Section 3 - The Bow

Work continues on Windsong, even if the blog is slow.  The next section I am working on after completing the cockpit and engine room is up front on the bow.  I decided to move up front to work my way back because I will be doing heavy cleaning in the bilges, and the water flows to the back of the boat.  It would be pointless to clean going forward only to have dirt and grime flow back over what I have already done. Why did I start in the back in the first place?  Well, the first section was relatively small but had some serious projects, but in out-of-the-way places so I could learn how to do things like glass over holes and other repairs.  I continued to the cockpit and engine room because that section was possibly the most complex of them all with the most major repairs needed.  I wanted to get that one out of the way, so the forward sections would seem easy compared to it, and I would have gained the necessary experience to do most of the repairs quickly.

So the next section covers the anchor locker, v-berth, head, and the deck space above them.  There aren't too many huge projects, but I do have to replace a couple of bulkheads, fill a few holes, and figure out some other things as listed in the list below:

Deck: -Remove all deck hardware – COMPLETE -Pot thru-deck holes with epoxy – COMPLETE -Thoroughly clean with soap, then solvent -Sand with 150 grit -Fill/repair all unused holes – autopilot, old telephone plug, etc. -Grind/bevel all dings and imperfections (including deck joint) -Fair decks with thickened epoxy -Sand fairing compound down to a smooth surface -Re-Apply fairing compound and sand down as needed

Anchor Locker: -Replace anchor locker/v-berth bulkhead - IN PROGRESS -Sand, clean, paint anchor locker - IN PROGRESS

V-Berth & head: -Remove all trim, equipment, accessories, etc. - COMPLETE -Grind out all lockers of old adhesive and foam - COMPLETE -Remove and replace bobstay chainplate - IN PROGRESS -Replace v-berth/head bulkhead -Glass in cabin top stiffeners -Cut out window templates, seal exposed core with epoxy -Glass in unused thru-hulls in head -Clean and sand all surfaces for paint prep -Prime and paint all surfaces (may save painting when the whole interior is ready)

So far I have cut out and have been sealing the anchor locker bulkhead with epoxy, as well as prepping the area to glass it in.  I should have the bulkhead in by the end of the weekend if all goes well.

I also spent this past weekend holding a grinder over my head for hours on end, completely covered head to toe in heavy clothing and a respirator in 100 degree heat with fiberglass dust flying all around me.  The purpose was to grind out the old foam and strong adhesive used to glue it to the lockers in the v-berth.  It was absolute hell.  My least favorite thing to do in this whole project is gearing up for fiberglass grinding, particularly on the inside of the boat.  It is so damn hot, and nothing keeps the fiberglass from getting into my skin.  I knew the grinding had to be done though, and I am very happy to have completed it.

I also removed the old bobstay chainplate.  This piece is a strange one, as it is glassed in from the inside and encapsulated.  There wasn't much in terms of a sealant keeping water out of the small crack that the chainplate went through, and as the boat sat on land for a year, water was still dripping out of it.  I was worried about serious corrosion in the encapsulated metal, so I decided the best course of action was to remove it and have it replaced.  I am replacing nearly every bit of the standing rigging, so I might as well do it here too.  This is what the backing of the plate looked like glassed in:

Here it is with the glass cut out, and the whole item removed:

Speaking of replacing chainplates, thanks to my Dad for helping me out and getting all new chainplates fabricated this week.  They are pretty much the first new piece of rigging I have and can't wait to get them polished and on the boat.  He is also helping me out with new, custom designed stanchion bases and a few other bits.  I'll write about them when it comes time to start installing.

Back to the grind...