HMS Beagle Model Ship Project
Week 21: Poop deck problems (March 7-13, 2011)
The poop deck has presented a lot of unforeseen challenges. The plan is to be able to lift the whole thing up a few inches to access the servos and rudder inside. So first I cut the deck out of a 1/4 inch basswood board. Then I planked it using the same technique as the others. So far so good.
Because of how tall the sail servos were I had to raise the poop deck a little higher than planned by adding some basswood strips on the bulwark rails. Then I added 1/2 inch wide planks on either side to hang down over the bulwarks to keep the poop deck in place laterally and (hopefully) make it a little more watertight.
But then I realized that the top of the transom, which acts as the poop deck's aft railing, is now way too short. I thought about trying to add some more wood to it, but, ugh... My poop deck has also somehow gotten a slight twist in it, so it's not laying perfectly flat on the port-aft corner. Double ugh...
So I did a rethink on the poop deck. First I sanded the 1/4 inch deck down to less than 1/8 thick. Next I figured out how to put the servo for the rudder on its side (well hopefully it will work) and cut out the extra rails I had added. So the height now is about where it should be, I just need to figure out how to somehow latch it down securely in the event of the dreaded tip-over.
I'll be drilling a hole into the poop deck for the mizzenmast servo anyway, so it can still be mounted vertically without the height being a problem. I'll probably end up mounting it up through the poop skylight to help conceal and waterproof it, yet another historical alteration. Ah well...
Finishing the rudder went much better. Cut the ends off two pins and used my trusty Leatherman to press them into the rudder's oak dowel. Shaped a square-ish tiller from basswood and pressed onto the pins with wood glue in-between, being careful not to put pressure on the rudder guide. Looks like a pretty secure setup.