BWCA Lining up stem forms Boundary Waters Group Forum: Boat Builders and Repair
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1JimD
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03/19/2015 08:22PM   (Thread Older Than 3 Years)

Here is a trick for lining up your stem forms. The sight sticks are temporarily stapled to the stem forms. And the eye ball is used to align.
Two sticks on each end.

Jim
 
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HighPlainsDrifter
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03/19/2015 11:12PM  
This is a very good tip. You have a sight on the keel line, but with this method you also need to make sure that the stem mold is plum.

While building my Ranger, I found out (the hard way) that my eyesight is a bit crooked. My keel line was true but the stem mold was a bit off plum and would have resulted in a crooked bow (or stern). Fortunately I discovered the problem as I checked the fair of my molds. My solution to find the problem was to run a true plank along the keel line and hang a plum bob off each end. Sure enough, the plum bob told the story of the crooked nose.
 
Alan Gage
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03/20/2015 09:36AM  
Line up the cross hairs of the laser to the vertical and horizontal lines on the form, temporarily clamp in place, drive two screws, move on to the next one.

Quick, easy, accurate.



Alan
 
1JimD
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03/21/2015 03:06PM  
Alan
I was into Menards today, they weren't giving away any Lazer Levels ! Ha !
I do like your method !

Jim
 
Alan Gage
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03/21/2015 04:33PM  
No, they're not cheap. The one I use, a PLS-180, is about $300. I bought it a few years ago when I was building my house and thought long and hard before buying it. As it turns out it was some of the best money I've ever spent. I can't count how many times I used that when building my house and then building my shop. Not to mention the countless uses I've found that are non-construction related.....like building canoes! It's a huge time saver and has made some jobs, which would have been a real chore, simple and easy.

Alan
 
1JimD
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03/21/2015 06:50PM  
I can definitely see where they are a great help in carpentry. I truly wish I had one ! That's why I checked at Menards ! I'm sure they are worth every penny !

Jim
 
HighPlainsDrifter
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03/21/2015 08:46PM  
quote Alan Gage: "Line up the cross hairs of the laser to the vertical and horizontal lines on the form, temporarily clamp in place, drive two screws, move on to the next one.


Quick, easy, accurate.





Alan"


I see the laser on #'s 2, 3, and 4...... what about the rest of the molds down the line? What happens to the vertical component when you are building a canoe with a flat keel line ? What happens at mold station 0 when all of the remaining molds are in the shadow of station 0 ? If you say that you set up on the opposite side, then how can you be sure that you are in the same plane as the opposite side ?

I think I prefer sighting on sticks :)
 
Alan Gage
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03/21/2015 10:24PM  
quote HighPlainsDrifter: "quote Alan Gage: "Line up the cross hairs of the laser to the vertical and horizontal lines on the form, temporarily clamp in place, drive two screws, move on to the next one.



Quick, easy, accurate.







Alan"



I see the laser on #'s 2, 3, and 4...... what about the rest of the molds down the line? What happens to the vertical component when you are building a canoe with a flat keel line ? What happens at mold station 0 when all of the remaining molds are in the shadow of station 0 ? If you say that you set up on the opposite side, then how can you be sure that you are in the same plane as the opposite side ?

I think I prefer sighting on sticks :) "


I set the laser up in the bow and start placing the stern forms first, working my way forward so there's nothing to block the laser beam from the form that's being placed.

It takes a few minutes to get it set up properly and the first step is making sure the laser runs dead straight along the center line marked on the strongback. Once the laser is in position it isn't so much as breathed upon until the last form is screwed in place.

The laser is self leveling and gives me both a plumb and level line so all I have to do is match the lines from the laser with the center line and water line that are marked on each form. Just line up the cross hairs. I didn't keep track but to set all 15 forms on my current build took 45 minutes at the most.

When I get done I can site down the forms by eye for confirmation but that's superfilous, the laser is more accurate and less likely to be fooled. If I want to verify all the forms are at the same height, after they've been installed, I can just move the laser so it's to the side of the strongback and the horizontal beam will hit the edge of every form and I can tell at a glance if any aren't in line.

If I want to see if they're all vertically aligned I can raise the laser so it's higher than the forms and it will shoot a line that will hit the top of each form so I can be sure all the vertical marks are lined up.

Before I start stripping, and while the laser is set at the canoes water line (the horizontal lines on each form), I make a mark on the wall at this height. Then, when the canoe is all stripped and fiberglassed, but before it's been removed from the strongback, I set the laser to the height I'd marked on the wall and instantly I can see the canoe's water line as it flows along the entire hull. I can take pictures of where the laser shows the water line at the bow and stern and can refer back to them later so that if I'm trying to work out trim I know exactly where the designed water line is on the hull.

I can also drop the laser down a little and it will show me how the shear rises from the center height.

I've used it on my last 4 builds and it's been perfect on each one.





Alan
 
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