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The Dames Blonde journey started with the development of the wooden kits. This narrative shares some of the experiences of the first ever build. We've learned a lot since then and now do some tasks and processes a little differently but it's still a little bit of the Dames Blonde history. And the first IC Slurp One Design wooden is still being used regularly at West Kirby. We thought you'd find it interesting. We will be sharing more of these experiences in this section over the coming weeks and months.

Hull Build

1. Place the bottom panels of the jig on a ladder but do not assemble the frames on to the jig
2. Join each bottom panel (Doc.6003, Art.no. 0005-1, 0005-2, 0005-3) whilst laid flat on the jig surface - glue only, no taping needed at this point, cling film or polythene under and over the joints, ply and use bricks on top to hold flat and together whilst glue sets.
3. Loosely bolt assemble the spine and 3 transverse frames without gluing to make sure all the pieces are in the correct position.

4. Wedge the spine assembly upright (I used bricks along the length) so that it is sitting on its tags and all in a straight line on the jig surface. There is room to do this whilst the bottom panels are on the jig base.
5. Un-bolt the spine, apply epoxy, bolt back together and re-wedge it upright.
6. After bottom panels and spine have set - lift-off the jig surface and assemble the jig.

The bit I didnt do. - Put a line of cling film right down the centre for the whole length of the jig as the epoxy runs down the tags in the spine. Probably be best to line the transverse jig supports as well although I didnt stick to these.
7. Place the bottom panels in the jig. They are a good tight fit and once they are pushed into line do not tend to move apart other than in the aft 18 inches.
8. Lift the spine as a whole and place in to the bottom. It sits in without pushing the bottom panels apart.
9. Use half clothes pegs or other small wedges to align the spine tags into the centre of the slots in the bottom and to hold it upright.
10. Tape a piece of wood across the jig bow support and tape the forward spine upright and in the centre as it tends to flop.

11. Tape the bottom together right at the bow (Duck tape). It only has a slight tendency to move apart and the tape is enough to hold it.
12. At the aft end put a line right around the bottom panels and spine and tighten up to pull the bottom upwards and inwards to meet the aft end of the spine. Tape this up underneath to pull the bottom panels together.
13. Paint either side of the spine and bottom at the joint with epoxy, a fillet of epoxy/filler mix down the whole length of each side then overlaid with tape, all done within the epoxy curing times. Leave to cure.
14. Cut-off the tags on the forward transverse spine web to 6mm
15. Lift the assembly one side by about 2 inches and place the centre side panel in position one side, then the other. Dont glue the side panels together as there is enough movement in the joint (Although very little) to get the ends out of line by about an inch if you do and then they wouldnt necessarily line up with the bottom panels. Tape the side panels to the bottom, using the tape to pull the tags tight together.
16. Put the aft sides in position in the jig

17. Drill two holes half an inch from the aft end of each aft panel, and through the aft end of the spine. Lace the aft end tight to get the side panels to touch the spine.
18. Tape the aft panels into position. Once they have been laced together at the stern they will go into position nicely and be held by the tape.

19. The joints between the centre and aft side panels will now have handily sprung apart. Glue them, cover with cling film and clamp with ply either side of the joint.
20. After the aft joint is set do the same with the fwd panels, I put a couple of 6mm dowels through the bow to stop it springing apart and then taped it.

21. Once the fwd joint is set, re-check that the sides are still taped into place in the tags in the bottom, then epoxy fillet along the length of the boat and overlay with tape.
22. Place the carriage support rails in position on the webs, tape them in position and the webs to the boat sides and epoxy fillet each side of the 6 spine webs to the spine.
23. Fwd bulkheads - Duck tape into place at the top and the back, epoxy fillet and tape on the front.
24. Fwd bulkheads - Once epoxy at the front set, remove the tape from the back and epoxy fillet and tape the joints at the back and at the point where they touch the sides. Peg and Glue the deck supports to the bulkheads. (6mm dowel fits the holes)
25. Scored slots in the mast support and bent it to fit the spine and bulkhead. Taped into position then epoxy glue and fillet (Havnt taped this yet - must do that)

26. Cut strips from the 6mm packing approx. 1 to 2 inches wide depending on what is available. Peg and glue the strips as inwhales for the aft 2/3's of the boat, pull the strips tight with screws, remove screws after glue has set.
27. Fore-deck inwhale just glued and screwed (Screws then removed)
28. Peg and glue strips along either side of the top of the spine for the whole length except aft of rudder and fwd of forestay point.
29. Cut a ply 'plate' to fit between the carriage support ribs on the spine from the deck level to the bottom parallel to the side and 18mm away from the side at the top. This is filleted and taped at the bottom and to the ribs. I have then added a 6mm strip along the top to give a 14mm top surface to glue to.

30. Cut a ply plate (6mm) approx 8 inches by 6 inches to fit at the shroud positions and glued and pegged in place against the side (inside).

Next step is another layer of tape along all the major joints as you suggested and fitting the fore-stay plates.