Steam Yacht Thordis

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Planking

We decided to plank up the midship sections first as this was the weakest and most mis-shapen areas and get the line and strength of the hull back so we could chop out other areas without worrying. We're using Scottish larch and initially we riveted three planks on each side leaving an open plank between each. This sounds a bit strange but the wood was still green (unseasoned) and we thought it could dry on the boat without holding up the work on the ribs. It also gave us plenty of places to cramp the ribs down but adds to the work because you then have to accurately fit both sides of the infil planks later on.

It should be mentioned at this stage that the framework for the steel bulkheads has already been fitted at an earlier stage to keep the hull in a rigid shape but are not fixed permanently yet as I seem to be 2" short in the engine room! So far the planks have bent in quite nicely without any steaming but as they get to the stern they take on quite a twist (almost 90 degrees) and I envisage a few more complications there.

These two photos show the tree we have earmarked for a one piece stempost. In Larry Pardeys book 'details of classic boat construction' he says, to find a tree the right shape for a big one piece timber is like trying to find a million carat diamond. Even having found one, there's no telling what it's like inside until you cut it open. You can use all your knowledge and experience, all the work, time and money, but if it twists, warps or cracks in the wrong place you can start all over again!