Friday, October 29, 2010

Getting Rid of That Blank Look!


The pine laminated very nicely to form the keel blank.  I then marked the foil on one end of the blank.  My plan was that I would run it through the table saw at depths that corresponded to the foil outline--just like I did with the foam for my practice rudder (yeah I've decided that was just a practice foam is just not gonna do the trick!)  The difference,however, is that the pink foam weighed nothing, and this plank (even though it's pine) weighs a ton!  I tried the table saw thing but trying to push it through by myself with any degree of accuracy was going to be a dissaster!  So I decided to bring the saw to the blank by using my skilsaw.  This seems to be working great although it takes a while.  I'm using a piece of 3/4"ply as a straight edge that I clamp in place.  I then set the depth, and make a run down the blank.  Then I unclamp, move a quarter inch, reclamp, reset the new depth, and cut again..and repeat..over and over.  It's not hard, and seems to be working quite's just a bit tedious and takes some time!

I had a good talk with the guys at Fiberglass Supply yesterday.  Matthew was very helpful as I talked about my keel ideas.  The guys at FS are totally cool and are always helping me brainstorm stuff.  So it turns out that I don't really need to make this keel out of carbon fiber...even though CF is sooo cool!  The biggest advantage to carbon is how stiff it is for it's weight.  And in certain situations, this is really important.  I'm not that concerned about making the keel fin lightweight.  So I can use S or even E glass..and just increase my layup schedule to reach the same strength as the CF.  It may flex a bit more..but it will still be strong (at less than half the price as CF)  Besides, I'm gonna paint the rudder and keel orange(cause orange is fast!) so no one would be able to see the awesome black carbon anyway.  I head off to Seattle tomorrow to work a few probably work on shaping the keel fin some more come Monday.