Twelve Spiling Steps
Welcome Brother -
I feel your pain. . . I have been there, man, and it's a bummer. . . But I've been clean and sober after spiling planking for 8 years, ten months and three days, now, and maybe I can help.
Repeat after me our TWELVE SPILING STEPS:
1 Glue up the keelbone and bulkheads from the kit. Make sure that they are square and true and your heart will follow also. Fill each and every void in the eggcrate below the lowest gundeck with balsa blocks. Make sure they overhang each bulkhead all over, and damn the expense lest you be damned.
2 Take thy spokeshave, thy razor knife, thy sandpaper, and thy other implements and decrease the excess from the balsa blocks by removal. Quick should you be until you are close to the end, then slow is your watchword.
3 Make thereby a hull, equal and symmetrical from side to side, accurate according to the plan lines, and smooth, with curves flowing gently. Solid too, as your faith in yourself.
4 Find you a latex enamel paint of a light and pleasing color. Daub the solid hull all over, as Moses' mother did the basket of reeds in which he was lain. Recoat several times with thy paint, until the shell on the hull is as hard as was Pharaoh's heart.
5 Divine and locate the lowest line of the lowest wale on the plans. Draw it thus on the solid hull of your making. Be exact and careful as will be St. Peter at the hour of our judgment.
6 Divine, locate and draw similarly on the painted hull the lines, vertical in space, corresponding to each station line as taken from the plans. To cradle or mount the hull upstanding may be helpful, as it would be in resisting temptation.
7 Determine the desired maximum width of your hull planks and mark divisions of such size on the station line at the center of the hull, adjusting as needed at the garboard strake. Mark on each station line, save the foremost near the stem and the one or two hindmost before the sternpost, a similar number of divisions, but of diminishing size. Fight the urge to exceed the maximum width, as you would fight the Devil himself.
8 Connect the marks from station line to station line, marking out the edges of the plank strakes. Your lines, when viewed from right ahead or right astern should be gently curving, with no abrupt humps or hollows. A flexible wooden batten will ease your journey and smooth your brow.
9 Continue the lines forward and aft in a pleasing fashion. Where two planks at the bow diminish to half the maximum width, draw there a drop plank, to take the place of the two. Where planks at the stern widen to more than the maximum width, draw in a stealer, and there will be two planks where once there was one.
10 Inspect your work from all sides and angles, then erase, adjust and redraw until you are happy with your efforts. Preserve your happiness by inking in the lines with an indelible pen, as you would preserve the joy of a child's smile.
11 Transfer the size, dimension and shape of each plank or strake to wood by laying translucent tape down flat on the hull and drawing thereon the plank edges that appear through the tape. Remove the tape and lay it flat and without bend or kink on your desired planking, matching edges as much as possible. Cut, carve and sand the plank to shape, then make a mirror image plank for the opposite side. Mount them to the hull in their appointed places.
12 Continue thus, from the garboard up and the wale down, and finishing with a shutter plank in the middle, until the entire hull is sheathed in wood, as tight as a miser's purse and as sound as the ark of Noah. Thus will you grasp the principles and mysteries of spiling, and the glory of the Lord will be upon you.
Hoping that I didn't sound too much like Yoda, I am,
A fellow sinner,