Continue Fairing the Hull: Believe it or not, considerable progress has been made since my last journal entry!
As you can see from the photo, I am continuing to fair the hull. I am using an ultra light body filler from Advance Auto Parts that spreads like soft butter and sands quickly and easily. I mix it with a minimal amount of hardener, slather it on thinly with a plastic spreader, and sand it off after it has cured. I start the sanding using 36 grit sandpaper and work my way up to the higher grades. About 95% of the filler that is put on is sanded back off.
Periodically during the sanding I use a wire brush to clear the sandpaper. This prolongs the use of each piece of paper.
At this point it would be reasonable to question why I am using body filler at all to fair the hull. There are several reasons:
1. I made a point of using materials that can be readily bought from local suppliers. The exterior A/C plywood that I used was inexpensive and made out of spruce. Spruce is extremely grainy/rough and needs to be faired. I probably saved $500 - $700 by using exterior plywood versus marine plywood, but paid for it in elbow grease. I obviously have more time on my hands than money (or brains).
2. I made an error by not following my own and advice and using only file boards and flexible files to initially start the fairing. At some point I impulsively used a grinder to remove some excess epoxy from the areas around my scarf joint. Even though I held the grinder as flat as possible, there was considerable cupping where I used this tool. As my father used to say, "Too soon old and too late schmart".
The Harbor Freight file board is holding up fine. A couple of times during the sanding process I stop and put a good squirt of oil inside the file board air intake.
One of the things that I found when sanding the epoxy fillet on the keel is that the size of the sanding disk matters. These disks come in several varieties, and I did the initial sanding with the larger disc. Mistake. The larger disk cupped the wood on either side of the fillet and required me to make some repairs. The smaller disk sanded the fillet smooth.
On to the good stuff!!! My Australian buddy, Trevor Noy, has raised the standard in boat building (again). He has also motivated me to get with the program and get my boat on the water.
Trevor is building a 6 meter launch from plans by David Payne. The boat beam is 2.3 meters, and the hull draws 450mm.
This a first look at Trev's boat. As you can see, the workmanship is excellent.
Note the rub rails at the waterline, the alternating paint scheme and handsome bright work.
Trev and his boat. Good job!
I have a few more hours of sanding and then I'll be ready to glass the boat!