Equinox Project | Tuesday, December 23, 2008

I trimmed some 1/4" fiberglass sheets to 2" in width, and then cut and fit them to the underside of the cabin sole to support the new access hatch forward, with a 1" overlap beneath the sole and 1" protruding into the opening to eventually support the hatch.  Afterwards, I epoxied the pieces in place and set the sole aside.


Next, I prepped the various hardware holes on deck for epoxy filling, which involved covering the bottoms of the holes with tape to prevent the epoxy from spilling out, and also protecting the deck areas around the holes with additional tape to keep the epoxy where it belonged.  I reamed out a few holes that I had not done during my earlier sessions, and after cleaning up I filled all the holes with a thickened epoxy mixture that would forever seal the exposed core in the oversized holes once the hardware was reinstalled.


I epoxied a transverse brace into the bilge area directly over the new midships divider.  while not strictly necessary, I felt that the brace would provide a bit of stiffness to the cabin sole by securing the two sides together; since I also epoxied the ends of the brace to the hull, the whole arrangement promised to prevent any undue flexing of the sole that might otherwise occur because of the disruption of its original structure.


I made some final adjustments to the companionway trim pieces, and then glued the top arch to the lower section.  To help clamp the pieces while the epoxy cured, and hold them in the proper alignment, I hot-glued some small blocks to my bench that held the pieces accordingly and gave me a place to apply light clamping pressure.


The teak veneer plywood cosmetic cabin sole had originally been varnished, but over the years water had gotten beneath the finish and begun to lift it.  Because the veneer was so thin, I didn't want to attempt to sand off the old varnish, so I took a small section of the sole and applied some paint stripper to see how it went.  The stripper worked well, and the sole cleaned up pretty well.  I planned to follow the same process on the remaining pieces.


Total Time on This Job Today:  5.75 hours

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