This is Page 6 of Building Instructions for the Redneck Racer Camp Boat.
Summary of Activities
- Purchase a 5 lb. weight and other materials for the leeboard and rudder. Try to find a 5 lb. flat barbell weight at a Play it Again Sports or similar sports store. These weights are usually about 5/8” thick and a little over 6” in diameter and can often be purchased for a couple of dollars. Buy (1) 3/8” x 3 ½” and (1) 3/8” x 3” galvanized or stainless steel bolt, (6) stainless fender washers, and (2) stainless or galvanized wing nuts that will fit on the 3/8” bolts. Purchase a 1/2” x 2’ x 4’ BC plywood panel. See activities 2 and 3 below for an additional plywood panel purchase you might want to make. One extra panel will be all that is needed for both options in activities 2 and 3.
- Glue the leeboard together. Match up the two cutouts from the aft section of the inside frame shown in Panel 2. Glue and clamp these pieces together securely with the face sides out. IMPORTANT OPTION: Purchase a 2’ x 4’ x ¼” BC plywood panel. Using one of the existing leeboard pieces as a template, draw an outline similar to the template only add about 1” to its width and about ¾” to its length. Cut out this new piece and sandwich it between the other two when gluing making certain that the new middle panel is flush at the top and that about ¼” of the middle panel protrudes from the forward edge and about ¾” protrudes from the aft edge. This ¾” thick leeboard will provide you with a wider and much stronger leeboard than the ½” leeboard made from only two pieces. Use this option if you expect to sail in rough conditions or on larger bodies of water anytime.
- Glue the rudder together. Match up the two cutouts from the forward section of the inside frame shown in Panel 2. Glue and clamp these pieces together securely making certain that the good sides are facing out. IMPORTANT OPTION: If you chose to purchase the extra ¼” plywood panel mentioned above, follow the same procedure to make a wider and stronger ¾” thick rudder. Use this option if you expect to sail in rough conditions or on larger bodies of water anytime.
- Paint the hull. While you are waiting for the glue to dry on the leeboard and rudder, you can be working on painting the hull inside and out.
- Cut out a handle for the leeboard. Looking at the original sketch of the “Redneck Duck” design, fashion a handle out of scrap wood that is the same thickness as your leeboard and looks like the handle in the sketch. The “grip” should be about 3” at the base narrowing to 1 ¼” at the top and angled as shown. There should be a 6” or longer back edge of the handle piece that can be screwed and glued to the leeboard. Flatten the top and backside of the leeboard, then use that back corner of the leeboard to draw the cutout on the handle so that the handle makes a tight fit. Fill in any gaps with PL Premium and sand the handle edges so that it is comfortable to grip.
- Shape and sand the leeboard. If you can borrow a belt sander with 60 grit sandpaper, this step can go much, much faster. Otherwise use a sharp block plane and an orbital or other electric sander to shape the leeboard. Viewed from the bottom, the leeboard should be shaped like a modern submarine with a rounded nose, a 6” flat section, and a long taper that is squared off in an aft edge that is about ¼” thick. Plywood will splinter easily when the surfaces are being planed, sometimes even with a sharp-bladed hand plane or electric plane. If you find that is the case, fill the splinter holes with wood filler and use the sander to complete the task.
Try to sand your boards into a modern submarine shape when viewed from the end. However, leave about ¼” on the trailing edge instead of shaping the aft edge to the knife point shown in this photo.
This photo shows how inserting the extra ¼” board can provide added width to the leeboard.
The sanded BC plywood leeboard. Note that the part of the leeboard that is usually above the water line does not have to be shaped. In fact, the aft top edge needs to be squared off so that a handle can be added.
- Drill the pivot hole in the leeboard and the side of the boat. Place a piece of scrap wood under the leeboard where you will be drilling your hole. If the scrap is tightly pinned to the back of the board, your pivot hole will almost always be perfect on both sides, if not, the drill can splinter the back side of the hole. The position of this pivot hole in the leeboard is 3” from the forward edge and 6” down from the top of the board as long as the top of the leeboard is aligned with the top of the boat’s gunwale. (Refer to the initial sketch of the “Redneck Duck” design.) If you are planning to use a 60 sq. ft. leg o’ mutton for your sail as recommended for this initial PDRacer hull, the pivot hole in the boat’s side will be located 4’ from the stern of the boat and 6” down from the top of the gunwale. Temporarily screw a piece of scrap wood to the inside of the hull as a backing plate where this hole will be drilled just as you did when drilling the initial hole in the leeboard. Use a 3/8” drill for both the hole in the leeboard and the hole in the boat. Check for fit using the 3/8” bolt.
- Cut the weight hole in the leeboard. Place the 5 lb. weight on your leeboard so that it is as low and as far forward as it can be and still be in the 6”-wide flat part of the board. Draw a circle around the edge of the weight and cut the circle out to the inside of your line with a jigsaw. Test fit the weight inside the board and sand off any high places so that the weight will fit snugly in the hole. Place wax paper or a piece of smooth plastic like a thick garbage bag under the leeboard where the hole has been filled. Fill any gaps on the top side between the weight and the leeboard with PL Premium or epoxy mixed with wood flour. Fill the center hole with a wood plug cut from the round scrap and/or with glue. Once the glue or epoxy has set, sand the surface smooth, turn the board over and repeat the gap-filling process on the other side of the leeboard.
Cut a hole in the leeboard for the weight. If you need additional weight in the board because you sail in salt water. Add an extra 2 lb. weight closer to the bottom of the board.
Insert the weight and plug into the leeboard. Make certain that you are working on a flat surface and that you have wax paper or plastic under the weight area.
Spread glue or epoxy over the surface of the weight on both sides. Once sanded, the weight will be difficult to detect until you lift the board.
- Shape and sand the rudder. Repeat the procedure in activity 6 to shape and sand the rudder after the glue has set. Some shaping and cutting of the top corners will have to wait until the next activity is complete.
- Cut, shape, and sand the wishbone tiller/rudder case. See Panel #8 for detailed dimensions and the cutting plan for the sides and other pieces. The sides that make up the tiller and case are best cut from a 2’ x 4’ x ½” BC plywood panel which has to be purchased separately. After the two sides are cut out, match them up and plane and sand the pieces to the same shape. Once this process is complete, cut and shape a piece of 1” x 4” to fit the front of the rudder case. Make certain that this piece is thick enough (usually slightly more than ¾” in thickness) that a ¾” thick rudder will not bind inside the case. Be especially careful if you expanded the thickness of the rudder by adding a ¼” –thick center piece of plywood to the rudder. Cut another smaller piece of 1” x 4” to act as a spreader between the two sides of the tiller handle. I recommend priming and painting the inside parts of the rudder case before gluing the two sides together along the 1” x 4”. Later, it will be nearly impossible to get a paint brush into the narrow opening between the two sides of the rudder case. When the paint is dry, glue the sides to the 1” x 4” pieces shown as dotted lines in the plan. The ends of the handle are joined for about 5”- 6” with glue as well. Clamp and/or screw these end pieces together securely. If you are using screws to hold pieces together, use fender washers under the heads to keep them from denting the faces of the rudder case and tiller handle. After the glue has dried, remove the screws and replace them with shortened skewers.that have been dipped in glue. Later you can plane the tips of the skewers off flush with the face sides of the rudder case and tiller. Next, sand the pieces smooth then prime and paint the rest of the finished case and tiller.
- Test fit the rudder in the case. Fit the rudder in the case with the forward top corner of the rudder just clearing the top of the case when the forward edge of the rudder is butted up against the 1” x 4” “butt” board. Mark a pivot holeabout 3” to 4” from the back of the case and positioned roughly where shown in Panel #8 of the plans.
Place the rudder flat against the 1” x 4” “butt” board
Drill a small 1/8” hole in the rudder about where you think the pivot point should be. Place a small nail through the hole and into the case. Test that the rudder will rotate all the way around in the case. If it doesn’t, cut more curve into the forward top corner of the rudder or move the pivot hole.
Once the rudder “kicks up” properly, glue on the other side of the rudder case and tiller.
The “butt board” in the photos above was replaced with a slightly thicker piece made from a ¾” thick piece of plywood that the builder had on hand.
Try to achieve a submarine shape when looking at the board from the bottom end. Use this shape for both the leeboard and rudder.
A bungee cord secured to the aft edge of the rudder by a small padeye and to the case by a 2 ½” x ¼” bolt with fender washers on each side keeps the rudder in the down position. The bolt should be located about 3” lower on the case than shown in this photo.
- Drill the pivot hole. Once you have located your rudder’s pivot point, place a piece of scrap under the rudder case and with the rudder properly positioned, drill a 3/8” pivot bolt hole.
- Prime and paint the leeboard, rudder, and rudder case and tiller. After the paint is dry, attach the rudder in the rudder case with a 3/8” x 3” stainless or galvanized bolt, fender washers, and a wing nut.
- Clean up.
Notes and Tips Below Correspond to the Daily Activity Numbers Above
- Do not deviate from the cutting plan shown in Panel 8 if you want to have both B or good sides facing outward when your wishbone rudder case is complete.