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  1. #1
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    Default Building the OZ PD Racer - now renamed the OzRacer


    On another thread or two in the Design forum, there has been a little discussion which it seems may well lead to an attempt to hold the 2007 PDRacer World Championships at the Goolwa Wooden Boat Festival (no one has told the Official Body yet, so let's just keep that as our little secret for now eh?), and of course the Queensland Championships on April Fool's Day have already been announced.

    The only snag in all of this, is that to date, as far as we can tell, there are no actual PDRacers in the country, so we (Boatmik and I) have set out to rectify that situation by building a suite of them. OK we're building an identical pair, to the PD(Puddle Duck) Racer design rule, interpreted by Boatmik, with the most important bit, the colour scheme, chosen by yours truly.

    (Just to skip forward a bit. This is a video of one of the boats to come from this devlopement in 2010 - it shows a square shaped boat with polytarp sails can sail very well indeed - Brad Hickman sailing in Oklahoma - OK)
    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B3f7n1IWozg"]YouTube - PDRacer #431 at Lake Eufaula Oklahoma[/ame]

    Some of our northern hemisphere compatriots, have produced boats that are mildly efficient. Many are spectacularly economical and simple to construct, although not all could be described as beautiful, and some aren't even handsome.

    Our objective is to produce a pair of boats in essentially one weekend, (except for painting), complying with the rule, that will sail efficiently, be reasonably durable, economical (read cheap) and most importantly look reasonably attractive.

    We have already given ourselves a bit of a head start, by laminating the foil blanks and chine logs (the bent bits round the bottom of the hull sides), and since we have elected to fully coat the boats in epoxy for durability we will precoat one side at least tomorrow so we can get going.

    Once we have proven the construction, Boatmik will offer an "Australianised" metric version of the drawings on his website (free download in keeping with the spirit of the class).

    To kick off, below is our budget, and our thoughts on the minimum construction cost might be for a basic boat, we'll tell you how we went in a week or so!

    Pic Shows Boatmik hard at work on the new secret keel design (I've seen it, but you lot will have to wait till after we win the cup!).

    Cheers,

    P

    http://www.pdracer.info
    Last edited by Boatmik; 5th Nov 2010 at 02:26 PM. Reason: to provide more of an idea of where the boat got too - this thread is really long!

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  3. #2
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    The pics begin:

    1) Bits of 125 x 19 finger jointed pine (Ex window reveals) being de-stapled. These are 1500 long, and as we need 1100 and 900 respectively for the centreboard and rudder, will need to be made longer. There are already more joints in them than one can poke a stick at, and the foils need to be 22 mm thick anyway, so we've decided to do a bit of what my beloved calls "quilting". ie, cutting a perfectly good stick up into little bits, and gluing it back together to make a stick in a different shape.

    2) Now we have a pile of 19 x 22's that are too short one end.

    3) A few minutes of puzzle work, and we have the strips in a configuration that gives us a 2000 long board, ready for laminating. I have chosen "yellow" cross-linked PVA, because we are going to be glassing the foils when they are finished, and it's plenty strong enough.

    4) The boards glued (top of pic) while an eclectic collection of second-hand junk waits to be converted to boat scantlings. In that pile are pine skirtings, door reveals, a WRC corner stop for cladding, some 12mm Crapiata boarding, and goodness knows what else. It's free and in the spirit of the project, so we'll overlook any nail or screw holes.

    5) Laminating the chine logs. We used two 10mm bits of pine and yellow glue, on a simple form comprised of a bit of 6mm ply with some screws in it. Note the packaging tape on the ply to stop the bits sticking to it as the glue goes off. Yellow glue is fine here too, as we intend to coat the whole of the interior with epoxy, and in any case it is quite water resistant.

    So there's the headstart we've given ourselves... tomorrow night I guess we start in earnest.

    Cheers,

    P

  4. #3
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    Thumbs up wheres the dust?

    P you could eat off that shed floor, if your in my area swing by and let me know how you do it!
    Have fun with the project though, sounds like a lot of fun. Keep us all updated.
    Scotty

  5. #4
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    Thanks Scotty!

    Well it's Friday, so we're off and running! Well we're talking a lot, and trying to ensure that we have thought of every rule cheat going... we won't necessarily build "cheats" in, but we want to see where the holes are or if the design rule needs plugging.

    I got some double sided tape from a sailmaker today, and saved a few dollars on our budget!

    Pics:
    1) Gratuitous shot of Michael lost in a sea of coated ply. Apparently our el-cheapo ply has a Karri face, and it looks quite pretty, but at 4mm thick it's a lot heavier than 6mm Gaboon would have been (and one third the price).

    2) Michael setting out the first side panels. He's done a terrific job of optimising the design and has nutted out a nifty setout where the hull panels are skewed a little to leave a perfectly formed off-cut that will become the side decks.

    Once we've got it up and running, he plans to make his drawings available to all via his website...(in the spirit of the class...at no cost)

    3) Checking for fairness. Setout is really easy, and Michael has nailed panel pins at the offset points, then clipped a fairing batten onto it with spring clips. It's then an easy matter to draw along the batten and create a perfectly fair curve, right where you want it to be.

    Oh and while this was going on, I wasn't just sitting round doing nothing, I was finally fitting the decks on the Eureka!

    cheers,

    P

  6. #5
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    What the hell is all this talk of "eepoxy" and "Fibreglarse"????? and that really inappropriate word.... "longevity"!!!! I thought the rules pretty much demanded construction ply, recycled Crapiata and construction adhesive.
    As for the sails, sod ply tarp, what about sarking? That is nice an reflective on one side for dazzling the opposition and has lovely Blue with Black print on the other..... also it is Tyvek which is very light and VERY strong.... just my thoughts.
    I hope I don't get into strife for quoting from a PM, but there are some pretty valid points raised, so as well as bringing the six o'clock Saturday update, I'll try to aswer 'em.

    Firstly: Epoxy, fibreglass and longevity; I'm forking out $200 bucks for a boat here, that's half the price of an iPod, but I want it to last long enough to get it to Goolwa in a year's time. We (Mik and I) also want it to be reasonably durable so that we can convince people to build more of them for their kids. Even at less than a third of the cost of an Optimist sail, people will want them to last a season I reckon!

    By the way, the glass tape/epoxy route will make the boat heavier, so a ply/latex paint job may well be faster! :eek:

    Construction Ply Give us a break, do you know how much that stuff is??? We paid exactly $20.00 per sheet including GST, and a crappier ply you won't find on this planet. Looks good but!

    Wisdom from those that know better is that you need at least 6mm on the bottom, and they use up to 1" planks on the sides. We figured this stuff was so heavy that we'd only need 3.7mm thick stuff........ of course it's also brittle, if you check out the second photo. We're going to have to be a bit careful I think...... so use pine or something else if you can get it for a better price than I could this week. (6mm Gaboon was only $52.00 and I was really tempted!)

    While looking at that photo, you may notice that now that we're into the heavy work, Michael has his safety boots on!

    Photo 1: is evidence of the recycled crapiata that we are in fact using. In fact we aren't dressing it either, and we're not too particular about cutting out nail holes.... we just don't have the time and it's sort of not in the spirit of this exercise. (wait for next time though)

    We laminated the centreboard out of 38 pieces of fingerjointed crapiata, 17 wide but none full length...so we can't be accused of not trying to be resourceful!

    Pic 3: shows the poor old Eureka sulking in my study, just when it thought is was going to get completed too.....

    Pic 4: See how safety conscious we are? Michael wears earmuffs while planing off the waterproof PVA glue (not construction adhesive- much cheaper!)

    He also can't hear my constant prattle, but I'm sure that's not the reason he's got them on!

    Pic 5: Cutting the framing for the bulkheads, all 19x19 finger jointed and dressed on the two sides that were already dressed before we milled it!

    Finally [/b]Polytarp Sails[/b] Ghastly stuff, but $10.00 per sail.....can't say more than that!

    Better go and glue stuff!

    More later!

    cheers,

    P

    http://www.pdracer.info
    Last edited by Boatmik; 12th Dec 2007 at 08:31 PM.

  7. #6
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    Great fun watching the two of you build this Midge. Now if I could only build up the courage to try sailing I might have a go at this.

    BTW Eureka's looking really good too!
    Have a nice day - Cheers

  8. #7
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    Rowan,

    When you come up to test the canoe, you may as well try sailing!

    cheers,

    P

  9. #8
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    Looks like I am going to be waiting a while to try sailing then, if I am going to wait until the canoe is finished!
    Have a nice day - Cheers

  10. #9
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    Well it's eleven PM and we've decided that we'd better stop using the planer before the neighbours get home! (Just kidding...we've been gluing framework on panels all night.)

    Pics:
    1) :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: I have no idea what that stuff is on the floor, but I'll clean it up in the morning.

    2) Gluing the chine log (the stick at the bottom of the hull side) on. This form of boat construction is quite quick, where we are going to paint over the finish, we epoxy the join, then use gyprock-screws to hold it all together till the glue dries. The blue tape at the far end of the hull is Chinese for "be careful stupid, this is where you broke the hull this morning.

    3) The front bulkhead and some other bit. The bulkhead has the hole in it (cut so we can put a hatch in for access), note that as this panel will be finished clear, we've avoided screw holes by using clamps till the epoxy sets.

    The curvy bit leaning against the wall in the background is the side deck panel, actually four of them.

    I did think about using brads, but we sail exclusively in salt water, and if water does get in.....

    4) The hull profile. I've searched every photo on DPRacer.com, and think Michael has come up with a beauty! We are both looking forward to tomorrow to see the things in 3D.

    A few observations after day one:

    I think it would be possible for anyone with a clear set of plans building a basic boat, to get it close to paint-ready in one day, if they weren't too fussy, and had all the materials pre-bought.

    We've spent a fair bit of time today refining our thoughts, milling our scrap timber, and generally making things up as we go along. When the drawings are complete, all will be pretty clear. It's a very simple project.

    On the other hand, things like our mast keep getting in the way of progress. We've now elected to build it hollow, square section and using a bunch of old 12mm Crapiata feature walling I've had lying around for a while. This means at least 3 lengths need to be scarfed together to get to our 5.4m mast lenght (for kiddies, a smaller mast option will be drawn - and we'll be making one as well).

    Till tomorrow when we "Go 3D" and qualify for our hull numbers...

    Cheers,

    P

  11. #10
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    Sunday round smoko.

    Report from the blokes putting the Race into Puddleduck Racing!

    Not really, but we finished framing all the bulkheads early this morning, Pic 1 shows all the major components layed out ready for assembly. Still a lot of detail work to do though. Note more of that blue chinese writing reminding us where the cracks are!! :eek: Thankfully with 19 x 19 glued all round, the ply has become a bit less fragile.... here's hoping!

    Pic 2) The easiest and quickest way of fairing boat frames when you are dealing with odd grain direction, epoxy dags, and end grain plywood is with a belt sander. This is the only thing I use my belt sander for as far as I can remember:confused: .

    Pic 3) We think it's easier to bung framing round the whole perimeter of each bulkhead and then just hack out the bits that aren't necessary later. The bloke in the pic wandered in off the street to pose if you are wondering at the inept looking hold on the chisel...... .

    Pic 4) This sort of gives an idea of how all the bits intersect. Joinery doesn't have to be too precise, as the glue will fill all, but it's good to be within a mm or two!

    And so to the next post where we check that it all fits!.....

  12. #11
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    Well we're almost in 3D.

    Pics show the hull form at least, once the hull bottom and decks are on, the boat has a chance of looking quite pretty (for a Puddleduck).

    In the Great Aussie tradition, we have elected to carry a largish rig (we are also building a more modest one for those not quite so into self-harm), and while most of the boats built to date seem to have lee-boards, we will go the whole nine yards, and build a proper centre board case.

    The structure will benefit from the stiffening framework in any case.

    Anyways, my coffee's finished, and Michael is already back in the shed...

    Cheers,

    P

  13. #12
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    5:00 PM Sunday.

    One boat in 3D, the other about an hour away, and we've spent a good deal of today mucking around with detailing again. We are rather keen that we don't want the "simplest boat to build in the world" to turn into something else, but at the same time our style of sailing is a little different to the way they seem to be used in the States, so we want to have a side deck to sit on, as mentioned previously a centreboard case (which will add stiffness to the structure too) and now we'll make the mast step adjustable for rake, so that we can use different size sails and keep the helm balanced....

    Pic 1: Assembly begins by screwing the bulkhead and rear transom with wallboard screws. All screws will be removed later, they are just there to clamp the thing together till the glue dries.

    Pic 2: The front transom gets added.

    Pic 3: The transom bottom clamp (the bit of timber that connects it to the hull bottom) is built oversize, and planed to match the angle of the hull. This is quite easy to do, and it is useful to span a straight edge across to gauge the angle required for planing, and better to check progress with an sliding bevel. Both transoms and bulkheads need the same treatment.

    Pic 4: Finally faired battens ready for the bottom to be fixed.

    Pic 5: The bottom finally screwed and glued. Again, all screws will be removed after the epoxy is set.

    Presently the bottom is very light, but will stiffen up with the addition of internal structure and a couple of battens on the underside.

    More pics later this evening probably!


    P

  14. #13
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    Final Weekend Report! (have a break for a few days while I'm away on business!)

    Well we got our two boats to a floating stage, but not operational...

    We have no doubts that building one basic boat could be achieved in a weekend by a moderately skilled person, but two weekends would give a bit more relaxation time.

    Our boats have a few complexities which we think will take another day's worth of work on each: Foils to be shaped and glassed, side decks and bouyancy tanks installed, centreboard case and thwart, as well as an adjustable mast step.

    Then there's another day or two of glassing, bogging, and painting, and of course a night or two to make two sets of sails and a couple of masts for each boat.

    Why a couple of masts?? Our sailplan calls for a largish sail, which would probably not be suitable for beginners or kids, so we will build two rigs for each boat. We have enough tarp, and the mast material is free, just a bit of dillying round (and I'm good at that!).

    Snag is, I have commitments out of town all next weekend too, so we'll just have to see how we go... my guess is that we'll go sailing without finaly paint within a fortnight from now, but then I was going to have the Eureka finished by Christmas 2003 as well!

    Pics show one boat on the lawn this arvo, and the garage which is starting to look like a hatchery. It's amazing how the curved side decks (not shown) changes the boat visually; you'll just have to wait and see.

    Cheers,

    P (tired but happy!)

  15. #14
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    Looks great Midge. I have been going over the PDRacer website and I think that they are a great idea to get into sailing. SWMBO might even approve too!

    Just wondering, are the holes in the transom for bungs?
    Last edited by Boatmik; 12th Dec 2007 at 08:32 PM.
    Have a nice day - Cheers

  16. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wood Butcher
    Just wondering, are the holes in the transom for bungs?
    Yep!

    We plan to use good old sink plugs on a bit of elastic. That's one of the great things about not taking it all too seriously, we can have a bit of fun in the detailing. Originally I thought we'd use tennis balls, but couldn't stand all the bad jokes that'd spring from it!

    You may be able to go sailing before you get to test the canoe yet!

    cheers,

    P

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