Monday, May 16, 2011

Guest cabin update #1

I've found that one of the problems with my plan is that I really have no plan other than making the boat look like the picture ( for the most part). It seems that every time I get going on finishing a wood project, I have to stop and attend to a metal project I've been blowing off. One of my biggest goals has been to build the boat so I can always easily get back to critical systems for future maintenance. Since I don't want to bury some things behind wood work, I wait until I'm doing the wood work before I finalize some of the metal work decisions.

The bow thruster resides under the sole of the guest cabin in the bow of the boat. Because of the extreme hull shape in the bow and me wanting to get the most space out of this area, I waited until now to install the bow thruster and finalize how the sole interacts with the bow thruster compartment. I'm using a hydraulic thruster ( Key Power Inc. ) and from the start of the build, I knew I wanted the thruster in a water tight compartment so that is what I framed. I cut the hole int the thruster tube to accept the thruster saddle, and once I saw the saddle installed I felt the water tight compartment I had framed was too large for the hydraulic thruster. This are of the boat is where my ballast gets installed so I decided to re work this water tight box and give some of the box area back to it's original purpose of holding ballast. I cut the box lid in half, and welded in a bulkhead to create a bow thruster box alongside the ballast box. This ballast compartment is one of seven ballast compartments ( the bow thruster occupies the eight ballast compartment). I have a gut feeling that the boat is going to trim heavy on the port side, so I decided to put the thruster on the port side and re activate the starboard side ballast compartment.

The boat designer calls for about 5200 lbs of ballast ( increased by 900 lbs due to increased fuel tank size). The cubic footage in my seven compartments is more than enough to accommodate all of my ballast.

I welded a tab on to the bow thruster lid and ballast compartment lid so I could bolt on cleats for attachment points for the sole. I also held the hull liner up off of the sole by 1.25" in this area to allow me to remove the sole in this area to access the bow thruster. This was a tricky part of the boat in regard to having a removable sole, but it did work out nicely. I've been holding all the wood 1/2" off of the sole so I can have a place to tuck the carpet vs having to add base board later.

I'll install the thruster later this summer once I'm back into the mechanical systems mode. All the cutting and welding is finished regarding this area so I re painted the compartments and lids before I screwed down the plywood sole.

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