Sunday, 4 March 2012

A small step

Installing the floor battens was today’s task.  The first step was to cut to length the timber for the four longitudinal battens so the joins would meet on one of the steel cross members. This was a relatively simple job.  The next step involved cutting all the cross battens that fit on top of the steel cross members.  Initially the plan was to cut the battens inside Waiouru; however each cross batten requires a small length of “under frame”.  More on this later!  So in the end a jig was made and the cross members cut out and assembled in the workshop.



Richard gave me 10 high speed steel drill bits and a large bag of wood screws.  The timber is fixed to the steel cross members by first drill a hole through the timber and steel, then the timber is fixed to the steel with a wood screw.  This isn’t the easiest task and I quickly realised why Richard had provided 10 drill bit.  If the bits weren’t breaking, then the screw head would snap off.  Nevertheless, by the end of the day the majority of the timber was screwed to the steel cross members.

Earlier, I mentioned a jig for the timber cross members.  Kingspan insulated sheeting will be installed between the battens.  A small timber fillet has been fitted to the underside of each timber cross member.  This will support the Kingspan and prevent it falling into the bilge.

Initially these fillets were going to be fixed to the batten with wood screws.  A quick calculation identified a significant number of screws would be required.  There’s almost no weight in the Kingspan so I used Richard’s battery powered nail gun instead.

We have been able to salvage some of the original Kingspan.

This will be cut down to fit the new batten layout.  If we are to achieve a thermal cocoon then the insulation will need to extend from under the floor to the side of the hull where it must seal with the spray foam.

My current thoughts on achieving this is to screw a fillet of timber under the outer longitudinally battens.  This would support the thin lengths of Kingspan I’d used to fill in the gap.  Hopefully these pieces of Kingspan will come from the offcuts.  Any crevices and cracks will then be filled with spray foam.  This can be purchased in an aerosol can.  

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