I have to admit this has been a positively miserable spring. Unlike many years past that as soon as Easter came, it was hot and sunny, this one has been cold, dark, and dreary. As snoopy would attempt to write “it was a dark and stormy night”
Couple that with odd work hours and the typical spring colds that kept me indoors on the few rare days I had off when it was nice out.. and work on Flirt settled in to a slow crawl.. but there was progress, I was just not wanting to post as it was so slow.
It started with reinforcing the cabin top. As the cabin top is more or less one molded piece with the deck, I would have to start there. A trip to the local lumber yard netted me a nice piece of finished marine grade 3/8s plywood (about 9mm for those reading who are not stuck in the US system of measurement) that I gently cut and fit to exactly match the side decks. I set them up to run from the underdeck support for the mast back to the cockpit, giving me a good long uninterrupted run of strong wood. It was then just a matter of mixing a lot of epoxy up to the consistency of peanut butter and laying it on thick before screwing and clamping it into place for a few days to dry and harden completely.
A week or so later, I was able to get out there to sand everything smooth and flush before laying in more thickened epoxy to allow a fairly fine finish between the old glassfibre and the new epoxied into place wood.
Now a thing to remember with epoxy and unfinished wood, the grain on the wood is very dry and “thirsty” it will suck the epoxy right up and leave you with a less than perfect place to adhere any glassfibre or in my case, Carbonfibre. Be certain to properly coat the wood and let it draw the epoxy in before adding another coat so as to properly stick your choice of reinforcement to the wood.
On that note.. the expensive black fabric I love so much.. carbonfibre.
And just because all boats need their pretties.. I picked this up for a comparative song on ebay. I have been waiting for a while for one to show up that was cheap and in good condition. Most are either twice the price or look like the sharks have been gnawing on them.. in many cases both apply- expensive and in bad shape. I give you a 12″ (32cm) Herreshoff Bronze hollow cleat. It’s going on the foredeck to replace the silly little 6 inch (16cm) long one that was there.