Build Log: Norwegian Sailing Pram - Model Shipways - 1:12 [COMPLETED BUILD]

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Aug 1, 2020
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20210313

Started work on the Norwegian Sailing Pram today. Both transoms are finished along with the keel board and 2 bottom planks. The pram has no frames that the planks are attached to; just the transoms and each other (internal bracing comes later on in the build). Assembly is upside down over two profile molds.

Bending the planks was necessary so the wife’s no longer used large barrel curling iron came in useful. Have been resting it on its stand and holding the handle down with one elbow while running the planks over it. That works but I’m thinking about a jig I can clamp down that will hold it in place with the barrel pointed off-table to make plank bending a bit easier.

So far it is a straight-forward build. Looking forward to continuing work on it.

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20210317

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day everyone.

The pram is progressing nicely. Have the bottom planks, keel board, garboards and strake planks installed. Have been taking my time and letting the glue between the planks dry overnight; progress isn’t fast but it is steady. Will work on the final planks on each side (the sheers) this evening.

Fixed the hair curler to the table with a piece of leftover kit wood and a couple of clamps. Definitely makes bending the planks easier. Just have to watch out for the barrel so I don’t burn myself. (I doesn’t help that my work table is round; just need to keep aware of my surroundings when the thing is heating up and cooling down.)

Preparing the planks involves a bit of carving at each end. Keep telling myself, go slow – no deep cuts. Then it’s a little light moistening of the inside of the planks, bending over the iron and dry fitting the planks to the hull. I let everything dry for a couple of hours (or overnight; depends on how late I get started each day) then unclamp, glue and reclamp. I check the fit of the planks and add a bit more glue and clamps as needed to keep everything tight. Plank ends are trimmed once the glue is dry.

Took the pram off of the molds this morning to check on last night’s work. Wanted to check from the inside to make sure everything is going together correctly and the planks are tight to each other. Everything was not quite right as I found that the stern transom knee ended up out of true somewhere during the assembly (I’m sure I pushed on it a bit at some point; doesn’t matter how it happened just needed correcting). A bit of scraping with the knife and the application of some acetone and the transom knee was off. Let the acetone evaporate, cleaned up the stern transom and knee, and glued everything back together. All well again with the build.

The last 4 photos show the cockeyed stern transom knee; the pram back on the building form with the knee installed properly; the stern showing the way the planks overlap; and the build so far with all planks trimmed up.

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20210321

Busy weekend working on the pram. Cruddy weather kept me inside the best part of both days. Hopefully Spring weather will arrive this week; when it does I’ll have to balance model time with bike riding & hiking time.

Work has come right along once the hull was planked up and off the mold. Skeg and bilge keels glued on before coming off the mold the the inner frames, inwale, bow and stern transom knees, thwart supports, rudder gudgeon, battens for floor boards, rub strips and oarlock reinforcements were all glued in place. Along the way the bow and stern transom curves were cut and finished and a slot was cut in each inwale for the rearward plates that the mast will be tied off to. I installed the support for the mast - instructions said it was a two part support one with a hole and the other for the mast to rest on; both parts have holes so I glued a small reinforcement on the keel board under the mast support just in case it is needed. Centerboard was completed and seems to slide okay in the centerboard box; will probably sand it just a bit more before painting.

One major ‘oops’ that brings to mind something about measure, measure, measure – related to the inwales. The directions said to use the 3/16” x 3/316 strips for the inwales. I see 4 strips that look about the same size, measure one side of one and it is the correct size. Grab the matching strip and proceed to bend both to fit (used the outside of the sheer planks as a drying form). Strips are formed and get glued in on the inner side of the sheer planks, trimmed in at the bow and stern transoms. Transom knees and thwart supports get installed. I begin to notice that the thwarts take a bit of sanding to get them installed and they don’t look exactly like the photo but are close enough. Over all the pram is looking like it should. Then I get to the instructions for the floor battens – along the lines of ‘take the two 3/16” x 1/8” strips – and I start wondering what is this? There are no 3/16” x 1/8” strips in the bag…wait a minute, there were; they are now the inwales. I’ve gotten far enough in the build that I’m not ripping things out to start over; the 3/16” x 1/8” strips were used for the floor battens. Next came the rudder gudgeon and oarlock reinforcements – yep, am supposed to cut these from the left-over parts of the 3/16” x 1/8” strips. Instead, I cut them from some of the scrap that held laser cut parts. All ended up OK and I’m just reminded to measure, measure, measure before cutting and/or gluing.

One minor error in the instructions – for the oarlock reinforcements. The instructions only contain the location for the forward set; photos in the instructions and on the box clearly show two sets – one aft of the forward thwart and one aft of the center thwart. I used the same location measurement (1-1/2” actual [18 scale inches]) aft of the forward most thwart support in both pairs of supports.

The rudder is next along with getting the thwarts and floor boards ready. Then comes painting followed by the metal parts, mast forming and rigging. Still plenty to do.

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20210328

Have the ship finished. Was able to work a few hours each evening and then over the weekend. A couple of things discovered along the way – all minor:

  • there is no outhaul cleat with the parts (fashioned one from scrap)
  • the halyard cleat is with the parts and on the plans but not really mentioned in the instructions (installed it on the mast as the tie off point for the halyard)
  • there’s not enough 0.3 mm line to do everything the instructions call for (used some 0.25 mm line I had in my collection of spares)
  • the instructions don’t mention that holes are needed in the stern transom knees until it says to thread some line through them.
The kit came with 3 rigging clips but only called for one on the bow end of the forestay. I used the other 2 on the mast end of the backstays (this is not called for and the pictures don’t show it; I decided to use them).

I only formed 2 of the 4 oars that came with the kit. Haven’t decided yet if I’ll finish the other 2.

With everything the right size and the instructions followed, when all is done something does not quite look right. The rudder seems a bit too high and the gaff seems too long. Sometime in the next couple of weeks I’ll shorten the top of the rudder just a bit, shorten the gaff and lengthen the rubbing strip on the mast where the gaff meets it.

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Uwek

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Congratulations for finishing this nice and interesting boat - well done !!
And what comes next? Any plans for a new project?
 
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