This website documents my progress in building a Farrier F-85SR trimaran.


union jack
Build log 2018

30 dec 2018
Due to work and health problems I wasn't able to do much work on my boat since the previous update. This month however I finally was able to do some jobs. The diagonal braces under the trampolines will be attached to the floats with a dyneema padeye. I glued an internal reinforcement in place. Then I started filling and fairing. With all the edges and curves that took quite a bit of time. As the temperature had dropped I needed to wait longer between filling and sanding. I used this time to perform other tasks.

I finally painted the trailer cradle. I used 'de IJsel' dust gray, expecting to use if for the boat as well, but found it too grey for my liking. I have to find a colour that is more white. Afterwards I glued the carpet to the cradle and bolted and glued the steel tubes in place. The cradle is now ready to be bolted to the trailer.
The beams are bolted to the CMM's with bolt plates. To fix the exact position for the bolts, I glued a piece of foam in place with hot glue and drilled a hole through the beam hole. Using this hole as a template I drilled the holes in the CMM's for the two hold down bolts. I first wanted to use my drill press, but found out that the Upper Folding Strut was in the way when lifting the beam up far enough. A second set of eyes and a triangle protractor did the job. The fit of the bolts was good. I enlarged the holes slightly and coated the inside with epoxy to protect against moisture. The seat of the beams on the CMM's was not 100%. Theoretically they have to fit exactly, but in practice on side can be one or two millimeters off. To solve this, I glued a mixture of cotton, aerosil and epoxy in between and bolted the beams in place. There is a good even contact now.

The wingnet tubes should be aluminium, with flanges welded on the ends and bolted to the beams. I bought some carbon tubes, which are much stiffer. I made carbon fittings to glue them to the beams. A bit oversize initially, as I still had to determine the exact place for the beams. When I finished fairing, I clamped them on the beams, cut to size and glued. At the same time I also glued the outside reinforcements for the padeyes in place.

All holes for items mounted on the boat need to be sealed with an epoxy mix. I drilled the first pilot holes for the tiller bearing plate. Many more to follow.

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30 sept 2018
After a long holiday my work did not allow much time for the boat, but slowly I was able to complete some jobs.

With the floats folded it was a much easier than thought to reach the aft side of the front beam and laminate the glue joint. Just crawl in head first.
Next job was closing the temporary access holes. First I protected the floats with two layers of plastic. Then I made a glass flange on the bottom of the hatches. To pull the hatches into place, I made a contraption out of the float supports. I finished the job by laminating the outside, which was the final lamination job on the hulls.

In between I found out that the flex rubber of the tiller extension was quite bigger than I thought, so I glued a carbon piece on top of the tiller.

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22 july 2018
In order to glue the floats to the beams, I rebuild a few old supports. The floats are angled outboard about 9 degrees, so they needed to be angled. I then lifted the floats, supported them into the right position and made sure they were symmetrical port and starboard. I did have to take care not to disturb the alignment of the beams, as that was still possible.

To glue the beams to the floats I had very restricted working space. Most work had to be done by feel and by hand, as there was no space for a multitool for sanding. Even a mirror did not help as my arms were blocking the view. Wat worked, was making a lot of pictures with my phone in between work. A boroscoping camera would have been better, I think.

After gluing I needed to sand and prepare again before taping with glass fibre. With most of the edges taped I was able to remove the supports and fold the floats. This went really well. They can't be folded fully yet, as the hull supports are in the way.

Now I still have to tape the aft side of the front beams. I need to crawl into the floats and that is easiest when the floats are folded in. We did a test fit and, while very cramped, I think it will work.

After ordering my deck hardware I had to work on one pair of conical nuts. After that, all aluminium parts were ready for anodizing and I'm now awaiting their return.

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30 jun 2018
Quite a few pictures this time. Not that I did a lot of work, but I did have a lot of visible progress. The nice weather continued, but before I was able to apply primer to the last areas I first had to cut slots in the trampoline tubes. I used a mold that I wedged vertically to the tubes. Worked out really nice and quick.

I wasn't happy with the end result of the boom, so after some additional filler and sanding I gave the boom another coat of primer when I was coating the last parts of the main hull. After that I had to go back to sanding again, as I had to smooth out the high build primer.

In between I also started preparing the folding system. The acetal bushes were too tight for the pins. While building the beams I had encountered this problem. Some time ago I read a bulletin of Ian Farrier, where he stated that pins had to have a light push fit and that it was OK to sand the inside of the bushes lightly with sandpaper.

I rebuild the supports of the main hull and put it on wheels. This allowed me to move the hull and place it in between the floats. To have support for the beams, I'd already bought jack stands, which I now assembled. First I used them with my laser level, to level the main hull. Then I easily lifted the beams on top and fitted the upper folding strut. I leveled the beams and checked fore and aft alignment. As I had hollowed out the pins, It was easy to align the pins by sighting through the holes. The beams still had some for and aft movement, So I clamped on some battens for rigidity.

I was happy with the fit of the folding system and the beams. Only the gap between the beams and the CMM's was a bit tighter than expected ( should be 3 - 9 mm ), but it was just enough. Beforehand I had expected to need help with alignment of the beams and lower folding struts. By using some battens to support the struts or the bolts, I was easily able to work alone. Only when bolting down the brackets I needed some help.

Lastly I prepared the floats to receive the beams. There are two extra holes next to the aft beams so I can laminate these on the inside. Back in 2012 when building the floats, I had marked these. The cutout for the beams were made to measure by using a template and I sanded all areas.

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31 may 2018
And then suddenly we got some nice weather. Much warmer than normal and ideal for painting the boat with the shed door open. As I wanted to apply the coppercoat myself, I turned the hull inverted ( for the last time, hopefully ) and first applied primer. For the trailer cradle I had used Awlgrip 535. For the hulls I had bought Nautix HPE high build primer. This is great stuff to work with, not so thin and with a lot less solvents.

As the HPE is so nice to work with, and with the nice weather holding ( hottest may month in known history ) I threw my plans around again and started applying the high build primer to the boat. I'm almost done. A few places had some discrepancies or pinholes. I filled these with a bit of Nautix watertight epoxy filler. Below gunwale level I have sanded back the primer. This takes at least as much time as the painting itself and you have to be carefully not to sand through the primer. I used a few pieces of worn 80 grit paper to sand any drips or ridges, then switched to 180 grit on the torture board and the eccentric sander. The last session was with the Rupes, using 240 grit. The rest of the sanding work can wait until we have rainy weather again smile

Only a few more painting days to go.
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30 apr 2018
A commonly accepted wisdom under home builders is the infinity of filling and fairing. There'll always be something that needs more attention, so at a certain point you just have to quit. I had hoped to be able to announce this today and almost made it. One reason is that I left the most visible and hard to fair parts to the end. It doesn't have to be perfect, but I do want to make an effort and not stop too soon. What's two weeks on a total of seven years?

When I checked the deck hatch, I was not happy. Somehow I had sanded too much of the raised edge away. So, I added filler to the edge, reinforced it with glass and added some more filler. It looks a lot better now. I also was not happy with the vertical faces of the CMMs. These things are tough to get smooth anyway and I can understand Ian's switch to moulded parts for the F-32 and F-22.

To work on the cockpit it is easier to have the boat on its side. It also was time to sand the hatches to size and glue the carbon hinges in place. I used 5 minute epoxy for this. It is not as strong as normal epoxy. The idea is that, when someone steps on the door, the hinges will just brake off, without damaging anything else.
The chainplate for the fore stay has been cut so that the ELHF furler will fit.
After serving me seven years, my 12V Sears multitool gave up. I think the carbon brushes have worn out.

Between sanding and filling I applied primer to the trailer cradle. The topside is white, the bottom gray. I added an extra layer to the bottom and finished it off with clear epoxy UV coat. I had these on hand, and they where somewhat old and expired, so perfect for the cradle. I was struck by the amount of solvent in these paints and how long the fumes remain in the shed. My shed is well isolated, but therefore also poorly ventilated. I first wanted to put the three hulls in the high build primer by myself, but I'm not sure about that now. It means I'll change my work order and delay the primer a bit.

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31 march 2018
While my router was cutting the frames for the trailer cradle, I glued a wooden plank on top of the cradle for reinforcement. From cut-offs that remained I made form pieces that will fit the frames onto the steel tubes. After these together I lifted the contraption onto the hull and glued it onto the cradle. To increase stiffness I glued edge strips onto the cradle as well. After lifting the cradle off the hull I taped all glued edges for more strength. The cradle is now ready for paint.

In between I went into the main hull to do some filling and fairing in hard to reach places. The rest of the interior was sanded and only needs a touch up in a few places. Outside on the main hull I laminated the underside of the anchor roller. After the trailer cradle was lifted off the hull, I started sanding the edges and ridges of the exterior.

The moment of painting is getting closer. I'm not sure yet what colour scheme I want. Below the waterline  will be coppercoat, that is no issue. Above the waterline I have two possibilities left. I like a dark blue hull with a white deck, like this English F-33. The downside is that the hulls have to be very smooth, because every irregularity is highlighted. A lighter colour is possible of course, but does not appeal to me. I will probably end up with a white hull, with light grey anti slip on deck, which basically is the standard farrier colour on the F-22.
White is much more forgiving and I can always use PVC wrap foil to give the outside of the floats a colour. A friend of mine advised me to go for DC831 dust gray as a slightly off-white color. I'll paint the trailer cradle in that colour to see if I like it.

I cut the chainplates on the floats to size. The gooseneck for the boom is ready. All conical aluminium nuts have been made and shortly I will have everything anodized.

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28 feb 2018
Curing of epoxy takes quite a while at these low temperatures. It basically comes to a standstill after I leave the shed, only to go further when I heat the shed again. So, I work on several projects and turned the hull on its side so I could fill some hard to reach spots in the cabin. I also continued work on the deck and the cockpit. They need to have a good shape, but don't have to be super smooth, as 99% will be finished with kiwigrip ( deck and cockpit floor ) or EVA foam ( cockpit seats ). Except for the edges, I only filled the weave of the glass cloth on the cockpit floor. I also did another fit-check with the daggerboard, which was a good thing, as too much filler had worked its way into the case at the trailing end. A bit of sanding did the job.

The boom is ready for primer. One part is not ready yet, the goose neck. I found out there's a part missing which I will have to make myself. I did a few small jobs, like gluing the anchor roller in place and finishing the removable strut. This still needs to be faired though.

In between I also started on the trailer cradle. It will be supported by frames for which I laminated a sheet op ply. I did not use peelply this time, but after initial curing I filled the weave with filler. After I applied a last fill to the cabin sides I turned the hull upside down to be used as a mold for the cradle. I stretched two layers of plastic over the hull as I wanted to be sure that no epoxy wood leak onto the hull and laminated 4 layers of glass on top.

As it got really cold, I also started up some aluminium work. I made parts for the temporary stays, which are used for raising and lowering the mast, the mast rotation limiter and also some aluminium conical 5mm nuts, that will sit on the underside of the deck.

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31 jan 2018
I've finished sanding the floats and they are ready for epoxy primer. Especially the starboard float has a few spots that need some attention with a bit of filler afterwards.

The stripes of filler have been sanded back and filled. After curing for several days I sanded the area again. Of course there were a few areas that needed some extra filling. That needs some time to cure now.

In between sanding I also worked on the boom. First I had to measure the distance between the mast and the traveler. The boom needs to stick out a bit behind the traveler. When sailing close hauled the tension in the main sheet will help mast rotation by putting the boom in compression. Also, when releasing the traveler tension in the main sheet will reduce a bit, making it easier to release the traveler. I cut the boom back to the required length. The cut off is used as a mold for the goose neck. I reinforced the ends of the boom on the inside. At the aft end I glued in aluminium blocks so I can screw the outhaul track to the boom.

The removable strut has been sanded back to size.

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