Keel to stem issue

Outboard designs up to 14'

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Keel to stem issue

Postby RLASON52 » Thu Jun 26, 2014 12:36 pm

Hi all, I'm starting to feel like a dummy with all the questions I've put forth, but I'm trying to get this build right the first time. So here goes.

I'm getting ready to trim and mount the 4" keel. With it resting across frames # 2 & #4 and perfectly level to the building form and gravity, the stem end of the keel is not parallel to the notch in the stem. If I bend the keel down to make full length contact with the stem, the aft end being closer to the keel that the forward end of the notch, the breasthook raises up off it's blocking about 1/2', changing the required 21" dimension from set up to the bottom of the breasthook. It seems as if the stem is sitting on a fulcrum point at frame 5.5 Attached is a few pictures of the uneven gap between the keel and the notch in the stem. Early on I posted about the stems's notch and the breasthook not being parallel and went ahead and cut a new stem. When it matched the plans perfectly I figured it was meant to be that way. Can anyone shed light on how I should proceed?

keel-stem difference2.JPG

keel-stem angle 2.JPG

Another question while I have you...... In the transom /knee picture I've attached is the position correct and could I go ahead and secure with epoxy and bolts the knee to the transom and then once the keel is glued and screwed to the frames position the notch in the transom frame on the keel and glue and screw them together?


I"ve woodworking for many years and this project is really testing my skills. Give me a set of plans for a sideboard or rocking chair any day.

Thanks again, Rick

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Re: Keel to stem issue

Postby Roberta » Thu Jun 26, 2014 1:06 pm

Have you anchored the stem and breasthook to the blocking to prevent lifting? If properly set up, there will be an angle and you need to draw the keel into the stem with the bolts. The angle in your pic look's about right.

The knee and transom assembly can be installed as you have it. Make sure the depth of the notch in the transom is of the correct depth. The thickness of the keel will be the depth of the notch as measured in the center of the notch. Otherwise you will not be able to fair the keel even with the bottom of the transom. Make sure your keel is flat between the transom and frame "4" to prevent a hooker or a rocker. Shim or adjust framing to get it flat.

Roberta :D
Roberta "Queen of the Boat Builders"
Built Zip "Oliver IV", Super Spartan "Jimmy 70", and Torpedo "The Glen L".

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Re: Keel to stem issue

Postby gdcarpenter » Thu Jun 26, 2014 1:33 pm

Hope these photos help. Keel does indeed need to bend down going forward to unite with stem. In one photo you can see that I through bolted keel to stem before anchoring the rest of the keel. The other photo shows how I pre beveled the front end of my keel where it mates to the stem, I left my keel full width for max hull support, many seem to taper the keel width down to the width of the stem. Note that keel is a lot thinner where it meets the stem to fair with the frames. Ignore the fact that my keel was a "skeel" - skeg and keel made as one piece.

Personally I would not attach the transom knee until I had the transom mounted onto the building form, only then will you know for absolute sure that everything lines up according to "The Plan".
This is my first, last and only boat build.

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Andy Garrett
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Re: Keel to stem issue

Postby Andy Garrett » Thu Jun 26, 2014 4:39 pm

Your angles look spot on to me.

Screw your breasthook to the blocking so it is anchored, then bend that keel right itno the notch. As Roberta said, draw the two members together with the bolts.
Andy Garrett

Perhaps the slowest Zip build in Glen-L history...

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