Skip to main content

Projecting the Transom

     The template for the transom is somewhat more complicated to make yourself than the other section templates because the transom's rake distorts the transom from its true size and shape. To get the true size and shape, you must undertake a process known as "projecting the transom." The template provided [on the Centerfold] has been correctly projected, but if you are making your own model and need to find the transom shape, you will need to study the process in one or more of the references given in the appendix. Robert M. Steward's Boatbuilding Manual, pp. 63-64, is particularly useful.

     Editor's Note: Illustrations for the following paragraph are not present in the manuscript, but the text has been retained for its unusual nautical terminology.

     You will also notice that since the lines plan for this boat has been drawn following the inside of the planking, the templates have been made to these dimensions. The profile template, therefore, except for the sheer line and transom, is actually a tracing of the apex line (also called the inner rabbet line) which is the line formed by the inside edge of the plank at the middle of the boat. Models made to the inside of the planking (meant primarily to show the shape of the hull) usually leave off the stem, keel, and skeg.

     You can see now that if you are given any lines plan, you can make templates yourself by copying the lines with carbon paper. If you are thinking of building a boat and would like to see it first in three dimensions instead of a two-dimensional drawing, you can easily make your own templates and carve a model for inspection. The more carefully you make the templates and the model, the better idea you will have of the boat when the job is finished.

Rob's experimental hull

Experimental hull, transom (stern) at left

Model and photo by Rob Pittaway