Starting the planking

With the keel, transom and stem pretty much done, it’s time to move onto working out how the planking will work. This isn’t an easy job – each plank is a different width and shape, and all that has to be worked out early on.

Stage one was making little blocks the same width as the plank landings will be (that’s the overlapping section between each plank where the nails go). We did a rough calculation about how wide each plank should be for a start. But the plank widths vary – that’s because you need a narrower plank where the hull curves sharply, and wider planks where the curve is gentler. So the spacing of the planks starts off wider near the keel, and narrows further up. Plus we needed to allow for the optical illusion of the rubbing strakes at the sheer which will make the planks look narrower than they are. We tacked the blocks onto the centre mould to mark where the plank landings would be.

Once we had got it looking right at the centre section, we used a vanishing point board to work out the plank spacings at different sections on the boat.

Then it was just a matter of tacking battens on at each landing point. And for the first time we can see the actual outline of the boat. Pretty nice. Although we need to make some adjustments at the stem where the battens need to concertina up a little.

Nailing the battens on near the keel took a bit of effort…