A journal of the history of the '60s Batman Batboat, how I came to buy a replica and my hopeful adventures in repairing and making it a functional Anti-Crime cruiser.
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Batboat Rebuild: Day 11 September 19, 2008
(drawing the pattern to the ply just before cutting the new stringer section)
It was a nice, warm sunny Friday afternoon that day. I set out to cut the remaining stringers from the pattern I made the day before when the originals were cut out of the boat.
This was an easy job because they were only five foot long and didn't have much of a curve at the bottom.
The two others I had traced out on the plywood belonging to the tip of the longer ones were next.
Everything seemed to be going okay at first until I tried to fit them all and the transom in the boat. The longer stringers fit about two feet too long.
After a few moments trying to figure out what happened I pieced together the rotted original I made the pattern from and laid the new one beside it. It turned out that had I mistook a rotted piece of the other stringer for this one when I traced the pattern. This was confirmed when I fitted all the original wood back into the hull.
My sheet of plywood is 8 foot long so the 12 foot stringers had to be made in two parts. Thankfully, the section where I made the goof was the shorter end. I retraced the original wood, cut new ones and they turned out perfect.
Here are photos of how the transom and stringers fit in the boat. There is about a 4 inch overlap in the longer sections for later joining cuts.
I left about four inches of overlap in the sections for the longest stringers so they can be cut and joined together later.
The below pix shows how the original stringers were joined. The work day was just about over and I accomplished everything I set out to do for that day. There were a lot of small scraps of ply scattered around so I cut them up on the table saw for my burner.
All that day I had been cutting from a large sheet of ply so had I taken the safety guard off but didn't put it back on and cut 1/3 of my finger tip off.
Not cut to the bone but it was a big mess. Chunks of skin and whatever. I wrapped it up in gauze and taped it up but didn't want to look at it.
As it so happens, I was cutting the last piece of the second to last scrap of ply and ZIPP!!! off goes the finger tip. Blood everywhere, especially on my door knob after I tried to get into the house and to the sink.
Never been to the hospital for it. I just kept it clean and redressed it several times a day.
Use that safety guard on the table saw folks!!
It didn't hurt but throbbed for days. Had a woozy, sleepy feeling for nearly a week, too.
The gauze I initially put on it was fused to the wound for half a week until I soaked my finger in hydrogen peroxide.
As I said before, early that afternoon I was cutting stringers out of a large 4x8 sheet by myself. At all times I was 2 to 5 ft away from the blade and had to take the guard off so I could see where I was guiding the cut.
When finished and when I was sure everything fit in the boat like it is suppose to I began to clean up and cut some of the scraps I knew I couldn't use in other applications.
All other times in the past I'd have the safety guard on but that morning I got a "lets just be friends" email from my girlfriend and my mind kind of wandered off about that and also about the next work that needed to be done with the Batboat.
I had been very careful all that afternoon up until that point.
It happened so fast. The flesh was off in a split second and I didn't feel a thing immediately.
Now I can see why there was so many accidents in those old lumbermills 100+ years ago. It happens so quick.
From now on I'll remember to keep the guard on and go slow with the small stuff being cut.
I finished cleaning up the area and posted a query at the iboats.com forum. Feeling very drowsy from the wound I took a shower and went to sleep.
Six days later my finger was still throbbing and hurt. Here it is six days after the accident.