Still working on the “Mattie Cooper” (Picara) almost every day, aft deck is about done. Scrap boards are in the companionway just to get a feel for the hard top that comes next.

I will try very hard to keep the overall height of the boat the same as designed, but with a hard top and a 24 inch X 24 inch sliding hatch forward and a 24 inch X 30 inch sliding hatch aft. I plan on cutting one inch off the top off the slot top rails and then making the hardtop and hatches about one inch tall. The lost strength due to cutting the rails will be returned by adding a set of outer ¾ inch rails to contain and hold down the hatches. The hard top and hatches will be built from a light wood frame and foam covered with 4 oz glass, the plan is to keep it as light as possible, but strong enough to serve its purpose.

A set of backrest were added to the self draining deck / cockpit for comfort. There was enough room to have a cockpit coaming about 4 inches wide to rest ones arm on. Together the cockpit coaming and backrest allows about 100 pounds of buoyancy from foam under each backrest. The buoyancy from the foam should aid recovery from a knockdown as it is located fairly high above waterline.

The job is getting down to just a few major jobs, ( leeboard, rudder, and mast mounts) and she will be ready to paint and rig.

Still greatly enjoying the project.

David W Davis