Having learned my lesson about asymmetry in the construction of the frames, I approached the Utility's frames very differently. First, I drew out frames 1 and 2, as well as the keel backing, full-size on a sheet of 1/4" marine-grade Douglas Fir plywood.
|Frames & keel backing traced out on the plywood.|
I learned an interesting thing about mahogany. Apparently, it is rather light sensitive. Driving home from the lumber yard, a small portion of the board was sticking out my back window. After about 2 hours in the sun, that part had turned considerably darker, as seen on the keel in the photo below.
|Keel and frame members laid out on the plywood.|
I fastened the gussets onto the frames using Glen-L Poxy Shield epoxy, (thickened with #2 silica filler), and 1-1/4" bronze screws. The frames & interior surfaces of the transom were encapsulated with 3 layers of Poxy Shield. After each layer dried, I scrubbed & washed off the amine blush using dish detergent, warm water & a Scotch Brite pad. I also sanded lightly between the layers with 220 grit sandpaper.
|Gluing the forward frame members onto the plywood.|
Another thing I did differently than with the Squirt was to take construction of my building form much more seriously. I made it from 2x8's and 2x6's, with well-reinforced cross braces made from 2x4's left over from the Squirt form. I took a lot of care to make sure the surfaces were level, clamping them into position before fastening with 3" wood screws. Trying to build something with level surfaces on a sloped floor was a little tricky. The key is to mark the positions of the legs on the floor once you've gotten the parts level. That is, unless you're going to bolt the form to the concrete floor. That's the preferred method, but several builders don't do that. I didn't.
|Frames, transom and keel on the building form.|