Baggy Wrinkles

Baggy Wrinkles
S/V Nautica, Hull #614, Built at Whitby Boatworks Ltd., Ontario, Canada 1977, one of the most recognizeable Carl Alberg designs. A masthead sloop displacing 9000 lbs, keel hull, Yanmar 15 hp diesel, LOA 30.27 Beam 8.75, Draft 4.29, roller furling headsail, tiller, berths for 4, interior teak bulkheads, teak cap rail and cockpit teak coamings, 12 volt lighting, aluminum mast support, Harken self tailing winches, in its day was designed for customers as a Cruiser-Racer, the Alberg 30 remains a Classic design of the large Alberg inventory.

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Thursday, May 28, 2015

So she's painted and ready for sailing.
Notice the grey pinstripe under the rub rail which accents the boot-stripe.  Both colors are a grey derivative, the hull being the darker and the boot, a bit much lighter.  These compliment each other and add accent to the white freeboard while the teak shines brightly with its dark wood tones, also varnished with Epifanes matt finish varnish.
 It took a month to prep and paint her.  There were so many days of prep work that I thought perhaps I should just pitch a tent at the club and work every day from sun up to sun down.  Even the drive to the club began to be a laborious thing.  But the work paid off.

The dory now has a hard bottom paint that is not affected by the water because she doesn't remain in a slip 24/7, since I pull her out of the water after sailing.  
While the boot-stripe is not yet put in this photo, this shows the gloss of the bottom paint and the merging curves of the transom.  The small bulge on the left I corrected in the final application of the boot stripe, forming an asymetrical appearance of the hull line.
 It will be great to get her back on the lake and see if there is any appreciable difference in handling or speed with the new bottom paint.  I doubt so, but if not, just knowing she's cleaned-up and ready for sailing is enough for me.  Plus, she looks like a classic! 
And this is after pulling the tape on the boot stripe.  The white sections I painted by hand after this photo was taken.  I rubbed the stern to smooth the junction between bottom and stern along the line where you see the grey over-paints.  Due to the wide stern and sloping lines, the boot stripe ran further than the hull would permit so as to require the boot to widen underneath the stern.  However from the side, the boot looks straight and level.  This is the optical requirement when putting a boot, sometimes ignored by some. 

Wanted to update this view of the hull so added this photo I snapped yesterday showing the cleaned up hull...that image above was getting on my blog-nerves.  I'm awaiting putting the metal strip on the transom this week.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Just a note on positioning of hull and boot stripe.  A day before I painted the hull I did one more thing that'd clean the hull a bit and permit me to see one last time, before any paint touched the hull, where the water-line met the hull.  

I launched the Dory to see exactly at what point the water would rise.  This I did after I'd finished the hull sanding and before I painted the bottom.  By this, I was able to determine with some degree of accuracy the position of my hull and boot stripe.
The penciled lines are evident at the upper right.

So then, after seeing things naturally rather than just by measurement, I was able to place the boot-stripe in position.  Interesting process.  And a bit counter-intuitive as lines play tricks on the eyes.

Once the paint dried on the boot stripe, I launched Baggy Wrinkles one more time to see how the water met the hull.  It appeared a happy ending as I watched the lines of the hull meet the lake.  Even the colors looked smart in its environment.

The Typhoon is a pretty and classic design.  And this painting seems to show-off her design.  Rather than a dazzling red or a brilliant blue, the calm grays join together to offset an aging white freeboard.  The additional grey pin-striping under the rub-rail carries the eye upward into the warm teak above it and onto the deck with its assortment of original equipment, aluminum cleats, bronze guides and plates, and portholes.  

Here are 2 photos, a before and after of the difference in appearance:

Grey bottom paint peeks out at the bow and disappears to stern.

A pronouncedly bolder line runs from bow to under stern tail.  Provides for a visible boot stripe with added weight.

Having struggled against the harbinger of messy weather and a schedule that took me away from the lake for the best part of a month, she was for the most part finished.  I wet-sanded the freeboard and applied my 3M polishing compound once more, bringing a smooth and mirror-like appearance to the upper hull.
Just before freeboard compounding/polishing and put away for a few weeks.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Painting the dory was a marathon race.  The sole difference was it wasn't to the swift but to the sure.   The application of the hull paint was an ordeal of sorts but the results were rather impressive.  Waiting for several days of cool temps and low humidity had come in late April after an intense several weeks of sanding the bottom paint and prepping for a new bottom paint.  This is the result the day after removing the tape for the first phase:

1st and 2nd coats applied, it was time to re-tape for the boot stripe.

Taking the last waterline found on the hull, I used my boot stripe marker to extract another line on the hull.  After conversation with others and examining photos of the dory in the water, it appeared that the waterline, albeit accurate, did not provide the dory the best appearance when loaded and underway.  

The original water-line disappears and the boat loses some of its linear perspective.  So, I moved the waterline up several inches, and then I placed a 3 inch boot stripe on top of that line.  Decisions, decisions, how would it work?  I knew the water line would now be visible except that stepping onto the hull dockside it will move down quickly.  Remembering that on a large yacht, the lines don't move down at all!  On a little yacht, every bag of goodies and provisioning and people push a dory into the water.  So up with the boot stripe.
Using a thinned mixture of Epifanes mono-urethane grey to cover the sanded hull boot-stripe.
Taping was a major exercise.  A new 3M tape found at Lowe's was the best ever.  It adhered lightly yet could be lifted in order to find the best angle of appearance, then a bit of a press and it is secure.  Once I had penciled the lines with my leveling marker, I then pulled the tape into positioning using my naked eye to validate and adjust the lines I began to see on the hull.  I think this process is similar to looking at something in 3D because you must look for level then stand back and validate that from fore and aft and at beam.  Too, I positioned myself below the transom to examine the arrival of the points.  I adjusted and adjusted, muttering to myself during the process.  It was frustrating and yet after half an hour, I found resolution.
My finish is not perfectly smooth but overall is very smooth to the touch and should do well in the water.  The boot stripe appears white but is actually a shade of grey matching the grey line underneath the rub rail.

Continued boot stripe line meets the transom underneath the stern however the beam view is a perfectly flat line.  Sail Magazine's youtube video was a good primer for working this line.  I began with measurements and then graduated to the eye's view to perfect the curves of the hull when applying the tape.

As temps and sunlight played a role in application of the paints, I could not become impatient and hurry the process.  The Epifanes mono-urethane took 24 hours to cure hard.  And at that point there was sanding to do.  Using a 1000 grit, water and soap, I hand-sanded the entire hull after the initial bottom coat.  I knew I had to create a surface to which the second coat would adhere well.  At this point I began to do the calculations as to whether I'd put a 3rd coat or not.  Thinking I had worked my paint in reverse, applying thick then a thinner, I might as well quit while I was ahead.  There are problems to avoid, like "curtaining" when the paint hangs horizontally and appears like curtains.  And there is the problem of paint simply running down vertical walls if too thin.  Since I started thick I had to be careful.  So, I brokered with the state of the hull, knowing that in a year I will apply another coat anyway.  As per the instructions given by the manufacturer.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

A classic boat needs a classic look. 

Now don't get me wrong, I love dark blue, reds, and even black for certain hull paints.  But it's a small boat with a big tradition, so I didn't want to over compensate for its size but to permit her style and appointments to show off her character.  So, after mulling it over, I thought that I'd go for less impact as sometimes, less is more!

I'd given it a quite a bit of thought, after all, you never see hull paint unless heeled-over underway, or if the boat is on the trailer in the yard.   But tired of the ablative red paint, which seemed to get all over everything, I chose a hard mono-urethane paint from Epifanes, color 3221 medium gray for the hull and "matahorn" white 3140 for the boot stripe.  I wonder if it is not matterhorn because it is made in New England and the accent prevailed in the spelling of the brochure?  Now neither color is either grey or white, just a version of it. 

I wanted something subtle for this old girl.  Like you don't want to see an old guy wearing a muscle shirt, or a dignified older lady wearing a mini-skirt, a classic old boat need be careful to not be too brassy or bold or trendy.  So, subdued she goes...  And I had to match the colors to the freeboard white which has had some wear and tear, a bit of age to it, like old ivory.  I couldn't get too exciting with colors up against the existing white.  And I wanted to balance the boat's appearance a bit more too, raising the waterline, and resizing the bootstripe to give her a bit more panache underway.  Can I say that, panache?  Will anyone understand that?

The big challenge in this process was waiting for a weather "window" which would permit me the best combination of temperature and humidity and pollen count so that the paint would adhere and tighten-up the best it could.  This worried me a lot.  So, during painting I only managed to get a couple of action shots.  Going through a gazillion surgical gloves, I managed to snap one or two photos while I was painting.  However, most of the photos came at the conclusion of the process.  Here she is after the bottom is complete and drying...
The wobble in the finish is due to the paint being a bit too thick on first application.  The bunks are not touching the hull as they are really about 12 inches from the hull.  The only place not painted is directly under the keel.  Oh well.

I made some mistakes!  What a surprise!  Of course I did.  My first coat should have been thinned 5-10%, but I missed reading that until later, lol.  No wonder it was like glue going on.  Brilliant.  I learned quite a bit in the process and managed to sidestep the crisis as best I could plus, the paint is so good that even with the application misstep, the paint still beams.  The temps were variable, and though in 60s, the sun's rays managed to dry out areas of the paint a bit too quickly in my opinion.  I didn't get the optimal mirror-like hull I'd hoped to achieve after all my work.  Frustrated with my thinning failure I compensated by being careful and rolling and tipping as best I could given the circumstances.  Maybe I will revisit this experience in a couple of years when I've forgotten how painful it is to crawl around and under a boat tied-off between two trees.

But, for all my self-criticism, I think she turned out better than I'd expected for the first coating.  Maybe I'll gain half a knot hull speed?

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Final preparation for painting...
It's hard to believe that after several weeks I may be getting closer to painting this old girl.  At first, the task was overwhelming.  The ablative paint feels like felt to the touch.  It wipes off so easily and gets on your clothing, your hands and legs, even in ordinary use when launching and hauling out.  Seemed to me it might be easily removed but not a thought of that.  The ablative was like a protective shield against the creatures of the brine.

Before removal it is the chore you just don't want to face...

After removal it is a remarkable journey of persistence...

However, once begun, the task moved ever so slowly.  It's a painfully slow process and also physically painful task to reach, extended, push, draw back and forth, attempting to etch away at the hard ablative base.  While I used a vacuum to evacuate the red dust that fell quickly away from the hull, the remainder was tenacious.  Do not attempt this if you are weak spirited! 

My Dewalt's size kept me from removing too much fiberglass

Periodically through this journey of the hull, I've had a variety of onlookers, speculators, and helpful advisors, who have brought me something of support, like the jack-stand that serves on a support bunk to perhaps save me from the elephant falling on me, or the 3M filler for a couple of disturbing cracks in the rudder area, or just the casual philosophic stare which admire persistence and tedium while offering collegial grunts as to how arduous a task this must truly be.  And one or two have passed by admitting with that sage nod to have fallen prey at another time and succumbed to this insane employment.  They make me feel as if I've entered an astute collection of delirious stranded souls who will never pass this way again.  Any time I begin to get hazy in the brain like this I take a break, eat another Cliff Bar and drink fluids...
I had devoted several weeks or more to the process.  I knew it would "smoke me" physically.  There isn't a good position from which to sand the hull.  I've tried them all.  The best I could do was a 5 gallon bucket and an old flotation seat pad.  Otherwise I was on the ground wrenching my body under the hull, precariously tied-off to trees above, and crawling over the trailer axles, something which requires flexibility not always available at my age. 

There's always a long of it and a short of it.  The short of it was that I could have just paid for the work to be done, something rather painful in another aspect!  The long of it was that I could do it myself, risking physical entanglement beneath the hull and the many questions on procedure, mechanical blunders, the weather, the fire ants, and the long road to accomplishment.  I chose the long road.  I'm hard-headed.  Plus, I love my Typhoon, it seems easy to endure this just because I want to do it.  Strange sort of motivation isn't it? 

And after what has seemed a marathon race or weeks of incarceration depending on your view, I'm on the verge of painting the hull.  Awaiting the arrival of paints, I've found a new surge of energy using 320 grit sandpaper, my latex gloves run across the hull and back, finding the least imperfection.  "It's just about done, don't you think?" I muse to myself ,and seem unwilling to stop this insane prep work for some odd reason.  I've become accustomed to this ordeal in a reflective sort of way you might get used to something like military service, something you at first thought was incredibly hard and unusual which later became second-nature and after, fondly thought of.

So then, it's almost time to paint...
Notice pencil mark at upper left the new waterline.  Boot stripe will be above that line reaching to the tip of the lower stern.