After two months of work and patience, our bulkheads are almost ready!
The metal frame doors that our volunteer and journeymen friends assembled in June are now completed, along with four bulkheads made of 15cm2 oak posts, reinforced, and sealed with 45mm x 40mm pine cladding.
The bulkhead posts positions were determined with a 360˚ laser. After positioning the central post, we used it as a reference for the 360˚ laser which gave us the outline of the bulkhead on the hull. These posts help support both the deck beams and the cladding that was put on after the beams had been painted with bitumen.
The cladding was then fastened to the frames, the bulkheads’ posts, and the deck beams with stainless screws. Oriented at 45˚ to the center line to provide extra support between the hull and the deck beams, the pine cladding boards are joined to each other by tongue and groove, and sealed with bitumen in between all the grooves and cladding so that our bulkheads are now watertight.
The cladding is now being sanded with a machine then by hand and covered with the well-known “boat soup”, a perfect blend of linseed oil (70%), tar (25%) and turpentine (5%). This mixture permeates the timber, and reduces the chance of the timber shrinking over time and compromises its watertightness.
While these four bulkheads add stiffness to Hawila and create compartments for our two convertible cargo holds, we are keeping the aft bulkhead unfinished for now to allow us better access to the generator and machinery. Eventually, it too will be completely sealed.
Our Hawila is getting ready to sail and transport cargo !