|Before any work|
|The culprrt: poor maintenance of the forward |
part of the joint allowed water to penetrate along the length of the joint.
(All images @ https://picasaweb.google.com/113905172205315068165/ElizabethKeelAndBottomWork)
The big job at hand is to strip the keel back to bare metal, apply an epoxy barrier coat, reseal the keel/hull joint and fair and paint the whole mess (including the entire bottom). The rust visible on photos above is nothing to worry about, just surface rust. It does, however, indicate that the old barrier coat has failed. I received a quote from Oak Harbor Marina to strip, barrier coat and paint the keel -- a mere $2400. So I will, obviously do the work myself. Alas.
Armed with hammer, chisel, scraper, random orbital sander, angle grinder, shop vac, dremel, safety glasses, hearing protection, and respirator I set to the job of stripping the keel of all the old material. This is a seriously SLOW and laborious task. It would go a lot faster with a sandblaster, but the yard won't allow it.
The First Weekend
The surveyor was right, the polyurethane sealant in the joint remained intact, except at the forward end. My worries about moisture getting to the keel bolts was unfounded. I used the hook scraper to dig out as much of the old sealant as I could reach, leaving just some detail sanding necessary before applying a new bead of 3M 5200. I will prep the joint on both sides of the keel before sealing the joint.
After a couple of days of VERY slow going with lousy sandpaper and lots of hammering and scraping, I decided to purchase a dust hood for my angle grinder. With the grinder I can use a wire brush. I am hoping this will go faster.
The Rudder: Day 1
After 4 days ... damn this is slow going. Found the fastest method was to remove as much as possible with a hammer, chisel and stiff scraper. This will get off most of the old barrier coat without creating too much dust. Then the angle grinder with a sander attachment will do the most of the rest. Finally finish off with a wire brush. The orbital sander is worthless.
September 17 2011
After a week finally a coat of epoxy is on the port side of the keel and progress is being made on the starboard side.
September 24 2011
Two weeks later and both sides have at least one coat of epoxy and the keel/hull joint is sealed with 3M 5200.
|Before any work on the starboard side|
|Starboard side -- joint sealed and fairing begun|
|Taped the joint for a neat joint line|
Almost a month later and the keel, hull and rudder are as done as they are going to get. At some point you have to give up on perfection and recognize you are out of time. And boy did I give up on perfection! The keel has been stripped, the joint refreshed and the area has been (somewhat) faired. More time and I would have made a perfect fairing job of it. Alas.
After one coat of bottom paint ...
And The final product ... after two coats of bottom paint.