Rehabbing a Used Boat - Part 4

Rehabbing a Used Boat - Part 4

After three glorious sailing weekends spent in a dusty shipyard, there was a turn in the tunnel.  I just don’t know if the light I am seeing is a train coming?

I created a list of to-do projects 2 weeks ago and sent it to the six crew to provide some clarity on how much there is to do to this project boat.  My Dad thought I was trying to scare people with it.  That cracked me up.  Much has been knocked off the list, each weekend a few more tasks are added.

This coming weekend as I move away from electrical work that is mostly complete, I’ll tackle some fiberglass work.  Preparation is everything, one must sand the areas where the fiberglass will go, clean the area good so there is no dust, wax, or oil on the surface, mix the resin with the catalyst (mixing the pot of glue), saturate the fiberglass cloth with the glue, and put the piece of fiberglass in place, pressing air bubbles out and then wait for the glue to cure.  Once cured, the resin emits a wax on the surface, which must be cleaned off with solvents and sanding in order to get anything to stick to it thereafter.

I’ll try to complete wiring, with the installation of a LED goose-neck light for the chart table, and connect the GPS to the on-deck LCD display.

There’s a couple of pieces of teak trim that are gray on the fiberglass deck.  I’ve got some cleaner designed for it.  Once dry, we’ll put some oil on the it for a nice light brown finish.

In a previous piece I described how ventilation is key to having a sweet smelling interior and how humidity must be fought.  I’ll cut two 4″ holes in the deck (in non-structural areas) one will let the air in the front, the other is a solar battery powered fan that pulls the air out will be mounted at the back end.  One winter we accidentally left this solar fan installed in an earlier boat and found it running and the boat was dry and fresh inside.  They really work well and commonly run 24 hours a day.

Recently the plastic paper towel holder in my kitchen at home broke.  I went to get a new one at a name brand hardware store and the quality has dropped from fair to junk.  The new one was so flimsy I didn’t think it would last a day.  So I will build a solid one out of wood and PVC tubing for the boat and install it.  When you grab a paper towel and the boat lurches, I want it to still be there in one piece.

There are two outdoor stereo speakers that are cut through the deck.  The “surrounds” on them have disintegrated from age.  This lets water get into the boat and must be repaired.  Imagine a sound speaker, it has the hard cardboard like cone with an attached magnet.  The magnet is inside of a coil that causes the magnet to vibrate forwards and backwards with electrical energy.  But what holds the floating magnet in the center of the coil?  There is a rubber surround that is glued to the outer edge of the cardboard cone, and then the outside of this surround glues to the steel or plastic housing of the speaker.

Replacement surrounds are available online, finding one that matches the same inside and outside diameter is a painstaking search on the internet.  When they come in, you scrape off the old, maybe remove more of the old with some lacquer thinner, then glue the inside diameter of the new surround onto the cone first, let it dry for a day, then glue the outside diameter (making sure the magnet is centered) on the second day.  But do not test it for sound until the third day to make sure the glue is set.  Patience on this one is the big reward.

Funny, I was just thinking how “I’ve got a tool for that!” After my Dad has purchased 11 different used boats in my adult life, I have been adding tools to my repertoire that just makes each job easier and go faster.

This boat will rock when it is complete, we will have six different crew working on it during the next seven days.  Shortly after this crush, the boat will be launched.  Even then, there will still be a half-dozen projects that will be completed before this boat crosses the starting line in the Chicago Mackinac Race July 19, 2014.

Who knows?  We might even get to sail it a few times before then.

Type your email address in the box and click the “create subscription” button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.

Leave a comment