Today, the yard guys took care of sanding our hull in preparation for new bottom paint. We had an extensive area along the waterline that showed a lot of surface blistering. The explanation I got was something about when one color of gel coat is laid on top of another color, sometimes, for some reason, you get some blistering. This must be what it is as it’s only along the line where white gelcoat was laid down first, followed by red gelcoat. Anyway, because of this we decided to have the yard sand the upper foot or so of the bottom all the way down to the gel coat, exposing the flaws. Then they’ll just lightly sand the rest of the bottom as the expensive bottom paint we put on in Newport, Oregon is still holding and repelling boarders well.
The days are still pretty warm but these guys were doing this same kind of work, dressed the same way, when it was 100 degrees with 98% humidity. They’re made of sterner stuff than I am.
Here’s a close-up shot of the blistered area.
It’s not like classic osmotic blistering. It’s more like there were just lots of places where the red gel coat didn’t stick to the white gel coat (remember, these boats are built from the outside in). Our plan is to, first, assure ourselves that the white that is still stuck is well and truly stuck. Then, after wiping the whole area down with acetone, we’ll paint on a barrier coat of straight epoxy resin with no additives. Before it sets, we’ll follow with a fairing compound made of West Systems epoxy thickened with 410 Microlight Fairing Filler mixed to the consistency of peanut butter. We’ll squeegee it fairly flat and then, once cured, sand it down to a (hopefully) fair surface. Then 5-6 coats of epoxy moisture barrier and finally bottom paint. Shouldn’t add more than 2 days of yard time to the schedule.
Once the sanding was underway, a heretofore hidden surprise was exposed.
Looks like somebody might have plowed into a dock or something at one time in our boat’s history. This is definitely a repaired spot and, according to the records I’ve got, hull #20 was originally part of a charter fleet. I’ve wondered at every haulout about the moon craters you see next to the date in the photo. I now suspect that they’re voids in the repair work. After the yard guys are done, I’m going to sand this part down so I can see just how far the damage went. Just out of curiosity. And, of course, I’ll fill the craters while I’m at it.
We’re finally finished working down below and ready to start cleaning up and getting poor ol’ Siempre Sabado back into ship shape.
We may be in San Carlos a little longer than planned as we’re currently hatching a plot to get a new dinghy delivered from the States. More on that later.