I wish I could describe more of my boat construction in this way. Unfortunately, I often leave out a detail or two and find myself scrambling with epoxy-clad hands for a tool, which is great for the patina of the equipment, but not for the serene atmosphere in my ‘relaxation temple’/shed.
I had prepared every part of the centreboard case, including coating the inside bits with anti-fowling, ledges and head ledges were sized to perfection, pivot hole drilled and epoxy ‘bushed’…it was all ready for the glue up.
I glued up one half of the case and filleted it carefully, let it dry for the final assembly this weekend. I masked the fillets for the starboard side which have to be filleted once assembled (down the 90mm slot). I then considered how I would glue up and clean the the squeeze-out when I finally stick it all together.
Working alone, I had to consider how to place the final side on whilst it is all wetted out with thinned epoxy and spread with the thickened bonding epoxy, and it weighs a lot. The combination of 12mm ply, fiberglass and Copprcote is heavy. My solution was to set it up and wedge apart by 100mm, then lower by removing the chocks.
It worked a treat.
I made a clean up chisel ended stick to wipe away the squeeze-out. The stick is approximately 500mm long out of 9mm ply. The other end of the stick is tapered to the width of a tongue depressor. By taping a tongue depressor to the end I can form the fillets. And this is what I spent a few hours today doing.
I could scoop a glob of the thickened epoxy (e-glue by Botecote) on the tongue depressor, and carefully work it into fillets. It is slow work and I had to be very careful not to drop bits as I passed the tool in and out of the case.
After waiting for three hours I dove in to remove the masking tape. This did not go completely as planned. Tape is prone to tearing, and I had to use a long surgical clamp and a stick to pick it up when it tore. Worst of all, when I had over-filleted things, and yanked on the tape, it pulled out a bit of the fillet…Thankfully the epoxy could still be manipulated, and the filleting tool did it’s job.
All that is left is to apply some anti-fowl to the fillets and install the case into the hull.
– I did not mention this, but I have cut out the centreboard blank and tested it in the case before assembling…it swung on the pivot and filled my head with dreams of a fish-eye view, the foil cutting green water as we climb to windward…