Now the Xynole is on the hull, it’s time to fair the edges. This stuff seems to swell up with epoxy.
I ran a fillet just below the raw edge and then smoothed it out with a squeegee.
This made the harsh edge of the xynole all but disappear.
This is a fairing tool I purchase from 3M to smooth the hull. The paper measures 4,1/2″ x 32″ and is attached by hook and loop.
The top side has 2 nobs to hold and apply even pressure. They make these in 2 different configurations: one stiff & one flexible. This is the flexible version, meant to sand a gradual curve, like the hull of a boat. This fairing board will help me get the chine panels smooth and fair before applying the paint.
I might have been able to skip this step and simply fair the fabric after I installed the chine panel. However, if I apply the chine panel over the hull seam, it won’t lay flat and will probably create an air pocket behind the cloth, so I faired now. This will make applying the chine panel much easier.
After yesterday and today I can finally say I’ve finished applying xynole to the hull. It took no less than 5 coats of epoxy to fill the weave of this wonder material most commonly found in your wife’s lingerie. That stuffs not nearly as tough as this.
It looks like a protective shoe has been applied to the bottom of my boat.
All the corners stayed tight with minimal bulk.
And, it stayed flat, which I’m glad to see. During my last build, the fiberglass puckered a bit on the bottom and it was difficult to fair it flat again. This stuff stayed tight and true.
I almost ran out of epoxy trying to fill this weave. No matter how much epoxy you have on hand, this step will burn through it like no other. You’ve been warned. I ordered another 3 gallon today to finish the boat. I can’t move on to the side pieces until the extra epoxy arrives. So, I’ll have a little down time over the next week and a half. But, this step has been done correctly and I feel good. I’ll now let is all cure for a day and a half, then begin sanding it down to remove the nubs that still protrude. I’m still having a blast building this boat. So glad I began!
By running a sharp razor blade along the tape edge, the lower portion comes off cleanly.
I’ll be filling this weave with another coat in about an hour.
Tons of fun here folks. It works as advertised. Now to fill the weave with several more coats while the epoxy is still green. Yes, I’ll be up most of the night.
It came today in a long brown box. I wasted no time. The box flew open with the assistance of my Victorinox pocket knife and the rest is history.
Steps I took:
- I first made sure all surfaces were fair and properly sanding for good adhesion.
- I spread out the Xynole and smoothed out any wrinkles.
- I applied the 2″ blue tape around the hull.
- I cut the Xynole with household scissors (don’t tell Jennifer).
- I taped over the raw edge of the Xynole with another layer of the 2″ blue tape.
- I used a squeegee to spread out the epoxy (this worked great for the flat area).
- I used a foam roller to apply epoxy to the edges and chine panel.
- I’ll now wait a few hours and then cut off the excess by running a razor blade along the top edge of the inner tape.
Make sure you have a lot of epoxy on hand. I am amazed at how much epoxy this stuff soaks up. I’ll be applying the second coat in about 6 hours.
I still needed to touch up a few low areas around the boat.
Working my way around the boat, filling any low spots I found.
After another light sanding, I rolled the entire hull and chine panel with another coat of epoxy. This is the second coat of epoxy on these panels.
The nose area received two layers of glass. With the fairing material applied, you can’t see any of the seams.
I tried to roll lightly over all the edges where the wet epoxy met the dry epoxy (chine panel and the side panel junction) to avoid a hard edge.
I will sand this epoxy coat and wait for the xynole to arrive. Meanwhile, I can spend a few days cleaning up my shop and working on the steering wheel.
I’m confident it’ll take about 3 fairings to bring things flush. This is fairing #2.
There’re 2 pronounced edges to the glass taping. One more prominent than the other. Both of these edges need to be removed. This is easily accomplished by using a card scraper.
All edges have been scraped and all glass tape has been hand sanded.
Using a squeegee, I applied my fairing compound to all the taped areas.
Things need to get uglier before they can get prettier. Tomorrow I’ll sand all these edges and apply another filler coat. I think 2-3 coat should get me where I want to be. I’m taking my time here, I want a nice fair hull before I lay down the xynole.
So, after a few days away with my wife celebrating our 22 year wedding anniversary, I’m back in the shop. I was anxious to get moving forward, so I rolled up my sleeves and started in.
Aft corners are looking good after I filled them.
The steps I followed:
- Measured and cut all glass taping to it’s proper length.
- Rolled epoxy over all joint and seam areas.
- Rolled epoxy over all the glass tape.
- Applied the wet glass tape to all the seams and joints.
- Waited 6 hours.
- Rolled wet epoxy over all the seam and joints again (to fill the weave).
- Rolled wet epoxy over the chine and bottom panels.
I was pretty busy for several hours getting all this accomplished. The heat in my garage, during this time of year, is around 80 degrees. So, you really need to keep things moving. It feels great to be back building again after a few days away. I’m still loving this project. I would strongly encourage anyone thinking about building this boat to move forward. I’m willing to visit with any of you over the phone about my experience, (208) 589-1222.
Just a few more shots showing how the fairing process is coming along.
I used a pencil to mark all the low spots. Once you have the filler in hand, you want to easily and quickly find all the trouble areas.
All low spots along the seams got a second layer of filler.
The forward chine panels need to be filled where they met the side panels.
All mating panels needed to be filled where they come together. I’m filling these areas prior to taping, because if a ledge exists, the glass won’t lay flat and you’ll find air bubbles behind the tape. Getting these areas flat prior to taping is very important.
I love this view. Notice the shape of the hull near the transom. This is where the sigmoidal shape can be seen. I cambered my floor 3/4″ according to the plans. This is meant to keep the boat on plane while cruising at slower speeds.
If you take time now to get things flair, it will make the taping and covering of the hull so much easier. It’s not hard to do if you own an electric sander. I’m using a 6″ rotary palm sander. Don’t forget to wear your dusk mask.
Fairing the hull is a multi set process and one that I will work on over the coming week. It involves rasping, filling, fairing and sanding all the seams and edges of the hull. Once your finished, you do it all over again. Below is my first pass of this multi step procedure.
Front nose area needs to be built up prior to sanding down.
Tomorrow morning, I’ll sand these areas down and then lay on another fillet of fairing compound (thickened epoxy with micro balloons and wood filler). I can’t wait to apply the glass tape to all the seams and edges and get moving with the xynole. Take your time with these steps. You’ll be staring at your boat for a lot longer than it takes to get it right.
After flipping my Skiff, I just couldn’t resist tearing into the panels to bring them fair. So, instead of going to bed, I started in.
The Japanese pull saw worked reasonably well. I had to be careful though not to cut too deep as the saw tends to dive.
I followed this cut up with a block plane,
And finally, the famous Shinto Rasp.
It’s 12:17 am. Now I can go to bed. Tomorrow I’ll continue by filling the seams with thickened epoxy and fairing any low spots.
This boat just gets better and better looking every time I touch it. I really love this phase of boat building. It’s so fun to see things start to come into shape.