Star 45

Star 45

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Saturday, December 23, 2006

S45 Construction | John Fisher - keel tubes

Date: Fri, 22 Dec 2006 18:22:14 -0700 (Mountain Standard Time)
From: "John Fisher"
To: "Dave mainwaring"
Subject: Star 45 keel tubes

Here is a photo sequence showing how I made my keel tubes. I am using a keel from CPM (David Ramos) with longer keel bolts so they will go through the deck when finished. I coated the brass rod with carnuba was as a mold release.


Radio install on star # 3 | John Fisher

Date: Fri, 22 Dec 2006 18:09:14 -0700 (Mountain Standard Time)
From: "John Fisher"
To: "Dave Mainwaring" ,
Subject: Radio install on star # 3

Here are a couple of photo's of my latest star. I have just finished installing the radio tray for an under deck winch, jib tweaker, and rudder servo. I also included a photo of the sheet through deck mount. I also show the jib tweaker turn around. The part is a 180 deg sheet lead from great basin.

The radio tray is 1/16 ply backed up with 1/8 X 3/8 spruce or basswood. Note the glassing at the ends. This adds a lot of strength to the joint and I highly recommend adding it. I have 1" wide glass tape that I cut in half, then sprayed with 3M77 so it will stay in place for gluing. Then a dab of your favorite epoxy and you are done.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Duddy's universal building jig,: materials used

M. Duddy's universal building jig
Date: Thu, 21 Dec 2006 08:28:46 -0500

The material used in the jig is 1"x1"x1/16" aluminum square tube( very ridged and no twist).
The ends are 1 1/2" angle bolted in two places on the ends as you can see in the pictures. I checked the ends with levels and the jig is dead straight.

The angle pieces with the screws in them are 3/4"x 1/16" x 6" long. You mount your frames to these with a square on the centerline of your frame inline with the center of the attachment piece.

Next you use a square to square these on the jig rails, and line up with the string. Now you are rite on brother.:) The dimensions of this jig are ; 60" long x 6" wide because they only had 60" pieces in the rack , and I didn't know what I might be building in the future. You can make it any size you want.

The end plates I made from 1/4"(stuff laying around), and milled slots in them so I could slide the jig to one side or the other for balance. If you have any questions or if I can help you in any way , get in touch with me.


Tuesday, December 19, 2006

S45 Construction Michael Duddy's Universal Building Jig

Subject: universal building jig
Date: Mon, 18 Dec 2006

Attached is the pictures of the jig. It isn't hard to build , and can be used on most any boat model (maybe even wings too). It is all adjustable , and it can be tilted on either side to plank the sides of the hull you are working on. Once the hull is done it can be removed very easy. The materials are available at places like Home Depot,or Lowes , and I know of some aluminum suppliers that sell in small quantities. I could draw up some plans if anyone is interested. I have to make a stem and transom angle holder for it.

Join the AMYA Star45 Class !

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Tank Notes on International Star Boats (1/3 size models)

Tank Notes on Star Boats: "ROUND chines add another complication to getting speed from a hull. This bad feature is an extension of the range in which burble will appear. In the wake of any transom-sterned boat, a severe agitation of the water may be noticed, an indication that a breakdown is occurring in the flow of water under the boat. When water is released from the transom properly, the burble that means an increase in resistance is not present. However, it is possible to run without burble only above and below definite speeds, the range depending on the lines of the boat. But, also, the shape of the chine has some effect. With a square-chined Star, it is safe to say that the burble will appear at about 5 knots and run clear aft at about 6 1/2 knots (when the boat is upright and on the designed trim). Increasing the bilge radius to 3 inches, on a Star, increases the burble range by dropping the lower limit to 4 1/2 knots and by raising the upper limit to 7 1/2 knots. Also, a model with round chines, when running heeled, begins to climb out of the water forward as the speed increases, the round chine acting as a flat surface on which the model tries to plane. To complete the analysis, it is necessary to go back to sharp-chined heeled models, in which the burble range is from 4 1/2 to 6 1/2 knots.

With the sharp-chined models, there was no indication that the bow tried to rise, a further proof that the sharp entrance angles are imperative. The easiest way to decrease the burble range is to trim the boat by the head and, conversely, the handicap of a trim by the stern is that it will cause the water to break away from the transom at speeds lower than normal. Under all conditions except that of a rounded chine, the burble range increases by dropping the lower limit; the upper limit is quite constant, being 6 1/2 knots. Interestingly, that is approximately the speed at which some styles of Star hulls show the first signs of planing.

In summary, it can be said that many Star boat owners might have had a faster boat than the standard Star because:
1. The fore and aft contour of the boat had been flattened and a large decrease in resistance accrued.
2. The boat was sailed down by the head, at least while running, which would give a 12 per cent decrease in the power required to drive her.
3. Square chines might have been used, which mean a decrease in resistance.

Although this work was done directly on Stars, the information is also applicable to other types of square-chined boats. But it must always be remembered that, even though a skipper have all the information in the world and his boat has an enviable heritage from designer and builder, the combination must sail hard to be a winner."

Complete article on

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Star 45 Class | Rod Carr's "SPOT" Star #1

The modern day Star 45 Class got started back "when" Rod Carr got the AMYA launched and introduced the modeling world to his Star #1

Saturday, December 02, 2006

7.0 KEELS AND BALLAST BULBS: class specs.

Class specifications as of 2006:


7.1 Keel will be of the style known as drop, and will be of the FIN and BULB type.

7.2 Keel fins may be solid or hollow and constructed of reinforced plastic, plastic laminates, fiberglass, wood or metal. (Note: Strength and integrity of the keel fins must be maintained whether built solid or hollow.) Keel fin shape is not specified but must follow the general shapes outlined on the reference drawing. However, keels will not be less than 6 inches nor more than 8 inches long (Fore and Aft) at the keel/hull junction, nor less than 4 inches nor more than 6 inches long (Fore and
Aft) at the keel/ballast bulb junction.

7.3 Keels, keel fins and ballast bulbs may be removable, however, they may not be changed, interchanged, substituted or otherwise manipulated once any heat or series of heats in which scores will be compiled, has started. Mechanically movable keels or ballast bulbs are specifically prohibited from use in Star 45 Class Yachts.

7.4 Ballast bulbs may be constructed of any material not prohibited by the AMYA. The actual shape is left to the builder's discretion, but will not exceed 9.75 (9 3/4) inches from the front of the keel bulb to the rearmost point of the keel or bulb.

7.5 Total drop (length) of the keel fin/ballast bulb combination will not exceed 11.5 (11 1/2) inches when measured from the keel/hull junction, before any fillers or streamlining is added.

7.6 Ballast may be made from any readily available material, such as poured lead, lead shot, etc. (Note: When using material such as lead shot, the mass must be solidified through the use of a bonding agent such as fiberglass or epoxy resin, plaster of paris, poured over and through in order to create a solid mass.)

7.7 Race directors may elect to use a template based on the construction plans to determine the keel length (depth).

7.8 Keel depth shall be measured from the center of the keel fin at the hull to the bottom of the ballast bulb. This measurement is from the edge of the bottom of the hull as it meets the side of the keel and should be determined during construction and before any fillet or fairing is added.

7.9 The Star 45 Class specifically excludes radio equipment, sail controls and batteries (power cells) from being considered ballast. This specification defines ballast as anything carried aboard the model for the main purpose of changing the weight distribution of the model and/or weight of the model. Ballast shall be fixed in place by gluing, fiberglassing, or bolting (bolts and screws).

7.9.1 Ballast may not be removed or relocated during any one regatta. The use of Velcro or similar quick release fasteners is prohibited as methods of mounting ballast.

Sunday, November 26, 2006


Phil Geren Sat, 25 Nov 2006 20:57:08 EST



November 2006 To December 2007

Table of Contents

Origin of this Committee. 3

Charter 3

Membership. 3

Processes. 4

Action Items, prioritized. 5

Origin of this Committee

Don Keeney, Class Secretary of the Star 45 Class of model yachts sanctioned by the American Model Yachting Association, announced at the National Championship Regatta held in October of 2006 that he plans to assist the Membership of the Class in achieving a clear, unambiguous, and uniform interpretation of the Rules. He also stated a goal to enhance the growth of participation in the Class.

To these ends Don formed the Star 45 Class Technical Committee of November 2006 through December 2007. The objectives, members, working processes, an an initial list of prioritized action items are set forth below.


The Technical Committee shall:

µ Ensure that the Star 45 Class Rules are:

o Capable of being clearly understood by all Class members without ambiguity;

o Subject to only one interpretation;

o Adequate to preserve the one-design principle of the Class, while allowing room for improvement in sailing performance


o Formulating and publishing Guidelines for Rule Interpretation and Application (“GRI”);

o Submitting to the Class Secretary proposed Rule Amendments and New Rules;

µ Enhance growth in Class Membership by:

o Discovering and publishing corrections and clarifications to errors and ambiguities in the approved Star 45 reference and construction plans;

o Discovering and publishing Guidelines For Building And Tuning (“GBT”) Star 45 Model Yachts in order to assist a builder in achieving a competitive racing boat, at minimum cost, complying with the Rules, regardless whether building from scratch or from kit materials.


The Technical Committee shall comprise eight participants: the Class Secretary, Committee Chairman, and six Members. The Committee Chairman and the Members shall have voting rights.

The following people shall be directly involved in the business of the Technical Committee:

Class Secretary: shall participate in all discussions; shall take the final decision on all issues regarding the Rules after receiving the recommendation of the Committee. shall have no vote in Committee voting processes; shall, subject to his sole discretion, publish Guidelines for Rule Interpretation and Application received from the Technical Committee; shall, subject to his sole discretion, submit to the Class Membership for approval Rule Amendments and New Rules received from the Technical Committee;

Committee Chairman: shall recruit to fill vacancies on the Committee; shall chair discussions among Committee Members and administer voting processes; shall have voting rights; shall prepare the final wording of GRIs and GBTs based upon the consensus of the Committee; shall publish GBTs;

Committee Members: shall bring issues to the Committee for action; shall discuss and reach consensus, through simple majority vote on all issues; shall formulate Guidelines for Rule Interpretation and Application and submit these to the Committee Chairman for preparation of a final document; shall formulate, prepare, achieve consensus upon and submit to the Committee Chairman Guidelines For Building And Tuning Star 45 Model Yachts.

Present Committee Membership:

Class Secretary: Don Keeney,

Committee Chairman: Phil Geren,

John Fisher,

Dave Mainwaring,

David Ramos,

Peter Latournes,

Mel Holman,

Region 3 Candidate - being recruited


µ Discussion shall take place through postings of Email messages to:

or messages posted while visiting this website: .

Posted messages are read at: .

Please note that photos and attachments cannot be sent to the above.

Photos and attachments can be sent to: , where building information is being archived.

µ Consensus shall be by simple majority vote;

µ The quorum shall be the Committee Chairman plus 4 or 6 Members;

µ Guidelines for Rule Interpretation and Application shall be published by the Class Secretary as he sees fit;

µ Guidelines For Building And Tuning Star 45 Model Yachts shall be published at Star , at , and at .

µ Preliminary performance targets for the Committee are to:

§ issue this Technical Committee organizational document for voting by the Committee on 26 November 2006;

§ issue one GRI per month;

§ issue the first GBT within three months.

Action Items, prioritized

1. Guidelines for Rule Interpretation and Application:

a. overhang of backstay chainplate, strut, boomkin or other device – how to measure

b. “hull” definition, wood, fiberglass

c. 1/4” or 3/8” bow bumper overhang

d. rudder profile and dimension limitations

e. jib numbering

f. obtain reference and constructing drawings additionally from Class Secretary (not just Ship’s Store)

g. fiberglass = fiber reinforced plastic, such as glass or other fiber cloth impregnated with hardened epoxy or polyester resin

h. Rule 1.4: rule to be waived if unable to be reasonably applied, such as, for example, if the deck or keel is attached, if verification by another Class member is inconvenient (requiring mailing the model, for example). Alternatively, Rule 1.4 to be deleted.

i. Hierarchy between Rules and Drawings

2. Guidelines For Building And Tuning Star 45 Model Yachts

a. Make available the best of the versions of the laser-cut frame files with instructions, online

b. Discuss if organization is the optimum for guiding beginners

c. Keel and bulb locations

d. Wings on rudders and bulbs

e. Glue recommendations

f. New building materials

g. New sources for woods, other materials

h. Jib tweakers

i. Jib twitchers

j. Drawings, correctd on CD

k. Camber recommendations for keels and rudders

l. Backstay tension calibrated for mast bend

m. Mast bend recommendations vs wind speed vs luff curve

n. Sheeting angles vs windspeed

o. Mast position vs wind speed

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Curved mast -- tuning a mainsail

Date: Wed, 22 Nov 2006 06:58:53 EST
Subject: Re: [Star45] Curved mast -- advantage ??

Curving a mast so that it bends convex forward (concave aft) moves the luff edge of the sail forward and reduces the camber of the sail in the section where the mast is bent (if bent half way up the mast, the camber in the up/down center of the luff of the sail is reduced). In a blow, this reduces power, reduces leeway force, reduces weather helm, allows the boat to increase its speed.

Generally, the minimum position of mast bend is considered to be a curve equal to the luff curve designed into the luff edge of the mainsail. For very light air and for heavy air, maximum mast bend is used for maximum speed. For very light air, less camber makes it easier for air to stay attached to the leeward surface of the mainsail as the air passes aft. For medium air and for waves, where maximum power equates to maximum speed, minimum mast bend is used to get maximum designed camber.

By use of all the tuning controls on a mainsail, one can obtain a certain amount of control over the distribution of camber over the length of the mast, and there will be an optimum camber distribution for any particular sail and set of wind conditions. Pretty complicated to get it perfect, however outstanding sailors like Stuart Walker are on record as saying it is of paramount importance to use this against competitors who are using it. Otherwise, in a one-design competition they win.
My two cents.

Monday, November 20, 2006

A great place to learn about sail trim.

From: "Don Keeney" <>
Date: Sun, 19 Nov 2006 15:39:26 -0600
Subject: [Star45] Sail Trim

A great place to learn about sail trim.

Don Keeney
Star 45 Class Secretary


Outstanding recommendation. Wonderful site. full of photographs and all sorts of instructional materials. Pictures of tells and how to read them:)

Also a must place to visit and test your sailing skills:

National Geographics Interactive Sailing:

Master rudder and sail to get your boat going as fast as possible no matter what direction you're sailing in-or which way the wind's blowing.
Controls available:

Sail Adjuster: Use the left sliding controller to rotate the sail in relation to shifting wind (shown as arrows). When you cross the path of the wind, your sail will swing to the opposite side.

Rudder Adjuster: Using the right sliding controller, steer to port (left) or starboard (right).

Uncle Dave

Friday, November 17, 2006

Star 45 Construction ply sides and a cedar strip planked bottom

From: "John Fisher"

Here is my dad putting the sides on his boat. This method could be done with balsa as well if someone has an issue with CA. The clips he uses can be purchased at any office supply store.

His boat is going to have ply sides and a cedar strip planked bottom. I made him a set of frames with 1/16 cut on the sides and 1/8 cut on the bottom for this application.

Using 1/16 inch plywood for sides

I use Titebond glue instead of CA. I first clamp a 4" by 48"
piece of the plywood against the framework on the building board. I then trace around the profile of the side to outline the approximate size and shape of the plank. Using a knife, I cut around the outline to remove excess plywood leaving about a half inch extra. This should be sufficient to allow the clamps to grab the stringers along the rail and the chine. I then apply Titebond on the stringers and clamp the plywood
in place starting in the middle and working to the ends. I used about 40 clamps to ensure a tight seal (2679).

I trim the plywood back to about a 1/16 of an inch above the balsa stringer using a Stanley modeling plane (2681). These cost about $10 at Ace Hardware or any home warehouse. This takes about 5 minutes and then I use sandpaper to finish the trimming.

Star 45 Construction splicing wood to get longer pieces

John Fisher writes:
Since 48 inch balsa is hard to find, I used 1½ pieces of 36 inch balsa that I joined using a 45 degree scarf. I cut a small (about 1 inch long) piece of the balsa I'm joining as a support for the joint, both structural and for alignment. 2668 shows the three pieces before gluing. I use titebond rather than CA because I'm sensitive to CA. I clamp the three pieces as shown in 2669 using the table top and the small piece to gain alignment in both directions for the two long piece. During construction the small piece of balsa must be placed where it doesn't interfere with the construction (2673). Once the stringer is glued to another piece of planking or another stringer the small piece can be removed using an Exacto knife and sandpaper

Monday, November 13, 2006

S45 Construction radio tray as a built in component to the hull.


I am building a new boat and incorperating a few new ideas. One is to
include the radio tray as a built in component to the hull. I added two
1/16 plywood plates that are notched to fit into the frames. This
particular one is designed to hold one servo and a RMG winch. I will see
how this works out. The down side is going to be limited access, but the
up side is light weight and strength.

If there is interest I may build this up for other winch options.


S45 Construction Rigging photos from John Fisher

Subject: Star 45 deck rigging

Here are some rigging photo's. Back stay fitting,
jib lead that I used, note that it holds the line off center so
it doesn't get caught in the mast jack, Another shows the notch I
put in the mast so I could put the sail on and the crane that I used,
and another shows my mast jack and vang. Plus a photo of my deck layout on


S45 Construction rudders on #812 and #813

From John Fisher:
Here are the two rudder examples, 812 is the thicker one and 813 is thinner. The % thickness is the same on both, but 812 is thicker over more of the rudder since it was a 1/8" pc of balsa that was rounded on the ends. 813 was made by two pcs of 1/64 ply expanded over a 1/8" shaft.

They clearly show the difference in cross section, however they’re a little small to judge the details. Interested in contrasting the radius of the leading edge. Is there much of a difference between the two rudders in the first .125 to .25 of the foil? Typically sections with a sharp leading edge will lead to a pronounced stall as the flow can’t make the sharp turn to stay attached to the low pressure side.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Star 45 Model Boat:
2004 Julie Ayres Award Winner - Mel Holman of Toledo, Ohio

Star 45 Class: "Featured in Model Yachting #113

2004 Julie Ayres Award Winner - Mel Holman of Toledo, Ohio

The Julie Ayres Craftsmanship and Beauty Trophy is awarded to the Star 45 owner voted by the participants at the yearly National Championship Regatta for what they feel is the most beautiful boat and shows the most Craftsmanship in the building of a competitive Star 45.

The Julie Ayres Craftsmanship and Beauty Trophy is awarded to the Star 45 owner voted by the participants at the yearly National Championship Regatta for what they feel is the most beautiful boat and shows the most Craftsmanship in the building of a competitive Star 45."

Star 45 Construction : Stand for tuning finished model

John Fisher sent these in. It might spark some thought for other people as well. He does not claim to have come up with this design, You can use any materials that you have handy, He has a mill and a welder, so his ended up in aluminum. these stands have been built from PVC and Copper pipe as well.

The stand has a vertical tube that is the pivot for direction. This way the boat can feather into the wind. If the ground is soft enough where you sail it can be pushed into the ground. Works fine in so-cal but not very well in colorado. Next there is a H shaped part that holds the boat. His are machined and welded aluminum, but he has seen this part done with copper water pipe or PVC pipe. He added the foam for insulating water pipes to prevent the boat from being scratched. The H should be able to rotate. This allows the boat to heel in the stand when force is applied to the sails. Connect the two and you have your stand. On his stand the connector is a pcs of 1/2" diameter SS tubing bent 90 deg. It provides both motions needed.


The boat shown is a hard chine 10R Class called the Diamond.

John Fisher has cutting files available for hard chine model 10R Class as well.
They go fast :-). John's 10R Class carries 1500 sq in of sail, is 65"
long and only 9" wide.

Star 45 Construction | modeler: John Whiteford, Rochedale, Queensland, Australia

Thought you may like to see a boat being built in Rochedale, Queensland, Australia. John Fisher kindly sent me the dxf files and I had them laser cut and everything is going together well with the hull now fibreglassed. I have all of his photos and comments in separate plastic folders and now quite a collection. He is certainly a delightful person and a great help.
John Whiteford

Photographs by John Whiteford


Star 45 Construction, radio, sail controls, servos, mast support,

Radio Board stringers between bulkheads
(Note the method of keel support using these stringers)

Radio Board

Rudder Servo

Mast support (inside hull)

internal mast support

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

S45 Construction Keel: trunk , alignment, support

Here is how John Fisher built two Star45 keel trunks. First he make a aluminum mandrel that is the same size and shape of the top of his keels. Next he waxed the aluminum and then put a single layer of wax paper over the mandrel.

He used a light spray of 3M 77 to stick the ends together on the second one. The first one had a pc of tape, which is now a part of the trunk.

The mandrel with waxed paper is wrapped with glass which he again used 3M 77 to hold in place. He has not verified that this doesnt have any long term effects to the glass so use at your own risk. John used 2 layers 3.2 oz glass with glass tape on the top and bottom edges to help add some stregth. Usually he would add kevlar, but that is not allowed in the star's. One the glass was in place John wet the whole thing with resin. If you dont have any way to vac bag the trunk, just let it cure and remove the mandrel. The trunk weighted in at 1 oz.

John has a food vacuum sealer so he put a release paper over the top (wax paper with holes in it), then breather cloth (he hasused paper towels in the past), and then into a food saver bag for the night.

To remove the mandrel he used a hammer and a vice. He knows that sounds severe, but that is what it took to get the mandrel back out. He started by placing the mandrel into a vice with smooth jaws. The jaws were just far enough apart that the aluminum would fit between them, but not the fiber glass wrap. Then he tapped the mandrel out. He points out how much force it took for him to get this apart so you can design your keel top with this in mind.

Photo 01- mandrel before prep
Photo 03 -mandrel with glass, ready for resin
Photo 04-keel trunk in food saver bag. You can see the resin going into the breather cloth.
Photo 05 - keel trunk off the mandrel, note the tape. 2nd trunk used3M 77 instead.
Photo 06 - Trunk on the keel.

The following picture shows the way that John aligned the keel on his second boat.
Since the keel is plate and 1/8" thick I laid a straight edge on it and
aligned it with the pc at the center of the transom. I did this on both
sides to make sure it is centered as well.

To capture the top of the keel box he added 2 1/8" X 3/8" spruce blocks
to the top of the keel trunk and glued them to the king plank. The photo also shows the glass tape He used to reinforce the
radio tray.

John Fisher photographer


here is an alternative keel trunk (from Uncle Dave)

I poked my camera down into the Sirius 45 and snapped a couple of pictures showing how the keel is attached to allow it to be removed and another installed.

The keel is a aluminum fin with my flat bottomed bulb. The keel trunk is assembled over the keel fin before mounting the trunk in the hull. The trunk is pretty simple. Two pieces of 1/8 ply on either side of the fin. Cut flush across the top of the fin. Height is determined by the amount of the fin to extend into the hull. Length is determined by the shadows or braces to support the fin. A filler pieced goes between the sides so that fin can be slid own and out of the trunk.

Before gluing the trunk up it is very important to coat the insides of the trunk to make the sides of the trunk as water resistant as you can. The the fun part is placing two mounting bolts through the sides of the trunk and thought the keel fin. I think the two bolts in the picture were 1/2 long 3/8 inch dia.


I placed a heavy wire through the both the bolt heads so I could turn the nuts on the other side.


With the nuts removed the two bolts simply push to one side and the keel fin mounted or removed as the case may be. In my models the height of the fin inside the model is low enough for a swing arm sail control to fit properly. I use Probar (now Dumas) SCU's.

Before building the deck I simply dropped the trunk (with keel fin) through the slot in the bottom of the hull so the trunk rests on the keelson. The hull being fiberglass the trunk if filleted with the bottom using some auto body resin-paste. I think I also used the resin paste to mount the keel trunk in my wooden models (memory escapes me its been years). The ends of the trunk are braced to the chine to with stand leverage forces from the heavy keel bulb and sailing stresses.


When the two bolts are tightened they not only hold the keel in place they also pull the sides of the of the trunk tightly together. With the tight fit one should expect the keel fin may stick in the trunk if some sort of lubricant (silicone) isn't used.

Construction Star 45, building rudder and installation

Here are some photo's showing one way to build a rudder quickly and easily. The quick overview is cut out the shape in a thin material, tape the sides together, insert the rudder shaft, fill the inside of the rudder with epoxy. This takes about 10 min or so to do. Followed by installation in your boat.

John Fisher

Lay out the rudder shape on a sheet of 1/64 ply. On other class boats John used a single layer of a 6 oz carbon fiber layup, so you could also lay up some fiberglass for use on the star. To do a glass layup, just take a sheet of 6 oz or heavier fiberglass, a sheet of lexan or plexiglass, and some resin. The first step is to spread resin on the plexiglass, then apply the fiberglass and then make sure it is all wetted out. Once cure flex the plexiglass and the layup will pop off.

Shows the two sides cut out of plywood, these could be fiberglass instead. Straight sided shapes like shown and the star plans are easier to make.

Tape the two sides together with masking tape. With curved shapes He taped them together then insert the shaft and resin. If you use straight sides on the rudder you can tape one side and then open it up like a book, apply resin, then close and tape shut. The open book method uses less resin but only works with sq or straight sided shapes.

Note the bend John put in the shaft to prevent it from turning inside the rudder.

Shows the top open to pour in resin. John uses a syringe to pour in resin once the shaft is in place. You can add micro balloons to the resin if concerned about weight.

Installing Rudder in Star 45

rudder brace

rudder tube


rudder link
John Fisher photographer

Friday, August 18, 2006

S45 Construction Deck(s), Hatches

from John Fisher:
Attaching deck to hull

John Fisher photographer

Hull with deck mounted:

John Fisher photographer



From Phil Geren:
The simplest hatch cover solution I have found for Star 45 is to cut a piece out of Presentation Cover vinyl, which cut-out is shaped like the hatch opening but 1/4 or 3/8 of an inch larger on all sides. Then, apply electrician's tape (1/2 or 3/4" wide) all around the perifery, so that half the tape is on the vinyl and half is hanging over the edge.

Presentation Cover vinyl which I get at Office Depot is about 15 cents a sheet; it is about 0.008" thick; it is slightly over 8.5X11" in size; a full sheet weighs about 16 grams; it is stiff, but flexible; it is crystal clear, but if you want it opaque, just wet sand it with #400 grit wet or dry sandpaper.

Position the hatch cover over the hatch so that the tape extends evenly past the hatch opening an equal distance all around, and then just press on the tape to stick it to the deck. It's waterproof, durable.

You can make spares and stick them to another piece of vinyl and carry that with you to the races. That keeps spares nice and flat and keeps the tape's sticky side clean for future use. A set of these hatch covers usually lasts me all season. At lunch, I take one cover off to allow the boat to dry out, sticking the cover to a dry vinyl sheet to keep the tape's sticky side clean.

Photo is Star 45 #778, freshly rebuilt for the Nationals this year, and a set of covers on the floor next to her.

Phil Geren photographer

from Uncle Dave:
I pulled one of my old Star45's from the attic and have it here in my workshop. It has a fiberglass Sirius 45 hull, a aircraft ply deck and aluminum keel fin. Unfortunately it is not one of my finest examples of workmanship or painting. However I'll suffer the embarrassment and use if to show some one style of hatch construction.

Carrying around a model around out of the water is no big deal. Taking a model out of the water can be something else. You first need to hang onto the model. Then find a place to take hold to lift the model. This is one of the reasons I have used easily removable hatches. You can grab the model through the hatch, fingers under the deck and pick it up. Of course a thin ply deck the model deck and hatch construction needs to be strong enough to withstand pulling on the deck and lifting a twelve pound plus model. Therefore I braced my decks around hatch areas.

First I built a flanged frame for the hatch to sit in that also extended under the deck and attached to the deck bracing.

Then I built a hatch cover based on the size of the hatch. Initially the hatch cover was made to fit very loosely in the hatch. I then took some silicone (tub seal or similar) squeezed a bead around the shelf/lip of the hatch. The covering the hatch opening with food wrap poly sheeting I'd push the hatch cover in place down into the silicone. This made a nice water tight gasket around the edge of the hatch. After waiting a day I'd remove the plastic, trim and silicone that showed topside. With the silicone dry, pop the hatch cover in place and check the fit.


I placed a strip of magnetic tape on either end of the cover and on each end of the hatch frame.


When the hatch cover and hatch mag tapes touched they pulled together. This magnetic tape is neat stuff you can pop the cover in place and it will stay put.

Typically I made my hatches about 4"X5" giving me plenty of deck to the sheer.

I heavy weather if the model might go over on beams end I'd cover the seams with tape just to be extra watertight. A 4X5 hatch gives room to get inside, adjust winch, radio etc, and to remove any water that got into the bilge while sailing.