Thursday, July 21, 2011

Building the LAR Keels for my Gypsy catamaran

In between building the hulls I had to build the LAR Keels. LAR is Low Aspect Ratio . The plan says I can either build the keels from flat panels OR make a small mould. Considering the keels to be quite narrow I would have imagined that it will be difficult the lay up the few layers of 600/225 matt. ( I do not have small hands!). So it was decided that I would make the flat panels and then shape it to the required profile. BUT BOTH THE KEELS MUST BE IDENTICAL! And I do not want to mess around with the keels as both these small keels should be able to take up the weight of the boat when beaching!First the shape and size of the panels are marked on the melamin chip boards. A releasing agent is applied to the surface so that the sheet produced does not stick on to the wood.. To speed things up I made a double sized panel so that it can be cut later and becomes two panels.Next gelcoat is applied. This was followed by the required number of layers of appropriate glass as per Richard Wood's plan.The flat panels are then clamped together and shaped using pieces of wood at the correct positions. The dimensions are given in the plans.After that the required layers of 600/225 biaxial are glassed inside the panels.As added security, I added another two layers of 600 gm CSM on the outside for some extra reinforcement. As you can see from this picture both the keels are almost ready. Maybe a layer of PU paint will complete the job.
This is another tick on my plans. A tick indicates a completed section of the plan.

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