|Project 4... Sail
Start with a sheet of 1/16" plastic.
Using boat drawing, measure top of sail and bottom sail for maximum
width and length.
Cut 2 for the top and one for the bottom.
Cut two pieces for the right and left side of sail.
Cut several pieces to make a solid nose piece that can be shaped. (took
Join the 2 top pieces.
Join the 8 nose pieces
Check plans to get the side of the sail angle correct.
Make wooden jib to hold the angle during assembly.
Once the cemented pieces have cured, using copies from the plans, trim
Top, Bottom and Nose.
I plan to make the sail taller than the plan and then inset it in to
the deck where I can add support under the deck to the sail.
Got to remember there is a dip in the deck at the sail.
There also appears to be some sort of foot rail at the outside of the
deck at the sail.
Parts cut from 1/16" sheet plastic.
Left to right.
1. Bottom plate.
2 & 3. will be the sail sides. I have already cut the bottom straight
and the trailing edge angle of the sail.
4. Sitting on the sail side is the piece that will be cut 1/16" under
size to the top plate to hold the sides in the correct location.
5. Two pieces of plastic bonded together to make the top plate.
6. Above the second side is the nose piece. It is made from bonding
8 pieces of sheet plastic together. It will be shaped and then two narrow
plastic strips (not shown) will be place on the inside to hold the sides
in the correct position.
I started by hand shaping the nose piece of the sail.
Using the top drawing to shape the top of the nose and the bottom drawing
to shape the bottom then hand shaping the center to fit.
Then using copies from the full size plans I made sail top and bottom
I glues one to the top plate and one to the bottom plate.
With Dremel, files and sand paper, I cut the plastic down to the plan
for the top.
I cut the bottom down and another 1/16" on each side to recess the
sail side panels in.
The two photos are the 3 pieces glued together.
I even shaped the exhaust on the rear top plate.
Next, I will fit small strips of plastic to the nose piece and to the
top plate so the side plates will sit in place. Remember the sides go on
the outside of the bottom plate.
Below you should be able to see the piece on the back of the nose that
is recessed to accept the side plate making it flush with the nose piece.
I cut drilled and cut the needed holes in the top of the sail. The bottom
most hole is only a location hole for the time being. That's a 1/8" hole
that will end up being 5/8" for the snorkel head.
I don't plan to glue the sides on just yet. (maybe one side)
I need to make and install the sail plane bearing blocks.
And I need to make a couple of pieces to hold the masts and periscopes.
On this boat the masts and periscopes will not be permanent.
I can leave them off or slip them in for display or running.
Sail plane bearing blocks are installed and a piece that will guide
the bottom sail plate tot he side plates.
The two side plates are bonded to the nose piece. After it cures completely,
I will start making the bend around the top and bottom plates. You can
see the exhaust at the back of the sail. It is not in the way. The side
plate fits under the top plate on a strip of plastic ledge, like the back
of the nose piece. Basically the sides will be flush with the outside of
the top plate.
There is now a plastic box under the top of the sail.
This will hold the masts in place under way or on the stand.
The mast will just slip in to their respective holes.
The sail has been been glues and the rubber bands are hold tension on
both side panels.
Side view and top view.
Once cured, I will shape the top nose of the sail and clean up the sides
to nose joint and top of sail.
The sail has been trimmed to height.
There is a block under the center in place.
Where the sail sits on the deck there is a drop.
About 1" from the front the deck tapers up.
About 1.5" from the back the deck tapers up.
On the view above you can see the notch at the nose piece.
The nose piece is correct for the deck and so is the center of the
That drop measured out about 3/16" so three layers of sheet plastic.
The pilot hole for the sail planes can be seen on the side view.
The exhaust was completed at the rear of the sail.
The top of the sail nose was rounded off and shaped.
The sail plane stand off blocks where added to both sides of the sail.
A little more fitting needed to get the sail planes and stand off blocks
to meet properly.
Actually the parts are rough sanded to fit and I need to get after
the parts with fine sand paper and/or a finish file.
Looks like I need a profile photo.
Got it. But this was after I took some 1/4" clear plastic and thinned
it down and shaped it for the port and starboard running lights and the
rear sail running light.
They are just set in place for now. Will be place permanently after
The port and starboard light lens is a single piece that goes all the
way through the sail.
There are two small holes drilled in the bottom of the plastic that
will be painted green and red.
There is a rear light fixture at the back of the sail to be made.
Above the flood light.
It's about center top to bottom.
Will need to scale the photos to get the location closer.
Making the rear light fixture.
I tried to make a piece that was vee shaped.
Total failure. Couldn't get the vee right.
When set in place the thing would spread apart.
While trying this, I was looking at the clear lens slot.
Why Not do the same thing for the light fixture. DUH!
So I measured and made the slot.
Next I bonded two pieces of sheet plastic scrap together. (correct
Once cured, I shaped the piece to fit the slot.
The I rounded of the edges to match the photo.
Glued in place while the piece was still long so, I would have something
to hold on top.
After it cured, I used the grinding cut off wheel on the Dremel to get
the protruding length near the right length.
Then I filed it down slowly keeping the angle lined up.
The pencil mark below the clear lens slot is the mounting point for
the hand railing.
Got to think about how I will do this.
This might requires some jib building and will take patience on my
I decided to do clean up on the sail for primer.
Got out the glaze and when after the places needing attention.
Mostly seams where pieces of sheet plastic were bonded.
Tomorrow while in town getting screws for the Skipjack project, I need
to get some 200 & 400 sand paper.
In this profile of the sail, should note that the sail is 1/4" too long
at the bottom.
This is so I can inset the sail in to the deck.
That 1/4" lines up with the front and back which will be flush with
the deck. (some day)
There's a dome of some sort on top of the sail.
Need to look at more photos to figure out what the shape is and where
it is mounted.
There are other items sticking up above the sail but those appear to
be masts that are not fully retracted.
Using various size brass tubing and 1/16" brass rod, I thought I would
start on the masts.
Using several photos I have found on the internet, I used them to scale
the mast diameters and heights.
I know the sail height. The sail width at the top, bottom and at the
sail planes. Using these numbers I was able to to guess on the masts information.
Brass tubing at the top 4 items in the photo. 1/16" brass rod is the
When building the sail I put a plastic box in the sail to accept the
masts. The box is 7/16" between the top and bottom and 1/2" from the top
of the sail. I drilled through the sail top and the top box levels when
I located the masts on top of the sail.
Using the 1/16" holes I drilled the openings in the sail top for the
masts that would be going in those locations. The snorkel hole has not
been enlarges yet in the photos above.
I made four 1/16" pins (1 1/8" long) that will go through he two levels
of the box under the sail top.
Then I cut 1/2" long, 3/32" tubing to fit over the rod. I cut 1/8" pieces
as well and a 5/16" piece.
I bonded the tubing on to the rod and added a second and third piece
of tubing as the mast would require.
I roughed up the finish so the glue would bond.
The bottom items is the periscope mast. Just have to shape the head
when the glue cures.
Top is the snorkel mast.
Next is the communications mast. It is two parts and I have not finished
the top. It will insert in to the lower section but I have to reshape the
bottom as the top is off set to the back of the lower section. Glaze on
the one side to be shaped. The plastic piece is temporarily the stop and
will be removed.
Third is the periscope mast.
Fourth is the radar mast. Making the radar receiver is next. Was going
to make two pieces of plastic and then put pieces in to separate the top
and bottom of the thing. But. Not practical. Size here is an issue. So,
I think I will take a piece of clear plastic. Shape it and thin it to the
correct thickness. Then I will polish the clear plastic so the sides are
transparent. I will then put grooves on the back to represent the frame
of the unit. Paint the top, bottom and grooves black. When dry, polish
the back again leaving black paint in the grooves. That should do okay.
The mast push in to the holes in the box below the top of the sail.
They are a tight fit and will stay in place even upside down. I plan to
put the masts in place when displayed. And they should be find if I choose
to run the boat with the mast in place.
I have detailed the masts.
I have three pieces to add.
The snorkel gets two rods. One front and one back.
The tall communications antenna gets one on the front.
The radar antenna is a single piece of clear plastic, shaped.
I cut grooves on the back side to represent the frame.
Painted the top, bottom and back with black.
After it dried, I sanded the paint off the back leaving paint in the
I like the effect. I can see through from the front and see the black
lines in the back.
The masts have been completed.
The first coat of dark gray primer is on the sail.
I thought I would show it off.