Batten spacing on the Zip

Outboard designs up to 14'

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Batten spacing on the Zip

Post by SteveC »

Making good progress on the Zip - have all the frame components and set-up form ready to go. In trying to determine which notches I will cut in the frames prior to hanging on the set-up form and which will wait, I'm noticing some discrepancies in the plans. In measuring the distance between the keel centerline and the batten centerlines, I'm getting some different readings from frame to frame - as much as 1/8". If the battens run exactly parallel to the keel (which I'm assuming they do), shouldn't this measurement be uniform across the frames?

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Re: Batten spacing on the Zip

Post by hoodman »

I don't know about the Zip but on the Geronimo the battens are not parallel to the keel. They taper in slightly toward the bow. So your assumption may be incorrect.

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Re: Batten spacing on the Zip

Post by TomB »

I am not a Zip builder either. My battens are equally spaced on the frames. 1/8" is "close enough", parallel works. Tom
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Re: Batten spacing on the Zip

Post by sproggy »

Even if the battens are parallel to the keel in the horizontal plane they won't be in the vertical plane because the amount of 'V' increases as you move forward. This means that even if you keep a batten a fixed horizontal distance away from the keel, due to the change of height the distance measured along the frame will increase as you move forward. The spacing isn't critical anyway (you even get to choose how many you have) but try to have one batten each side line up with the sides of your motorwell as that will make things easier later on. I've not cut my batten notches yet specifically because I've not finalised the motorwell design.

Having got to where I am now with the Zip I would have the following recommendation regarding cutting frame notches while the frames are 'loose'. It's OK to cut the chine and sheer notches on frames 4, 2 and the transom. Just cut them slightly shy of full depth to allow for adjustment later. But leave the notches on frame 5 1/2 until you come to actually mount the chines and sheers. This is particularly important on the chine notches where angles are a bit odd. Did someone mention shims.......? :oops: I cut the keel notches ahead of time and that worked out fine but decide whether you're going to laminate a strip of 1/4" ply onto the keel and make allowances for the extra depth if you are - it's not catered for on the plans.

The instructions say to cut the transom notches in the frame only, not through the ply. I believe this is because you're expected to finish the transom bright with the outer surface of the ply on display. But I'll be laminating over mine so have cut the notches all the way through - it's way easier and should give a stronger joint too (more glue area and screws further away from the end of the timber).

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Re: Batten spacing on the Zip

Post by BarnacleMike »


I believe I read somewhere, (may have been Glen's Boatbuilding with Plywood), that it's actually a "best practice" to cut the notches after the frames are mounted on the construction form.

That is the way I did the floor battens on my Zip.

I cut the battens first, aligned them as I wanted them, then marked and cut the notches to match. I did run them parallel to the keel. I guess you could even call it a "theoretical parallel," because there is a little "real world" variation... which I'm not concerned about. I'm building my transom in the same method as Sproggy, so these batten cuts did include going through the transom frame and the 1st 1/2 inch of plywood that is currently attached. I may have also cut the keel notch in the transom on the construction form... I don't remember.

As far as the other frames, I did pre-cut the chine and sheer notches.

The Zip plans are long-established. I haven't seen any documented cases on the forum where pre-cut batten notches were a problem. So, I think you'd be safe to pre-cut the batten notches to match the plans, if you choose... even if there are minor discrepancies.
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Bill Edmundson
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Re: Batten spacing on the Zip

Post by Bill Edmundson »


On the bottom battens there is some leeway. You will have additional cut out on the uphill side for the limbers.

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