Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Good progress and photos soon!

Just an update to reassure you that despite a lack of blog updates we are making steady progress and it won't be long before we have something worth uploading photos of. So far we have cut out the sides (port an’ starboard!) the transom (stern) and the little wedge shaped bit that will be glued to the nose block. This week we will make the bulkhead that sits amidships and next week we'll glue all these items together, then just we just need to add a sheet of balsa to the bottom and we'll have the hulls! Meanwhile I've been busy making stands, (lead free) keel ballast weights and have found some old plastic draws that fit perfectly in the hull and will house all radio control equipment. The group are thinking about colour schemes, themes and names for their vessels.

Friday, 10 September 2010

Be Prepared!

Iv'e prepared for our next meeting next Wednesday by making up cardboard templates for the sides, bow and stern so they can be drawn round and cut from 1.5mm balsa which I ordered today.
Also because cutting plywood is not exactly something we can do at a kitchen table I have cut out all the plywood parts for nine yachts ; Keel. rudder and mast support all they need is a little final shaping with a file and sand paper. I am gradually making up a tool kit and have a large board form an old compumpter bench that we can work on. I think I'll start off with a short lesson on cutting balsa (ie grain direction etc) and we can get started!

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Something's a foot!

(Pic from internet I hope the owner doesn't mind me posting it)

Last year I got involved with leading our church's older teenage youth group which my son Jake is a member of ,it's only a small group, there are far more in the younger group (Yo-yos) but it's just the way it is and soon they will be joining us. Apart from bible study we try to mix in other interests but even though endless volley ball is fine in the summer we wanted something for the winter months so I suggested the idea of building some kind of craft project, the kind of thing I enjoyed doing at their age long before kids spent hours on computer screens, we could complete a small step week by week. A rocket was suggested but we couldn't see that would be involving enough and I wanted something more traditional using wood so something radio control seemed to fit the bill. Aircraft are a little delicate and a crash could end up with a bin liner full of scrap balsa wood so boats it was. I did a little research on the web and discovered Footys!

The Footy is...

... a very small radio-control sailboat whose length is a mere 12 inches (30.5 cm). The hull can be made from a fiberglass mold or simply with thin sheets of plywood fitted together. Two servos are used, one to control the sail and one for the rudder.To keep competition keen, the Footy designers have proposed a set of rules to keep all the boats similar to a certain degree.There is an active and growing community of Footy sailors in New Zealand, the U.K. and the USA, where it has just been added as the newest official AMYA class

I settled on the Papaya 3 design because the plans were free and the easy to follow step by step instructions.
We must stick to the design but I'm going to encourage them to customise their individual boats with creative colour schemes and find they're own sail material.
We do need to raise some funds for the radio control systems but we don't need them for a while and that's part of the fun

Also we have invited church members to come and talk to us about their hobbies, we have a radio control aircraft maker/flyer and a wood carver so far.

I reveled the idea last night to huge enthusiasm but I'm hoping from what they said that not EVERY yacht will be made to look like a pirate ship! (and cannons and such weapons are unsports man like!) We have six youths signed up and three adults! well we can't miss out on the fun!
Hopefully next spring we'll learn how to sail them and can invite the church and villages to a race day on a local lake and kind of miniature yacht regatta.

Anyhow I'll keep you updated with reports and photos of our progress.