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Starting another Dart..


jim lee

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Are you saying the my hopes about the US economy and AUS government are going to come true???:P

 

I'm just in the industry and know quality when I see it.. And I also like it when a proprietor puts his money where his mouth is. IE Jim building the boats and has a genuine belief in them.

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Yes, but I didn't understand it. How is it flexible? If it is being stored in partly-cured condition, how? At low temperature? How is it then fully cured after construction? Assuming that it isn't fully cured in the first place.

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They're flexible because they are a light layup. Most of the green angle is two layers of 1708 - 45/45. (17 oz/yd biax weave fabric, 08 oz/ft mat) This matches the strength of the layup of the bulkheads so as not to cause cracking. We up it to three layers for the structural bits like the latch brackets on the companionway hatch.

 

Haha! Yeah I guess I do believe in them. They are -really- fun boats. Its fun to have a little island hopper ready to go play tied to the dock.

 

 

-jim lee

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They're flexible because they are a light layup. Most of the green angle is two layers of 1708 - 45/45. (17 oz/yd biax weave fabric, 08 oz/ft mat) This matches the strength of the layup of the bulkheads so as not to cause cracking. We up it to three layers for the structural bits like the latch brackets on the companionway hatch.

 

Haha! Yeah I guess I do believe in them. They are -really- fun boats. Its fun to have a little island hopper ready to go play tied to the dock.

 

 

-jim lee

Thank you Jim!

 

Thank you also for all the updates in the thread.

 

 

 

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Jim,

I've enjoyed following this thread on the construction of the dart almost as much as I've enjoyed sailing it. The quality of the construction was one of the reasons we purchased the dart, and it is good to know that what can't be seen is built as well as what can be seen. The construction along with everything else we have experienced with the dart is impressive and has exceeded our expectations. You have put your heart and soul into the production of the dart and it clearly shows.

Paul

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Hey guys, Kilo here ^^^^ (Look up!) ^^^^ is the winner of that auction that we held on Dart #2. If you wanted to know anything about Darts but were afraid to ask.. He's the guy! He owns one! And, he's not a salesman, like I've had to become.

 

Anyway, back to the build. We're putting in the liner this morning.

 

 

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Rear bulkhead tabbed in, underside of bunks gelcoated..

 

 

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Plexus going in. Horrid smelling stuff. I know I keep going on about it, but its just nasty!

 

There's only about three times the smell around here gets unlivable. First, when spraying gelcoat. No matter what you end up with a fog of just horrid chemicals. We try to do this last so we can leave for the night and let it all kick off. Second is the skin coat. This is done open mold and it can get pretty bad. Nothing like spraying gelcoat though. Third is any time we use plexus. It renders the shop nearly usable without a mask.

 

 

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Bring in the liner. The brace clamped to the back keeps the aft end trued up. Until now there was glass spanning the aft end. But, right before its mounted in the boat, this glass is trimmed off. Hence the brace.

 

 

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Aligning and lowering..

 

 

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And it kinda' goes in with a "squish".

 

Next I believe we will be fitting in the keel trunk.

 

-jim lee

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Hi Jim,

 

Thank you for posting these photos and updates. They are sure to save many SA'er's lots of money by crushing our dreams of building a good cheap sailboat.

I still believe in the market. I'm 25 and know dozens of people my age with 70 grand wakeboard boats, in a small rural town.

If there isn't twenty people ready to buy a practical, sporty, well made sailboat for 60 grand; our sport is in really danger.

I wish you all the best and hope you keep the updates comming.

 

 

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Hi Jim,

 

Thank you for posting these photos and updates. They are sure to save many SA'er's lots of money by crushing our dreams of building a good cheap sailboat.

I still believe in the market. I'm 25 and know dozens of people my age with 70 grand wakeboard boats, in a small rural town.

If there isn't twenty people ready to buy a practical, sporty, well made sailboat for 60 grand; our sport is in really danger.

I wish you all the best and hope you keep the updates comming.

 

 

 

 

That is the problem, the majority of boat buyers are powerboat buyers, not that there are many of them either. I work for a powerboat manufacturer and one of our dealers said to me during a discussion about sailboats and powerboats was that "any f#&king moron can drive a powerboat".

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That is the problem, the majority of boat buyers are powerboat buyers, not that there are many of them either. I work for a powerboat manufacturer and one of our dealers said to me during a discussion about sailboats and powerboats was that "any f#&king moron can drive a powerboat".

... and they do.

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More?! Alright..

 

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Finishing places few people ever see..

 

Sealing up the seam where the liner attaches to the hull. This gives a finished locker that is a lot easier to keep clean because there's no seam to trap gunk & water.

 

But it takes a lot of effort.

 

 

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Details details details. One of my jobs is making sure details of at least a level beyond what a customer would ever expect get attended to.

 

When Dr T was here he got everyone to hand me hand wipes every time I pointed out some minor detail that needed attending to. (From the TV show Monk)

 

 

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Glass tabbing for reenforcing the keel trunk.

 

The rule of thumb here is tabbing is 2x laminate layup. Everything for the keel trunk is at least double that as is the layup of the parts themselves. This is for spreading out the loads that are concentrated there.

 

 

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Keel trunk going in. First the base is bonded to the keel stub using plexus. As is the front of the flange to the bunk liner. After the plexus kicks off, we seal it so we can add the fiberglass tabbing to reinforce everything.

 

 

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Front of keel trunk under bunk liner being glassed in. The light green stripe under the glass is the sealer between the plexus and glass resin.

 

You can see the relief on the floor at the right of the picture where the speed/depth sender will be installed.

 

Next will be installing the block out plate that runs from the keel trunk to the forward bulkhead.

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And the block out plate is installed. This is actually built with a high density core to help absorb & spread the fore and aft keel loads.

 

 

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Ring bulkhead goes in. This helps hold up the front of the cockpit. After the resin kicks, we'll sand the tabbing smoother then give it a coat of putty to finish it off.

 

 

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Ring bulkhead and keel trunk installed. There is still the chain plates & side panel mounts to install. Then more pre-paint finish work to do.

 

 

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Locating the chain plates & finish work. Finish work always seems to take far longer than you' think.

 

The hope is to be able to pull this hull out of its mold next week.

 

We'll see..

 

-jim lee

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Jim,

 

On the interior topsides amidships, is the white color from using a filler or did you sand the glass? After the last structural work goes in, what happens to that interior surface? Gelcoat or ?

 

Oh, and thanks for posting and I love the attention to detail.

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The stuff on the sides is a fine scree of putty. We're very careful to sand the glass as little as possible.

 

And your very welcome to the details.

 

-jim lee

 

Your attention to detail is laudable, Mr. Lee. Clearly you have your heart in it.

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Detail..

 

Very early on, during the Dart development, we'd realized there was no way we could ever compete with the slam-'em-out builders on price. Nor did we want to. The one arena that we could compete in was quality. The thought was that this would be great because to make a light fast boat, that will last, you really need to pay attention to all the details. There is not a lot of interior to hide things behind. There's no allowance for extra material or structures. So, you have to be very careful how things are put together. And, for those that buy them, this should lead to extremely happy customers. In theory that is..

 

The upside is, building a boat like this is actually kinda' fun. We all get a little extra time to really get things right. All of us in the shop here really enjoy being able to really do what we do and do it well. This would never fly if we were pushing them out the door using the least amount of labor possible.

 

The downside is, how can we tell anyone? How do you tell someone that, this one is really different? Every boat builder, no matter how cheesy, is busy yelling about how their boat is built to the highest quality standards and is the fastest thing since rocket ships. Who would ever listen to us? I know I wouldn't. Just another salesman.

 

When I read these comments on this thread about "Wow look at how these things are built!" and I fell like. "Finally! They are beginning to understand."

 

So thanks everyone!

 

-jim lee

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... ...

 

When I read these comments on this thread about "Wow look at how these things are built!" and I fell like. "Finally! They are beginning to understand."

 

So thanks everyone!

 

-jim lee

 

You deserve more than compliments IMHO.

 

Years ago I got a chance to go thru an Oyster (British-build big-ass cruising boat although they have built racers in the past)... multi-million dollar boat back when a million dollars was a lot of money... and it was built with incredible attention to detail even in places that nobody would ever see. Everything could have been a "how-to" pic in a textbook.

 

Honestly, the Dart looks every bit as good.

 

FB- Doug

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A couple of us have been following every step of the build - do you have any restrictions on visitors to your shop. Assuming that we will let you know in advance and not just show up.

 

Can you show up? Good lord yes!

 

We love to have people come look at what we're doing. The fact that anyone would take the time to come have a look, makes us feel like we may not be crazy doing this. ( In this economy we do feel kinda' crazy ) C'mon down! We'll give you the full dog and pony show!

 

You can goole the address:

9029 Molly Lane #C

Anacortes, WA 98221

 

We're behind the chevy dealership.

 

 

Mark, I think Karl took that pic. at least that's where I got it. He's got high school age kids now. Saw him last friday, he's starting to foredeck on a SC27 out of Bellingham WA.

 

 

-jim lee

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After days of detail work masking begins. The plan is to paint everything but the rear floor. Reason being that the rear floor gets a lot of wear and tear during the build so we'd like to paint it last.

 

 

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Finishing up masking. Summer is coming and its hitting over 70 deg. For us that's pretty warm. Not only does it make the bunny suits more uncomfortable we also have to adjust the chemistry of the resins we're using.

 

 

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About 2-3 years ago the Arlington gelcoat plant shut down. Suddenly, gelcoat is coming from somewhere else. The reps insist that there is no difference whatsoever. When we called them out to see what was going on, they told us it was our fault.

 

What's going on is this new stuff kicks off way too fast. So fast in fact, that if you actually get the stuff on a part, the wax doesn't have time to rise to the surface before it kicks. This causes the resin to never fully cure. Acetone will wipe it off. Just horrible.

 

What to do? We need to mix inhibiter chemicals to slow the stuff down. We're adding pigments, inhibiters, catalyst.. Mad science and its annoying.

 

So the trick your seeing here is leaving a resin/gelcoat blob on the counter that the guy running the chemicals keeps an eye on. This way he keeps the guy running the spray gun informed as to how fast his resin is reacting.

 

 

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Everything sprayed white..

 

 

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Another shot. Most of what you see here is covered by cockpit, out of sight, out of mind and forgotten.

 

We need to do a little side trip next week. Someone just bought another Dart rudder for their B/25. Seeing it is a Dart part, I'll post some pix of putting that together as well. Then we'll have to deal with pulling everything out of their molds and putting the hull and deck together. The old shop had gantries, this shop does not. I' not sure how we're going to do this.

 

-jim lee

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The Dart project was put on hold for a few days as we had to fill an aftermarket order for a Dart rudder blade. Its a Dart part, so we'll show you how we make 'em.

 

 

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Molds cleaned up and waxed. I was bored so I waxed 'em myself.

 

 

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Loading the drystack. The glass is tapered from 8 to 2 layers. Each layer is shifted orientation 0/90 & 45/45. Once all the glass is loaded we put in core.

 

The core in this case isn't really structural. The strength come from the glass shells. The core is to take up space so we don't need so much filler to glue the halves together.

 

 

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After being shot and trimmed. Setting up for gluing the halves together.

 

We scree in bonding putty while the halves are in their molds. This is to make sure we get the right amount. Too little and you will have voids, too much and the rudder comes out too thick. There's not a lot of adjustment possible once the two halves are mushed together. You either get it right, or you don't. This way we can be sure to get it right.

 

 

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Once the halves are glued together, we glass over the entire nose to stitch the nose of the blade together.

 

This is important because this seam has a lot of sheer forces on it and the glass going across the seam keeps it from splitting under load.

 

 

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After everything is glassed up the rudder gets hand fared to the templates.

 

Hopefully tomorrow the glassing on the blade will be complete and we'll be able to gelcoat it.

 

The plan is to ship it off to the customer next week. Its to be a replacement for a B/25 rudder.

 

One of the very few things the Dart Shares with its ancestor the B/25 is the rudder. We use the rudder that the B/25 was supposed to have but never got developed. So, we sell these as aftermarket B/25 rudder blades. They're very popular with the people who've bought them.

 

-jim lee

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About 2-3 years ago the Arlington gelcoat plant shut down. Suddenly, gelcoat is coming from somewhere else. The reps insist that there is no difference whatsoever. When we called them out to see what was going on, they told us it was our fault.

 

What's going on is this new stuff kicks off way too fast. So fast in fact, that if you actually get the stuff on a part, the wax doesn't have time to rise to the surface before it kicks. This causes the resin to never fully cure. Acetone will wipe it off. Just horrible.

 

What to do? We need to mix inhibiter chemicals to slow the stuff down. We're adding pigments, inhibiters, catalyst.. Mad science and its annoying.

 

So the trick your seeing here is leaving a resin/gelcoat blob on the counter that the guy running the chemicals keeps an eye on. This way he keeps the guy running the spray gun informed as to how fast his resin is reacting.

 

-jim lee

 

I feel for you, that's a sad feeling having gelcoat kick in the pressure pot hoses while in the middle of spraying.

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Real quick update..

 

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Doing bodywork on a transparent part. This is nearing the end of the hand shaping session.

 

 

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Gelcoat.

 

Gelcoat is sprayed on and its hung out to dry. Monday we should start sanding through the grits.

 

Unlike "real" paint, gelcoat goes on thick and rough. You have to sand it down using finer and finer grits to make it smooth and shiny.

 

-jim lee

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First we complete the rudder..

 

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All sanded, buffed and waxed..

 

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Put it in a box and ship it off to the customer.

 

Now we can go back to the Dart we've been building. We'd finished up the hull so the next thing to do was to pop everything out of their molds and stick together a boat. Sounds easy don't it?

 

 

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Popping the deck out of its mold.

 

 

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Pulling the lifting strap under and getting it into position to lift out the part.

 

 

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Forklift, stinger & spreader bar in position for the lift. All this wonderful heavy equipment we borrowed from Jim Betts. ( Thanks again Mr Betts & Co. !! )

 

Hang on, let me get the next set of pix set up..

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Deck up and resting on its side. These things get big fast. Starting with some rolls of fabric, sheets of core and a couple buckets of resin, we suddenly have something that you need machines to move about.

 

 

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Flipping the deck onto the deck cart. This kind of work makes me all sorts of nervous.

 

 

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On the cart with edges trimmed. Its a deck!

 

 

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Inside, looks wonderful!

 

 

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The Cadillac cockpit.

 

The decks outside to make room for us to pull the hull out of its mold. Those pix will follow pretty soon. (I hope)

 

-jim lee

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Time to finish up the hull project and get everything ready for attaching the deck.

 

 

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The forklift with its spreader bar is tied to the bulkheads ready to take up the strain for when the hull come out of its mold.

 

 

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Pulling off the mold halves. Like peelin' a banana!

 

 

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Spots to be carful of when trimming the edge.

 

 

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Trimming. Nasty dusty job. One guy runs the saw or grinder the other holds the vacuum hose to suck up the fiberglass dust.

 

 

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All trimmed up! The return flange was ground this morning and its all ready for the deck.

 

Now we decide wether we mount deck hardware on first, or glue the deck on first then mount the hardware later.

 

More choices to think about..

 

Will this boat have bunks and cushions? Or will it be a stripped out racing machine?

 

If it has bunks, should we splurge and go for doing the wood trim option?

 

Maybe develop a carbon trim package for the interior?

 

Full electronic package with wireless speed/depth & battery charger? Or just nav. lights?

 

All these options to think about. If someone would step up and buy this machine, these options would be theirs.

 

Or yours..

 

-jim lee

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Sparse interior and simple electronics plus beer cooler and we've got a deal...that said clearcoated carbon is sexy on any boat and will always be fast, so get that in wherever you can!!

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The power cat & its molds are one of the banes of my existence. They were left here by the company that had the building before us. They are a complete mess. They draw all sorts of "bargain hunter" types looking for a free boating lunch. I'm told that someone in Las Vegas is paying rent to store them.

 

Ok strewn.. Seems like you need to come out for a test sail. Better hurry though, there's someone currently nibbling at hull #3.

 

-jim lee

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I totally dig the boat, but will be in the market somewhere around hull 10-15...keep it up, hopefully we can get together when I'm fully ready to buy, and you're still makin hay!!

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Back again with more pix. Your not all tired of this are you?

 

Its time to put the deck on the hull and make a boat out of this.

 

 

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First Tom drills the backstay mount holes. We're using this as a lift point for the deck.

 

 

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Tim finishing up the window cutouts.

 

 

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Test fitting. There's always trimming issues. So we first set the deck a couple inches up on blocks to see where everything is going to line up.

 

 

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Deck back sitting on its cart again waiting for the trimming to be completed.

 

 

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Trimming off the tops of the bulkheads. The deck goes on and off the hull a few times as everything is brought into alignment.

 

One of the things we were looking to finalize is where the tops of the bulkheads need to be trimmed. On boat#2 we were able to mark the molds for the bottoms of the bulkheads. Now were going to be able to mark the trim lines on the molds for the tops. Just another step to making production easier.

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There we go. Finally the deck is attached to the hull! (It was glued in place this morning.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Then everything changed..

 

Yesterday, about 3/4 of the way through this deck fitting process, Mark Palermo from New Orleans area walked in, looked around, chatted a bit with all of us.. And bought the boat!

 

I'm starting to see why salesmen do this. Selling is a complete rush! Nothing like what one experiences in engineering land. I'm still stunned.

 

Now we -really- need to get busy, we have the boats owner watching all of this online!

 

-jim lee

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Yesterday, about 3/4 of the way through this deck fitting process, Mark Palermo from New Orleans area walked in, looked around, chatted a bit with all of us.. And bought the boat!

 

 

That's awesome, congrats! But keep the pictures coming, some of us are here for the free show.

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1342033542[/url]' post='3782675']

Well done. Keep the pics coming. They are a good sales tool as they show a very high quality build going on.

 

And the boat is made in America! Putting Americans to work..Hats off for that!

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Lost sale of olde B for New-B. no pun distended, but Goode to see someone, anyone moving product not marked Made in China and Sold by Walmart.

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Holy Crap, who told my wife about Sailing Anarchy?? That's just great, first the GPS tracker, now THIS?! huh.gif

Had a blast visiting Left Coast HQ. Jim and the Left Coast team are impeccable - "eye of the tiger" on details and true artisans of the craft. I especially enjoyed the sea trial on hull #1 followed by some awesome fish tacos and west coast micro brew with visionary Jim Lee.

I am incredibly impressed with the Dart. Super quick acceleration, wide groove, points like a banshee, very efficient layout and huge cockpit. I have always been a fan of Leif Beiley. But the industry iconic influence goes beyond. I won't spill the beans on who else but believe me when I say Jim has surrounded himself with BRILLIANT people most anarchists know and respect.

Nope, haven't been following development on anarchy (actually, this is my first post).

No need to worry about stripping it down - it's a fast puppy! However, it is an option.

 

 

 

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First post, from New Orleans, you know the rules. Someone please throw her some beads. All kidding aside, congrats on the new boat. Hull 2 is racing at Whidbey Island Race Week starting Monday. In the same class as J80s, a new J70, some Rockets and misc. other boats. Based on what I saw in Anacortes last year, I expect she will do well. Have fun with the purchase (I'm jealous). Cheers.

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Definitely going symmetrical. Not a fan of fixed bow sprits.

 

 

If all goes well with the production schedule, I should have the new Sapphire ready for her debut at TYC's Single-Handed Regatta (10/6). Can't think of a better way to 'become one with my boat' than to sail it 30-42 miles around Lake Pontchartrain, solo. Ater that, I anticipate heading to P'cola and bang the buoys with my pals at WFORC - GREAT boats, EXCEPTIONAL sailors, and venue that will truly test Dart capabilities. From there, YES, back on Lake Pontchartrain for LPRC. From there, who knows, KWRW??

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Congrats Jim and Mark!

 

Its a wonder how things turn out. I remember introducing Jim, who was living with his wife on his cramped Columbia 26(?) at the time, to the B25 almost 20 years ago to the day when I brought my new B25 Zilla to Sierra Point Marina. Like me, he really loved that boat. Apparently it left a lasting impression.

 

Jim BTW I still have the helicopter photo of us racing Zilla on the Windjammer. I will send a copy next time I get home, probably January.

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Is anybody watching WIRW the dart #2 is leading their fleet,Go the ogopogo! (Even tho I have friends on the rockets)

 

I am at WIRW sailing Vipers and watching the little Dart beat up on their class. Looks like a fun boat... and the full compliment of Ullman Sails look good ;)

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Congrats Jim and Mark!

 

Its a wonder how things turn out. I remember introducing Jim, who was living with his wife on his cramped Columbia 26(?) at the time, to the B25 almost 20 years ago to the day when I brought my new B25 Zilla to Sierra Point Marina. Like me, he really loved that boat. Apparently it left a lasting impression.

 

Jim BTW I still have the helicopter photo of us racing Zilla on the Windjammer. I will send a copy next time I get home, probably January.

Too bad the B25 isn't racing. Would have made an interesting comparison with the rating difference between it and the Dart.

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Jim,

Brilliant thread and congrats on the sale. I can't remember the last time I locked my office door and sat here reading a thread from start to finish!

 

Thanks for being so courageous both as a thread poster and boat builder!

 

Cheers,

Brant

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What a treat for the boat owners Badda and NOLA to have this thread as a coffee table book to read all about the build.

 

I hope you print out the pages and pics!

 

You have a great looking boat!

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Thanks everyone!

 

It was a Cal T/2 we lived on. The only place that didn't leak was the forepeak. I remember that picture of Zilla, I'd love to see it again.

 

Here's the current (live) Whidby island race week scoring www : Race results The Dart's in PHRF 8. There are 2 day left of racing so the winner isn't decided yet. Right now, they are doing very well.

 

Oh and they are racing the boat in full cruiser trim with cushions etc. & camping in it for the week. Comfort & speed!

 

-jim lee

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Now that the hull and deck are together, we're back to doing smaller "support" projects again.

 

 

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The final bits of the attachment of the deck to the hull are going on. Shown here is one of the easier bits of this process. I couldn't even see when Tim was working under the cockpit and in the quarter berths.

 

 

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Deck seam above port quarter berth. You can kinda' see a line up there in the top right corner. The indent is the port primary winch pad.

 

 

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Transom hull to deck seam. When the deck goes on we attach it with Plexus. Then seal the Plexus with putty then sand the putty smooth then.. Topcoat with gelcoat. ALL around the seam. The two rectangles spanning the deck seam on the transom here are the glassed in backing plates for the outboard bracket and the rudder bolts.

 

 

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When Mark bought this boat everything changed. We suddenly have an overlord and we've made promises that we need to honor. Now we're looking at what we need to finish it. There's a LOT of work to do! Everything is going into top gear.

 

While everyone else is in the shop building stuff as fast as possible, I'm in the office trying to sort out what we need to buy to complete the project. I brought my kids in (Even neighbor kids) for three days last weekend and made them help sort out inventory. Counting parts & labeling boxes.

 

 

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More small parts.

 

Tim/Tom dry stacking the mold for the cockpit foot rests.

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Adding the cross rib blocks.

 

Word in the shop is that the lowly footrests are the hardest part on the Dart to build. Very fussy glass work and trimming.

 

 

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Foot rest mold all packed and ready to bag.

 

 

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Mark's rudder. Remember we just built a rudder? Now we're building another.

 

 

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Trimming the rudder shells. Yuck!

 

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Trimmed rudder shell.

 

Next inline?

Pretty quickly we're going to get buried in boat parts. There's still a pile of glass work to do, erase hull seam, forepeak bunk plates, floor plates, ice chest lid. Side panel plates. The floor, ice chest lid & side panels have wood either infused on them or in them. Then there's the entire keel assembly thing..

 

Pour lead..

 

Makes my head hurt thinking about it!

 

-jim lee

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This is really a very cool thread, thanks. I started reading it yesterday and now I'm hooked. Excellent pix and explanations Jim, hard to belief how much is going into this...

 

Cheers, Win ever.

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Well, looks like the results are in and Ogopogo (Dart #2) did win PHRF 8 in Whidby Island Race Week.

 

Congrats to April, Paul & Crew!!

 

P8 PHRF 8 (PHRF - 11 Boats)

1. Ogopogo, Dart, April Butler - 1, 1, 3, 1, 2, 2, 3, 1, [3] ; 11

2. Octopussy, Rocket 22, Chris Lloyd - 2, 5, 1, 4, 4, 1, 1, 2, [5] ; 15

3. South Lake Union Trolley, Rocket 22, Aaron Leskosek - 4, 6, 7, 2, 1, 3, 2, 4, [7] ; 22

4. DaSpencer, J/70, Michael Pitt - 3, 2, 5, 6, 6, 7, 6, 5, [7] ; 33

5. Taj Mahal, J/80, David Schutte - 8, 4, 4, 3, 5, 6, 4, 8, [8] ; 34

6. Moxie, Express 27, Bill Sumerfield - 7, 3, 2, 9, 7, 4, 8, 6, [9] ; 37

7. Skye Rocket, J/80, William Mckinnon - 6, 8, 6, 8, 3, 5, 5, 12/DNC, [12] ; 41

8. The Kraken, Santa Cruz 27, Troy Fields / Danielle DeVoe - 5, 7, 8, 5, 9, 8, 7, 7, [9] ; 47

9. Crazy Ivan, J/80, Steve Moe - 12/DNF, 9, 9, 7, 8, 9, 9, 3, [12] ; 54

10. Zipper, Ultimate 20, Mark Dobie - 12/DNC, 12/DNC, 12/DNC, 12/DNC, 12/DNC, 12/DNC, 12/DNC, 12/DNC, [12] ; 84

11. Vapor, B/25, Bill Boyd - 12/DNC, 12/DNC, 12/DNC, 12/DNC, 12/DNC, 12/DNC, 12/DNC, 12/DNC, [12] ; 84

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Hi Jim,

I'm been quietly following this thread from over here in Australia. As others have commented it has been great to follow. Thanks for taking your time to document the build.

 

Great looking boat.

 

Cheers

Mojo

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Nice to see the boat doing well at Whidbey. Looks like a great boat ! I have been doing alot of research on the sportboat market and think that the area of growth will be with this size and type of boat. I just turned 50 and have been competitive sailing for 40 of those years. Have done the Melges 24 for along time and really enjoy that type of racing. I am not interested in racing a floating condo and don't do any cruising. I still want to race but am getting too slow physically for the Melges racing and hiking. Several years ago, anything but a flat out high performance boat did not interest me. I am finding now that a boat like the Dart or J/70 type boat is more inline with my future sailing. Lets face it, love them or hate them, J Boats knows the sailboat market a high percentage of the time and when they are faulted for missing the market is usually because they were ahead of it ( J/90 and J/125)

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Shake and bake baby!! Indeed, the Strategic Alliance is once again on the the move with new, FAST boats. Hoping to get our "starters" on board for KWRW. Wouldn't be grand if both boats go?! Let's see how things go during the fall campaign. Already have Paul Mitchell and Patron Tequilla on the hook for sponsorship $$.

 

 

Strategic Alliance at it again!!! Good pick Mark. I really liked the B25 when I sailed it. Did I read, KWRW????? You know big boy is ready!!

 

Hope to see it on the water soon!!!

 

 

PS, Welcome to Sailing Anarchy!!!!!!!!!!

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Hi Jim,

I think you should make it an alum rig with normal symetrical spin. I got an alum that is 30 years old and still works perfect. You will want a normal spin sail if you want a decent PHRP rating. An add on carbon spar and bowprit are very cool options.

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IMG_0669.jpg

Transom hull to deck seam. When the deck goes on we attach it with Plexus. Then seal the Plexus with putty then sand the putty smooth then.. Topcoat with gelcoat. ALL around the seam. The two rectangles spanning the deck seam on the transom here are the glassed in backing plates for the outboard bracket and the rudder bolts.

Wow. Didn't look like that when I crawled into the back of my old SJ24...... :lol:

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Jim,

 

Love this thread, keep the pics coming. Glad you sold hull #3. Heard from numerous friends at WIRW that #2 looked spectacular on the water and did a nice clean up job in her division. Seems like you got a winner here! This boat is still in the top 3 list of 20-something footers I am looking at getting down the road here in a few years. However, just to warn ya, I'll be chomping at the bit for a carbon mast and boom package......B)

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The project is in the mode where there seems to be a thousand things going on and nothing is moving forward but time.

 

I've spent nearly all my time lining up and ordering massive amounts of parts. How did people do this in the old days before computers to track all those zillions of parts?

 

Tim/Tom have continued to do all sorts of glass type things of support nature.. We'll show some pix of where they are now.

 

 

Foot rests completed and ready to install.

IMG_0698.jpg

 

 

Glass cloth, plumbing and cherry veneer ready to be infused into a side panel.

IMG_0701.jpg

 

 

A side panel being infused..

IMG_0696.jpg

 

 

Rudder halves being bonded together.

IMG_0697.jpg

 

 

And a little quickie mold Tim made up for making a mount for the Dart's main power breaker. Its gelcoated here and ready for glass to be laid in.

IMG_0700.jpg

 

Tomorrow we push this all forward another step.

 

In other news, Steve, who did most, if not all of the tooling for the Dart interior, has agreed to come back for a little bit to take care of getting the trailer built. He did the 3D model of the production version, so he's got a good grasp on it. He's also friends with Guy who originally designed the trailer. That also helps.

 

Hungry & exhausted, I'm going home now..

 

-jim lee

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Like most I tend sometimes to think that new boats cost more than a person might think they "should," but seeing all your detail work and how it's done instead has me concluding, "That's a whole lot for the money. No wonder it costs that."

 

Fine work.

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I've spent nearly all my time lining up and ordering massive amounts of parts. How did people do this in the old days before computers to track all those zillions of parts?

 

 

Clipboards, lots of clipboards.

 

B)

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I can't let this thread go! There is a chance my dad might sell the C&C 99, and I keep seeing the Dart as the boat in between that and my Viper. I spent the first 12 or so years of my childhood on our Tanzer 22, both as a cruising boat in the summer (which my dad also raced to great effect), and as a kid's spaceship in the driveway during the off season. Stock with snacks, and run an extension cord for a portable black and white tv, and you have a great vessel for overnight adventures across the galaxy. :)

 

Anyway, I get that same cozy feeling about the Dart, looking at the interior pics (more please!), and it would fast on race days too.

 

My current question, thinking about the Tanzer, is where in that interior do you use/store a chemical toilet?

 

I would love to see more interior shots from the common spots where someone might sit, lay down, cook, etc.

 

I still think carbon mast should be standard too.

 

Thanks,

 

jason

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Sorry, missed all the action here today. You can store a porta-potty under the forepeak. There is more than enough room under there. You can put in on the cabin sole to use and the companionway door is frosted for privacy. Or you could use a bucket..

 

I have an update to post, give me a couple minutes..

 

-jim lee

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Its been awhile, we've been kinda' busy, sorry. The trouble is, there's not a lot to see for the amount of work going on. We've spread money just about everywhere and there's lots of boat parts moving our way from all over the country.

 

Here's some progress pix..

 

IMG_0689.jpg

Busting tail for a few weeks and I swear, it just looks the same..

 

IMG_0706.jpg

See the little triangle brace in the forepeak there? We need to add six of these to brace where the stanchions mount to the deck.

 

This was something that came out later in the design after we were able to sail Dart #1 for a bit. The stanchion mounting base was just too weak. ( Stuff like this is why you test things before selling them. )

 

Jim Betts was the one that showed us this slick way of bracing he stanchions. Its light, unobtrusive, and plenty strong. Sadly, the alignment is so touchy they must be installed -after- the stanchions have been positioned. Meaning? After the hull interior has been "completed". Uggh! And, they end up taking massive amount of man hours compared to their diminutive size.

 

 

IMG_0735.jpg

Tim working on stanchion bases. Extremely

unpleasant task that makes him really quiet during lunch.

 

 

IMG_0734.jpg

Keel bulb tray.

 

When the boat sits in a cradle, like its trailer, it uses a thick fiberglass tray to hold the keel bulb in position. This takes the weight of the keel off the hull for storage, this is a good thing. And, it keeps the keel from moving around during transport. This is also a good thing, really good thing in fact.

 

Mark wants an extra keel tray for the boat hoist he's putting together for parking his Dart. So we're building two of 'em.

 

 

IMG_0736.jpg

Tom dry stacking the bulb tray. When they're completed they end up being 3/8" solid infused glass.

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IMG_0738.jpg

Bulb tray after infusion. Tom's just starting to grind the backside so we can paint it.

 

 

IMG_0739.jpg

Keel bulb tray all painted and ready to be trimmed.

 

Note Tom just made another one today. For Mark's hoist.

 

 

IMG_0743.jpg

Electronics panels. Electronics always change over time and the last thing one wants is lots of holes all over the boat as the electronics are upgraded.

 

To solve this we bolt all the electronics to replaceable 1/2" marine plywood plates. Want to up grade? You can re-drill the plates or just toss 'em and make up a new blink set. I picked this trick up back in the day doing a tour of the "Chicken coop" where they were building SC70s.

 

To set this up we digitize the different bits we install and using the computer lay out how we want the panel configured. From this we get a 1:1 print that we use to create a wood template.

 

Clamp the template to a sheet of plywood, trace around the perimeter and bash a hammer on all the nail heads. Presto! You have your panel all laid out perfectly.

 

 

IMG_0716.jpg

Handy slave labor.

 

I found, quite a few years ago, that children can actually make for a good labor source. If you watch 'em.

 

I'd trained Danny to do soldering for me way back when he was a wee tot. I have him here putting together wiring sub assemblies. He counts stock, cuts glass, makes up assemblies all for shopping credit. Heck of a deal!

 

 

IMG_0741.jpg

Wire-way panels.

 

These cover the wire coming up from the keel area behind the interior side panels. They mount on the sides of the main bulkhead behind the side panels. You can see them when you look in the cubby hole.

 

White formica?

 

I've seen where people like to use white formica as a base for electronic mounting plates. The problem with formica is that its typically very heavy and not waterproof.

 

The trick we like is that if you wax up a formica table, spray it with white gelcoat and infuse cored glass over all this..

 

The result is indistinguishable from white formica execept..

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IMG_0742.jpg

Backside of wire-way panels..

 

Its really light, strong and 100% waterproof.

 

 

IMG_0708.jpg

Bunk lids. We shipped all our best bunk lids with Dart #2 (Ogopogo). Therefore a shiny new set being cooked up. Here they are being dry stacked..

 

IMG_0712.jpg

Infusing..

 

 

IMG_0733.jpg

De-molded and ready to trim. Tom's been going like a madman molding stuff. He's been piling up a big backlog and one day soon he's going to fire up the grinders and trim all of it. That's going to be a mess!

 

 

IMG_0744.jpg

Little fiberglass part needs some holes drilled in it. This is the housing for the main power breaker that mounts on the side of the battery box. I left this on the bench in hopes that Tim would see it, take pity on me, and drill the holes.

 

There ya' go.

 

-jim lee

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Beautiful work. Visited Ron Moore's Watsonville shop today - quite a treat. Made me wonder why you don't build stanchion sockets in the hull instead of using bases requiring support. Plain stanchions from Garhauer are beautiful and way cheaper than those with bases. Would you do a Transpac in a Dart? Seems ideal at first blush.

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Jim,

 

Thanks for the answers and the further documentation of your build. I would encourage you to mention the chemical toilet storage on your website, and anything else you care to offer for privacy to go with it.

 

I think your angle for this boat is the sportboat owner who wants to be able to do weekend cruising several times during a season, without paying the price to push furniture around the racecourse.

 

I see a young family eating cereal and drinking coffee or juice in the morning, sailing/racing with everyone involved during the day, and grilling with some grill attached in the evening.

 

Cheers. I hope to see one on Lake Champlain.

 

jason

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Beautiful work. Visited Ron Moore's Watsonville shop today - quite a treat. Made me wonder why you don't build stanchion sockets in the hull instead of using bases requiring support. Plain stanchions from Garhauer are beautiful and way cheaper than those with bases. Would you do a Transpac in a Dart? Seems ideal at first blush.

 

Mostly because we use the stanchion bases as through bolting for the hull-deck seam.

 

hyerstay : We have a "camping package" that's not on the website. Consists of a boom tent setup, galley (Jetboil camp stove), cockpit lighting (Led keychain). It always gets a laugh when we show it to people at the factory. But really, its pretty slick. When the sail's parked on the boom, cruise mode, you get nearly 6' headroom in the cockpit as a living room. I would add a propane grill on the stern for most of the cooking and use the Jetboil for things like morning coffee. Our sound system can have an iPad plugged into it for viewing videos with surround sound. The possibilities are endless..

 

Ya' can't just hope to see one. It won't happen 'till YOU move on it.

 

-jim lee

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Still working on trailer parts and the beginnings of fitting out the hull.

 

 

DSCN0007.jpg

Checking for vacuum leaks on the rear trailer cradle. They did a good job. We shut off the pump that afternoon and the bag was still holding vacuum the next morning.

 

We make the cradle as one piece. After its mounted on the trailer, we cut out the center section. This is to allow the keel to pass through when trailer launching.

 

 

DSCN0009.jpg

Infusing the rear trailer cradle. I bet your all getting tired of seeing resin wet parts in vacuum bags.

 

 

DSCN0010.jpg

Rear trailer cradle all ready for to have its backside gel-coated.

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DSCN0015.jpg

Meanwhile back in the Lab.. I've been busy building electronic subassemblies. Remember the earlier picture of the plywood plates and the little switch box?

 

 

DSCN0016.jpg

Battery & main circuit breaker. Notice there's two plates here. The battery plate and accessory plate. All Darts have at least a battery for lights. The accessory plate is for all the extra goodies one can order.

 

We bolt them together to match how they will be mounted in the boat. This makes wiring them a lot easier.

 

DSCN0019.jpg

Finally time to install some of this stuff. Really, when installed, it'll be all tidied up.

 

 

DSCN0021.jpg

We put as much of the electronics weight as low and in the center of the boat as possible. Both plates are mounted back to back directly in front of the keel. Battery installed on port side of the keel...

 

 

DSCN0020.jpg

And on the starboard side we have.. The accessory panel! This Dart is getting..

 

A built in battery charger,

A Left Coast Simple Stereo.

And, A Tactick wireless speed & depth system.

 

The hole in the floor is for the flush mounted speed/depth sounder.

 

Next week we should have the wire-ways and hopefully the side panels installed. I'll get some pictures off all that going together.

 

-jim lee

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One of the little unexpected engineering pitfalls that can kill off a week.

 

DSCN0032.jpg

Here's the problem.

 

Tacktick display, the coolest thing, all solar powered and wireless.. We want to attach to the mast. But it needs to be quickly and easily removable because when the mast comes down, you don't want to crunch it.

 

 

DSCN0033.jpg

Tacktick gives you these nifty triangle pad things that the display snaps to.

 

 

DSCN0034.jpg

But the only, easy to remove, mast mount they offer is this compass mount. It has rectangular hole pattern. Oh dear..

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DSCN0029.jpg

So we came up with this. "The missing Tacktick adapter". Yes a rectangle plate would do. But, seeing we were having all this stuff laser cut anyway.. What the heck, lets have fun, design something cool and slip it in with the rest. We made up a bunch of 'em.

 

 

DSCN0031.jpg

Here we are. Rectangle hole pattern with flat head screws & nylocks hold the adapter to the mast mount. The center holes are tapped 4-40 to attach the triangle pad for holding the display.

 

 

DSCN0030.jpg

The finished assembly. The display snaps on and off as it was designed for easy storage between races. The entire mount comes off the mast with 2 screws for dropping the mast when you want to trailer the boat.

 

-jim lee

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DSCN0015.jpg

Meanwhile back in the Lab.. I've been busy building electronic subassemblies. Remember the earlier picture of the plywood plates and the little switch box?

 

 

DSCN0016.jpg

Battery & main circuit breaker. Notice there's two plates here. The battery plate and accessory plate. All Darts have at least a battery for lights. The accessory plate is for all the extra goodies one can order.

 

We bolt them together to match how they will be mounted in the boat. This makes wiring them a lot easier.

 

DSCN0019.jpg

Finally time to install some of this stuff. Really, when installed, it'll be all tidied up.

 

 

DSCN0021.jpg

We put as much of the electronics weight as low and in the center of the boat as possible. Both plates are mounted back to back directly in front of the keel. Battery installed on port side of the keel...

 

 

DSCN0020.jpg

And on the starboard side we have.. The accessory panel! This Dart is getting..

 

A built in battery charger,

A Left Coast Simple Stereo.

And, A Tactick wireless speed & depth system.

 

The hole in the floor is for the flush mounted speed/depth sounder.

 

Next week we should have the wire-ways and hopefully the side panels installed. I'll get some pictures off all that going together.

 

-jim lee

Very cool layout putting the electrical system on one common mounting board. I'm seeing several large boat manufacturers doing the same sort of thing. It really makes servicing so much easier.

 

One question though. Is it not risky having the instrument sender through hull fitting below the electrical panel ? Even with a dry sailed boat and the water flaps in the through hull there could still be water getting in.

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