Friday, April 4, 2014

Didi 950 Build - Bottom Skin Panels

Mike Vermeersch's amateur boatbuilding project of a Didi 950 is moving on to the next stage, with bottom panels fitted and work starting on the side panels. Mike is building from a plywood kit that we supplied to him and reports that the fit is good. The kit has jigsaw joints on all large panels, making them easy to assemble either on the floor or on the boat.
Didi 950 with all stringers installed.
Two of the stringers each side, at the junctions between flat and radiused skin areas, have plywood doublers attached to serve as backing pads to the joint. I call these the tangent stringers. The doubler on the upper tangent stringer is in process of being fitted and can be seen running forward from the transom through to the third bulkhead from aft.

In the photo below, the transom has been fitted, followed by the bottom panels. These panels each have two transverse jigsaw joints and join each other at a centreline butt joint over the plywood backbone. In the photo the jigsaw joints have temporary battens over them to secure them while the glue is setting.
Bottom panels fitted.
Mike has also started to dry-fit the side panels ahead of gluing in place. At the right of the photo the forward lower panel can be seen and which will continue through to the transom. The lower edge, as seen upside-down like this, forms one half of the chine. The other half of the chine will be formed by the upper side panel.

Today Mike's 300lb brother decided to test the hull stiffness of this partially-built Didi 950 . He climbed onto the bottom of the boat and jumped on the bottom panels. They passed his improvised test but I think that I would have recommended that he wait until the whole hull was skinned before doing such a test.
Mike's 300lb brother tests the Didi 950 hull stiffness.
The broad stringer that shows on this photo is the upper tangent that will join the lower side panel to the radius.

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