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The first stage in boarding the platform is to place the false platform on the frame. The false deck is usually made from 1mm plywood and will need to be slightly adjusted for the various notches in the bulkhead if it is included with your kit. Mark the centerline on the fore and aft deck making sure it lines up directly with the false keel and the bulkheads fit through the notches in the false deck. This fit should be neither tight nor loose. The false deck will allow the deck boards to fit together more easily and lay flatter and more even.

The false deck is curved from the midline to the starboard and port sides. The amount of camber is usually shown on the waterline drawing that comes with the kit, the dimensions of which should be marked by the builder on the bulkheads as a guide. If the plans do not indicate curvature, the general rule of thumb is ¼” rise per foot. So in our 1:48 example from the last article where the beam (joist) is 56 feet, the rise would be 13 /32″ or 10 mm from centerline to port or starboard edge. Make sure the sheer plane (length) matches the body plane (depth) and remember that deck curvatures do not always follow exactly the same hull sheer curvature. This is because the stern of the boat is lower in the water than the bow. The level midpoint between the stern and the bow is approximately ¾ of the length of the boat between the stern and the bow. If the planes do not match, make adjustments or else accessories such as barrels will not sit properly on the deck (barrels should point slightly down). You should also measure the distance from the waterline to the top of the false deck to ensure accuracy with the hull. If necessary, you can soak the dummy cover in warm water or warm ammonia water to get the approximate curvature you need. Remember that when soaking wood, you should only use warm water and leave the piece in the water for no more than 15 minutes. In this way the cells of the wood will be collapsible but not broken.

Once you’re happy with the dummy deck’s curvature, make sure it fits snugly against the dummy keel adjacent to the sternpost or rudder. Using wood glue and pins, adhere the false cover to the bulkheads. Once the false cover is firmly in place, mark and cut pre-marked openings for masts, hatches, railings, and driveways. It is best to do this after placing the dummy platform due to the curvature of the platform.

You are now ready to apply planks to the false deck. Covers used to be light colored. The board width for our 18th century model is between 8 and 14 inches with an average scale of 5.82mm; however, not all boat deck boards are the same width, so any width between 4.23mm and 7.41mm would be acceptable. The thickness of the planks varied from deck to deck. Lower covers were up to 4″ thick (2.12 mm) and upper covers 3″ thick (1.59 mm). Remember that the length of the board must not exceed 5.5″ (140 mm).

The deck strakes (planks) were broken, especially at the rounded edges near the bow. The end of the plank is equal to 1/3 of the width of the plank and the length of the snipe is equal to not less than twice the width of the plank. As far as the change of board is concerned, there are three, four and for the French boats, five changes of board. As an example, this means that there would be four equally offset planks between the first and fifth planks in a four-plank offset arrangement. It is helpful to create a cutting template to ensure that all planks are cut evenly and to the correct length. You can also use this template for nail pattern.

On a full size boat, a 3/8″ wide (0.2mm scale) gap was left between the deck planks both lengthwise and at the butt ends to accommodate the caulking iron. covers were then nailed down and then caulked with tow (a mixture of animal hair, sphagnum or hemp moss and tar) and the seam paid with pitch. There are several ways to simulate the tar lines. Depending on which method you use , tar lines should be applied prior to clamping the deck boards into the dummy deck.

o Black thread can be glued between the boards.

o Another method is to darken the edges with a marker pen, which you will need to test to make sure the marker doesn’t bleed into the wood and give you a fuzzy line.

o Another method is to use a soft black lead pencil and darken the edges. With the use of a pencil, the putty lines will not be perfectly even and will tend to fade in and out. This gives it a realistic appearance.

o Laying the boards edge to edge and gluing them to a sheet of black paper, then cutting them apart will give you a perfectly even caulking seam.

o To produce a subtle look, simply spread the planks slightly apart and allow the glue to drain between the planks. You can leave the gap and allow it to be filled with whatever finish (stain, urethane or paint) you intend to use or clean the seams with a colored glue mix, or fill the seams with a graphite paste mix (used for waterproofing leaks). Sealing gaskets). It is a bit difficult to maintain an even spacing between the planks because as the planks are glued to the hull they require bracing which can cause the planks to shift.

o You can also use black grout as long as your board material is hardwood.

The nailing or tree nailing pattern depends on the width of the board. The traditional method of adding tree nails is to use strips of bamboo or hardwood dowels that are passed through a drawing board to form the nail. Alternatives would be to use bristles from brushes, brooms, brooms, wallpaper brooms, or anything that has bristles. Composite materials of copper, brass, or silver wire or plastic rods are available in many sizes and can be applied by hand or with spring-loaded nailing tools. Once you’ve formed the tree nails, drill holes in the deck boards in the pattern of your choice, then glue the nails in place. Once you’re done, give the deck surface a light sanding.

Once you are satisfied with the deck, it should be sealed with paint, stain, or urethane. If using urethane, remember to thin the first two coats 30% with a thinner (70/30 mix) and apply the third coat unthinned.

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