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Friday, June 21, 2013

Boat Glassing



I put another 10 hours or so into the boat project, but there's not much to photograph. Pretty much looks like the last photo. The difference is that there's now a layer of fiberglass on the bottom, including the stern and bow transoms.

It took a lot of digging around the basement, but I found a trash bag of 6oz fiberglass cloth. Once upon a time I built and repaired canoes and kayaks. The glass cloth is three feet wide and long enough to span the length of the boat twice. It covers from several inches down the sides and overlaps in the center of the boat.

When I lay down fiberglass and epoxy, there are always a few puckers and bubbles. Over the years I've discovered it's easier to sand them out and patch them later. Working with wet glass drives me nuts. As soon as one pucker is smoothed out, another is formed somewhere else. All the time, the resin is slowly hardening, so the clock is running.

Today I did some sanding and repair, but there were fewer problems than I feared. While working on the boat, UPS showed up with more resin and a roll of 9oz fiberglass tape. That will reinforce the seams.

Between the fiberglass and thicker plywood than what the plans called for, the boat will be a tad heavier than some builds. At least the weight is down low where it can help a tiny bit with stability.

The resin is a two part mix with a 2:1 ratio. They are poured and mixed into clear containers with volume measures built in. The nice plastic container I first used broke, so now I'm using a mason jar. Like much of this boat project, I'm using what I have around the house.

Some people like to sand until they get a perfectly smooth finish. I did that one time -on a canoe that I then took through white water rapids. After that my sanding got a lot less finicky. My boats will get dinged and scratched. They get used and abused. Perfect finishes are for show boats, not play and working boats.

-Sixbears

18 comments:

  1. Sounds like you're making progress.

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  2. Sounds like you are moving right along with the project!

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    Replies
    1. Might have to take a break to go sailing though . . .

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  3. AHA!
    Just as I suspected, a fellow Pack Rat.
    Just happened to have enough mat to build a freaking Jet Boat in a bag down in the basement did ya?
    HMMM?


    LOL!
    I keep telling my wife all that "crap" as she calls it is invaluable when you need it and don't have to go clear to town and buy some stupid fastener,fitting or twenty pounds of fiberglass mat as it were.

    Good on ya man. I always hated the stink of resin though, that stuff is nasty.

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    1. Second generation pack rat.

      Found a roll of mat and a roll of woven roving. Between the two of them you'd have a good start at least.

      After 34 years of marriage, my lovely wife doesn't even complain about the "junk" -too much.

      Epoxy isn't as bad as polyester resin, but that's one of the reasons the boat project got moved from the basement to outside. Besides, the basement is full of junk . . .

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  4. I once met a man at a boatyard who was long boarding a yacht. I asked him how long he'd been doing that. He said he'd been doing it for about a year! I've got better things to do with my life... as do you...

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    1. Indeed we do! Can't have those projects cut too deeply into life.

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  5. Hope you didn't end up itching much from the fiberglass.

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    1. The cloth isn't bad to work with. The sanding dust can be a problem. One more reason to keep sanding to a minimum.

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  6. I like my old dinged up aluminum boat, and my four cycle motor.

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    1. I'm sure you aren't afraid to actually use it and have some fun.

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  7. Yeah I put a "showroom" finish on the pirogue I built, complete with varnished rub rails and breast hooks. I was afraid to scratch it. Keep It Sailing Stupid just has Valspar porch paint. And LOTS of blemishes. I am not afraid to scratch it, and it looks almost as good.

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    1. It's real tempting to make a boat too pretty, but that cuts into actual real time on the water.

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  8. ah, sniffing epoxy again, heh....

    Wildflower

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    1. The smell of resins remind my grown children of their childhoods.

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  9. Was grid down this afternoon with no explanations from the power people.
    We lost power to the south west corner of the state and it didn't make the news. So I went out and did another full size mock up of the trilo. The funny thing is that I resorted to cooling the kitchen with a solar panel and fan that I was saving for the boat. All I need now is to move a broke van from my build spot.

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    1. I've been curious about your boat build. Will we meet somewhere in southern waters this winter?

      I did hear about your outage. Thunderstorms got the blame from what I remember. No details.

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