Monday, July 13, 2009

Batboat Rebuild: Day 32 July 11th, 2009

Today the first stringer gets bonded to the hull.

At first I planned to use peanut butter (peanut butter = polyester resin mixed with fine saw dust called "wood flower") to bed the plywood in. Checking with the guys at the forum, however, they recommended using PL construction adhesive. Its better and cheaper.

The two main reasons are the cost of the amount of resin needed for the job (including UPS delivery, the resin is $50 per gallon) and that the PL adhesive is more flexible. A rigid bond will harm the flexible Batboat fiberglass hull if it hits the water too hard too many times.

The PL adhesive was less than $8 per 28 oz. tube. That won me over and I went with that.

No need to run back to Lowe's! Three 28 oz. tubes of PL were all that was needed for this job.

Last year when I was grinding out the old fiberglass around the rotted stringers I decided to leave three small sections from one of the longest ones in. This was so I can clamp the new stringer to them, giving support to it and the others when connected and bonded to the hull.

With all stingers placed in the boat and connected by the cross braces I took a shim to get the top of the long stringer positioned level, using the bottom edge of the dashboard as a reference.

After a few adjustments I got it where I wanted and clamped the ply to the fiberglass.

This is is better than what the factory did. I would find out later that the original deck was at least 2 inches higher on one side because the stringers were not set in square with each other.

I glopped in a generous amount of adhesive under and along the sides of the wood.

None of the stringers are completely flush with the hull. The original ones weren't either (not suppose to be) and over the winter the hull lost its shape a little due to the missing deck. Now it is more square from the improvements I made to the trailer, however.

I cut a shim and used it to smooth out the surface and to push the compound into openings.

The tube says it cures in 24 hours. I left it for two days and the ply is securly bedded to the hull. I broke out the old fiberglass the wood was clamped to by hand. Everything turned out perfect without the mess of using peanut butter.

The rest of the stringers go in soon, followed by the deck.

The best has yet to come!

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