Saturday, September 3, 2011

Wharram Fiberglass Ariki Catamaran

We have a contract to build a new catamaran for a fellow here in FL. He decided that he wanted an Ariki. This is a 45' classic design from James Wharram. I have several other folks interested in this size boat as well and I had been getting ready to build a hull mold for a Tiki 36. Well I thought about it and decided that a hull mold for a boat that was sold versus one on spec made alot of sense.   My client agreed to have the boat built in foam core glass and Hanneke of James Wharram Designs modified the lines a little bit to make it a little better for the glass and here we go.
This shows a model of the Ariki built by my friend and very talented designer/artist Kevin Hutchinson. He has had the hots for an Ariki for 15 some years. He had this model floating around his studio and when I told him we were bulding one he brought this down for inspiration. Alongside are the frames for the model of the Tiki 36 that Kevin helped me work up. Next to the left is the mold that we made from this set of frames and a little more to the left is one of the hulls we pulled from this mold.

We are going to build the Ariki using the same technique. This is referred to as building from a male mold. It does mean we will have to fair off the outside and paint it, but the inside will come off the mold ready to tab in bulkheads and will be very fair.

We put some tables together to loft the boat out full size.

We then transferred the frame shape to some 3/4" plywood and added legs to attach them to the strongback below.

Next we leveled out the strongback and attached the frames and the stem and sternpost.

Below we have started strip planking the mold. We cut 3/4" strips from 2x6s and screwed them to the frames. We edge nailed them with an air gun and connected the butts on the inside with little squares of 1/4" plwood screwed on.
The strip planking went very smoothly and we have completed both sides up to the stem foot.

Next we will have to sand and fair this out for a layer of glass to use as the surface of our mold.
The graffiti is a guide coat to help us sand and fair.