Monday, April 14, 2014

Making a Mast

Bob Allnutt, Victory #2, found some spongy wood in his mast below the goose neck. Now he's debating rather to replace the mast with wood or metal. This begs the question, how exactly was the LNVT's mast made? First cut a groove, which will become the wire chase, down the middle of two 3" x 1-3/4" x 13' boards. The boards are then glued together and hand planed to the final 3-1/4" round, finished diameter. When I expressed surprise that the spar shaping was done by hand, Tommy said "Too long for a lathe." Very good point ;-). He couldn't remember the type of wood used (other than it wasn't the local type of mahogany which is a poor wood) but said it was both light, rot resistant, and plentiful. He does remember using rosewood for some spars. Those will last a thousand years he said.

Quarter Sawn Teak

Tommy Chen Inspecting a Teak Log

Tommy Chen and I had an interesting discussion today about the teak he used. The trees were generally over 100 years old, some even approached three hundred years. He knows, he counted the rings! All his teak was quarter sawn. This minimizes the amount of softwood (i.e. the summer growth) exposed in any one place. It's the missing softwood that can give decks that wavy look.