From the Perspective of the Kids

It’s always nice to hear what children have to say about our RELIANCE Project; when we get some of their input, it’s always interesting. Here are some recent examples:

Stephen and his Dad came for a visit after sailing school; I asked Stephen to give us his impressions of the boat. Several days later, he came back with a Lego diorama: a waterfront scene just like the one at the sailing school, but with RELIANCE at her mooring. You’ll note that RELIANCE has a bow-mounted cannon. Stephen says: “Every big sailboat needs one!” If only Charlie Barr were so inventive…

The scene is complete with a navigational buoy in the foreground. I like what the sailing school is teaching its young students, but now I’ll have to see if Stephen has smuggled a small cannon onto one of the HH12 1/2’s….

1 stephen's lego

Charlotte brought Queen Elsa to visit her Scandinavian subjects, but it seems the Third Mate has other things on his mind!

2 Queen Elsa

Finishing Off the Deck Edge

Denise delivered the third mate’s jersey, complete with all the details: hand embroidery of RELIANCE NYYC, ribbing at the collar, and ribbing at each sleeve end. Thank you very much!

1 third Mate

Meanwhile, Bill, Herb, and Sandy have dry fit one of the deck edge toe rails into place so we can perfect our plans to complete attachment.

2 deck edge dry fit

This toe rail assembly was actually an extension of the shell plating at roughly deck level to hold an angle iron piece with bull nose at the top. At the bow of the real RELIANCE, the nickel steel shell plate was 5/40″ thick, which lead to another of our “moments.” In our scale, that is 1/48″ thick!

3 detail of shell plate

Our RELIANCE model–with its deck the length of a J-24–had only 21 web-frames to which tobin bronze and nickel steel plates from about 1/48″ to about 5/128″ thick were attached. Imagine sailing your J-24 with that hull!

The toe rail really finishes off the deck, as you can see here:

4 deck view

(The bottom of the angle iron had been laid earlier as can be seen in the foreground)

Deck Edge Update, Shipments, and Spreader Progress

Work continues on the deck edge toe rails. One is complete and the second one is going into the jig for some final-finish work.

1 deck edges

We received a large shipment of nickel plating from R.E. Sturdy, our third such shipment from them. Again, we give them our most sincere thanks and praise for donating to our team’s success.

2 received new ni plating

Also received in that shipment were plated topmast shroud turnbuckles and mast hoops; thank you Tom and Dorothy!

3. And mast hoops and topmast shroud turnbuckles

Keith continues to make amazing progress on the spreader and now it is on to the truss!

4. Spreader progresses

Finally, we moved our benches to align the mast, topmast, and topsail yard so initial work on rigging can be done. This will also enable us to complete our topmast with sheaves and cone parts.

5. Alignment

Design Exploration and Some Extra Recognition

Mike and Sandy took a trip to the Museum’s sail loft and curatorial space to check out special thimble, span hook, and hank designs. Span hooks were used for gaff and boom spans, and we’ve got 65 hanks to make along with 75 rings. The hanks were not clipped to the forestay and topmast stay, but instead to rings on these wires:

11 Special Thimble

12 Span Hook

13 Span Hook

14 Hank

15 Hank

This past week also brought news that German yachting magazine Goose had published a┬áthree-page article on our model. We’ve also received inquiries from other yachting and travel magazines, so our RELIANCE seems to be showing well!

16 Goose

Steve, the SCOUT, and the Steam Engine

Steve continues to work to the upper section of the mast; the angle iron cheeks and, as you can see, the fourteen ladder rungs which Burr had made for us earlier in the year are involved.

7 Ladder rungs

We also had a visit from the Okerholms. Bob brought his beautiful model of HMCo’s SCOUT which was one of the first boats through the Cape Cod Canal when it opened.

8 Scout

SCOUT’s external condenser coil must have made running aground a real nightmare, even in mud!

9 Scout external condenser coil

These photos lead us to Don working to restore our triple expansion steam launch engine, another of our projects in Building 28 (Don’t you love candid photos!)

10 Don works on engine

Boom and Spreader Progress

Sven has been working on the boom…

3 Sven working on boom

…and Keith has been seizing the spreader chain plates with wire, just as it was shown in our drawings.

4 Keith seizes Spreader with wire

It still seems incredible that there was only one set of spreaders on this ~190′ tall rig; 34 feet tip to tip of 3-inch thick Douglas fir. Here’s some spreader progress:

5. Wire Seizing close up

6 Spreader in progress

Continuing to See Progress

We’ve been fretting about constructing our deck edge, having decided we needed the strength of a thin metal toe rail. First, we were going to shape it on our table saw in jigs and a metal cutting blade, then back to the old router routine. seen here:

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This has routed surfaces on both sides, and–in fact–has three routed surfaces and a bulb to very tight and thin dimensions. You can see there are two of us taking care of everything while Bill carefully guides the router along. By the end of the day, we had one 12-foot section completely routed out, and three others almost so. We were so curious about the fit that we just had to dry fit this first piece in place, and WOW it really changes everything. We’ll show you profiles of both sides once we’ve filed and sanded the surfaces to perfection next week.

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