From little things big things grow ….

By | October 4, 2011

All the big bits of furniture are largely in place now except for the two sections inside each side of the doorway.  I am waiting for the doorway to arrive before glassing those two in so I get them in the correct place in relation to opening the doors, as these doors will be opening in. Another big ‘decision’ but after much thought and discussion with my door man, we decided on opening in.  However, the devil, as they say, is in the detail and as an example I spent most of today just resolving the join between the nav station furniture and our couch. Because the furniture was designed for a different shaped couch we have a nasty shaped gap between the two as you will see from the photos. I used a piece of reject furniture that I had made to give me 90 degree piece and cut it to fit the gap. It then had to be joined to the couch back with epoxy glue and then glassed in place. There was also a square hole through from the wet weather gear locker to the area under the couch so I will give a little more detail as to how much work this small (about 300mm square ) hole involves. After the piece is cut and then ground to shape all four edges both sides are sanded to aid adhesion., then wiped with acetone. The piece is tacked in place using a hot glue gun, then each edge is filled with thickened resin applied from a gunk (cake piping) bag. This will form a radius for the glass instead of a sharp corner which would encourage air bubbles ( read weakness). Each join starts with a chopped strand layer, then 50mm double bias tape, then 75mm tape, and finished with another layer of chopped strand then rolled with a consolidating tool. These 32 pieces of cloth were pre-cut to length. By lunchtime you have two small pieces glassed in place and you are left wondering where the morning went!

The other job I had set for today was to reinforce the areas under both the power winch and the rack of rope clutches near it. For any Fusion builders out there I strongly suggest beefing up these areas with a few extra layers of glass and by far the easiest time to do this is BEFORE you put the kit together. (That’s what I’ll do on the next fusion I build … ha, I don’t think so!). I laminated four extra layers under the winch spot but I have to slide the reinforcing under the clutch area because the shower recess is now in the way so I’m thinking about a sheet of aluminium.

I finished the day gluing a sheet of ‘shiney’ sheet around the inside of the doorway in the rear double cabin, not an easy task as I did it in one piece to avoid a couple of extra fairing joins (there’s soooo many of these joins, Amanda keeps saying “what’s a few more”). The less the better I think as not my expertise … yet.  ‘Shiney’ sheet is simply sheets of fibreglass I lay up on a piece of waxed glass (seven coats of wax) in the following order – gelcoat, layer of chopped strand, layer of double bias cloth, and a finishing layer of chopped strand. This provides cheap smooth sheeting for use throughout the boat.

I hope reading the above detail is not too boring  but we have been asked for more detail so remember – be careful what you ask for …. At least it may provide some insight into the long and often boring list of boat building jobs.

Finally … the thought for the day … no matter how many strips of chopped strand you cut up you will always be at least one or two short and it’s such a pain using scissors when your hands are covered in a sticky combination of resin and glass strand!