Starboard Panel

After rolling 5 coats of epoxy onto the Starboard Xynole, I was ready to fair and fill the weave with thickened epoxy.

This went a lot faster than the Port panel since due to my improved technique.  Now, I do a side to side filling motion, followed by a vertical motion using my squeegee.  It seems to work nicely.  You can apply the epoxy a little wetter for longer work time.  The thickened epoxy fills all the little holes and makes the panel smooth.  Once cured, I’ll sand with my orbital 6″ sander using 120 grit.  Then, I may need one additional fill before paint.  I’m getting very excited about seeing Dark Navy on this hull.  Hopefully, before week end.

 

 

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Starboard Xynole, First Coat

Today I got the first coat of epoxy on the Starboard Xynole panel.  It went on faster than the Port panel, due to the squeegee lift and fill technic (described in the Port side post).

 Steps I followed:

  1. I first use the squeegee to fill as much of the weave as possible in the shortest amount of time.  This is what I’m calling the lift and fill technique.
  2. I then use the foam roller to even out the epoxy and fill in the opaque areas.
  3. I then go over every thing again with the roller to make sure all the epoxy is set into the fabric.  The roller tends to squeeze all the air out of the fabric for a very tight adhesion.
  4. I then run a rag soaked in alcohol around the lower areas to remove drips and run that occur during the above steps.

Summary:

I’m hoping to begin the painting process next week.  I can’t wait to see Dark Navy on the hull of this boat.  But for now, it’s 4 more additional coats of epoxy, then filling and fairing the Starboard panel.  It’s all good folks, start yours today!

Xynole Texture Fix

After sanding and fairing the xynole on the Port side panel, I noticed a significant texture to the surface.  Even with 5 coats of epoxy, there’s more texture than I can deal with.  If I were to paint over this, it would look like orange peel.  But, the upper side panel would be smooth.  I knew I had a problem, but wasn’t sure how to fix it.  I could simply paint over it and sand until the low spots were filled, but this didn’t seem right.  After thinking it over for a few minutes, I realized I could mix up some thickened epoxy and squeegee it over the entire panel to fill all the low spots.  This worked great!

Here’s how it looks:

Summary:

I’m very happy with how the epoxy mix filled in the texture.  Tomorrow, I’ll sand and squeegee in one more coat.  It’s easy to want to move ahead quickly at this stage,  but the right thing is to take your time and get it right.  You’re going to look at these side panels every time you launch your boat, let’s get it smooooooth. 

 

 

Port Chine Panel Completed

It takes no less than 5 coats of epoxy to fill this weave.

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The aft corners will require some filling and sanding.

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The bottom and Port side now have the xynole applied.  

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This shot shows how I wrapped the xynole around the bow of the boat.  The Starboard xynole (to be applied next) will wrap around onto the Port side.  Finally, the glob of epoxy on the bow is filling a wrinkle created by the wrap.

Summary:

Just following the standard steps here.  I’ll sand and fair the edges once cured.  Then, I’ll be onto the Starboard panel.

Port Side Xynole

After waiting several days for epoxy to arrive and spending some time with my family in Yellowstone National Park, I’m back in the shop.

This morning, I applied epoxy to the Port side panel.

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Head navigator helps me get the xynole tight.

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I placed the fabric seam about an inch above (boat right side up) the glass tape line.

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Just like last time, I’ll cut at the edge of the inner blue tape.

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Wrapping the corner.  The white spot is wet.  It’s the glass showing through from the underside 

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Now  waiting a few hours before applying the next layer of epoxy. 

Steps I followed:

  1. Tape and trim the xynole like before.
  2. After trying several different technics, I learned to applied the epoxy with a squeegee.  I held the squeegee at an upward 45 degree angle.  I placed the squeegee at the lower edge of the xynole seam.  I then poured epoxy on top of the squeegee and drew the squeegee upwards toward the top edge of the xynole.  This system seemed to work best for me for applying wet epoxy to the steep chine panel.
  3. Then, to even out the dry spots, I rolled the entire fabric with a foam roller.

Summary:

I’m still amazed at the amount of epoxy this stuff soaks up.  It takes longer than one expects to wet out.  The first application takes the longest, with each subsequent application becoming a little faster.  Consistently moving forward on all these little steps gets the boat built.  I’m really enjoying the process.  

 

Fairing the 1st Layer of Xynole

Now the Xynole is on the hull, it’s time to fair the edges.  This stuff seems to swell up with epoxy.

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I ran a fillet just below the raw edge and then smoothed it out with a squeegee.  

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This made the harsh edge of the xynole all but disappear.  

 

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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.

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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.  

Summary:

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.  

 

Filling the Weave

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.

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It looks like a protective shoe has been applied to the bottom of my boat.

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All the corners stayed tight with minimal bulk.

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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.

 Summary:

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!

Trimming the Edge

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By running a sharp razor blade along the tape edge, the lower portion comes off cleanly.

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I’ll be filling this weave with another coat in about an hour.

Summary:

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.  

Xynole Arrives

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.

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Steps I took:

  1. I first made sure all surfaces were fair and properly sanding for good adhesion.
  2. I spread out the Xynole and smoothed out any wrinkles.
  3. I applied the 2″ blue tape around the hull.
  4. I cut the Xynole with household scissors (don’t tell Jennifer).
  5. I taped over the raw edge of the Xynole with another layer of the 2″ blue tape.
  6. I used a squeegee to spread out the epoxy (this worked great for the flat area).
  7. I used a foam roller to apply epoxy to the edges and chine panel.
  8. 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.

 

Summary:

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.