45 days

We started the week putting up staging so that we could reach the topsides for planking. This is about 6 feet high and is reached by an old cottage staircase, so we now have an upstairs. Barnaby, back from his travels has been working upstairs, fitting the sheer strake (this is the one where the topside planking meets the deck). The line of the sheer is probably the most important curve on the boat for getting the aesthetics right, and so there has been much chin scratching.............. a sixteenth up on frame 3............. that's it, now a thirtysecond down on 6............ mmmmmmm. What do you think?

Meanwhile downstairs whilst dodging the cramps raining down from above, Mark and I are working our way steadily upwards. Planking may not make for the most interesting website but it's actually quite addictive. With each plank the shape of the hull becomes less of an exercise in imagination and more a reality.

And just to help things along a little, we've taken on a another shipwright, Freddie (see his picture in the 'building the hull gallery'.