The New Boat Part 11


Before we turn it over, there is still much to be done on our Penny Fee. We wanted to put an extra layer of epoxy on the bottom of the boat to give it added protection from water penetration, and that necessitated putting on the water line so we would know what parts of the bottom were below the water and what were above. There are several ways to determine the waterline and transfer it to the hull, but the one we used takes advantage of the fact that the shop has a very smooth and level concrete floor and that the boat table, molds, and the resulting boat have all been built such that the waterline is parallel to the floor.

We created a rolling platform that holds a pencil on the end of a stick at a designated height, and then rolled the platform around the boat letting the pencil touch the hull lightly as we went. We cleaned up and faired any imperfections in the pencil line with a batten, and then used tape to finally define the waterline.

Waterline jig

Once the bottom of the hull had been given the coat of epoxy, it was time for the primer. Two coats of primer were applied. This was a family affair in that I was helped by the woman who will voluntarily get up in the middle of a stormy night and stand an anchor watch, and her parents (we wish we had taken pictures of this).

The hull after two coats of primer. We did not prime the sheerstrake, we will do that after we roll the hull and attach the out-wales.

Before re-establishing waterlines and getting to the serious painting, we needed to place and attach the brass half-oval pieces to the bottom. These will add some protection to the keel and bottom. The half-oval is held in place with screws and a generous application of bedding compound.

You might be able to see the gleam of brass here.

Next came the taping off of the waterline and the masking of the topsides with newspaper (we used the Wall Street Journal), and then the bottom paint was applied.

The masked hull with the first coat of bottom paint.

One of the peculiar things about waterlines on a lapstrake boat is that they change in an almost Escheresque way depending on how you look at them. Seen from above (well technically below) there is a jagged and uneven appearance. Seen from the waterline, or the horizontal, there is a seamless line.

Waterline seen from head on.

Waterline seen from above, or really below once the boat is rolled right-side-up.

On to paint the topsides and boot-top….

If you would like to read all the posts related to this project together, go to the category at the right called “Penny Fee” and click on it. It will pull all the posts on the penny fee onto one page for you.


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