It's been quite some time since I've posted an update but that's not to say nothing has been done!! As the title of this entry suggests, I've started a number of things, it's just that none of them have been fully completed. They are all interconnected and the progress of one often relies on the progress of another!!
After mating the deck to the hull and glassing it, the next step was the building of the cockpit. Unlike the first cockpit I put on this boat last year, I've decided to go with the laid up glass method. I used 1/2" foam insulation as the form around which I'd lay up the glass/epoxy. This foam will bend to a tight radius without breaking, making it easy to get a full run around the cockpit coaming with only one join. I tacked the foam to the deck using hot glue. (Note: applying the glue to the deck first reduces the heat enough so that it does not melt the foam. Trying to glue foam to foam with hot glue does not melt as the glue melts the foam before it can stick!!!
Once I had the full band of foam in place I built up the "ears" using shorter pieces. I used contact cement to glue the foam to foam. Once the glue had set, I shaped the form using sandpaper. I rounded over the edges of the cockpit - particularly in the rear - for comfort during rolls.
|The first strip in place.|
|The full form in the rough.|
|Shaped and sanded.|
I then simply built up the glass/epoxy over the form. The glass extends under the deck to provide more rigidity. I tinted the epoxy but I will be painting the coaming as well. The coaming is prone to scratches so making it black underneath will reduce the visibility.
|First layer of glass/epoxy.|
|After first three layers are trimmed.|
I liked the foam seat that I made for my Black Pearl (BP). I thought of building another for this boat but decided to try and replicate it in the glass. I started with the BP seat as a mold. I placed a sheet of thin plastic over it. Then proceeded to lay three layers of glass/epoxy over it. Followed by one more sheet of thin plastic. Then I took some damp sand and packed it down into the seat to make sure that the glass/epoxy was pressed firmly against the "mould". After it dried, I subsequently added more layers until the seat is quite stiff.
|BP foam seat.|
|Glass laid in place.|
|Glass wetted out with tinted epoxy.|
|Damp sand holding over plastic to force glass to conform to the shape.|
While building up the coaming and seat, I moved on to cutting the hole for the skeg control box. This turned out to be an easy job. I simply marked thea are on the deck, drilled four holes in the corners and cut out the rectangle with a jig saw. I then recessed the opening slightly so that the control box will be flush with the deck.
|Outline etched in the glass.|
|Control box as it now looks!|
|Skeg control location. Seat laid in place and looking too glossy!!|
The following are just a number of images showing the project as it now stands.
I've still got some finish work left on the coaming and seat. A few days ago I rolled on, what I hope to be, the last fill coat of epoxy. I did some good sanding prior to this last coat of epoxy and expect the final sanding to go smoothly - pun intended. After some finishing touches, I will be ready to paint. The plan is to go with a white hull and green.deck.
I think I can see the light at the end of the tunnel!!
Thanks for dropping by,