Tag Archives: model making

The Work Continues.

Just returned from ten day trip to Santa Fe, Taos and the Canyons of NM, AZ, and UT. Must say that our RELIANCE is certainly the equal of the great art of Santa Fe and Taos (no bias all all!) but it is very hard to compete with the grandeur, scale, and beauty of nature. No contest, it is nature every time….  We flew home from Las Vegas: I am still struggling to wrap my head around the mirage of Las Vegas appearing out of the desert after visiting Grand, Glen, Bryce and Zion Canyons and Monument Valley…..

In my absence, work continued on RELIANCE with multiple efforts underway.

We are starting to splice wire. In the first photo Herb and Bill are developing splicing jigs. In the second photo, hands of our new “expert” are worming, parceling and serving – complete with miniature serving mallet – (see 1938 instruction manual in background) 
Bill is also working on the spreaders (photo 3). 
Keith is placing miniature rivets in pad eyes (photo 4). (These latest fittings bring RELIANCE into conformity with our “Configuration Date” (First AC race). From pictures we can see that fittings and components were added, moved and changed during the racing campaign. 
Steve is working on the boom crotch (photo 5). Although our RELIANCE will ultimately be posed underway with sails, we anticipate that for a short interim period until the atrium is built, she’ll be displayed at a mooring with topmast housed, and gaff, boom and mainsail resting on the boom crotch.
Meanwhile Mike and Harrison Casting Co are making our gooseneck assembly, and Burr is completing the capstan assemblies.

1. Discussing splicing jigs 2. Hands of the splicing expert 3. Rosey the Riveter 4. Roughing out the Spreader 5. Working on the boom crotch

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Thank you Hasbro!

Had a great session this week. Burr has been making four of the large capstans – three on deck and one for the boom. These are similar to the one on display in the museum store – which is of slightly later vintage, (photo 1).  The winch barrels are jewel-like (photo 2) and we can’t wait to see the completed winches.

Bill has been looking at the mast plans to see how the shroud eyes are kept in place. On wooden masts there would be cheeks – bulges in the mast on which the eye of the wire rope shroud (properly wormed, parceled and served) would rest. With a steel mast there’d be angle iron instead of cheeks. We’ve been wondering about the shape of these and along comes another RELIANCE serendipity moment as one of our guests, a retired Newport News employee, came to us wanting to understand how rivets in RAINBOW’S metal mast were bucked. We quickly showed him our RELIANCE mast construction and engaged him in a discussion of mast construction including our angle iron dilemma. He’s going to check RAINBOW drawings and Newport News archives… How cool is that!

Our 1903 pre-commissioning crew arrived today and were waiting on deck for their allotment of RELIANCE uniforms. The deck of RELIANCE will soon be a busy place! (Photo 3) 

I mentioned in an earlier blog that we’d received 35 G.I. Joes from Hasbro and I want to heartedly thank them for their donation. As you can see and imagine when they are in proper uniform that they’ll be an awesome addition to the display. THANK YOU!! (photo 4)

1. Display winch 2. 1.5 inch tall model winch barrels 3. 1903 crew 4. Thank you Hasbro

Configuration Management

There is a lot of effort going on behind the scenes to make sure our RELIANCE is accurate. Boats, especially race boats, change during the season. We chose late August as our configuration date, when RELIANCE was measured and raced for the Cup, since this timeframe is when we had the best pictures. Ours has been a constant battle for configuration management. 

For example, NGH’s approved drawing 86-126 (from MIT Hart Collection) shows the original placement of three topmast backstay staples and a trysail staple as shown in picture #1 and as placed on our model as in picture #2.  Our visit to the NYYC in NYC last Spring to see their model showed a discrepancy which was confirmed in picture #3 as blown up in #4. 

Our metal casting expert, Mike Mirman, then used this picture to created a new fitting, shown in #5.

1. 86-126 Stern Details 2. As designed configuration 3. afterguard on fantail 4. As raced configuration 5. As raced configuration

Fall Happenings at The RELIANCE Project

Things are moving fast this fall. We’re working on completing all the deck fittings and soon will be moving on to boom fittings.

Our woodworker who is building our deck hatches, monitor, and companionway is back from summer hiatus. It seems as everyone is really charged up!

In September we received display cradle designs from Roger Martin Design, a naval architect firm. This design is similar to one proposed by the School of Engineering students in their project with us last year. At that time we were not sure how strong our hull and deck were so we opted for “Plan B” as a student project. Now that we have the hull, we are levering their “Plan A.”  It will be quite spectacular! Three 2″ o.d. steel rods will be inserted through the keel. These rods are welded to blocks at 15 degree angles replicating her heeling over and attached to a heavy steel 6′ square base plate. Thus the RELIANCE will appear suspended in air without any stray guywires.

We began this week on a biggest technical challenge, drilling three perfectly center-aligned and parallel 2″diameter holes through 3′ of keel. On Tuesday, we moved RELIANCE under the chainfalls and turned her on her side so we can position the drilling mechanism. Over the next few weeks, we’ll make certain of all our alignments, build the bore jig, and complete the drilling – VERY CAREFULLY!

In the meantime we continue to work on our 4′ real-sized wooden spar cross sections, the rudder, spreaders, and a myriad of other tasks. Enjoy the pictures….

 

 

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Visualizing 1/6th Scale (With the Help of Some 4′ Sections)

We are building 4’ long sections of real-sized mid-sections of the wooden:

–          Topmast  (58’ 4” long, 13” diameter)

–          Club Topsail Yard (68’ long, maximum cross section of 13 5/8” x 10 1/16”, tapering to 4.5” at ends)

–          Club Topsail Club (57’ 6” long, maximum cross section of 9 ½” x 8”, tapering to 4” x 3 ½” at ends)

–          Spinnaker Boom (83’4” long, 12¾” maximum diameter, tapered to 4½ ” inboard and 5½”at other end)

The topmast, yard and club will be shown together as a display, with the topmast and yard vertically next to each other, just as they would have been when sailing, and the club lying horizontally next to the yard.

Shown below, we have cut our douglas fir lumber to dimensions with the help of Dan Shea.(all the wooden spars were douglas fir for lightness and bending strength–the original topmast being douglas fir but changed to sitka after a June 1903 dismasting and the club increased in cross-section size of 7 ½” x 6 ¼”)

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First: 5” x 5” glued together as topmast sides, further cuts outlined on ends.

Second: Various pieces of the club, yard and topmast stacked waiting further cuts and assembly.

Third: Kerfs have been cut into these planks to aid in chiseling and planning out the centers. (If you count, there are extra yard pieces. We have made extras yard sections from leftover pieces we have, and hope to sell these as furniture/ fund raising displays, but more about this in the future)

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Off to Dan Shea’s shop next door (Check out his Bristol Boat Company website bristolboatcompany.com ). His expertise is so valuable and he has really big tools, so we’re jealous! We also used his planer to get planks to the right thickness. Yard top is shown in left picture and topmast in the center picture, and lumber back in our shop in the right picture.  Dan wears the red shirt, and Bill Lawton waits to catch the pieces.