NSLM (nslm) wrote,

Boating DIY

Having arrived a little earlier than I expected, and still having hours of sunshine to enjoy I decided to get a little of the DIY that I've been meaning to get around to done. The rear doors on Phocidae are, like the rest of her hull, steel. However, steelwork doesn't always look too pretty, so most boats have a wooden lining to them. Phocidae's lining was made of MDF with a thin light oak veneer. Having been boating through the winter this wood, apparently not varnished well enough, had started to rot and delaminate so I had been planning to replace them, and hopefully do a slightly better job...

Well I didn't have enough clamps to get both done at once so I decided to do them one door at a time. Taking a wrecking bar to the wood and prying it off was surprisingly therapeutic, as I suppose most destructive tasks tend to be, revealing two curious nuts attached to the inside of the door for the bolts that hold the catch to keep the door open when cruising in place. I then got the panel attached, and left the glue to dry... This took a little longer than I had originally expected. About 8 the glue had finally set enough that I could attach the hardwood trimming, after which I decided to stop for the night since it was starting to get dark.

This morning I used a little filler and some sealant to tidy up the door and try to prevent water dripping down behind the wood. Then I pulled off the rotten wood from the second door, and glued the new panel one. While that was drying I sanded off the second door, and stood back to admire my handy work. The first door now just needs a couple of coats of varnish, and should look really good. After lunch I took the clamps off the second door. Now the glue takes about 24 hours to dry properly, but after 4 hours should be sufficiently well attached that you can add the trimming. What I'd forgotten was those funny little nuts. With the first panel I'd drilled a pair of holes partway for the nuts to sit in, concealed by the front of the panel. I'd forgotten those this time, so of course the wood was under a certain amount of tension, and as soon as I removed the clamps began to peal back off the door. Oops. At this point I needed to think about heading back to Bath, so didn't have 4 hours to leave the glue drying again. So I bodged a few things to keep the boat secure, then gave up for the day. I know what I did wrong, and I should be able to retrieve my work and finish off when I get back to the boat on Friday, assuming dry weather that is...

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