My home repairs kept me busy on Saturday so I didn't make it out to the yard as I'd hoped. However, I did manage a very productive session on Sunday. My Little Man came out to help for a few hours, which is always fun. He's great at holding a socket or vice-grip on a nut inside the cabin while I work on deck. He also fits into places that are pretty painful for me, like the anchor locker. Although we bring toys every time we go, on this Sunday he came up the ladder shortly after we arrived and told me that he didn't feel like playing because he wanted to help with projects. He's the best!
Together we pulled the bow casting, bow pulpit mount, and bow cleat. I'm planning to polish these pieces with some Dremel power, then prime and paint the bow casting and pulpit mount. They started out life with a flat-black coating, and I plan to put one back on. I'm using a Rust-Oleum aluminum primer, and a flat black enamel spray-paint. No, it's not a 2-part expensive marine finish, but I've heard from a few sources that this works pretty well if you don't mind a touch up once in a while. I really don't, and NOTHING could look worse than what I see now.
In the pictures below you can see how ugly the finish has become. While the bow cleat is still very nice around the bolt holes, it's scratched and weathered badly on the large top surface. It's worse than it looks here because the camera flash brightens it up. This is an easy DIY project that will really make the foredeck look nice with little invested beyond the Dremel itself. That tool is being used more ways than I can count right now.
I took my son home for dinner, then returned to the yard for some more work. I cleaned up the exposed butyl from the deck-hull joint and then went to work on the starboard deck core. I was able to get the entire balsa section ground into shape just about the time the yard lighting started to kick on. Good thing too. As soon as the sun dipped below the tree line the temperature plummeted and a slight breeze came in from the lake. By the time I cleaned up my tools and tied the tarp back down my fingers were numb. Isn't summer supposed to right around the corner?
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