Hull Planking

The hull planks were milled from white pine.  They were cut to a thickness of about 1/32″ and width of about 3/16 inch.  The planking was in a double layer, as in the original boats, with the first layer glued onto the frames in a diagonal orientation, about 45 degrees from the frames in the mid portion of the hull, and as it ran for the remainder, especially in the bow.  The first layer was slanted directed toward the bow above the chine, and opposite below the chine, to make a chevron pattern pointing aft.  Then a layer of thin cotton fabric embedded in waterproof glue was laid over the first layer of planking, taking care to smooth it well and eliminate air bubbles.  Once that layer was dry, the final layer of planking was installed, with the planks above the chine at a diagonal opposite the first layer, and the planks below the chine running nearly horizontal fore and aft.

higgins_hul_planking_3

The hull with the first layer of planking installed and the fabric layer applied over the planking.  I used Titebond III waterproof glue to install the planking and to embed the fabric layer.

higgins_hull_planking_4aSecond layer of planking done, chine/spray rails installed, and first coats of urethane marine varnish done.  Note the direction of the planking as described above.

higgins_hull_5The hull cut free of the building board and the board converted to a cradle. The exhausts are carved from maple and painted gold/bronze.  The exhausts are hollowed out and have plastic tubing for an air pump to create, I hope, somewhat realistic exhaust bubbling later on.