Water is supposed to stay on the outside, right?

The last couple times out sailing, there’s been a small trickle coming in from the transom. While this seemed not ideal, it didn’t trouble me too much and it was relegated to the “Meh. I’ll worry about that later.” part of my brain.

That is, until I took a good look at the rear of the boat, and noticed it was splitting and delaminating. This is bad. My roommate Paul helped me flip the boat over so I could get a better look at what I was dealing with, and it turned out to be inexperience.

Oh no....

Oh no….

The hull protection of the woodglued sheet was actually holding water against the hull. So while it was being saved from abrasions like sand and rocks, it was beginning to rot from the water. Note the darkened spots where the water has really gotten into the old screw holes. Gross. The sheet was going to have to come completely off. Good thing I bought 10 yards of fiberglass cloth!

Getting down to task:

Thanks for the help, Paul!

Thanks for the help, Paul!

There aren’t any pictures from the next step, which was prepping the hull for the fiberglass. Which mostly means smoothing all the rough edges, taking out any corners, and generally sanding and planing the hell out of everything.

Today’s adventure in epoxy didn’t turn out very well. I learned a few things:

  1. Leaving epoxy in a mixing pot causes the life to decrease. I had almost no time to work with it, because it was setting up incredibly fast.
  2. Epoxy sets up considerably faster when it’s hot outside.
  3. Epoxy that is kicking off will get so hot, it can melt the container you’re mixing it in, and begin to smoke. This is disconcerting if you happen to be holding it at the time.
  4. If one intends to make a wood-filler/glue with woodflour and epoxy, it’s best to have a LOT of woodflour on hand, because 3 oz. of epoxy will soak up a lot of it.
  5. If there’s a void on a vertical surface, and your filler is too thin: Don’t bother applying it. It’s only going to run out and cause grief.
  6. If there’s a void on a horizontal surface, and your filler is too thin: Go ahead and apply it, but it might end up taking WAY more than you have ready. (And still have a void.

Tomorrow: Back to back to working on oars, and round two of wood flour filleting.

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