Sunday, February 3, 2013

Still a Boat Building Blog After All

Yes, this is still a boat building blog. Since stripping Solitude III of her sticks, I have slowly been making progress on the items that I the rush to launch.  Once again, I'm sawing wood, mixing epoxy,  slathering on varnish, and yes, SANDING! 

One of the first things I decided to tackle my overly-snug tabernacle.  When I installed my "load reacters", I fit them snugly up against mast-less tabernacle.  Well, turns out I may have fit them a little too snugly, making it a minor battle to raise the mast.  Some work with a saw and chisel helped out with this. 

My new, temporary boom gallows

Re-shaping the "load reacters"
  Another unfinished item that has been driving me crazy forever has been my boom gallows.  The gallows was originally cut out the day of Solitude III's maiden voyage and was raw, unfinished wood at the Wooden Boat Festival.  At some later date I was able to get one coat of epoxy on it, but then...well, that was it.  So, finally, I whipped up a temporary gallows (mainly to hold up the ridge pole for the boat cover), and set to work with the real gallows, including making modifications to mount the stern navigation light, adding more coats of epoxy, and for the first time in months, sanding.  More sanding and a zillion coats of varnish will be coming soon.

Speaking of varnish, the spars now have so many coats on them that you can see your reflection in them.  Ironically, now that they gleam, I am pondering whether to apply a topcoat of satin varnish.  The spars get beat up a lot and a satin sheen will help mask all the minor dings and divots of a spar's life. 

While not explicitly a boat-building project, after the hydrolock incident, I decided it was time to stop fooling around and start storing my outboard in the full upright and locked position.  It only took about five minutes to whip up a wall mount for the little noisemaker...much less than the amount of time that I spent clearing out oil from the cylinder!

So the projects resume.  I still have quite a bit of work I'd like to do on Solitude's interior, and I still have to make a set of permanent drop boards.  Actually, the drop boards will be more difficult than I thought.  A search of the shop revealed that I do not have any bits of 1/4" marine plywood remaining that will be large enough to construct the drop boards from.  What to do?  'Tis a quandary.

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