Bluenose Build Log

mrshanks

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#1
I happen to have an archival copy of my original Bluenose build log from the old Lauck Street forum. Although I built this a few years ago, all the tips and techniques described in this log will still work on the current Bluenose kit from Model Expo along with Bob Hunt's excellent practicum. I will repost the log here by adding a new post (with pictures) every day or so. Enjoy!!
 

mrshanks

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#2
One of the things I like to do when keeping a build log is to record the number of hours I spend actually working on the model. This could give beginning builders a rough idea of the time commitment they might be looking at. I do not consider myself a fast model builder so you can take my time estimates to be conservative. Keep in mind that my build times do not reflect the hours spent reading the practicum and researching forum posts. I'd be willing to bet I've spent nearly as much time actually reading the material as building. I'm currently right at the end of Chapter 1 and am transitioning into Chapter 2 of the Bluenose practicum. The 3 key learnings I have obtained so far include:

1. Read ahead! Bob provides many clarifications in later sections and chapters of the practicum. You can also use his photos throughout the practicum to compare back against earlier work. I found this as well as other's forum posts to be invaluable learning aids. I've also found myself reading and re-reading sections and chapters in the practicum. It's important to make sure you understand exactly what Bob is explaining as he is laying the foundation to general principles that could apply to any ship you might build in the future.

2. Relationships! Bob says it over and over. Every part you create and every piece you glue has a relationship to some other part down the road. Using the "read ahead" technique described earlier will increase your understanding of these relationships as you see how Bob progresses with the build.

3. Precision! Carve, sand, and shape every piece you make as precisely as you can. Those of you who have OCD will have an advantage on the rest of us in this regard. Precise fabrication of each part will ensure those relationships we talked about having the best fit possible. The cool thing about working with wood is that you can always redo your work or fix nearly any error you make.

I progressed through Chapter 1 without running into any critical issues. I was very careful while prepping and gluing the keel parts. I also took this time to cut out the bulkheads and do a quick dry fit test. This also gives you the chance to see the general shape and size that Bluenose will be when completed. Go slowly and take your time while carving the rabbet joint and you will be surprised at the results you can achieve. I spent 3.5 hours carving and shaping the rabbet joint on each side of the keel.

Build Duration of this step: 12 hours
Total Build Duration: 12 hours

Mike Shanks

BNRabbetJoint.jpg
 
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mrshanks

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#3
I used binder clips and a machine square to glue the bulkheads to the keel as straight as possible. After the glue dried, I ran an additional bead of Weldbond down the contact seam of each bulkhead for added strength. I did not add the additional timbers for strength as some builders did since I felt the basswood was soft enough and the Weldbond strong enough to handle the fairing-in sanding to come later. By this time, I had also glued in the keel reinforcements, and stern post. I also traced the shape of the stern transom blocks prior to gluing bulkhead O.

Build Duration of this step: 3.5 hours
Total Build Duration: 15.5 hours

Mike Shanks

bnbulkheads.jpg bntransom.jpg
 
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mrshanks

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#4
I faired-in the bulkheads by sanding them in 2 steps. On the first pass my goal was to just lightly sand the laser char off the edge of each bulkhead without changing the shape of the edge. On the second pass I faired-in the shape of each bulkhead and used a plank strip to test my progress. I continued shaping them with a sanding block until I was pleased with the lay of the plank (see picture below). I think its very important to spend some time doing this as it will pay huge dividends later when we begin the actual task of planking the hull. I did find a slight error with the laser cut of bulkhead J being too narrow across the beam. I easily corrected this by gluing a 1/16" strip to bulkhead J and re-fairing. I also mitered and glued in the horn timbers during this step.

Build Duration this step: 11.5 hours
Total Build Duration: 27 hours

bnfairing.jpg bnhorntimber.jpg
 
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zoly99sask

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#5
Hello Mike,looks like a good start,looking forward for the rest of the build.
 

lauckstreet

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#6
Hi Mike,

Good to see you posting your build log on the Bluenose. Followers of your build should take notice of the fine sanding and fairing you did on your bulkheads. The "before" shot shows all the burned edges of the bulkheads and the "after" shot shows how that's been sanded off of every one of them and how each bulkhead flows to the next and previous bulkhead. Fairing the bulkheads is one of the most important steps for an easy and clean planking job as can be seen by the lay of your first plank lying tightly against each bulkhead.

Anyway, thanks for posting this build log.

Take care,

Bob
 

mrshanks

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#7
Thanks guys!

I cut the general shape of the transom block out with my scroll saw and glued it to bulkhead O and the keel. I'll finish shaping it later with my dremel. In the meantime, I spent a lot of time fairing-in the insides of the bulkhead extensions and testing the fit of the waterway and first bulkhead planks. I also lightly sanded the char off the tops of each bulkhead. Once I was pleased with the fit I went ahead and glued in the fore waterway planks with Weldbond and used office clips to keep everything secure while the glue dried. I was sure to miter the forward end of these planks so they fit together at the bow.

Build Duration of this Step: 5 hours
Total Build Duration: 32 hours

bntransomglue.jpg bnfirstplanktest.jpg bnforewaterway.jpg
 
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mrshanks

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#8
It took me about one hour per side to shape and fair the stern transom. Using a combination of dremel tool and hand sanding I ended up with better than expected results. As the transom gets shaped in, continue with the faring in of the aft bulkheads making sure your sanding block makes contact with 2 or 3 bulkheads. In this manner you can visualize the shape of the hull and really get the contour on the final bulkheads and transom to blend in smoothly. With Chapter 1 now officially completed I went back and faired in, glued, and clamped the aft waterway planks. Tomorrow we will begin planking of the hull.

Build Duration of this step: 3 hours
Total Build Duration: 35 hours

transomshape.jpg transomdone.jpg afterwaterways.jpg
 
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mrshanks

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#9
I made a mistake by planking the hull with the narrower planks intended for the deck. Luckily I had sufficient stock in my lumber yard as there would not have been enough in the kit for both the hull and deck. Since I was already well into the planking, I opted to continue with the narrower planks. The result came out the same except for an increase in build time since I had to lay more planks.

planking1.jpg planking2.jpg planking3.jpg
 
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mrshanks

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#10
Next time I'll apply a thinner layer of wood filler since I ended up sanding most of it away. The hull came out very smooth with nice flowing lines. My best planking effort to date. With Chapter 2 now complete, we will move on to planking the decks.

Build duration this step: 39 hours
Total build duration: 74 hours

planking4.jpg planking_done.jpg
 
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lauckstreet

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#11
mrshanks post_id=22385 time=1505155923 user_id=4809 said:
I made a mistake by planking the hull with the narrower planks intended for the deck. Luckily I had sufficient stock in my lumber yard as there would not have been enough in the kit for both the hull and deck. Since I was already well into the planking, I opted to continue with the narrower planks. The result came out the same except for an increase in build time since I had to lay more planks.
Hi Mike,

For some reason these three photos don't show up when I look at the webpage. Just wondering if they show up when you view it.

Bob
 

mrshanks

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#13
Just completed Chapter 3. I was a bit intimidated by the nibbing strake. I followed Bob's instruction closely and spent some time practicing the notching cuts. I used a single-edged razor blade to cut the nibbed planks. I found it more accurate and easier to control than using the Chopper tool. A brand new #11 Xacto was used to cut the notches in the nibbed strake. These notches are smaller than they might seem. After a few, it became much easier. When matching the planks to the nibbed strake I purposely went for a slightly tight fit. The soft nature of the basswood has some give allowing for very fine tolerances on the fit. A standard #2 pencil was used to mark the caulking on the edges of the planks. Like Bob, I glued in the nibbing strake prior to cutting the notches. I was able to fabricate all the nibbed planks prior to gluing them in. This allowed me to make fine adjustments where needed. Work very carefully when cutting the notches as correcting major errors would mean ripping out the strake and starting over. I think its less risky to cut the notch first and then fabricate the nibbed plank to fit. Its easier to make a new plank than deal with poor notch cuts. This chapter went much faster than the hull planking in Chapter 2.

Build duration this step: 8 hours
Total build duration: 82 hours

ch3_1.jpg ch3_2.jpg ch3_3.jpg
 
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zoly99sask

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#14
Hi Mike,I can't see those 3 images either,I tryed to fix it but did not work,when I get home I gibe another try on my pc.
 

mrshanks

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#18
Chapter 4 - Quarterdeck Planking - as Bob describes in the practicum, I was unable to keep the nibbed planks even port/starboard. I also ended up with +1 plank on the starboard side. While not as good as the forward deck, I am pleased with the results and am happy to get this completed. With the deck planking out of the way I can move on to Chapter 5.

Build duration this step: 16 hours
Total build duration: 98 hours

ch4_1.jpg ch4_2.jpg ch4_3.jpg
 
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mrshanks

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#20
Got the waterway planks filled in, deck re-sanded, and another coat of poly. With this, the ship is now completely sealed. Time to attack the bulwarks.

Build duration this step: 2 hours
Total build duration: 100 hours

Ship_Sealed.jpg
 
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