Thursday, December 15, 2011

Out at last... !

…..of my garage that is… :)

It took me about 2 months but I finally found a way to take my boat out of the garage…
It is now at the mast builder s place for fitting. Sailmaker will be called soon for the final phase of this odyssey.
Weather was just perfect today. About 15 C in mid December ! Considering the crappy weather we had about a month ago, this was really amazing !
I was quite apprehensive but thanks to all guys who came to help me it turned out to be quite an easy task. Even lifting the boat up onto the trailer was not an issue. I am not sure how heavy the boat is but 2 guys, one on each side, could lift the transom easily so I hope it will not be too far off from class limits.

And talking about trailers, as you can see in the pictures the one we used was definitely oversized but that was the absolute best I could find. The owner of the trailer, who as also driving the truck, happen to be a boat builder himself and owned one of the largest fiberglass boat factories of Turkey. Wish I had met the man before.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Hardware and foot straps

Here are a few pictures of the boat with hardware and hiking straps installed. I am stoked !

Still need to install the rudder plate to consider the boat fully finished. But I am really close....and have a hard time grasping what it means......

What an adventure ! Stop thinking, build !!!

That is the strap adjustment. Simple velcro with 20cm on each side. Gives me plenty of adjustment length to play with the strap height.
I will most likely to play around with bungies to leave them at the right height to facilitate sliding my feet underneath them, but I will leave this fine tuning for later, that is after splashing.

And this is how they look when their height is set up to minimum height, flush with cockpit sole.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Kiwi Grip

I am finally really getting close to finishing off the boat, just a few things more and I will focus on setting up the mast (which is done and beautiful !) and getting the sails cut.

So one of the last finishing touches was applying the anti skid paint and i choose to use Kiwi Grip because of all the good things I heard about.
I bought a can of white, which was the only color available in Turkey, and custom colored it to a light grey using a small amount of water based pigment as recommended by the Kiwi manufacturer. 5 minutes on the shaker at the paint shop and my custom grey was ready.

Then I took my time to tape all areas I wanted to keep in the original Perfection White. That is a lot of masking tape !
But the real work was to round off ALL corners. I mean all of them, except the ones I forgot, were rounded off using a large washer as a guide and my cutter.
It was an enjoyable task to do and kept my mind busy for a while, a bit like assembling a puzzle.

Kiwi application was very easy and straight forward. I just use one of the plastic squeegees I had left over from all the epoxy work, threw it down in patches were I needed it, spreaded it all around to achieve a uniform thickness, than gave it its texture using the special roll. More than the force applied to the roll, I found out that it is mostly the amount of gooey you lay down that will change the final texture.
On my boat, I went for a smoother texture on deck sides, where my butt will be, and for a more aggressive texture on the cockpit floor.
One issue I faced, which is worth mentioning, is that in the areas I took too long to remove the tape after applying KG, the tape itself ended up melting down. I mean it started to disintegrate under the Kiwi chemicals, become very soft, and mushy. And I am talking good quality blue tape !
İ removed about 90% of all the tape while the Kiwi was still fresh, but on one of the benson where the tape had been left for about 20 mns, İ only managed to peel off the top of the tape yet the glue and part of the tape material stayed on the benson.

A second of panic (!!!!!) just to think about the possibility of screwing the whole thing up.....and then İ decided to leave it as it was and remove the blue tape left over the following day,after the bordering Kiwi had hardened.
Next day, with a little acetone and finger nails scratching, I removed the blue tape that had been left behind. Thanks God my anti skid paint job was safe. And it looked really sharp !

All that time patiently taping the boat paid off. I really dig the round corners and the white and grey color scheme. Check it out

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Stainless Steel Shine

Here are a few picture of the bow piece and the rudder plate I will use on my boat. It is all heavy stainless steel. Probably too heavy for most of the racers out there. But I like the shine and glow of those parts.

The bow piece is simple and as you can tell the spi pole will go though it. Might not be class legal because my forestay attachement will stay above the ring and if you project it forward , it will actually meet the deck level forward of bow.
Oh well ! Until another i550 gets build to race me down here, that is what I will have on my boat.

The rudder plate is very straight forward but very cool. The rudder will be pined down by a long rod inserted through the 2 transom and 2 rudder heavy duty gudgeons. The pin is then pushed down, compressing a spring, and hold underneath a hook which is itself welded to the plate.
Should hold well any force applied on the rudder itself. I would be very surprise if those fail before the rudder do.
Shine on....

Non skid taping

Here is a short update on what I have been doing. Boat is almost finished and one of the last building steps will be applying the non skid.

I bought a can of white Kiwigrip which I custom colored to a light grey. Then I masked the boat with blue tape.
That is a long but amusing job to do as it gives you a chance to visually check out for the boat symmetry

Still some more taping to do, mainly rounding off the corners of the masking tape, then some sanding to (unfortunately) rough off that glossy Perfection surface, and I ll be ready to spread the Kiwigrip all over the boat. As a matter of fact I really do mean all over as most of the surface will be painted over.

No matter what though, I will leave that keel support as it is because I really dig its zebra look.

Friday, July 22, 2011

upper deck is painted

The upper half of the boat was finally painted. Again I used Perfection which I believe is a pretty great paint.
This time though I did not thin and did not tip. I just rolled it with a West roller made for applying epoxy. They work beautifully for paint....and the final result is really good. The paint really levels out great, no roller marks.
The cockpit side panels and the round transition received 2 layers of paint and so did the sides of the cabin house. The rest pretty much got one single layer for which I did not try to achieve full opacity as they will be covered up later with grey KiwiGrip.

I think I could have pay more attention to detail and done a better job on fairing those cockpit side panels. I might layout another layer on those panels and try to give them some texture to hide out some of the not so fair spots....Or maybe I will use Kiwi in the sides as well.....I will see that soon.
I am now off to Brazil for a well deserved 2 weeks break....I will dream about my boat (for sure) as there is little else to do before splashing.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Chain plates in

Figuring out where to place the gussets was one thing, but actually bolting the chain plates on those gussets is a whole different story....
Days in Turkey are currently really hot, so working inside that tight cabin trying the correct way to drill those holes on the gussets as close as possible to the shear clamp was not easy !

After I had mark the precise location of the chainplates, I used my Bosh Multimaster to cutout the upper deck. That tool is just wonderful and I could not have done it without it.
The place around the gussets was so tight with the frame and decks and hull and all....that i could not fit my driller properly in order to drill the holes.

What really saved me this time is a little gizmo I bought that allows you to drill perpendicular to your driller. That is quite an advantage and I also used that gizmo to redrill some hardware hole from below deck.
The holes were then filled with thickened epoxy and the bolts were tight. I did not use any release agent on them so I hope I wont have to remove the chainplates any time soon.

I guess I could have tried to place the chain plates further towards the shear but that would have implied working even closer to that gusset-frame-hull tight corner. And that would have been simply impossible to do with the kind of straight down chain plates I made. The design of the chainplates would have to be changed.
And I leave that decision for the next builders cause I am done with my chainplates !

No matter what, the final assembly looks really sturdy and I believe the boat could easily be lifted from those chainplates. The chain plates themselves are made of 5mm stainless steel, 8cm by 17 by twenty something as I recall.....They were bolted through the gussets with 10mm stainless steel bolts.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

deck faired

Deck is finally faired, sanded and ready for painting !

İ followed the exact same process as for the hull :
1-faired all cloth seams and overlaps with a thicker mixture of resin + West Microlight 410 fairing filler. İ used a medium size plastic squeegee and made sure no bumps were left behind and everything was flat to the touch.
2- after sanding the initial putty, İ applied a thickned float coat all over with an even large squeege and left a thin film of resin just enough to cover up the cloth weave. Actually İ used a large metal spatula. İ had to round off the corner of that spatula as not to leave any scratch on the fresh float coat but it worked a wonder leaving a smooth thin film of thickened epoxi.

Then came the dreaded fairing time..... Except this time İ have to admit i did not kill myself handsanding with the longboard. İnstead İ went with my large orbital sander and 80 grit dry paper ! That went fast ! But İ was carefull enough not to oversand. The main reason İ did not use the longboard is that İ did not intend to obtain such a flat surface as İ did for the hull. No need for that since most of the deck surfaces will be overpainted with Kiwi Grip which will certainly mask any imperfections. Another reason is that it is impossible to use the longboard for the cabin top or even for the cockpit floor because of the bensons İ glued.
So İ just started with the sander.....and finished the job off with it. İt looks good, no apparent flaws to the touch.

One thing İ did before fairing was to drill all the holes for the hardware placement. And to make sure İ would not loose sight of them (which apparently happened to other builders) they were all overdrilled and filled with blue colored epoxi. İ used small amounts of a special epoxi coloring agent. İt worked out great as all filled holes were still well visible after applying the float coat.

İf you zoom on the below picture you will see the blue marks for the jib rails bolts .

After sanding the float coat, İ pre-drilled all holes . Now İ am pretty sure İ will not loose them even after painting.

Next steps are primer, paint and anti slid Kiwi Grip. İ also have to repaint the interior cabin and fix the compression post but there is not much to do before İ can turn my attention to mast and sails.... :):):):)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

hardware placement

Thanks to my fellow builders I finally started to have a better understanding of what kind of controls I should have.
Set up for spin and jib sheets was pretty easy and İ did exactly what Kevin did with side by side blocks . And because İ am building the long cockpit/short cabin version, İ can still seat 2 people side by side either in front of those blocks or behind. Plenty of space to move around and good access to all commands in case of solo sailing.
Most of the issues however came up with the dog house hardware placement.
Might sound easy for most of you but for a non experienced sailor such as me, it was all pretty hard to figure out.
As suggested, I bought some ropes and started playing around and simulating where all the cleats and blocks should be fixed at. The main issue I had is that the space around the cabin cutout and and mast base is very limited because I probably over cut the cabin opening. So I was left with little space to fit everything.

But I followed all the good hints and advices of what should be where , and ended up with this set up:
vang and cunningham running on the smaller external cleats . Spin tack line running on the middle large cleat. On the cabin side panel İ left a cleat eventually for a jib downhaul line

vang, cunningham running on the smaller external cleats, spin halyard running on the middle large cleat.On the cabin side panel İ have the Jib furling line as İ intend to use a furler.

Cleats for Main halyard and Jib halyard will be set on mast itself to save some deck space.

Spin tack line, Jib downhaul and Jib furling run all the way to bow and are deflected and held in place with little blocks. İt looks clean and should work fine with the fixed spin pole İ will add later on.

İt seems it will work out fine so a very special thanks goes to Josh, Chad and Kevin who helped me out each with a different step of that hardware location process.

All holes have now been overdrilled and filled with blue colored epoxi silica. That should help me not loosing sight of the holes after fairing.
The hardest part was really to place patches of duck tape underneath the traveler rail holes to fill them out with epoxi putty because İ had to dive underneath the cockpit sole all the way back to f169,5...
The place is so cramped inside because of all the stringers and reinforcement that İ would bump my nose everytime İ had to turn my head from side to side. But İ managed to keep my claustrophobic attacks under control !
That is one more benefit of this whole building experience ...

İ have already started fairing and sanding and should be painting top deck in a couple of weeks.

Monday, June 13, 2011

boat is back on its feet

That is right. We flipped the boat once more today and I will finally go back to sanding and fairing some more but this time on the upper deck !
I swear I was missing that noisy and dusty action. Got bored of sniffing paint thinner.
So I just grabbed my orbital sander and went to work....My poor neighbors will need to bare with me for a couple more weeks.
I am sure they enjoyed the painting phase much more than I did though :)
And since the upper decks were sanded before I turned the dog house upside down, I actually do not have so much work to do.
If everything goes as planned, Ill be fairing before the weekend.

PS:......and just one more thing. I took my time to look at the boat tonight and I just could not believe I actually build it ! It is one amazing achievement for a first time builder and it is absolutely doable. If you are still thinking about it, just go for it and commit until the end. You wont regret it.

Friday, June 10, 2011

final look

That is it ! Hull is finished for good and I am flipping the boat tomorrow to finish off the top.

So overall I really over did it and ended up using Interprotect , VC Tar and VC Offshore . But all that should help avoiding water infiltration and osmosis. Hopefully its money well spent...

Vc Offshore is a bit weird though...First of all the can I bought was supposed to be white....
To start off when I opened the can what they call white is actually more a light beige or creme color. Than you dump 800grs of copper powder into it and you end up with something a bit purple or grey, but certainly not white ! The thing is supposed to change color after some days of immersion so I am curious to see what it will actually look like later.
And it is not an easy paint to roll mainly because it dries so fast. I did my best to avoid leaving roll marks but could not. The paint job, even after 3 coats, is pretty uggly. Seriously. Marks all over that are hard to show on the pictures...I guess this antifouling should be sprayed on instead of rolled on to get a smoother result.
But, although I tend to be a bit of a perfectionist and the results are not really what I expected, I dont really care because this whole part will be soon underwater ! Cant wait for that to happen.

keel ordeal

Keel and bulb assembly is finally finished.

Actually I had finished the keel already but a small change in my game plans sent me back to the sanding board....Initially, I had primed the keel with Primekote and painted it with white Brightside in order to build a custom sleeve around it for the keel box.
But because I will probably leave the boat in the water, I decided to apply an antifouling paint to the keel. That meant sanding off all finishing job I had done before, applying new primer and new antifouling paint. That is the reason why one can still see some darker sports on the pictures. Those are traces of the Primekote.

Anyways, the heavy bulb (80 kgs) was fixed to the oak keel with 4 stainless steel bolts, nuts and washers.

The previously drilled holes on the bulb and rudder were filled with a thick mixture of resin and silica. Then the bolts were inserted and properly tighten. And because they were slightly longer than needed, I trimmed off the ends with an all purposes hand saw.
Then everything was neatly filled with more epoxi silica putty.

Then it was time for some basic fairing , sanding, painting. Question was how to do this with a keel-bulb assembly weighting more than 100 kgs....Lay it down on my working table and do one side at a time or hang it ?
After consulting fellow builders on I decided to hang it from the ceiling. Went to the hardware store, bought a heavy duty hook and a ready to use 8 to 1 purchase. I drilled the hole in my ceiling, screwed the hook and admire in ow my keel slowly raising from the ground.
That is one single screw holding over 100kgs ....Not too bad.
I let it hanging over night to be sure it would hold. As everything was still looking good the next day, i faired and sanded the beast.

1 coat of Interprotect followed by 1 coat of VCTar2 and 3 coats of VC Offshore later the job was finished and the keel looked like this

One thing I must say to all of the future builders who might be reading this is that you really should build a small cart to move your keel and bulb around.
I followed the advice of fellow builder Kevin and that was probably the greatest piece of advice I could ask for. Simply said, I could not have done it without that little cart.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Shinny Perfection

Getting close to finishing the paint job and I am happy with the results. The colors and scheme are not the usual thing but I am really happy with how it looks. Pretty cool for a sportboat. Now with that type of painting, that thing is better fly !

But take a look at that shine ! Interlux Perfection is indeed a glossy paint. You can even see the blue sky on the white part. Took me a little time (and money! ) to get to that point because I had to paint every color more than once and than lay a final glaze coat to protect the red from fading.

Now that the sides are done, I only need to apply VC TAr and the chosen VC Offshore antifouling on the bottom and I am done with the hull. I picked up a can of the white VC Offshore. I think it will look cool with a white bottom !

I will post a new entry as soon as I have the hull paint done with the antifouling.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Perfection Red

A glimpse of things to come.....

After paying my dues with the white Perfection, I finally managed to apply Red Perfection correctly.
Thinning, rolling and tipping is no rocket science but it takes a little practice to get it right .
When you do, it looks pretty least to an amateur eye like mine !

And yes, everything you did not sand and fair properly will stand out. But I am beyond that point now.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Painting schedule. You need one

I decided to try a different paint layout on my hull. JRay and his really cool yellow strips hull inspired me to go for it , even if I don't have any painting experience, except painting the walls of my first daughter bedroom.
And that was long time ago...
But building this boat has taught me that nothing is impossible and that with a little patience, planning and care one can pretty much do anything...even building a boat !

So my hull will be red, white and grey. And since it will stay in the water year long, I will have to use antifouling. Sounds easy ?

In my case I have to use just about all of the Interlux products.
I had already applied a coat of Epoxi Primekote all over the hull and though I was doing good but when I went to the store to purchase another can for the second coat, I found out that they do not sell the stuff in Turkey anymore.
So I had to find an alternative product that could be laid over that initial Primekote.

To make a very long story short, here is what I will use for the sides :
-epoxi primekote
-Perfection undercoat
-Perfection Plus as a glaze coat on top of red (read on to follow me)

And for the bottom hull:
-VC Tar2
-VC OFFshore

İ İf you take into consideration that ALL products have different minimum and maximum overcoating times, that many coats of each need to be applied and that some need to be sanded in between coats and some dont, the work schedule is simply nuts !

İ mean it seriously took me over an hour looking at all spec to finally determine the proper sequence and time schedule..... of how and when to apply each coat !

And then when I thought I was all set, I came across this fine print on the specs of Red Perfection:
"if Red Perfection is to be used, then a full coat of glazecoat should be used as a final coat after full opacity has been achieved with the pigmented system to prevent premature loss of gloss or color change".....
So no matter how easy İ would like things to be, İ guess that is not the case.

First thing I did was to draw the layout I wanted on my hull. I actually had previously taped some large sheet of papers on which to draw.
And instead of looking at my hair, or lack of, check out another one of my really hightech tools which was needed for drawing those nice curves...! My garage hose worked perfectly.

Then I cut out the template with the help of my little one.

Once that was done, I applied one coat of Interprotect on the hull. It looks really nice although the final surface is not the smoothest. But I guess it is a good texture for a primer.

Then I placed the template back on the hull, placed good quality taped around it making sure I left a margin of about half an inch, and painted the Perfection undercoat.
As you can see on the picture the contour lines are not really precise but that does not matter since the white will be covered over with red on one side and grey on the other one.
And yes, I managed to let my roller pass by the tape....No big deal really since all that grey Interprotect will eventually be covered with white Perfection Undercoat.

I like it. It gives a good idea of things to come.