The Schooner Sara B Log

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December 04, 2011     Post 37
December Update

Keel patch
The days of 2011 dwindle. But in the barn the accretion of Sara B continues. After finishing the Big Cover Up we took a bit of a break for a very short cruise to Kingston and Main Duck. Fairing the hull, a time consuming task, began with liberal applications of microballoons and Raka epoxy. Various plastering techniques were tried and the basic four inch putty knife did most of the work. Several sessions of plaster it on, sand it off again, ensued.

John Puparro came by a couple of times and used his belt sander with a fairly fine grit belt to help out. The larger area of the belt knocked down the bigger lumps and ridges that the palm sander tended to ride over. After about a hundred man (woman) hours of plastering and sanding and a little judicious grinder work, we concluded a work boat finish would suffice.

Thorneycroft on it's way
Chris pieced in multiple epoxy layers to patch where the keel had been blocked during the Big Cover Up. The entire bottom was scuffed up lightly then given a straight epoxy coat. Now a two part barrier coat is going on for final sanding before primer and paint on the topsides.

Chris extracted the prop shaft (my, that sounds simple. It wasn't) and laid up a fiberglass tube around it and re installed it. He re united the Throneycroft with its tranny hooked up a makeshift exhaust and cooling system and on a warm summer afternoon fired it up for a bench test and a bit of preliminary clutch fiddling. After two years of dormancy it started immediately. The bald faced hornet village in a bush next to the exhaust pipe termination outside the barn was not pleased. (awesome video)

The boat was reblocked on the trailer and the trailer unblocked. Chris worked out a steeply angled lifting rig and once again using chainfall and truck to move motor and boat respectively in a delicate dance, the motor was returned to its dark little cave under the galley counter. Home again. We were all happy to see it safely back in the bilge. The shaft and motor were aligned and the shaft is now being glassed in.

I've started installing some of the deck hardware and the wood for the toe rail is drying in the shop. Today Chris started installing the toe rail, to be built up of pressure treated pine in four laminations. We're into pragmatism and pressure treated for this job. Somehow with 1500 pounds of fiberglass on the hull large expenditures of time energy and money on top quality traditional boat building lumber just doesn't seem warranted any more. Some additional remaining challenges include possibly devising a heat resistant exit for the dry exhaust ( or possibly converting??? to a wet exhaust) re installing the keel cooler, getting the prop on ( it looks like it will clear the build up of fiberglass on the stern post) building up and fairing out the area aft for the taffrail, grafting the new toerail onto it and probably some other challenges that I don't yet know about. We'll keep plugging along until it gets too bitter. Stop by for some fun.

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