Thursday, October 8, 2009

Batboat Rebuild: Day 41 August 7th, 2009

Only thing my notes say for this day is that I worked for over 6 hours but the photos bring back all the great memories of that day. Finally, progress!

I was very busy getting the boat ready for the new deck.

The excess fiberglass was ground off the stringers where the cross braces get bedded in.

The slots were adjusted and perfectly sized and fitted to their cross braces.

More white fiberglass dust to clean up and make me itch!

Each stringer is completely bonded to the hull. The surface of the cross brace notches are left bare wood which will help the peanut butter bond the plywood together. (peanut butter = polyester resin mixed with wood flower / fine saw dust). This bare surface will soak it in. :)

It is impossible to rebuild a fiberglass boat without an air compressor to blow the itchy fiberglass dust out. Ruth Uhala of Bay City loaned it for the summer. Thanks, Ruth! :)

The shop vac sucks up the most of it and the air compressor blows the finer particles out. (and sometimes in the direction of my bad "barking dog next to my bedroom window" stoner neighbor's house, too. he he.)

Those stringers took forever to put in! On this day I bonded in the cross braces that join and support the deck pieces. Finally, it was time to begin something with the deck!

To bond in the braces, I used the #8 1 1/2 inch stainless steel screws mentioned in the previous blog and peanut butter. The marine plywood used for the cross braces was 3/4 inch thick. If longer screws were used with the smaller stringers they would go through the hull.

I pre-drilled and counter sank all the holes after making sure everything lined up and was perfect....

...mixed up a small, 16 oz+ batch of peanut butter...

...glopped in a liberal amount of it into where the cross braces go....

...And screwed the cross braces down.

Excess oozed out everywhere which is good. When the peanut butter hardens, it and the screws create a permanent bond with the stringers and braces. The only way to break it is to intentionally rip it all out with power tools. Or if the boat is hit by an exploding shark!

Back in '69 when Glastron built this craft they stapled the two inch wide cross braces into the stringers, much like a Walmart garden trellis. The braces I made are overkill at 6 inch wide, but it didn't cost me anything extra to do it that way, plus they are bonded in.

Looks good so far! I took my finger and filled in some of the gaps with the excess peanut butter.

As it started to harden, the "glop" was made smooth using my fingers. Look at the weave in that thick 1708 biaxial fiberglass!

The result is two more perfectly flush surfaces to attach a deck to.

All countersunk screw heads were filled with PL Construction Adhesive and ground smooth after it had hardened.

The deck plywood peices were set in the boat and the locations of the stringers and crossbraces beneath were marked. This lets me know where to put the screws later.

These two deck pieces are butt together with lines showing where the braces and stringers are underneath.

Looking under the deck towards the bow for gaps

With the complete deck temporarily set in place with weights I took a look underneath to see if there were any unlevel gaps between it, the cross braces and the stringers. Where there was, light shown through and I lightly ground those high spots down so the deck lay on top of all completely level.

Perfect. Everything went smoothly.

Looking from the bow toward the transom. No gaps.

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