Blasting and Biking

This evening, I’m quite cozy on front of the wood stove with Mack-a-pousse purring on my lap, Murphy is laying on front of the fire and Marley curled on her couch. It’s feeling wintery in here tonight; it has also been feeling wintery outside lately.

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If only sandblasting could just be it, but no, after blasting comes cleaning. Sand, sand, sand and more sand.

 

A week ago we sandblasted most of the main compartment, only a lower section and the bilges are left to be done. All I can say of our last sandblasting party is that it was cold. I spent my days dreaming of a hot bath…funny, it doesn’t seem like it was so long ago that I would have favored a dip in the pool. Time flies and winter is coming in quickly. Unfortunately, I don’t think we will get the last step of blasting done before it gets too cold, as we had planned for this fall. The temperature is under normals and the weather still yucky so we are not having too much hopes for a nice Indian summer. This also means I won’t get to start the work on the boats interior this winter. Not to worry though, there are still enough other jobs to keep me plenty busy.

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To limit the cleaning we sealed off the front. I don’t have a door build yet so I improvised one. Mark called this my tool torture board. A close up might help see better what I did…but don’t worry no tool actually got hurt.
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 Here it is. I didn’t want anything complicated for a temporary door. I used some twisted rope loops to pull the board and lumber together. Mark says it’s called “Spanish windlass”. Some pipe insulation around the flange makes the seal. The tools are used as levers to twist the rope and lock it. A good trick to keep in mind in case of a “need a quick fix” for a “oops” hole in a hull.

We have been working on the boat quite consistently this fall but the past couple weeks it was a little extra effort for me to keep my mind to it. I have to confess: I have an other love, boats are not all….there is also the dog. Marley and I have been racing for the past couple years in sled dog sports. Yep, sled dog sports…with one dog. She pulls me on my skate skis or bike and this is by far the most exhilarating sport I have done…well maybe except for wind surfing, that’s exhilarating too. I’m not either a strong skier or cyclist but have a great complicity with Marley and we have been doing alright at races. This to say, Marley and I are going to compete at the world championships in bikejoring next week and I am pretty exited about it, it should be fun.

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Looks like fun, hun?

Ok, lets think of the boat again for a bit. We have three coats of epoxy paint on the interior and are going to apply the forth and last one tomorrow. With the lower temperatures we have had to thin the paint a little bit because it was just to thick to roll or brush… have I mentioned how great Marley is running lately and that I have a new bike for the race? …concentrate, concentrate…boat, boat. So? The paint, cold. We also found that it was worth keeping it not to far from the wood stove overnight so it would be that much warmer and thinner for the next day. It is quite stunning the difference of viscosity of the epoxy paint between 10C and 5C. I know it seems crazy to be painting at such low temperatures and I would rather not be. The 235 paint is good to be applied down to -7C…eeee… we have set our lower limit at 5C to not play with fire, or ice in this case.

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Getting pretty. Pretty exciting.

 

If there is an advantage to the cold weather on our current work it would be for for the blasting. The colder air makes a remarkable difference on the sandblasting results, the air is not only dryer but also denser. Sounds surprising, but we can actually feel the difference, with the same settings the “jet” feels “stronger”.

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Mark hard at work while I’m freezing outside and would rather be blasting…that’s saying how freezing I was. Hopefully I’ll toughen up before the real winter gets there.

Still wondering about the cabin top? Safety Yellow. The final colors of the boat will be somewhat colorful. We are not totally decided on painting scheme but have a close idea of what we want. Yellow is a tough color to get uniform, it has poor coverage capabilities and require extra coats compared to softer tones. It seemed like a good idea to use a yellow as base color, it would be a good starting point for either other yellow or green tones. As it turns out we quite like this color and will most likely not change it, but will add some green trim here and there. It may look strange now but I know the final result will be quite sharp. Wait and see.

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No more mystery 🙂

Well this is it for a quick update, I realize I haven’t posted anything in a little while; sandblasting and painting are not the most exciting thing to write about. After this last coat of paint on the interior we won’t be touching the boat project for a week. Like I already mentioned, I’m taking off to Northern Quebec, Saguenay, for the race and hope for some good fun with friends and dogs. For those international readers out there, racers should be coming from Norway, Poland, Tcheque Republique, Germany, USA, France and maybe more.

 

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