The day started out nice and cool and got hot and humid by noon. The wind was blowing just right and you could smell the Chesapeake. It smelled like we were near the ocean. We worked on the new main center partition that runs aft from the galley to well under the cockpit. Here you can see what it will soon look like before we put the formica laminate on. We also cut out the 1/8 in. plywood that the formica will be attached to. It seemed like the day was going fast and we were moving slowly-it was and we were. As we started to put the wall into place to determine how it fit since attaching the foam, the electricity on our row went out again. Instantly, the heat began to rise inside of Gemini. I called the marina to tell them our problem one more time. By the end of the conversation, I had given up all hope that there would be a speedy fix. I even explained how we couldn’t continue to work without power to the boat. While the electricity was out, we went shopping for some supplies and tried to take Bunny’s tools back to him. Bunny is a carpenter who did some work on Gemini last year-a good carpenter. Bunny wasn’t in, so we decided to ‘suss’ out some ice cream stores. After ice cream, we were completely restored and came back to Gemini. When we pulled up, the electrician told us the power was back on. We went back to work muscling that wall into place. The marina called me back to tell me that the electrician fixed the power. Obviously we knew that already, but I was especially happy that the marina called me back as I had requested. We only got two of the four pieces in before we had to leave. We left happy.
Check out the size of that wall. We put it in and after a few dozen trims here and there the wall was finally bolted together beneath decks. Wolf’s template was golden. There was one problem. Wolf was lying on the exposed copper mesh in the aft as we worked on trimming the wall. The copper pieces jabbed into his skin making for a prickly situation. We pulled the walls out of the boat and Wolf trimmed them so the foam could fit between the wall and deck and hull. The foam ensures no hard points that could cause the hull to weaken. I glued the foam into place and cleaned up. We did have to remove the center board in the companionway. The picture here shows it in. We already removed the port side board, you can see it missing. It looks like King Kong ripped it out. I wasn’t very happy about that, but it was necessary to put in the wall.
We did it. We finally tabbed the aft head wall to the hull. It was easier than imagined. There is no doubt that we should not be held up by this task in the future. Wolf became efficient wrapping burritos of fiberglass soaked in resin for me to easily roll out. I became good at busting bubbles and laying it up. We still haven’t broken the code on how to avoid the stickiness that gets all over us and the boat. After tabbing, Wolf moved onto working the main center partition. I worked the cockpit drain until the power went out for our row at the marina. Wolf and I worked on the partition together. It has become a super large wall. So much fun.
I also performed surgery and pulled a strange object out of Wolf’s throat with my needle nose pliers. The object was not identified. Wolf had tremendous relief after the surgery.
We had to leave early and yet still managed to accomplish a lot. We completely sealed the plywood wall that we installed yesterday in the aft head. Wolf fit the template to the three sheets of connected 5/8 plywood and cut out all the pieces for the middle partition. He discovered that we have to make a fourth board because our calculations were off. By the way, only boards with a width of 38″ can fit through the hatch. We successfully created a new bed for the forward cockpit drain hole. Our first attempt was a disaster. We were fortunate to be able to get all the fiberglass off right away. I forgot to bubble bust and bubbles were forming like mad as the resin had its exothermic reaction. Oh, but it was hot and my sweat app was working! BTW, notice the wall in the background?
Wolfie and I had a plan. We had it all worked out. We were first going to check out how well our new wall turned out. Then we would tab it in with fiberglass. Once we arrived and removed the braces, we were glad to see the wall was perfect. The panel of formica and ply for the inside of the head was checked for fit. It fit like a glove. Some sanding of the wall to take off the cabocil (glue made of resin and some whispy deathy white devil dust) was in order while Wolfie screwed the wall into place. It will remain there for at least a half a century if not longer. Both of us sanded into a taper the foam that separates the wall from the floor and ceiling (coach roof and hull). We collected all that we thought we would need to fiberglass (tab) the wall to the coach roof and hull. We were about there and it was closing on 10am. The temperature was closing on 100 degrees with the humidity not abating when I called it – “we tab later.” Wolfie spent the rest of the day planing three sheets of plywood to make up the center partition in the aft of the boat. I sanded the shelf that holds the floor to the aft lazerette and put a bow on it for gelcoating. I also prepped the hole for the forward drain in the cockpit to get it ready for a new center. Wolfie said, “we accomplished a lot today.” I agreed and wiped the sweat and fiberglass from my forehead.
We accomplished a lot today because we are just doing it and not overthinking each task. The laminates for inside and outside of aft head main wall were created by glueing the formica to the pre-cut 1/8 ply with contact cement. Each sheet was trimmed with the router. The shelf in the aft lazerette was covered in fiberglass and putty. The 5/8 in. ply wall was wetted with resin then joined with cabacil, blocks, and bolts and braced with pre-cut beams and clamps for a straight set. It got rather exciting on the last task because we could have thought it through a bit more. We will show some pictures tomorrow.
Wolfie went to Kings Dominion with his minions while I was left to handle what the bugs did to Gemini. Yes, bugs ate the wood used to hold up the bottom of the aft lazerette. I removed as much of the rotten/eaten wood, ground down the fiberglass on the hull and on the shelf. I swore I was done grinding, but it never stops. Then, using Divinysil 1″ and 1/2″ with Cavicil first and then resin, I created a good void filler. Tomorrow, I will cover with fiberglass and seal it off for good. I would say this was a $1000 day!
Saturday, JJ and I scrubbed the aft with 202. 202 is a toxic fiberglass cleaner that burns through rubber gloves like molten lava. We scrubbed, then sanded, and then went out to lunch for a big hamburger.
We made some good headway today. We placed three laminates on two bulkeads in the aft head. We rehearsed and it went much smoother. It will be nice to have the head done! Our mantra today was, we should be having fun. The heat and the fumes make it tough to really enjoy ourselves, but we make the best of the operation. Thank heavens we get support from the local yard.
Today was hot (97 degrees-120 in the boat) and the smell of chemicals just hung in the air. We hung a piece of formica laminated ply that spanned the aft head to the aft cabin. We made plenty of mistakes, we got mad, we yelled, we stomped, we sweated a lot, and we were glad to go home. We look forward to doing work that just doesn’t stink and cause brain damage.