Sunday, 16 March 2014

tops to bottoms this week!

Shepherd Outboard now has both bottom panels fitted but not fastened - we might look at them for a while before screwing our courage to the wall and getting out the SikaFlex and boat nails. Which is what we are planning to do.

It has been our plan to S1 epoxy seal the inside surface only of the panels. our working theory is that this will reduce the possibility of water sitting int he bottom of the boat soaking into the bottom plywood and then keeping the underside of the frames damp - a bad formula. However I will call Dwight once more to run this theory past him just to be sure.

We are sure that trying to do an epoxy encapsulated bottom is a bad idea on an old boat - this was done on the Hunter and it's bottom was going bad on us only 10 years after it was done professionally - (just before she was donated). Our reading and research has resulted in the decision to do something like a "5200" bottom which is a breathing bottom (no snickers out there). Subject to Dwight's ( recommendation, we will S1 the inside of the bottom panels with their outer edges still rough, bed them in SikaFlex as we boatnail them down on 2" to 3" centres around the edges and across the frames - sucker won't leak anywhere through that bottom! Next will be deciding what to use for a bedding compound and what to use for outer planking - we'd like to use the originals.

George and Ray fit the panel
looks perfect actually.

No Mini-Hopper action this week, Bernie buggered off to Florida to get warm and requested that the process of redesign await his return - possibly this week. So no news on that front!

Next up the shop is the TNT restoration which took a surprise turn this week - but also had a surprise outcome! Recall from last post that the team was grinding the 'glas off the bottom screws to have a look. They were "presenting" themselves through the paint which is not a good sign! Sure enough, they were steel screws and the steel was rusting and bubbling up.

After spot checking the fasteners the ones into the bottom battens were all loose and many of the keel and chine screws were also not well secured. The conventional solution would be to remove the screws, drill out the holes, plug them with epoxy, re-drill and countersink them - then refasten with bronze boat screws. This what we began to do when some genius realized that we could boatnail the bottom half way between the old fasteners, remove the rusty stuff, fill with epoxy and DONE! This will save days of fussy work!

Jason and Anton dig out screw slots...
and later - banging the bottom home!

meanwhile Steve unscrews...
 Whew! what a furious day on the TNT - status really shifted a few times!

Under the Roostertail Lounge, the engine shop which is now so totally transformed as to be unrecognizable from a month ago, Joseph and Peter were in getting more engines running! This week they fired up the 1951 Johnson 25 horse (Seahorse?) and a second 1957 Johnson 18 (missing a few parts). They are now moving into the detail repair mode of the engines with damage. We had a discussion of the degree of restoration we should subject these engines to - the 1952 10 horse that Peter is working on for example has mostly intact paint and decals - not perfect but not bad. before we try anything drastic we'll try just clean and polish with maybe a protective coat over....

18 horse Johnson runs
35 HP Johnson runs too

25 HP Johnson runs
 And finally Wayne becomes our artiste for the day and pencil traces the original graphics on the Gas-Hopper. Deck is stripped and next are the sides.

What skill and control is demonstrated here - amazing

 And that's it for this past week! Stay tuned for next weeks edition.

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