In today’s thrilling episode learn how more rot was revealed before it was too late!
I decided that I would take off the bilge stringer so that the keel keel screws could be located and protected before the glueing began. All of the screws came out without difficulty but I had to break the stringer in order to remove it as it was also glued down. A swift strike with a hammer sideways did the trick although some of the underlying veneer came away as well.
Having removed the stringer and cleaned up the hull again I noticed that the rot had extended further than the stringer in a couple of places. So I now need to cut 4 of the veneers back a couple of inches. I’ll leave the rest where it is and use epoxy filler to fill in the areas where the veneer was pulled away with the stringer.
The bilge keel is going to be a problem as Naiad is being supported on the trailer by the keels as well as the hog. If I remove all the screws then the keel will come off and I’ll have to find a way to support Naiad. So I’ve decided to loosen all the screws and then tighten them back up again. Then, as I lay in each veneer I’ll take out the screws that are under that veneer, put a hole in the veneer where the screw has to go back and the replace the screw once the epoxy has set. That way the bilge keel will be firmly attached throughout the process. It will also give me a chance to check the condition of the screws and replace any that are waisted or damaged.
And the first replacement veneer went in. It is a great feeling at this point to know that at least something in the project is now constructive rather than destructive. Everything else I have done to this point has been removing or cutting or just generally destructive. For the first time I’ve done something that isn’t.
I just have to remember that the first thing I should do every time I start work is to apply some barrier cream to my hands. It makes getting the epoxy off a lot easier.
I also need to buy a lost of really cheap 1” paint brushes for applying the thickened epoxy to the veneers. I didn’t have any today so I was using a putty knife which was adequate but not ideal. Mind you, at least I won’t have to throw it away. The hardened epoxy will come off the metal fairly easily. Perhaps I’ll stay with the knife of the moment and see how it goes.
Oh, and I should not wear a good shirt when doing this, epoxy doesn’t wash off. I think a set of overalls might be a better idea.
In this photo the bilge stringer has been removed.
One of the two areas where the rot has spread under the stringer.
And here is the other area where the rot has spread. Two of the bilge keel screws can be seen in this photo.
A real milestone now, this is the first template cut from stiff cardboard to use for cutting the first replacement veneer.
The cardboard template offered up one last time to check the fit before the veneer is cut.
And the veneer in place. I had to cut it in to 2” strips as the force generated by the entire thing round the bend was pulling the staples out. With the thinner strips the staples were holding well. I used some thin plywood offcuts to use as a backing for staples. It makes them easier to get out and the damage caused by removing the staples is to the plywood and not the veneer.