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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Das Boat: Update Part II

Interesting things happen when you start projects in my neighborhood, you find out everybody's an expert. I never knew there were so many boat builders living so near to me. Oh well, never a dull moment.

Neighbor Dan checking to see if I'm building it to spec. Actually Dan, who was a professional painter was interested in the wood encapsulating properties of the saturation coat of epoxy that I just applied. The designer's directions call for a coating of epoxy to seal the wood and prepare it for a lamination of fiberglass. The wood grain really popped out once I painted on that coat.

Here's another look at the hull with the saturation coat of epoxy. I'm using West System's epoxy, mixing it in small batches and painting it on with a foam roller. Pretty easy to do but somewhat messy and it's always a good idea to wear gloves with that stuff because I've heard you can develop an allergic reaction to it. How sweet is that transom.... notice the wineglass shape (it's upside down)?

I have to admit, I was really nervous to start the lamination part of the epoxy process. I'd never worked with such a large area of fiberglass cloth, I thought I might totally blow it and ruin the hull. Here's the cloth draped over the hull. The kit that I bought comes with enough fiberglass to cover the outside and inside of the hull. I decided to beef up the bow and bottom of the hull with a couple extra layers of glass. I'm going to be launching and landing this thing right off our local beach so I figured it'd be a good idea.

You know, the lamination process wasn't too bad. The first half of the boat was a learning experience- it took me close to two hours to mix the epoxy, wet out the cloth, run the squeegee over it and fix any bubbles or wrinkles in the cloth. I learned a ton on that first half. For example, if you don't squeegee the cloth of excess resin, you can get a pool of resin that will float the cloth off the surface of the wood and create little undulations and folds. I didn't catch all of the pooling with the squeegee- so there are a few uneven spots. For the most part, however, I was happy with how the glassing went.

Lilly was monitoring the situation from the kitchen door. Notice the ears down, she knows she better not set a foot out of the house. Good dog!

Is this so wrong? As per my custom, one beer at the end of a hard epoxy session.

More wooden boat building with the Wine Glass Wherry coming up!


Anonymous said...

Nice haircut... high and tight!

Allan Cheateaux said...

I roll out big layups with a mohair roller. Puts the minimal amount of epoxy into the cloth and puts it in place.

John Ashley said...

Hey Allen- I could've used that advice a couple of days ago...

I was surprised at how much epoxy I had to use to fill the weave after the lamination coat was finished. Three layers... and drips, pools and runs all over the place.

I see a lot of sanding in my future.

John Ashley said...

Cut to code: It's a delta force thing, we all have to do it.

callsign222 said...

Hey John,

Long-time sailor, first time builder here, I saw your post at WBF.

Filling the weave = no fun. If you're not keeping things bright, sometimes you can mix a little thickener in there to help provide some substance... or at least someone told me that, and I did it, and it worked good. Anyway, I think you well, she stayed out of the fire pit and now she looks beautiful! Nice job.

My- and your- next boat will have less drips, pools, and runs now that we've learned... right? Right? Oh man...

John Ashley said...

Hey Call Sign,

Yep- now that we've learned! And the next boat... I better not even bring that up... but I do admit, I think about it!

Thanks for the tip with the filler... but now I've got friends and my wife telling me not to paint it... they like the wood even if it's not so perfect.

So I guess I'm going to be entering the world of varnish... I'm scared.