Refit:  Winter 2008-2009

Winter 2008-2009 Refit | Saturday, October 25, 2008

During the week, I managed to apply several more coats of varnish to the forward hatch surround and toerails.  With other work on the boat looming closer, and the brightwork in good condition with a good buildup of coats now, I decided to end the varnish work for the time being.  Besides, with so much work remaining on the boat, I thought it would be best to save a couple coats of varnish for spring, just before launch, to ensure that I had fresh varnish in good condition for the season.

Therefore, I began to reinstall the brass rubstrips.  On the starboard side, where 5 or 6 of the old screws had broken during removal, I drilled out the remaining screw, then filled the holes--now just a bit larger than the screws--with epoxy and left it to cure.  Meanwhile, I started installing the rubstrip on the port side, using new #4 x 3/4" bronze oval-head screws (item #113303 at Hamilton Marine, for my future reference). 

There's a good customer service story here.  Hamilton's catalog does not list oval-head bronze wood screws; the bronze wood screws they list are all flat heads.  Therefore, I ordered 2 boxes of #4 x 3/4" bronze flat heads, as well as two boxes of #4 x 3/4 brass oval heads, which were listed in the catalog and which were the screws I'd used to secure the rubrails in 2003.  I wanted oval heads, but figured I'd see how the flat heads looked, since I preferred bronze if at all possible.  So I covered my bases with both types.

After placing the order online, I received a phone call from Phil (I think it was Phil, but now it doesn't sound right...) at the store.  It turned out that they did indeed have oval head bronze wood screws, and he was calling to see if that's really what I wanted instead of the brass.  I was impressed, and also pleased to find that they did have the bronze screws I really wanted.  So we changed the order, and I received the bronze oval head screws.

Anyway, I reinstalled most of the port rubstrip during the afternoon, though I had to leave and didn't have enough time to completely fasten the last section.  It was tricky to get the rubstrip lengths back into place, as the material wanted to bend severely at the screw locations, since so much material had been removed in order to countersink the screw heads in the slim 3/8" wide half oval.  I thought there was a good chance that the next time I removed the rubstrip for varnish--probably in another 5 years or so--I'd have to replace it, as it seemed likely that the brass might break the next time it was bent.  Check back in several years to find out.


Earlier in the day, I installed the new forward hatch, which had arrived early in the week.  After checking the fit inside the opening--it fit perfectly, and almost exactly the same as the old Bomar hatch that I removed--I installed masking tape over the surround, then reinstalled the hatch and cut out the tape beneath the flange.  Then, I bored pilot holes for the #10 stainless steel wood screws with which I'd secure the hatch, excepting the four holes located in the hinges, where I drilled for through bolts for extra strength.

With the preparations complete, I applied a bead of mahogany-colored Life-Calk to the mounting surface, and installed the hatch with screws and bolts.  I left the excess sealant to cure in place for several days, rather than try and clean it up immediately.  Later, I cut off the excess bolt length in the interior, flush with the nuts.



My new sink (minus, the drain assembly, which was backordered), sump pump, hose, and other parts arrived during the week as well, and I spent a few minutes determining the best way to mount the new sump in the bilge, but otherwise didn't get very far on this task.

Total time today:  2.5 hours

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Glissando, Pearson  Triton #381

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