stuff. The shelter Destiny is under is wide open on one end and 6 foot by 6 foot canopied opening on the other. But it still probably helped to hold fumes around the boat more than if it was in the wide open air.
    JERRY CARPENTER - C147
    A man can succeed at almost anything for which he has unlimited enthusiam.

  12. #87
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    Sep 2008
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    Brooksville, FL
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    Well the weather has redirected me a bit...

    away for a short time from the toe rail project and towards finishing up the all mahogany tiller. Yesterday we had another 70 plus degree day so I cut out of work a little early so I could take advantage of the warm air to glue up my all mahogany tiller. Then today the temperature after work was below 60 degrees so I did not want to chance the putty not setting up so instead I finished making the tiller.

    All went well until I was using a router bit to put a radius in the edges of the tiller and I had a blow out. See the first picture below.

    But if you were to hold the tiller in your hands and look at it you would never know it was there unless I showed you what to look for. The second tiller shows the salvaged tiller and the original one I made.
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    JERRY CARPENTER - C147
    A man can succeed at almost anything for which he has unlimited enthusiam.

  13. #88
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    tiller talk

    Jerry,
    Making a second tiller is one thing I have thought of doing, and may still, because I like your idea of an all mahogany tiller.

    I would make the bending/clamping form flat on a table.
    I would use thinner laminations, as thin as 5/32"
    I'd glue a number of veneers together - 9 - 12
    - maybe not all at the same time
    - maybe two or three separate glue ups to keep the bent wood stress small.
    - take the tiller out of clamps when set - trim to its final length
    - and work the desired taper into it. Not sure I would taper just the bottom, but that would be simplest.
    Because the bottom laminations are theoretically in compression and not likely to splinter.

    Then I would put it back in the form and glue a final strip or two on the bottom and on the top if necessary that would become the finished dimensions.
    That way there would be no runout of tapered veneers. Which the H&L tillers all have, and aesthetically imco is this method's glaring feathering of glue line and veneer on the bottom of the lamination.
    Being one beautiful color the tiller could look like a single piece.
    And the grain would run full without runout on both top and bottom.

    Thinner lams theoretically produce less stress in the bent composite.
    Two or three wet and set glue-ups. would produce a tame tiller especially in the outside lamination that has most of the tension.
    Less likely to let go and pop a splinter when finishing.
    Miore glue lines, if it's the right glue, could arguably make a stronger tiller.
    Haven't seen anybody do a tiller this way. With mahogany I'd probably use resorcinol.

    If I ever get to it, I'll give that a try.
    We should always carry a spare.
    That would be the nifty two-tone H&L I have now.
    Last edited by ebb; 03-03-2010 at 08:19 AM.

  14. #89
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    Ebb that sounds like it would make a nice looking tiller

    Not sure it would work with my design unless I eliminated the knob on the bottom side of the tiller. I need all of the laminations to get the height for the knob. And that is also why almost my entire taper is on the bottom. This leaves the top piece almost intact and continuous.

    As I was typing that it occurred to me I could just glue a couple of pieces to the end of the bottom afterwards to make my knob.


    I do have one bottom strip that dies out completely and a second one that comes close which leaves the very obvious glue line from the resorcinol on the bottom which you can see in the picture below.


    I also agree with the thinner strips thought. I honestly think I could have made mine thinner than I did which was 1/4". But when I did my test clamp up everything seemed to work OK so I went with it. But thinner strips would have created less stress just more glue lines.
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    JERRY CARPENTER - C147
    A man can succeed at almost anything for which he has unlimited enthusiam.

  15. #90
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    Mar 2006
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    San Francisco - or Abroad
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    430
    I can imagine that your boat shelter might trap some fumes, but I cannot thing of any other disadvantage. You have a great 'workshop'!

    My Jib track is 4' long. You do not need the full 4', but I wanted to avoid using the ends. I highly recommend the set-up. It has worked beautifully with my sail. Pointing ability increased dramatically with the ability to trim properly.

    I spoke with the putty folks - and as it turns out, they have no suppliers out west. It is hazardous material, so shipping was almost as much as the product... So I may en-up mixing my own putty after all...

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