We teamed up with Rolf again, this time for the chainplates. We had the chainplates bent out of stock mild steel flat bar with Van Bebber but we needed to weld on the bit that the bolt securing the dead eyes to the chainplates attaches to.
Garrett got to pull out this bad boy, a horizontal bandsaw. I don’t know much about these machines but it cut through the steel like nothing. It was easier than slicing hard cheddar at work. The blade, with water running continuously, basically laid on the steel and made a perfectly straight cut.
We have two chainplates per side per mast, that makes eight total. The mizzen chainplates are a little smaller at, I believe, 2 inches and the main chainplates are slightly larger, again Garrett will correct me but I believe, 2.5 inches wide.
After Garrett cut each of the pieces to be welded out of bar stock inch and a quarter, Rolf used the old iron lady to bore the 1/2 inch hole we decided on to accept a half inch bolt to hold up the rigging. I do believe I heard a “bore-ing” joke escape Rolf’s mouth. But for me, I loved watching that beautiful faded green machine spin out product. I’m sure years and years and years from now I’d be equally bored…pun intended 😉
There’s something entrancing about watching something do what it does so well. Just like a violinist with instrument in hand or a bartender sliding drinks to thirsty customers. Sure it has its moments of frustration and we all don’t want to get out of bed everyday with a smile but this is a piece of history. Rolf’s told me the story but alas it’s a blank but I do know she’s older than Rolf, so there you go.
So, Rolf drilled, cleaned, and rounded than threw it to Garret (literally) and he spun the bored tube on this cool sander thingy (technical term) and presto! With the rust blasted away it looks like we went to West Marine and paid $50ea. when in reality we found a 2 foot bar in a salvage yard for 8 bucks, so $1 per fitting. I like those numbers.
Next step was to weld all 8 pieces to their respected chainplate. Babies for the mizzen and biggies for main.
Rolf tacked the pieces in place then turned Garrett and I loose to weld the rest!
Garrett and I have found
our new hobby. Although
Garrett learned quick that
he has to remember to eat
something! Shaky hands
makes for a grueling mastery of welding.
A great 3 hour work day! Next is to start positioning them on the hull. If you don’t remember, I know I haven’t forgotten, this is when Garrett says I can paint the hull!!!! He just wants to get the first holes drilled while he can still see the fasteners in the planking. The rest of the work on the chainplates thereafter can happen after we are in the water. We’ll have to create the metal straps that go around the lower dead eye which then attaches, by bolt, to the pieces we just welded onto the chainplates. Then we’ll have to make the dead eyes of course, and then the rigging which it still TBD but Garrett’s really contemplating kevlar rigging worm/parcel/and served. Our neighbor and buddy is doing that on his Aries 32 and we’ve been helping/watching the process and it seems super sweet but more on that at a later date. I gotta get home and make some dinner!