February 22, 2016
Over the weekend, I finished up the varnish work on the cockpit table, and now I reassembled it as needed and installed it back on the pedestal.
The existing boottop was not a color that the owners liked, so repainting it was one of the final items on my list. However, it was in generally fair condition overall which would keep prep work to a reasonable minimum. Most of the paint was sound and well-adhered, and would form an acceptable substrate for new paint without having to completely remove it.
To begin, I masked off the top edge of the existing stripe to protect the hull above during sanding. I didn’t bother sanding the bottom edge at the moment, since the bottom paint wasn’t in danger if being hurt or sanded away during the prep process. I sanded the existing stripe with 80 and 120 grits till it was well-abraded and smooth, and ready to accept new coatings. After cleaning the surface with vacuum and solvent wash, I masked off the bottom edge of the stripe.
With preparations complete, I applied a coat of gray primer to the boottop and left it to cure.
On deck, I masked off the windlass base and began to build up the varnish on the new wood with the second coat on the exposed areas.
With most of the work either in the final stages or completed, amidst some general cleanup and end-of-project tasks, one of the odds and ends still on my list was to reroute the wires leading to the solar panel, which fit on top of the dodger when deployed. MC4-equipped wires led from the port side of the cockpit and into the locker beneath, to the small solar controller box. A previous owner had led these wires through the gutter for the cockpit locker lid, which worked well enough but tended to want to pinch the wires beneath the lid when it was closed (if they weren’t arranged properly prior to closing the lid). The current owner asked me to re-lead these through the deck nearby.
I looked into routing the wires as far forward on the cockpit seat as possible, near the forwardmost corner, but access from below wasn’t going to allow me to snake the wires effectively, so instead I ended up at the next best location, which was the corner right near the locker lid, where there was access for the wiring beneath and the wires would lead nearly the way they had before, except away from harm with the locker lid. I planned to run the wires through a Cable Clam, so I drilled a hole through the deck for the wires, and marked and drilled oversized holes–removing the core–for three of the four fasteners that would ultimately secure the fitting to the deck (the final hole was located in solid fiberglass). I reamed out some of the exposed balsa core inside the larger center hole, then filled the void, along with the three fastener holes, with a thickened epoxy mixture that would, once cured, isolate the fasteners and wiring run from the nearby core. I’d finish up the wire installation once the epoxy cured overnight.
Total time billed on this job today: 6.5 hours
0600 Weather Report:
15°, partly clear. Forecast for the day: sunny, 32°