9 December 2010

Small bits of work in freezing weather

I can't do anything on the boat because it is so cold. I have been working on the new bulkhead I want to install in the house. Basically it is 9mm t&g pine boarding screwed and glued to a 4mm plywood backing. The plywood is in two sections, partly because that was the maximum width available locally, but in fact a complete panel would be impossible to fit into position because of the  taper of the cabin roof. The joint is covered by the third board in from the right. I have dry fitted it and it does fit, all be it very tightly. The sequence is: the boards are screwed on to the plywood on a layer of "no more nails" wood glue. When the glue is set, the screws are removed, and this has worked, more or less. (Poor man's vacuum bagging.)

When I have fitted the two parts in place, the final loose board will be snapped into place and screwed and glued to the plywood over the joint. Then the screws will be removed when the glue is set and hopefully I will have a reasonably flat panel of tongued and grooved boarding to the main cabin and smooth ply into the "fore cabin". I will fill and undercoat the bulkhead panels in the house and just put the top coat on in the boat when it is warm enough, after filling in last screw holes and the panel joint.

One dodgy thing I have done. Two of the boards cupped quite badly (curved up due to expanding on the sides facing the plywood). I have sprayed the outer face of these boards with a water spray for the last two days, and they have actually flattened. Whether this will hold after I have painted it is anyone's guess. I can see why professionals use vacuum bagging. It is impossible to clamp baords flat fully any other way. Screws don't really do it.

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