Aventura 34


Charlotte (FKA Aventura), a 1977 Sea Sprite 23' Sloop


Project Complete:  273.75 Total Hours

Scope of Project: Hull and deck refinish; brightwork maintenance; repairs as necessary; minor interior refit

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November 19, 2015

Aventura 34

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The major paint work was complete, and after several weeks of it I was glad to remove all the masking tape, paper, and plastic to reveal the boat all at once for the first time.  In the near future, I’d finish up some additional details while I still had good access to the hull and before concentrating back on the remaining deck work list.

While giving the hull and boottop a little extra cure time, it was the perfect opportunity to get to work on the new toerails.  From rough teak stock, I milled several blanks from which I’d form the final toerail profile, along with two test blanks cut from 2x4s.    Then, using a scrap of the old toerail as a guideline, I milled one off the scrap blanks into the new profile as a trial run, noting the various milling steps so I could recreate it easily on the next five blanks.

Satisfied with the profile, I milled five sections of teak into the required shape, starting each new step with the second scrap blank to be sure each step was correctly replicated.  With the milling complete, I sanded smooth all five teak blanks (each about 12′ long), and rounded the top corners for a more pleasing shape and to better hold varnish.

Each toerail would require two full pieces and half of the second in order to have ample overall length, since scarfing would reduce the effective length of each blank enough that some extra was required.  Using an old and increasingly worn-out jig on the table saw, I milled 8:1 scarfs on the ends of the rail sections as required, starting with the two scrap blanks to ensure the setup was correct and then moving on to the remaining sections.


Since I wasn’t using the staging right at the moment, I created long tables on each side of the boat, and set up the rail sections on these for glueing–much easier on the knees and in all other ways than doing it on the floor.  I cleaned all the joints thoroughly with acetone, secured plastic over the bench to keep it clean and prevent epoxy from sticking, coated with plain epoxy, and then glued the two scarfs for each toerail with thickened epoxy.  The benches meant that I could clamp the rails directly to the work surface, which helped keep the angled joints from slipping as they are wont to do.  I’d leave the rail sections in the clamps for a few days to give the epoxy lots of cure time before continuing work.


Total time billed on this job today:  7.75 hours

0600 Weather Report:
35°, cloudy.  Forecast for the day:  cloudy, chance of showers, and rain late.  Temperatures rising through the  40s.