Holiday vacation progress is best progress - hope I can keep delivering more posts like this!
Since the last update regarding the removal of the transom insert, I've been able to remove the old aluminum transom skin, strip out all the sheet metal that make up the bench and side console, and started stripping the inside of the hull. At this point, all planned wood work has been completed and I'm waiting for another shipment of penetrating epoxy before moving forward with epoxying of the wood to seal it up. Once the rest of the hull and sheet metal is painted up, the only thing left will be to re-install the wood into the appropriate area.
I'm currently working on getting the transom insert replaced with a 1 to 1 replica. I'll likely go with two sheets of marine grade 3/4" Douglas fir to make the 1.5" transom. I'll glue the sheets together, epoxy the entire panel, and call it a day. The aluminum transom skin will be replaced as I mentioned previously and after pulling it off, I'm glad I did, quite a bit of corrosion and rot. Removing all the rivets and transom wasn't nearly as bad as I suspected. A nice fresh 1/4" HSS bit, and some pin punches I was able to remove all rivets in less than an hour. Peeling it off revealed the damage I described as you can see in the photo - the flange where it's secured to the hull was particularly bad.
After getting the transom skin off and being pleasantly surprised in how easy it was, I decided to remove the splash well and brackets to check for damage and and make getting into the area for clean up easier. During this process it was a balmy 10 degrees F outside and you can see the space heater that drove off the frostbite.
Knowing that I wanted to repaint the inside and outside of the hull, I figured while I was waiting for the replacement transom, I might as well start working on prepping the inside of the hull. I picked up an angle grinder and a mesh silicon carbide paint for paint removal and did a small test area.
It was at this point in time, I believe I had a stroke and after coming to - the back bench sheet metal had been removed...
along with the mid benches..
..and the side console.
Jokes aside - I figured that since I have a rivet gun and replacement rivets I would only be saving myself frustration by removing all the sheet metal (besides the front bench) before starting paint removal. As a result, I was able to remove the bulk of the paint in under 3 hours:
After the work put in here, bulk paint removal for inside the hull only needs to be done on the front bench seat, the side console, and a small area in the bow that be be see in the photo above. I still need to finish up the detail removal (around rivets and clean up of paint I didn't get with the mesh disk) and after seeing the brushed aluminum created by the mesh disk, I'm kind of digging the look it's created. I'd like to try and create a more uniform brushed style, or a satin finish on the aluminum as an alternative to paint. It would save on the etching chemicals and paint and I think it could be a cool look for the finished boat. While the boat is stripped like this, I will also be replacing rivets in the hull that are missing or loose.
With the holidays coming up, progress will be sporadic but substantial since I have two weeks off and you'll see a few more posts before the new year.
What do you guys think of the brushed look - do you think a uniformed brush direction look, random brushed (ie random orbital sander), satin finish, or a polished finish would look best?
Is there anything else you think should be done while the boat is bare bones like this? Cutting or shaping foam for the bottom of the hull while it's in this state is something else I've been tossing around in my head.
Hope everyone is having a good holiday season and continues to do so!
Until next time,
I'm adding this section to each post to show people the tools that were used during the progress contained in the given post and maybe provide some information that will help others in their own build. These are just normal links, not affiliate, and any thoughts on the items below are only a reflection of what I think.
Dewalt 4 1/2" angle grinder / model # DWE402W
: https://www.lowes.com/pd/DEWALT-4-1-2-i ... 1000051711
Used for paint removal and cutting out some old hardware that wouldn't comply with traditional removal. I don't have any prior experience with angle grinders so I can't compare it with anything, but it isn't too heavy and I was able to remove all the paint in one session without having to put the grinder down as a result of fatigue. The guard is easy to move with a spring load latch system, even with gloves on, I had no problem in moving the guard as I moved down the hull. It's also short enough that I was able to maneuver it into some tight spots that wouldn't be possible with a longer tool. Overall it was comfortable to use, with the only difficulty in how thick the grinder is. I have average size hands for a guy and activating the paddle switch and locking it with one hand was something I could do successfully probably 50% of the time.
Gator Power Sanding Silicon Carbide Disk / model # 9488
: https://www.lowes.com/pd/Gator-Power-Sa ... 1000346965
The shining hero of the paint removal process. I saw a few Youtube videos that recommended this type of disk for paint removal and I wanted to give it a shot and it was absolutely worth the price. At $10 each, first buying them hurt a little bit, but after using them the cost is justified. It doesn't clog with paint like traditional sand paper and it's tough enough that it removes paint in moments and will actually cut down burrs and smooth out rough spots in metal as well. It doesn't leave the underlying metal untouched, but it doesn't take huge cuts or chunks out of the material. Keeping the grinder moving and a light touch are all it takes to keep from taking away too much base material. With the progress in the post above, I only used 2 disks and because it didn't clog or require frequent change out I more than made up for the cost in saved time.
Crimed Wire Wheel / model # PWW040WHLD01G
: https://www.homedepot.com/p/Avanti-Pro- ... /202831062
I used this sparingly to get into some of the more detail places. It works well, but it isn't supposed to be used in an angle grinder above 4500 RPM
I should be using a knotted/twisted wire wheel brush, but it's far too stiff to get into the nooks and crannies and removes a lot more of the aluminum than I would like. I'm open to suggestions for alternate for this task.