With the hull planked below the deck, it is time to start working on the top side of the ship. There are a number of things I can work on, so I decided to do a little bit of planning.
I have the Model Shipways Bluenose kit’s instructions as well as a full practicum for building the ship. As I previously noted, the practicum follows a very different approach from the instructions and leaves some steps out.
It might be time to really take a look at the order of operations in the instructions and the practicum and identify all the differences. Understanding the two approaches can help me to formulate my own plan of attack.
I started by going through the entire set of instructions, and listing out each step. Then I did the same for the practicum. I was careful to refer to things in exactly the same way. After making a list from both, I started going through the plans, identifying every part that was labeled to create a master list of everything that had to be built or installed.
Once I had these three lists, I started comparing them. I found things that seemed to be left out of the instructions, so I went back through the instructions and found where they were mentioned. I did the same for the practicum.
The end result is that I have a list of the steps, in order, for both the instructions and the practicum. I have notes about exactly which things are skipped in the practicum. I can also clearly see the different orders of operations.
With all this information in hand, I started outlining my own set of steps. I organized things around reaching certain milestones, like finishing the planking, finishing rails, completing aft deck furniture, etc.
It took several passes to make sure I had everything listed.
I focused mostly on the short term – the next 5-10 steps. Later items can be rearranged as necessary.
I put everything into a spreadsheet. I grayed out the completed items and entered the dates I finished each step. I highlighted my next few steps red so I could easily find my current tasks.
This will also help me to ensure that I don’t accidentally skip anything. I know from going through the instructions, practicum and plans, that I have all the major components of the build listed. If I think of some smaller step that I want to make sure I do, I can just add it here and have confidence that it won’t get lost.
Since I decided that my next milestone was to finish the upper planking, I now know what I need to do to accomplish that. I can’t install those planks until I have the transom framed and the knighthead / hawse timbers installed (since planks attach to these). I also know that I’ll need to cut the scruppers and carve the waist cove into the planks before I install them.
So, my next few steps look like this:
- Cover the mast slots.
- Frame the transom, including the transom ‘tumble’.
- Install knightheads and hawse timbers.
- Install cable chafe blocks
- Clean up the stanchions created by the bulwarks to ensure they are sized correctly.
- Figure out how to cut the scruppers and cut them.
- Carve out the waist cove.
- Install the bulwark planking.
Many of the other build logs I’ve seen install the deck planking before building up the bulwark planking. That might be a wiser move, but I really want to be done with hull planking, so I’m going to do that first. Now I know what I need to get busy doing.