Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Coming into the home stretch, the final month of boat work, I really turned up the heat and things began to come together quickly.

Painting the exterior was an interesting experience with new types of paint: both one and two-part polyurethane paints, stupidly expensive, but worth the price. We had rolled and tipped the top of the cabin with one-part Interlux "Brightside" and it took three coats, sanding between each coat, to get a fairly satisfactory finish. It still showed a few brush marks, but it is a good "3-foot" paintjob (i.e., it looks good from 3 feet away. I would have used the two-part "Perfection" paint, but frankly I was a bit afraid of it, having heard horror stories about sags, runs, and humidity issues. I finally decided to use it on the hull and with the help of Troy, Amanda and Garrett, their neighbor, we rolled and tipped the first coat. It went on nicely, but we still saw brush marks and after much discussion, we decided to just roll the second coat with the foam rollers. It worked out great, except that the paint is chemically very aggressive and the rollers needed to be changed every ten feet of hull due to disintegration! It took a third coat to get it right, but it looks almost as good as a sprayed finish. I did the boot top stripe and the accent stripe in the same paint, also rolling, and we're all very pleased with the finish.

I had stalled a bit on the icebox installation, having been unable to locate the high R-value urethane foam but finally located a source in Indy that manufactures it and they cut it to the exact thickness (3") that I wanted and I was able to do the cutting out of the shapes on my table saw (the dust was nasty and I needed the respirator, like with a lot of the boat work). The box top and lid are fully insulated and the top is removable for later installation of refrigeration if I decide to go that route. For now there is an ice well and drain into the bilges for the melt water. It holds about 5 cubic feet of groceries.

The engine room lid, which is the cockpit floor, now has a lexan hatch installed to allow easy access into the engine room when at sea and I replaced the shortened teak strips. The cut-offs will be used beneath the galley stove.

The sliding hatch was in terrible shape, with a rotted plywood core on the sides. I dug out the old wood and slid in new plywood, epoxying it in place. The stainless steel side runners were also misaligned and they had to be carefully reinstalled. Finally, the inside surface got a coat of the light blue paint like we have on the cabin overhead and the top got a couple of coats of non-skid paint. The bedlog, the rails that the hatch slides on, were also misaligned and I adjusted that and opened up the grooves for the stainless sliders a bit to compensate for the slight curvature of the bedlog.

With the formal christening in sight, scheduled for Saturday, September 4th, I'm burning the midnight oil at the barn. 9 or 10 pm quitting time is normal now and on at least one night I worked until 2 am. I was tempted to just sleep in the boat, but I would have had to drag a cushion out of storage!


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