Over the past few months job skills apprentices have been getting a handle on the whaleboat we are building for the Charles Morgan. It is a big project and has such a unique history. There is a few hours of video that we have from Mystic Seaport when they documented the building of the same boat. We have also been talking with Independence Seaport Museum to work through problems.
Our goal for this semester to to have the keel, stems and molds set up as well as all of the frames bent. The boat is being built right side up and the molds will be held in place with supports attached to the ceiling. One of the biggest challenges for us so far has been the keel rabbet. We typically build boats upside down and lay the keel into the molds. The molds then guide the process of cutting the rabbet for the first or garboard plank. We have templates we have made of the plank fitting into the keel that we have been using to cut the rabbet. It is a conceptually challenging process. Steam bending the frames and the stems is something that we have heard is laced with difficulity.