Thursday, 20 December 2018

It’s coming together.....

Well, I have been down the boat quite a bit recently but didn't write any of it up as I'm not sure its worthwhile. I only had 2 comments from people confirming they read my blog (Thanks Glenn and Steve!). Anyway, I will tell you about progress I made since my last blog entry.

First of all I managed to get the cockpit locker lids finished. All the expoxy was cleaned and sanded and then the top and sides was given 2 coats of light blue International Interdeck. The British weather was determined to stop me with some nice frost on the sanding table:

But I wasn't to be put off and sanded the expoxy off the cockpit lids Here are the usual before shots where the epoxy has been sanded back:

And after:

Please note that the actual colour is nothing like this. I'm not too sure if it was the lighting or something. Anyway I was pretty pleased with the overall result. Once they had dried for a few days, I was able to install them in the cockpit. Here they are:

Not bad eh? As you can see they are already getting dirty thanks to the great British weather!

Next was to clean the table base and the hardware itself. Remember the base?:

Horrible! After cleaning, it looked like this:

A whole lot better!

My next job was to paint some of the interior woodwork. Before:

And after 1 coat:

They still needed a little more paint on them (which I have done, but haven't taken any pics yet).
I have also given the ply panels at the rear of the boat a couple of coats of white gloss. This is just to freshen them all up. I would like to replace all of these wooden panels and will do so when I have a bit more time.

Getting the carpet on the port side of the cabin was next on my list. I had to remove the cabin support which was a little tricky as I had to clamp a spanner to each nut on the inside of the cabin and then  go outside and try and unscrew them. Often the clamp and spanner fell off when I was turning the screw on the outside, so I would have to move the ladder, climb back in and do it again. Once this was done, I was left with the old carpet underneath which I scraped off and cleaned up.

I then measured up the carpet and cut it to size in the workshop. I had to cover the table and part of the floor with plastic as it was covered in dust (from some scruffy sod sanding INDOORS and not cleaning up after themselves) and I didn't want it to get dirty. I left a heater running in the cabin to warm the cabin interior surfaces as it was only a few degrees.

To glue the carpet down, you have to spray the carpet and the surface you are gluing it to, You then wait until it is tacky and press them together, You get a little bit of time to adjust the carpet, but not much! I then had to place and tape plastic sheeting around the cabin, so I could lay the carpet down flat when I was spraying the glue on it, and also to protect the windows and all other surfaces from the spray glue. Once it was on, I just left it to dry. I will cut the window section out at a later date. Here are some after shots:

So, that left me with only the rear panels to put back. However the bottom wooden support was loose, so I had to stick on some grab adhesive and brace it with a piece of wood:

Not a very exciting picture, but you get the idea! Once I have put the back panels and cut new ceiling panels the boat should look a hell of a lot nicer!

The next thing on my list is to sand, epoxy and paint the cabin steps. I have already sanded them and put the first layer of epoxy on. I now have to finish them off.

As to the future of this blog? I really don't know to be honest. Most people seem to have stopped Blogging in favour of Vlogging. I'm not sure if I have the patience to sit and edit video to some of the standards I have seen on other channels. So I will keep checking to see if my page views are increasing. If they don't, I will stop. Simple as that!

(Probably) More to follow....

Sunday, 25 November 2018

My weekend..And I need YOUR help!

Bit of a mixed bag this weekend. Didn't really get the time I would have liked down the boat, but at least some progress was made. Yesterday, I managed to get a second coat of white paint on the kitchen unit. Here they are:

Then I started sanding down the cockpit locker lids that I had epoxied the week before. As I had brushed the epoxy on, they looked absolutely dreadful as the epoxy was so uneven with high spots all over it. I decided the only choice I had was to sand them down and give them a more even coat of epoxy with a roller. I sanded them down and was left with this:

After one uniform coat of epoxy, they looked much better. I forgot to take a pic, but you will see this next week before I start painting.

Solas has a small dining table aboard sits on a steel or aluminium pedestal. I have never been able to undo the pedestal from the base, so resolved to get the two apart by unscrewing the base from the floor and working on it outside where I can apply heat and force. I was staggered to see how filthy it was under there. It even beats the place where the oven was removed! Check this out:

The pedestal. Now see what the space underneath looks like:

and the pedestal base itself:

See what I mean? Have you ever seen anything so disgusting? Annoyingly, I didn't dare to clean the area in case any of the dirt splashed onto the kitchen units where the paint was still slightly tacky, so I screwed it back down. This will have to wait for another day.

I then turned my attention to the door that was on the kitchen units. It looks horrible with many coats of a beige brown paint  and very dirty. I thought I would sand it a bit and see what the wood underneath looked like. Here it is before I started:

And here it is after about 15 minutes sanding:

Quite a difference! I dug out some old varnish I had and soaked it in a sink full of hot water to make it easier to apply. I didn't have any white spirit, so wanted to give the wood a chance to absorb the varnish. I am quite stunned by the result of the first coat:

Looks great doesn't it? It has got me wondering what the kitchen units may really look like underneath all that paint. Me putting another 2 coats on may not have helped!

OK, so I hope you have enjoyed what I got up to this weekend. Now I would really like your help. There is a discrepancy between the page views reported back to me. Google stats says I get far more views than the page stats report (my last blog page only got 2 views according to the stats). As it usually takes me at least an hour to type the content and upload my pics, it doesn't seem a good use of my time if only 2 people are reading. So I am in 2 minds whether or not just to stop doing this altogether.

What I would like is for you to PLEASE leave a comment below. It doesn't have to be long, even one word to say you read my blog would be fine! Then I would know that continuing this is worthwhile.

Thanks very much and more to follow (maybe!).

Actually, I will at least report how many comments I had!

Bye for now....

Sunday, 18 November 2018

One step forward....

Not quite two steps back, but it can feel like that when doing up an old boat!

I was unable to get to the boat last weekend due to family commitments, but I managed to get down both days this weekend.

My main mission yesterday was to get the cockpit locker lids epoxied on one side and get the gaps filled in. As with all jobs, its the prep that is important. All the sanding has been done and I needed to wipe all the wood down with panel wipe. Once this was done, I realised I needed to heat the epoxy up, so I did this with a sinkful of hot water. Once the epoxy was warmed up it was mixed and then painted on one side of the wood with a brush. I'm not really looking for an amazing finish as the boards will be sanded and painted, but I wanted to seal the wood so they will last a few years at least. Once I had got a coating on, I mixed the remainder of the epoxy with colloidal silica so that I could fill the gaps.

If you remember, here is a pic before the epoxy went on:

Here it is after:

As you can see it does look a little rough, but it will be sanded once it has cured fully (about a week or so).

Of course this is just one side, so I left this overnight and this morning flipped them over and did the underside. Here is a pic of the underside:

I didn't actually take any pics after I had finished, but its pretty much the same as the first pic!

I had then planned to go and paint the sides of the bilge ready for the new (to me) engine to go in. I discovered I had left the bilge paint at home so I put the engine cover back on again.

One thing I have been wanting to have a look at is the cooker. Solas has a gas cooker with 2 gas rings, a grill and an oven. It is a Plastimo Atlantic which looks like it was made a few years ago:

I haven't used it yet and have no intention of until I have decided whether I will keep it on board. I wanted to remove it to see how it was connected and what the space behind and underneath looked (as it looks pretty grimy from the bit I can see). I spent half an hour or so with a spanner, but could not get it undone, so I decided to use a hacksaw and just cut through the copper pipe (which shouldn't be connected directly to the cooker anyway). One the cooker was removed, I was left with a horrible empty space. I started to clean it and then remembered to take a pic:

Its worse than I thought it would be. I got a bucket of hot water and this went black almost immediately as it was so filthy. Two buckets later, I was left with this:

I can't even figure out how this whole thing has been put together! It looks as though there has been some sort of thin metal liner fitted inside another metal liner.

It still looked really  horrible, so I decided that I would run some paint over it. If I decide to keep my Origo stove, then all this will be dead space anyway as the Origo will sit on top of this space on its gimbals. This is for 2 reasons. Firstly, the height is much better to cook with and secondly, it is NOT gas! I needed to take the unit door off and this was actually the hardest job of the day. I used a bradawl to dig the paint out of the screwheads and undo them. I just left the hinges on (as it looked as though they had already been painted over many times before).

So this meant some more sanding. I decided to sand by hand as the area isn't massive and it only took about 15 minutes and I was left with this:

So I spent a while going around and masking off all the areas I don't want any paint on. In my experience, this usually takes way longer than the painting itself. Once I started painting, I could see that one coat was not going to be enough. I didn't paint the top of the work surface as I intend to install a new Formica worktop.

Anyway, here is the result of the first coat:

As you can see it is far from perfect, but I think a second coat will finish it off nicely for the minute. Longterm, if I don't put the cooker back I will replace the whole front panel and build another storage cupboard for food or something.

It also made me aware that there is still loads to do! I realise now that there are still areas of the boat I haven't scrubbed out and painted yet. A little at a time though!

More to follow....

Sunday, 4 November 2018

Variety is the spice of life..

Today had a bit of everything. I spent a couple of hours in the morning sanding (which was a little grim to be honest!). The cockpit locker lids need to be finished as soon as possible to stop the rain coming in (I am sick of having to empty them with a bucket and sponge). However, they were so wet when I removed them, I have had to leave them in the workshop for a few days to dry out. So my plan is to sand them down, then use epoxy to paint them, mix up some thickened epoxy and fill the gaps in then sand and paint them. For some reason I didn't take any decent pictures of them before I started. Here are some pics of them during:

As you can see, some of the wood was a little green and I wasn't too sure it was going to sand off. Here they are after :

As you can see, they still aren't perfect, but they should soak up the epoxy just fine and you wont see any marks under the paint. I should hopefully get these done in the next few days.

Then I decided to have a look at two of the sail bags that are aboard. I have not seen any of these before, so decided I better have a look. Here are 2 pics:

To my delight, the mainsail looks perfect, It is made by crusader sails and there are no rust marks or anything. There are a couple of small dirt marks but they look like they will wipe off. I might send them off to get cleaned anyway. The second bag looked like a sailcover and the sprayhood. I'm sure there is another bag under the forward berth (which currently has wood and cushions over it), so I will look for that in the next few days. I hope there is another bag, or I don't have a jib or genoa!

On the plus side, I do appear to have a yacht number with the Tomahawk logo! 6103Y - I am hoping the Tomahawk Owners Association may have some more information for me (if they ever answer their emails!).

The light was starting to fade too, so in the last half hour I had a quick look at the 4 winches on board. They all turn, and 2 of them are covered in green stuff, so I got some metal polish and gave them a quick spruce up. The green came off easily and I'm just hoping all the chrome will polish up.

Hopefully more to come in the next few days....

Saturday, 3 November 2018

Not much got done at the boat today

I went down to the boat as soon as I could, with the intention of getting the cockpit locker lids and the sides of the cabin storage lockers sanded. However when I was aboard, I decided to try and cut the carpet around the window frame instead. This proved to be trickier that I thought and I would describe the job I have done as adequate rather than great. Some framing may be needed too! To cheer myself up I decided to remove the blue film over the bulkhead linings to see what that looked like. Here is what the starboard side currently looks like:

Of course once I had done that I wished I hadn't as I will have to wipe them thoroughly when I do decide to line them with something. At least it is cleaner than how she was originally:

After that I scrubbed the area on the port side cabin so that it is ready to be lined as well. Hopefully I can get that done tomorrow. I have also decided I would like something other than the cabin storage lockers that are currently there, but I haven't decided what. Maybe some sliding panels or something? Any ideas gratefully received, as always.

Still lots to do to get her looking comfortable!

More to follow.....

Friday, 2 November 2018

Lining the sides and locker lids...

Its Friday today and the weather was lovely. Even better was that fact I had the day off, so as usual, I went down the boat. When I got there, I decided I would try and cut the first piece of carpet to line the cabin sides. I measured up and used a steel builders level as an edge and using a piece of scrap plywood and a Stanley knife managed to cut the carpet reasonably straight. I used a tape measure and a permanent marker to mark off the measurements at certain intervals and the just joined the dots together.

Before I could think about trying to stick the carpet down, there was the problem of removing a support that was in the way. The support looks like a handrail, but I believe it helps support the rigging by moving some of the load to the cabin side below it. Here it is before I removed it:

So once I had unscrewed the nuts and unscrewed the bolts on the outside (which is attached to one of the rigging stays) I then had to scrape the old carpet behind it. This left a load of old glue, so I had to hoover it all up. When the area was clean again, I taped up the window using masking tape, as I will the need to cut the window shape out of the van lining carpet.

Then I decided to have a bash at sticking the carpet down. I have never done this before so was a little bit nervous as to how fast the glue set. As it turned out I needn't have worried as you seem to have plenty of time to align and stretch the carpet across. I just took my time and was quite pleased with the end result:

Obviously I still  have to cut the window piece out, but thought I would leave it to dry fully before doing this. The ceiling panels and other trim will cover the edges too.

I still had a bit of time on my hands so I removed the wooden cockpit locker lids. The lockers are always full of water and the wooden lids are always soaking. I removed them and taped bin bags across them and put the lids in the workshop to dry out or a couple of days. My plan is to sand them back to (hopefully) sound wood and then fill any gaps with epoxy and paint them with epoxy. They will then be given a couple of coats of light blue Interdeck paint. I will take some pics of these tomorrow.

Lastly, I scraped and prepped the other side of the cabin. This will need cleaning with water and floor cleaner, but once dried will be ready to have the carpet stuck to it.

See you all tomorrow.....

Thursday, 1 November 2018

Yesterday, All my troubles seemed so far away.

So sang the Beatles. Sadly my troubles are still here today.

Yesterday, I went down to the boat with Neil and we cleaned the boat again and then did a dry run of fitting the carpet to the walls. To our horror, there are now a couple of brown rust like marks across the carpet. Fortunately it is double sided so we will use the other side.

It flagged up the fact that even though we had scraped the walls and rubbed them down with panel wipe, they was still a dirty residue which needed to be cleaned off.

So today I went down and spent an hour with a bucket of hot water and some floor cleaner. I scrubbed with a scrubbing brush and then tried to rinse off with a sponge as best I could. Here is the obligatory after shots:

Although its still looks scruffy, at least it is clean and the carpet lining should stick down ok. Sadly there will probably be yet more cleaning to come as I still have the other side to do at some point.

I am hoping to get one side of the boat lined this weekend.

More updates soon.....