Saturday, December 8, 2012

Four on the floor

Today brought another two wretched forays into the quest for the slick and quick way to scarf sheets of plywood. Scarfing, for those new to the term, means cutting an 8:1 bevel along the edges of two boards, then glueing them together along that overlap to make a larger board. This was especially challenging, as the Moe has a sixteen-foot floor that is a full five feet wide. And three-quarters of an inch thick. I thought that might be a pretty stiff floor to bend onto the curved hull, so I decided to do it in two layers of 3/8" plywood. So each layer is composed of two full sheets scarfed end-to-end, plus two third-sheets scarfed on along the side. That makes 42 feet of scarf joint, for a full 84 feet of scarf cutting. 

Today's first invention was a clamp-on edge-cutting device, where a beveled Skilsaw runs down the jig and makes the perfect bevel. Well, it worked sort of okay but not great. The Skilsaw made one of those bad burning cat hair smells, and the cuts were less than ideal.


So for the third-sheets, each eight feet long and sixteen inches wide, we made a goofy vertical jig on the table saw and shot them through. This actually worked brilliantly. Unfortunately, all the rest of my scarfs will be on the ends of eight-foot sheets of plywood, and this system will not work. Back to the drawing board.


Anyhow, by quitting time we had all four of the big panels laid out and glued up. Next we scarf the ends of these and make the two 5'1" x 15'9" floor panels.


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