Week 7

Week 7 has brought me to this point.  The decks have been glued in place on the upper shear.  I used 1 1/4 nails as per plan to attach the decks to the shear but opted for 1" screws to fasten to the strongback and support structure.  Although the support structure is ridged, I couldn't bring myself to "pound" nails into it.

After the decks were in place the cabin side cleats were installed.  On the aft end I stopped this cleat where the cabin ends and attached another below the deck that runs to the transom.  I plan to attach a vertical piece of plywood to this .  The plywood will support the aft deck and also serve to hide all the control cables and wires running from the helm to the transom.  For now I will not attach it as I want it open for the cable installation.  In addition I plan to add an aft deck along the transom.  It will be about 3" wide and constructed just like the other decks.  But again I plan to leave this open for running the control cables. The steering cable has me spooked as I am really not sure how It will have placed to make the proper bends.

Actually, I now believe I am ready to turn the hull over and work on the bottom side.  I think I will line up a few friends this week and see if we can roll her.  With enough hands it shouldn't be too bad.  In the video they do it with two people but my working space is limited so it will be a little more difficult.

I can't say that I am looking forward to to glassing the bottom.  The process doesn't bother me but I don't know how I am going to fair spreading that much epoxy in a short period of time.  I haven't mentioned it before but I am allergic to it.  I had run into the problem about 15 years ago when building one of the airplanes.  I had hoped that maybe time had changed the situation but no luck.

If you don't have a problem with a reaction to the epoxy you are fortunate - but don't abuse it.  I wasn't allergic at first but I didn't the the proper precautions.  It didn't take long and I was having problems and now 15 years later I am still paying the price.

If you have ever had a bad case of poison ivy you have had a similar experience.  It itches like crazy!  I wake up at night scratching between my fingers.  I also get red blotches on my neck.  My worst was when I glassed the inside of the fuel tanks.  I spent a couple of hours bent over with the fumes flowing up into my face.  Before I was done I had developed large red welts on cheeks and forehead.  What a mess!

After that I started trying to have a fan blowing on me when applying epoxy.  The hope is that it will somewhat disburse the fumes before they contact me.  This helped but it is difficult to keep the fan on me when moving around the hull.  I finally broke down and bought a $30 organic respirator.  It has helped but I still break out every time I mix and spread epoxy - just not as bad.

This is my current procedure battling the rash - As soon as I walk into the shop I apply a "barrier cream" to to my hands and fore arms whether I plan to mix epoxy or not.  If I don't I will inadvertently pick up something that has uncured resin on it.

Next, if I am going to use epoxy I apply more barrier cream to my neck and face.  I then put on cotton glove liners* and the nitrile gloves over them.  What I have found is without the liners my hands will sweat enough to make the barrier cream liquid which then provides little protection.  If I hole a glove I am in direct contact with the resin.  The cotton liners seem to allow the barrier cream to work as intended and acts as an extra layer of protection.

I then use duct tape to tape my shirt sleeves to the tops of the gloves and strap the respirator on.  It seems to be working for now.  But still there will be a lot of fumes coming off the hull when covering................

Photo # 15 - View of bow with forward deck installed.

Photo #16 - Close-up of forward knee.  I errored here and placed it on the wrong side of the cross support.  It really shouldn't male any diffeence but it is nor according to plans.

* Cotton glove liners were obtained from Wicks Aircraft  -  $4.95 per 100