Re: Wherry fillet tip

Posted by Patrick Gillon on Jun 18, 2004

David, Regarding your question about "beveling the front and rear flotation tank tops to match the varing angle of the hull", I can only say that it took me a lot of fiddling/fitting to get it right. One thing that helped was using a sharpie pen on the top surface of the tank to mark the outline shape of the hull to be trimmed. You can slide the side of the pen barrel along the hull marking the tank from above. Of course this will require some pre-bevelling of the underside to get it close to the right position, then alternating back and forth, and back and forth, and so on, between trimming the outline of the top, then correcting the underside bevel to match the angle of the hull.

I did another thing that improved the situation which was reduce the hieght of the tank by about a quarter of an inch. At the front, this reduced the number of points where the top overlaps the steps between the strakes from twice per side to only one per side (the one closest to the front). Also, I cut a notch in the top to run past the step and avoided a large gap between the top and side. By lowering the rear tank about the same amount there are no points of overlap.

Basically, all of this added effort made certain that I had good contact surfaces for gluing inside the tank and my fillets on top are only 1/4 inch radius and are consistent.

Although it might seem so, I don't think I significantly reduced the volume of the tanks. I've swamped it and it still floats pretty high. I've never tried it in an uncontrolled high seas condition. I don't think the result would be very good even with the original volume. Also, because of this investment, I feel very confident in the structure of the boat. You'll be amazed at how much stiffness the tank tops add to the hull. I suppose the downside is that this also makes these connections very critical. I'm not sure what other builders have experienced, but in my opinion when it comes to fillets and other such mechanical connections, less is more.

As for your transom problem, I glued the transom in, removed the wires, then applied the fillets. My fitting effort and technique in this case rivaled the effort I invested in fitting the tanks, but again the size of fillet was greatly reduced.

If your're at this stage the next trick is a little late. I think the instructions indicate that the strakes are installed from back (at the transom) to the front. Because the lengths of the assembled strakes vary, I chose the reverse and started at the bow and worked back allowing the added lengths to run long of the transom and trimmed them afterwards. This made faring the bow almost a non issue.

Anyway, I hope some of this helps. Good luck with your wherry, I'm taking mine to the Keys tomorrow!! Pat

In Response to: Re: Wherry fillet tip by David Hopkinson on Jun 17, 2004