Glassing the Inside

Tape, cloth, resin and foam. (page 1 of 1 page)

Around the inside of the coaming. The cockpit coaming is glassed on the inside, and the area around the cockpit has been reinforced with 3-inch fiberglass tape (similar to nylon seat-belt webbing). The tape was soaked with resin, allowed to dry, then the edges were feathered to the underside of the deck by using a random-orbit sander and 60-grit paper. Then the inside of the deck was fitted with scraps of glass cloth and "glassed-in" (soaked with epoxy resin). In the photo above the glass has dried, but the new surface has not been sanded. It is important to pay a great deal of attention to sanding during and after these steps. If you do not sand prior to applying the cloth, the weave will continually snag on every sharp little bump, also, it makes applying resin a much more difficult task. Sanding when it has all dried is a must. Every stray silky glass thread, after being hardened with resin, is as hard and as sharp as a needle, neatly trimmed edges of cloth may be as sharp as a razor blade. Hit the whole works with the sander! Don't worry about filling out the weave with clear coats of resin on the inside of the boat... this only adds unnecessary weight, and makes the surface a lot more slippery. Eventually, After I've joined the two halves, I'll roll on a really thin layer of spar varnish just to make it look nice and neat, yet retain the (non-slip) texture of the weave.

The Inside of the deck. Reinforced here and there with tape (particularly behind the cockpit where one braces with a paddle for entry) then glassed with the large triangular left-over sections left over from glassing the outsides of the deck and hull, and smaller scraps to fill in the sides around the cockpit (use scraps on the inside where the seams are less noticable). Using trimmings is more of a hassle to "resin-out." Frayed ends catch spatulas and stick to gloves, but using your scrap cloth is still much more cost-effective than using 7-ft of glass from a bolt of glass cloth. If it looks kind of crappy, it is really no big deal, the seams, etc., are on the inside of the boat and will end up under a seat or within a cargo hold. The edges of the glass have been trimmed-away, but the resin is still drying in this photo. These surfaces have yet to be sanded, there are a lot of sharp edges.

The inside of the hull. As above, reinforced here and there with tape, then glassed with trimmings from doing the outsides of the deck and hull. Glassing the inside of the boat can be quite frustrating... you may need to clamp the cloth in place until the resin starts to set up. The cloth likes to pull away at just the wrong moment, etc. Also, this work tends to be hard on the lower back. Be patient. Once again, the glass has been trimmed, but the resin is still drying in this photo. These surfaces have yet to be sanded. Once sanded, they look dusty and abraded, but are quite smooth... be sure to get all of those sharp edges.

Paint it white? For those interested in "painting" the inside of their boats white, which makes seeing things inside the completed boat a lot easier (yes, paint adds weight too) I found a neat canned spray epoxy, at my local lumber-hardware super-store, that is used to refinish bath tubs. One would first mask the outside of their boat, then spray this stuff, just like spray paint. This spray epoxy would be an easy and quick way to put a really durable, tough white finish on the inside halves (or the outside of a boat for that matter)... I found the spray in the paint section of the store where they have the bathroom tile repair stuff... And low and behold there was marine epoxy and other boat fixing-stuff right there too!

Foam for the bow and stern. After the inside of the hull has been sanded, and most of the dust vacuumed away, the bow and stern are filled with minimal-expanding boat flotation / house insulation "foam in a can." This stuff is a nasty epoxy too, so use gloves, wear glasses and mask surrounding areas with tape. If the foam should push apart the sides of the boat (probably on the bow end) to the point that the deck does not fit, don't worry... Just take an old, sharp kitchen or fillet knife and cut a wedge out of the center of the foam on either side of the spar so that you can compress the hull enough to snap the deck on.



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