Today I have been on the boat for 3 weeks and I have made stellar progress on the list of must dos before we can depart. The little bits of corrosion in the bilges, water tank and lockers are now coated with Corroseal and Amerlock2/400. It has been a long and somewhat toxic process.
I have ground off all the rusty bits, old paint and 20 years of grime and applied the Corroseal and two to four coats of Amerlock2/400. I had expected doing this would take a week at most, it took the last three. This is how it all happened. I started by grinding the rusty, grimy bits. I don’t think that I have ever been that dirty in my life. After grinding and cleaning for 12 or 14 hours I would return to Ole and Karen’s to take a shower and it would take several scrubbings to get the water to run clean. After all the grinding, I cleaned the surface with a degreaser, applied the corroseal. The first hiccup in the timeline came when then corroseal failed to convert the rusty bits, turns out that the problem was surface prep. Despite using a powerful degreaser and then cleaning the clean surface with water and clean rags, it was not clean enough. Corroseal turns brown when it has been contaminated, in my case it seemed to be working so I left it to cure overnight (the corroseal takes 24 hours to fully cure and cannot be top-coated until it is cured). The next morning I was surprised and disappointed to see that the corroseal was spotted brownish green indicating that there was contamination. This meant back to square one, grinding.
I ground off the contaminated corroseal. Then I SCRUBBED the bare metal with denatured alcohol until my clean rag came up clean. I doubt that the boat has been this clean since it was built. The new application of Corroseal immediately started to turn the most amazing shade of bottomless black that I have ever seen. With the Corroseal down, I waited another 24 hours for the corroseal to cure.
The next morning the corroseal was jet black, just like it should be. It was time for the 2-part epoxy paint. What nasty stuff! For a brief moment I mixed it with out my dual cartridge respirator on it made my tongue tingle. GACK! The first coat took more than a half-gallon of the paint. The second coat, applied some 20 hours later took another pint-and-a-half, not including the interior of the tank.
A four day cold spell slowed the curing of the epoxy based paint. In the mean time I spoke with the yard about the corrosion issues at the mast step. The Master Shipwright had a great idea that will fix the problem and cost far less than hauling the boat. I am going to prep the surfaces as I have through out the rest of the boat then custom shape Ipe (an amazingly hard and indestructible wood from Brazil) to fill the spaces at the bottom of the mast. The Ipe, sitting on the lead ballast will take the compressive loads off the step that is starting to fail. The Ipe board that I bought cost $40 and most of it will be used for a fender board.
The cold spell ended and Susanna arrived a week ago, bringing with her sunny skies and smiles all around. With the warmer weather we where able to finish painting the bilges and tank just yesterday. It will be amazing to close up the tank tomorrow and fill it with water I a few days.
The next week to 10 days sees us finishing up work on the boat and filling her with groceries. The list of things to do is endless but I have divided it into the “must do” and “would like to do.” The “Must Do” list is getting shorter by the hour.
The list includes:
- Some stitch work on the mainsail
- Acquire new Halyards
- Change all the engine fluids and install the new fuel/water separator
- Install the new 400 feet of chain
- Change the hailing port on the transom
That is not everything, but it is a good chunk of it. We had thought that we would be able to leave by the 1st of May, but that is not going to happen, seeing how it is this Saturday. We are now thinking some time late next week. As the days start to tick by and things get put away on the boat we will have a clearer idea.
Wireless access has been more of an issue than I expected. It will be interesting to see how things shape up as we head north. Maybe we will want a high gain antenna after all!
Thanks for taking a gander. If you find something that's broken or missing, please let us know via our contact page. Thanks.