Saturday 13 July 2024

Paint Update | Bad News (Again...)

As mentioned in a previous post I glossed the companionway drop boards at the same time as the centreboard, so they were finished.

I did this because I wanted to test the latest paint job for resilience, the white paint having blistered the first time round.

So I put the drop boards outside, resting on the trailer. Here they are.


I thought no more about them, not seriously expecting  any problems due to the extreme care I had taken to paint them in accordance with the paint manufacturer's instructions on which brushes, rollers and thinners to use.

So imagine my dismay when I checked them a week or so later and found ... micro blisters.

The blisters appeared where water (rain) had lain on the upper surface of the boards. Exactly the same as the first time round.

I informed the paint manufacturer and they asked me to send them the boards, so I sent the lower board which was the worst affected.

This is the paint in question.


I really don't know what to do now.

I can't risk painting the boat again only to find that it blisters as soon as we put it outside on its trailer.

I will wait to see what the manufacturer says, but my mind is pretty well made up that I will switch to a different paint.

I hear great things about Epifanes, so I will give that a try with another test.

Journey has temporarily become something of an Ordeal.

Painting The Hull | Getting Ready For Gloss

When the white primer was fully dry I pulled the masking tape to see how much grey primer would need to be touched up where I had sanded through it.

It did need some work, but not a repaint as with the white primer.

I taped up some small patches on the edges of the boot top stripe and touched them up with grey primer. This is what it looked like.


This is what the transom looked like after the masking tape had been pulled.


We are now ready for gloss paint!

I decided to apply the white first and taped and masked off the grey primer accordingly.

This is what the boat now looked like on the starboard quarter.


And here is the view from the front.


It feels like we are close to finishing the bottom of the hull!

Sunday 30 June 2024

Centreboard | Reinstallation

It was time to put the centreboard back into the boat.

I made the original pendant from a length of Dyneema, as recommended in the drawings. It was difficult to seal the ends properly, and I was never happy with it. It is flat rather than round, and doesn't behave well.

So while the board was out of the boat I rove a new 6mm braid-on-braid pendant. It is low rather than zero stretch, at less than 5%. But I think that's fine.

I attached the new pendant to the centreboard, ready for installation. Here it is.


I sanded the primer around the pivot hole in the keel, like this.


There was quite a lot of debris in the centreboard case, so I used a length of plastic tubing taped to the vacuum cleaner hose to remove it. It worked well. Here it is.


I needed help to reinstall the centreboard, so MVLW (my very lovely wife) was recruited. I climbed up onto the hull and inserted the board while MVLW lined up the holes and pushed a 10mm bolt through the keel and the board.

I lowered the board into the keel.

That was a mistake.

My following attempt to knock the bolt through the keel with a hammer to insert the new pin revealed that it was solidly stuck in place, captive by the lowered board.

Here is the bolt and hammer.


We should have inserted the bolt while the board was still up in the air, allowing the latter to be manipulated to accept the bolt and then the pin.

But it was now impossible to lift the heavy board up out of the slot by hand. I needed mechanical assistance.

So I taped some plastic foam sheeting to a pair of long nosed pliers, to avoid damaging the board, and used them to haul the centreboard up so I could grab and lift it.

Here are the pliers.


MVLW helped again by inserting the bolt through the keel and a dowel under the board and across the keel to hold it upright, like this.


It was then very easy for me to tap the bolt through the keel and slide the new pin into place. Job done.

I dropped the board back into the keel, as here.


This is the new pin in its hole.


That's a relief. But the whole exercise went a lot more smoothly than the first time we did it.

Lastly I filled the keel holes with resin on both sides and used tape to hold it in place, like this.


That feels like a big step forward to finishing the bottom of the boat!


Centreboard | New Pivot Pin

The centreboard pivot pin was quite difficult to remove when taking out the centreboard, and I had to use pliers to pull it out.

I graunched it a fair bit as a result, and decided to make a new one.

Here I am cutting a second pin from some 10mm stainless rod I had.


Here are the two pins. The old one is at the top.


You can see that it is quite damaged. A new one took minutes to make.


Painting The Hull | Sanding & More Primer

When the grey primer was cured I removed the masking tape.

Here is the view of the transom with tape pulled. The Ship's Cat popped in to carry out an inspection.


And here is a view of the front of the hull.


It looked really nice. Now I had to sand the primer to remove the brush marks.

Here I am using a work light to sand the bottom panels.


Likewise I am sanding the side panels here.


Here I am sanding the bow in the same way.


I used a soft, flexible interface pad on the sander to ensure that I didn't sand through the paintwork on the curved surfaces, leaving bare patches. Here it is.


I thought about leaving the keel, but sanded it anyway when I sanded the keel fillets. Like this.


Despite my best efforts I still sanded through the primer in a lot of small patches. Look at this.


The grey primer was quite good, but the white clearly needed more coats.

I washed it with water three times to remove any dust, then taped and masked for white primer, as here at the transom.


A fifth coat of white was applied. Here is the view from the side.


Two more coats were applied, making seven in total.

When well hardened I sanded the primer with a P280 grit to get rid of most of the brush marks, like this.


Finally I used a P320 grit to remove the residual marks, leaving a really flat and smooth surface.


That is looking very good!

I will pull the tape when the paint is dry to see how much the grey primer will need to be touched up.


Centreboard & Drop Boards | Gloss Paint

I decided to gloss the drop boards and the centreboard, leaving the companionway slide and tabernacle until much later.

I need the centreboard to be installed in the keel so I can finish painting the bottom of the hull, and I want to to test the resilience of the latest paint job by leaving the drop boards outside in the weather. If the paint is going to blister again I want to know now.

Here I am sanding the primed drop boards with a P320 grit and a work light to show up the brush marks.


These are the drop boards after their first coat of gloss.


Taking no chances I washed them with water to remove the dust, and when dry wiped them with thinners to get rid of any contamination before applying gloss paint.

I did the same thing with the centreboard.

Here are the centreboard and the drop boards after the recommended three coats of gloss.


The instructions from the paint manufacturer are to sand between coats of gloss with a P400 grit.

I did this with the lower drop board but only sanded the second coat on the centreboard and the upper drop board, to see if it makes any difference.

I couldn't see any difference in the finished articles, so I think one final sanding will suffice.

Various Parts | Primer

I had previously applied four coats of white primer to the centreboard, tabernacle, companionway slide and drop boards and set them side to await gloss.

Before glossing I sanded the parts with a P220 grit to remove brush marks. In doing so I sanded through to the surface in several places, so two more touch up coats were required.

Here the parts are primed and sanded, again awaiting gloss.


I need to get the centreboard painted and finished to be reinstalled in the boat. I can't paint the bottom of the hull until it's back in the keel, so need to get it done.


Thursday 6 June 2024

Bottom, Sides & Primer | Applying Grey Primer

Light grey primer was applied to the hull in the same way as the white, rolling on and tipping out.

This is what the port side looked like after two coats.


And here it is from starboard.


Two more coats were applied and it turned out as nice the white primer did.

We're definitely getting there!


Bottom, Sides & Transom | Masking For Grey Primer

I had decided at the outset of the repainting that I would not paint the blue boot top stripe over the white bottom and sides.

Instead I would apply all the white primer, then pull the masking tape and re-mask for the grey primer.

Here is the boat with the white primer masked off for the application of the grey primer for the blue gloss.


It sounds like a lot of work but it isn't difficult and it makes painting so much easier.


Bottom, Sides & Transom | Applying White Primer

It was time to start painting the boat again, which was a very welcome milestone event.

The white primer was the first to be applied.

I washed the surfaces with water to remove dust and dirt. Twice.


When dry I wiped the hull down with the specified thinners to remove any contaminants, and applied the first coat of primer. This is what it looked like.


Three more coats were carefully applied, following the paint manufacturer's recommendation to use a short pile microfiber roller to apply the paint and a high quality synthetic brush to tip it out.

It turned out pretty good. Here is the side view


And here is the view from the rear.


You can see that I am able to paint both sides and the transom in one pass, which is both quick and easy to do. It takes just one hour to apply a whole coat.


Keel Fillets | Applying Primer

Part way through re-fairing the keel fillets I read the technical data for the fairing compound and discovered that I had to seal the fairing compound with the prescribed Hempel primer, which has to be used in conjunction with a specific Hempel thinners for brush cleaning.

Having previously suffered grievously from not obeying the paint manufacturer's instructions on which thinners to use I immediately ordered the two part Hempel primer and its thinners buddy.

Here they are.


This cosmetic enhancement is turning out to be quite expensive and time consuming, but what the heck ... I want it to be nice.

Two coats of the primer were applied, as in this pic.


It covered very well, and looks tough.

Then I pulled the tape and feathered the edges again, like this.


Here is another view from the rear.


That looks much better!


Bottom, Sides & Transom | Masking For White Primer

With the boot top stripe marked in it was time to tape and mask up for paint.

The build manual tells us to to paint the whole bottom white and then to paint the blue boot top strip on top of the white.

The blue and white sides and bottom continue onto the transom to form stripes around its edges, which I call the transom 'frame'. The manual appears to show that this was done separately to the sides and bottom.

I followed the manual's instructions to the letter and was never really happy with the outcome.

It was difficult and time consuming and resulted in significant 'steps' between sections of colour.

So I decided to paint all the white and blue sections separately and in one go.

This is the hull taped up for white paint, seen from the side.


And here is the view from the port quarter.


You can see that I can paint the bottom, both sides and the transom frame at the same time.

 Which I think is a much better idea.

I guess we will find out when I do it ..



Waterline & Boot Top | Levelling & Marking Up

This might be a long post but marking up the waterline and boot top stripe entailed a lot of work and was great fun, so it's worth giving a good description.

The first task was to ensure that the hull was perfectly level, along and across the keel.

When I made the dollies to support the boat upside down I inadvertently made the rear one far too low, so the boat needed to be jacked up quite a lot at the stern to temporarily make it level for the marking up.

I taped a long spirit level to the keel, like this.


I did something similar across the transom, as here.


I wanted to be as accurate as possible, because a difference of just a couple of millimetres would be amplified along or across the hull and would doubtless be noticeable.

I purchased a second bottle jack so I could safely raise both corners at the stern at the same time until the spirit levels showed that the boat was level.

This is the port quarter, jacked up and resting on wedges.


The hull was now level, and marking up began.

The first time I did this I worked out where the waterline should cross the chine at the front of the boat. It is at a point directly below the forward side of the front portlight.

Here the laser level is being used to mark this spot.


This is the laser level itself. It is an excellent tool.


Here the laser level is indicating the location of the waterline along the length of the starboard side.


The waterline was marked up by making pencil marks a short distance apart along the laser line and then joining them up with a rule to get a nice, fair line.

The waterline crosses the chine 154 cm from the stem, as here.


If this measures the same on both sides, you know it's level. It did.

This is the laser level in use across the transom.


I had also previously worked out that the boot top stripe should be 38 mm wide midway along the sides. So the laser level was then used to mark in the top edge of the stripe, like this.


This line was then pencilled on in the same way as the waterline.

That was fun!