Starting at the BEGINNING

Discussion in 'Sunfish Talk' started by Whitecap, Jun 7, 2016.

  1. mixmkr

    mixmkr Active Member

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    You can order everything online, with potential hazardous sbipping being less costly than 2hrs x 2 of gas. West system is fantastic but you're going to pay quite a bit more than regular resin and fiberglass cloth and filler. Ive uzed" quick" hardner in 90 degree. You,ll have 5 mins or more. The slow is geared for large projects wbere you need the time. Not so with smallish repairs
     
  2. Light and Variable Winds

    Light and Variable Winds Well-Known Member

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    IMHO, the pumps provided by West are an extravagance: they're measuring out a ratio of 5:1—epoxy resin to hardener—which you can do with a plastic spoon! :cool: (Don't contact the fresh epoxy in the can with a spoon wet with hardener :eek: ).

    The metal roller and squeegee are definitely nice to have, and can be reused. "Flux" stiff-bristle brushes are inexpensive, and effective in "jamming" resin into those persistent white voids. I've used latex, nitrile and vinyl gloves, with nitrile being the longest-lasting. (Green or blue nitrile).

    Not exactly. Modern battens are a bit like an Oreo cookie. Instead of a sugary white center, they have a "core" of wood, foam, or a honeycomb material. While balsa wood is preferred for economy and light weight, you can use tongue depressors or even old Popsicle sticks as cores. ;) In my old, full-battened, catamaran sail, I must have 100-feet of old, but salvageable, battens! :confused:

    On a plastic surface, lay down a 1-inch strip of "wet" fiberglass cloth, place one tongue depressor on them, then lay down one more 1-inch strip of "wet" fiberglass cloth. Make as many as you think you'll need for your projects, realizing that we're not looking for absolute strength, but a convenient way to secure the repaired piece "fair" to the hull. Their contact areas and the inside of the hole will need to be sanded. Cutting your "battens" as needed will increase their number.

    In my most recent repair, I cut two layers of fiberglass cloth to extend one-inch beyond the circumference of the piece that I'd cut out. (The "winning" side of a split Oreo cookie, if you will). ;) Laid wet on plastic sheeting, I dropped the wetted Sunfish piece (the piece I'd cut out) in the middle of it, with the outside (finished) surface facing out. To approximate the curvature of the hull, place the piece adjacent to the repair area. Peel off the plastic sheet before leaving the project for additional curing. (If made of the "wrong" plastic, epoxy can adhere :mad: strongly). "Slow-set" epoxy is good for first-timers, remembering that even "slow-set" sets pretty dern fast in sunshine! :(

    Instead of plastic sheeting, you can use wax paper, but be sure that any surface that contacts wax paper is never to contact epoxy resin. :oops:
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2016
  3. Whitecap

    Whitecap Member

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    LVWs & Mix,
    Thanks guys for the great information.

    I think I will go to West Marine and see talk with some of the reps there to get answers to some questions (after spending some time onntheir product website). I think I also will be using slow cure stuff. May need all the time I can get as I start building experience in this kind of repair work.

    Also Some good info in how to make those battens at home.......... Thanks buddy. Ill be using these techniques soon!

    Warm regards,
    Whitecap
     
  4. beldar boathead

    beldar boathead Well-Known Member

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    Just an FYI that West Epoxy and West Marine are completely separate firms. The staff at West Marine are typically motorboaters who don't know much about stuff beyond gas cans and water pumps.

    I'd go for the slow cure too. You are not in a race to finish this and I think you'll appreciate the extra time.

    Good luck!
     
  5. mixmkr

    mixmkr Active Member

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    You guyz and yer slow cure...wadda 'fraid of a little smoke ?? :-D
     
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  6. Whitecap

    Whitecap Member

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    Oh snap! Can one buy West Systems at West Marine? If not , where does one go? Glad you told me - was headed there before work. Would hate to waste that time.

    I'll look it up on line tonight,
    Thanks Beldar
     
  7. beldar boathead

    beldar boathead Well-Known Member

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    Yes, The West Marines I have been in sell a nice assortment of West epoxies. Just a coincidence they are both named West.
     
  8. Light and Variable Winds

    Light and Variable Winds Well-Known Member

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    It's a little scary when you're trying to hold onto an increasingly HOT container! :eek:

    (But "good one"). ;)

    My local hardware store carries West-System epoxy products—I think ALL of them. :) Not knowing that, I'd bought my "kit" through Amazon, which was delivered promptly. (An annual payment to Amazon-Prime pays for "free" :rolleyes: shipping). Their West-System epoxy "kit" contains materials that you end up not using, but it's a good start for a beginner. You'll end up going back for more individual containers. (Not cheap, but fun to use!) ;)
     
  9. Whitecap

    Whitecap Member

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    At the airport now about to start my next three day trip. On the way work, I stopped off at West Marine. Like Beldar said, they had a large selection of West Systems products. It is true that West Marine prices are a bit high (acetone quart size was four bucks more than at Lowes), but it was nice to talk with a live person about the products. After reviewing products in detail on line, and setting up my shopping list on the West Marine web site, the store manager worked with me and my list, offering a lot of good info, techniques, and alternate thought processes. It was an overall enjoyable, valuable, and an expensive experience.

    I can make a lot more money - but I cant make more time. It was good to have everything I neded in one place, a personal advisor there to help me, and reputable products to choose from. It was relatively expensive trip, as you guys told me it would be, but I cant help but feel excited to get in back the garage when this trip is over, and work on my boat with my new toys! 105 resin, 206 slow hardener, microlight, cooloidal silica, glass, acetone, brushes, gloves, 3m 5200, 3m 4000UV, syringes (for that deck/hull joint), mini pump, mixing sticks, and spreaders. One quick, efficient, helpful, and pricey stop - worth it! (to me).

    Thanks for the help guys.
    Looking forward to getting home,
    Whitecap
     
  10. tag

    tag my2fish

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    for future reference, Jamestown Distributors is my preferred source for West System epoxy, the 2-part expanding foam (if you need to reset the foam blocks), and a LOT of other various boat related supplies. they've recently started promoting their own line of epoxy, paints, etc under the "Total Boat" labeling. Might be worth trying if you want a cheaper alternative.

    I love all the leak-test pictures - a perfect photo documentation of how it ends up looking during the leak test process.
     
  11. Light and Variable Winds

    Light and Variable Winds Well-Known Member

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    Regarding that "gnarly" appearance of the aluminum trim.

    [​IMG]
    Replacing the pop-rivets is easily done with a 1/8-inch drill bit. When the old rivet starts to spin, just tip the drill-bit a few degrees, and the rivet will fall out. :)

    Before you start the forward deck's fiberglass repair, a block of wood and gentle strikes with a hammer will straighten out the trim. Sanding the burrs and scratches off the trim can then be done, and the trim masked-off for painting. Use a can of "bug-spray" paint of "chrome" finish, keeping mind that sprayed paint will still "show" fine scratches. Watch for overspray paint on the hull's sides. :confused:

    To "fare" the fiberglass repairs, it might be handy to make a long "sanding block". It's easily done with a thin and flat piece of wood, and two wooden blocks glued to its surface. Here, I've glued a damaged 24-inch belt sander loop for use as a very coarse sandpaper, but a length of regular hardware store sandpaper—or 17-inch automotive-style sandpaper—can be used.

    P8030007.JPG

    .
     
  12. Whitecap

    Whitecap Member

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    Awesome info LAVWs........... Ill use it all!

    Back home today...... Will have to fix my fence in the morning...... Then Ill pick my first boat repair in the afternoon. Ill probably try to do something easy for my start - like those two cleat holes that were never sealed up. Thinking I would use the resin and hardner mixed with the coiloidal silica to a peanut butter consistency, then spread it into the hole. Any thoughts?

    Thanks LAVWs!

    Hope all are well,
    Whitecap
     
  13. Whitecap

    Whitecap Member

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    Hey Beldar,
    I reputable youtube blogger, a boat builder in the Northeast, speaks of usi g 3M 502 to seal up and hold together that deck/hull joint. He speaks of it as possibly a better choick than usi g resin. I obviously jave no experience, but have been researching it a bunch since I know someday I will make this repair. What are your thoughts? Will 502 do a better job sealing back up this joint than expoxy resin?

    Whitecp
     
  14. mixmkr

    mixmkr Active Member

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    You're talking 5200. Good as a high adhesive caulk vs west for "resin" uses. No fine line for separate uses that youre describing. The 5200 will flex unlike west
     
  15. beldar boathead

    beldar boathead Well-Known Member

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    I don't really know, but the boat was built with the equivalent of epoxy, not 5200. That said its a small repair so 5200 probably would work.
     
  16. Whitecap

    Whitecap Member

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    Good to know.......... Thanks for the info guys.

    That repair is a ways off.....Ive got time to think it over. That 5200 (sorry about the typos above) is strong stuff from what Im reading (and watching)



    Btw..... What is the most effective way to plug up two old cleat holes that were neaver correctly sealed off? I cant seem to find any examples of such an easy project. What do you guys think?

    -Whitecap
     
  17. mixmkr

    mixmkr Active Member

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    Countersink/enlarge your holes and your new west sys and filler. The same for anything similar
     
  18. Light and Variable Winds

    Light and Variable Winds Well-Known Member

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    Countersink down through the gelcoat to the layer of existing (clear-looking) fiberglass. Special countersinks are available (at up to $30) as below, but a ½-inch drill bit works fine.

    [​IMG]

    That video is 12-minutes long. The discussion on 5200 / 4200 begins at 2:00 minutes. 3M's "5200" is described as "crazy-strong", which is why this pic (and the author) is a hoot:

    [​IMG]
     
  19. Whitecap

    Whitecap Member

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    LAVWs,
    Classic! Great pic on that countersinc bit ........ I dont have one (yet). Ill get one when I get back home. (Yes.... Back out for work....... Summer is the busy, crazy time for the airlines).

    Back hone Friday........ My goal is to just fix one small problem at a time - until there are no small problems left. Ill use your techniques as you discribed. I will start with those old screw holes and finish with the impact areas on the side.

    Rudder conversion has arrived and new sail is on the way. Will fix the deck/hull joint (with epoxy and filler - prob not with 5200) and the daggerboard trunk leak this winter. Then fare, sand, and paint. Thats the plan for now........ Watch it all change again soon!

    Warm regards,
    Whitecap
     
  20. Whitecap

    Whitecap Member

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    Ok guys day one complete of my garage restoration! I learned an absolute ton of little things today. What worked for me - what didnt - how far I came today - and how far I still must go. What a fun time.
    Here's me ready to start!
    [​IMG]

    Ill take you through it:
    1) sealing the port drain plug which was moveable and leaking air. I took a small scew driver and lifted it up off the face of the boat. Then broke out the 3M 4000 UV, and placed it inside of one of those very small syringe and made a fine bead at the base of the port, then tapped it back down in place ans wiped off the excess. It fit down snugly in place and hardened. Lets hope it holds.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Ill do this in multiple posts, so you can take a break.

    Warm regards and thank you for all the help,
    Whitecap
     

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