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Test Assembling / Installing the Rudder

Posted by Zachary Wiest in Electrical, Modifications

It has been ages since I posted, and I am sorry for that.  I was out of the country again and then had a bunch of guys come through for 5 days.  Anyways, I am back to work on the Skerry.  I test assembled the rudder and took some pictures so that you could see my modifications to allow for the trolling motor.  Once I put the other side on I side, “heck, why not try to hang this thing on the hull.”  Aligning the gudgeons and pintles is a daunting task.  I spent over 90 minutes trying to get it right.  It is isn’t perfect, but this isn’t the final install.  I just wanted to get an idea for how it will all go.

Time Spent: 2.0 Hours

Total Time In Build: 135.5 Hours

Instrument Panel and Rudder Work

Posted by Zachary Wiest in Decisions, Electrical, Epoxy, Modifications, Sanding, Tools

I have worked on the Skerry over the last few days but neglected to make post about my progress.   This post will hopefully highlight the things I did.

1) Cut some wooden blocks to mount under the seats at the forward and aft frame.  This blocks will be screwed to the frames and hull.  I will install u-bolts through them to allow the boat to be lifted at four point.  I plan to lift the boat out of the water using a davit on my dock.

2) I epoxied the center seat, waited for it to dry, then sanded all the seats.  They are ready for installation in the hull.

3) I prepared the rudder yoke by sanding, drilling out the tiller connection hole and filling with thickened epoxy, and covered the yoke with epoxy.

4) The rudder half that was fitted for the spacers in my last post was routed to allow for the motor cabling to pass through it.  The rudder yoke also has a channel on its underside for the cabling to run to the tiller.

5) I started building the tiller connection / speed control.  The speed control mechanism is directly from the minn-kota trolling motor.  It has 2 wires that run to the battery and 4 that run to the motor.  I connected the wires to it and covered the connections with liquid electrical tape.  Next, I built a small piece of wood, drilled a hole in it, and filled it with thickened epoxy.  This will then be re-drilled along with the yoke to form the connection to the rudder.  The wood piece was connected to the speed mechanism with lots of thickened epoxy.  This will soon be built up and faired with microballoon thickened epoxy.

6) I opened up the instrument panel that I built a few days ago for all the components.  They include a power switch, radio with usb connection, battery meter, on-board charger inlet, and cigarette lighter style power adapter.  Neat plastic latches that will allow the panel to clip into place are also installed.  After I made sure everything fit, I started coating the panel with epoxy.

7) I built a second blank instrument panel for use without all the electrical components.  This was made so that I can remove the battery and all the electronics to use the boat when I don’t want all the extras.  This panel was made by tracing the existing panel onto the original seat which I no longer have a use for.

8) I coated the rudder and dagger board with Interlux Pre-Kote Marine Primer.

Unfortunately I don’t have pictures off all this stuff, but you should get a pretty good idea of what I did by reading.

Time Spent: 6.5 Hours

Total Time In Build: 133.0 Hours

Beginning Rudder Head Assembly

Posted by Zachary Wiest in Epoxy, Modifications

Because my rudder is quite complex with all the electrical wiring, a lot of thought has gone into the assembly.  I glued one half to the the spacers with silica thickened epoxy and clamped it down.  This is just the beginning.  I have some routing for cabling to do before the rudder head meets the other half.  I must also primer and paint the actual rudder assembly first too.

Time Spent: 0.5 Hours

Total Time In Build: 126.5 Hours

Installing Mast Step and Speaker Boxes

Posted by Zachary Wiest in Epoxy, Modifications

I just installed the mast step using some of the same techniques I used for the daggerboard trunk: Marking the drilling pilot holes from the inside, drilling countersunk holes from the outside, gluing in place with silica thickened epoxy, then running 6 wood screws.  The speaker boxes are only attached with thickened epoxy.

Time Spent: 1.0 Hours

Total Time In Build: 126.0 Hours

Seat Supports / Instrument Panel

Posted by Zachary Wiest in Modifications, Sanding, Tools, Woodworking

Today I used some 3/8″ Okoume ply to make some center seat supports and the removable instrument panel.  It took quite a bit of time to measure, cut and form.  I used my jigsaw, hand saw, block plane, and random orbit sander.  The panel will contain the on off/switch, battery meter, cigarette lighter / power port, iPod/USB hookup, and the battery charger.  This panel will be removable to reduce weight when not needed.  The seat supports and the panel also form a battery box.

Time Spent: 2.0 Hours

Total Time In Build: 119.5 Hours

Speaker Boxes

Posted by Zachary Wiest in Modifications, Woodworking

I swear I haven’t been lazy! I have been busy and on vacation.  I got back to work by building some speaker boxes for the forward frame.  Because I cannot ensure that the speakers will be watertight, I wanted to put a box behind them in the forward frame.  This will allow me to assure that the forward buoyancy tank is impervious to water.

Time Spent: 1.5 Hours

Total Time In Build: 117.5 Hours

Making a Larger Center Seat

Posted by Zachary Wiest in Decisions, Modifications, Tools, Woodworking

Because I have chosen to add an electrical system to the Skerry, I needed to make a place for the battery.  I chose to install it under the center seat, right behind the center frame.  The battery stuck out a little bit, so I elected to make a new seat the extended 3 more inches to stern.  I traced the original seat, adding the portion I needed, then cut it with my jig saw.  I will use the original seat to cut a panel that fits vertically under the new seat.  This removable panel will house the electronics and hide the battery.

Time Spent: 1.0 Hours

Total Time In Build: 116.0 Hours

Forward Frame Speaker Ports

Posted by Zachary Wiest in Mishaps, Modifications, Tools, Woodworking

So I had a little mishap to clean up today.  The Skerry comes with a half cut hole in the forward frame for an offset deck hatch.  I opened up the hole a few days ago before thinking about speaker layout.  After the electrical test I decided to mount both speakers in the forward frame.  Because the deck hatch and the speaker have a different diameter, the existing hole wouldn’t work.  It was also not symmetrical with the starboard speaker.  I opened up the hole where it was supposed to go then used some spare plywood, a jig saw, and my router to make a plug for the rest of the hole.  When sized appropriately, I glued it in with silica thickened epoxy.  When this cures, I will fill in the gaps with wood flour thickened epoxy.  While this may be a little bit unsightly, it will be out of normal view in the completed boat as it is under the forward seat overhang.  I plan to relocate the hatch to the top of the seat. I will also be using a hatch that is 2″ larger so I have better access to the waterproof compartment.

Time Spent: 1.5 Hours

Total Time In Build: 98.5 Hours

Custom Rail Shaping

Posted by Zachary Wiest in Modifications, Sanding, Tools

I spent a few hours today shaping the Skerry’s rails.  I primarily used the router.  I also used the router and a mortising bit to remove some of the rail to flush-mount the trolling motor electrical connection and the oarlocks.

Time Spent: 3.0 Hours

Total Time In Build: 97.0 Hours

Electrical System Test

Posted by Zachary Wiest in Electrical, Modifications

Since my Skerry will have an option to hang the trolling motor / rudder off the stern, it has to have some sort of electrical system.  I put a video together detailing exactly what I plan to do with the build.

[vimeo http://vimeo.com/43231540 w=500&h=285]

Time Spent: 2.0 Hours

Total Time In Build: 94.0 Hours