The weather was cold and windy in the morning, but the afternoon was perfect. A nice cool breeze blew, tempering the bright sun. Please, I’d appreciate more days like that.. The temperature was perfect in the afternoon.
When the sun came out and the dark clouds disappeared over the horizon, the drill press was set up. The rest of the afternoon was spent drilling chain plates!
A drill press vice is used to hold the metal securely. 1/8″ pilot holes are drilled, followed by 1/4″ and lastly 3/8″ for the lower securing bolts and 5/8″ for the rigging pin above deck. This drill press does not have enough power to drill the 5/8″ holes properly, so I must find another or job it out to one of the mechanics here.
I managed to drill two 5/8″ holes before figuring out the drill press was not powerful enough. Not having enough power causes damage to the drill bit and may work harden the hole if it gets too hot. It is important to use lots of cutting oil to keep the drill bit cool. I chose the Boeing Co oil, Boelube. It works very well and I had little difficulty cutting holes of 1/4″ and less in diameter. The 3/8″ holes were almost too much for the drill press to handle.
I only drilled two 5/8″ holes. Four more must be drilled, but I will save it for a more powerful drill press. The other two lower chain plates are drilled with 1/4″ holes which must be enlarged. I also drilled the major chain plates with 1/4″ holes.
That done, I cleaned up my mess and put things away. I received a phone call from the yard office… my package of epoxy has arrived! This epoxy will be used to fill the “knees” with milled glass fibres to reinforce them.