Steps in Building a SCAMP sailboat
Links to all my scamp building pages.
Turning SCAMP Over to Work on Bottom
Turning a 350 pound boat over is not as simple as the instructions seem to make it. I don't have a good roof to hang anything from. It's a metal building with instructions NOT to hang anything heavy from any one point.
I don't have scores of muscled young men I can easily call on. Neighbours have agreed to give me a hand when the time comes but I have to have the boat ready to turn. Since I'm building alone and I'm a not terribly strong person I've had to think about this. Flipping the Scamp will need some preparation.
Lifting Scamp up so I can remove the frame.
Several Scamp builders have simply lifted the boat off the frame and put it on the floor then rolled it over. This is difficult for me.
Other builders have suspended the Scamp from the garage beams using ratchet straps then turned the boat in the straps. This seemed like a practical idea. It allows the boat to be lifted off the frame, which can then be removed and the area cleared. Appropriate saw horses can then be placed to support the boat.
Once the boat is up in the straps it is possible to gradually rotate it. I don't think this is simple but it is not dangerous and the boat is being supported while being turned.
Building a support frame to suspend the boat.
Although 300-400 pounds is a lot of weight, it is not terribly heavy for lifting straps and wooden frames to support. That's only a couple of hundred pounds per side.
I decided to get some 2x4s and build a cube framework. Since the lumber will not be cut down very much I can use the lumber again to make some fencing around my garden since I have encouraged deer all winter and they will love the fresh garden greens, if I don't do anything to protect it.
In theory this is very simple. I spent some time measuring, drawing a good sketch, getting my materials together and finally got started.
My carpentry skills would make a house framer weep. I cut some pieces and support braces for the corners and laboriously put them together.
The wood was reasonably straight when I bought it but it immediately started twisting around the minute I started working on it.
After a day of work I had a mostly solid, mostly square construction that looked like it might be up to supporting a SCAMP and steady enough while it was wiggled and pushed around.
I dug up the ratchet straps and some rope. The straps are not long enough to go all around so I'll connect them with some good boat rope. I will have 4 straps looped around. Each loop only needs to hold about 100 pounds so I don't expect anything will be stressed at all.
I made 2 sawhorses which will fit under the boat.
The sawhorse had me scrambling for every little piece of scrap wood but eventually I got them done. I had bought lumber but when I measured for the sawhorse I only allowed 4 legs not 8 legs. Senior's moment.
Hoisting the Scamp up
I made some holes to allow the ropes that will go under the Scamp. My straps are too short to go all around so I'm using some old halyards from the Tanzer I used to have. I made the holes and chiseled them to fit the rope.
I slowly tightened the ratchet and the boat lifted up nicely. It does not slide easily on the straps so I expect it will be crooked but I don't think it matters.
I set up 4 straps to even out the load. I have it in my mind that I will be able to control the down more easily. These ratchet straps open up suddenly when released. There is no gentle gradual descent. I figured I could let one go, then set it back up looser, then let its neighbour go and gradually let the boat down in small steps.
Once the boat was swinging freely and the frame appeared to be holding with no problem I took the building frame apart and put the pieces in the garage, then swept under the boat.
I put the sawhorses under the boat in case something bad happens overnight. Tomorrow I will try and gather some help to turn the boat. Supported by the straps it should not be too hard nor as dangerous as just lifting it up.
The SCAMP is suspended waiting to be turned. There is enough friction that one person could not slide the boat around. 2 Strong people might be able to nudge the boat to turn it.
I was lucky. Neighbours were having a baby shower and there was a whole lot of extra guys around to help.
The video has photos at the beginning that duplicate the photos on the web page. You can skip to :35 for the start of the video clip. If the video will not display this is the address: https://youtu.be/52S4M68plMo
The turning went very well and I'm now ready to start working on the bottom.