On Sat we glassed the bottom, went pretty well. Here were my complete steps for the hull:
1. Stitched panels together. Did my best to "float" them, get them fair and avoid pinching. Used nails to maintain a gap and pvc pipe for alignment.
2. Taped the gaps on the inside with blue painters tape
3. Used an epoxy syringe to fill the gap with Gel-magic. Instead of spot-welding, I got as close to the stitches as I could. On the transom, there was a natural gap on the inside but the outside edges were flush, so I used the syringe to fill the gap on the inside.
4. Allowed welds to cure overnight, removed stitches, completed taping gaps inside with blue tape where the stitches were
5. Filled in the welds where the stitches were, Allowed that to cure for a few days
6. Used a block plane to radius all edges to at least 1/2" radius. This resulted in removing some wood from the edges. I'm not sure I understand how other people can get a good radius just by adding thickened epoxy to the outside of the joint, but I read about people doing it all the time so I assume it works.
7. Sanded the radius all the way around with 80 to ensure that the glass/epoxy would bond(secondarily) to the cured Gel-magic.
1. Measured and cut all tape and fabric a few days ahead of time and put guide-lines on the hull with a sharpie. The sharpie was a mistake as the ink ran when we applied the epoxy, lesson learned.
2. Got the shop warmed up to 65 and turned the crockpot on low to get the epoxy warm.
- ready for glassing, I taped off the rub-rail area so I can glue the rub-railto bare wood as much as possible
3. Pre-wet the transom seams, the keel and the chines
4. Laid the tape on the transom seams, the keel and the chines, did not wait at all once pre-wetting was done
5. Wet out all the tape
6. Pre-wet the rest of the hull and transom
7. Rolled on the fabric (from cardboard tubes) and wet it out
With Elaine and I, it took a solid 4 hours from start to finish, which felt like about 15 minutes, could not believe it when we looked at the clock. We used slow hardener and never felt like we were getting behind, everything stayed greasy as desired.
The guidelines we drew on the hull, outside of the fact that the sharpie ran and will surely cause the boat to sink the moment it gets wet, worked great, made it really easy to get the tape and the fabric in the right place on the first try, or at least close. Working on greasy epoxy instead of tacky epoxy also made it possible to make small adjustments, if I had gone with my original plan of letting it get tacky, we probably would have gotten in trouble.
It all went pretty smoothly so not a ton of other lessons learned. We used bondo spatulas and glue brushes. When I do the inside I'll get some epoxy rollers to make it a little easier to get the air bubbles out. Fallguys recommendation to wet out the layers individually was spot on; if we had gone with my plan of laying all the glass down and the wetting out the layers together, we would have ended up, I suspect, with a lot more air and a lot more work. As it was, the areas with 3 or more layers of glass ended up a little milky but not too bad in my completely amateur estimation. Efforts to get them any clearer usually resulted in upsetting the glass layers so we figured best to leave them.
Last night I put another coat of raw epoxy on just the bottom and hit the sides with quick fair to start filling in the weave. System 3 gives a theoretical 72 hour re-coat window, my goal is to keep it under 48 hours and get the weave completely filled in the next day or 2. I used quick fair on the sides because it doesn't sag and I figured it would be easier than dealing with dripping epoxy, which was true, but it's a lot more work to mix and apply. What I thought was going to be a quick 1 hour job last night turned into a 4 hour job by the time I got it done.
I'll add some photos, there are some in my gallery now of the hull assembly etc, need to upload the rest.
Thanks again Jacques and Fallguy for the input!
There are only two seasons in Vermont: boating season, and boat-building season.