That wasn’t fun

They say you should only build a boat if you really enjoy the work. And for the most part this has been fun. But there are “those days”… Fairing the bottom has been about 20 hours of squirming around the cold cement floor and holding tools overhead the whole time. Yuck.

After two putty & sanding passes, we hit the surface with spray paint, then used the 24” longboard sanding block to find low spots.

Here it is the next day, with the black spots (low spots) filled with a white show-thru putty.

Another complete sanding at 120grit revealed everything fair enough to call it done. Tonight was one more putty application pass to fill in all the little trowel dings and gaps. Those are the darker, wet splotches in these photos.


Tomorrow these will get a light sanding and the whole bottom will get declared Ready For Paint!

Since we’ve been back in fairing mode this week, miscellaneous pieces are also getting handled on the table. Here are a companionway slider, some cabinet panels and the motor mount box.

And it looks like we told a little white lie last time; the deck area isn’t quite done as we found a few more bits that need some fairing cleanup. Putty in hand… When in Rome!

ps – congrats to captain Drew for driving F27 Papillon last Sunday to a high finish. Second in the tris only behind a fast F31, dead heat tie with the Gunboat 62, and ahead of the dueling F25carbons. Great day.

4 thoughts on “That wasn’t fun

  1. Greg, as one that spends many days, some times weeks, preparing hulls and decks for paint, I can understand your sore back and arms.. The end product will ultimately leave you proud and satisfied . I and many others are grateful that you have shared this build and dream.


  2. Hi Greg,

    What kind of paint do you spray as a guide coat? I’m in the processes of fairing the hull on my boat and a while back I sprayed the top sides with acrylic paint from a spray can. After sanding with a longboard I applied some epoxy fairing putty over the low spots which still had paint (a very thin mist, not a thick coat) before sanding again.

    I’m almost there, but I still have a few low spots left. I found out (the hard way) that my longboard was both too short (just 16″) and too flexible. The major highs and lows are now gone, but I have some very shallow and very long lows (not easy to explain) that I can see when I look at the hull from a low angle.

    I’m afraid that the paint that was left under the fairing putty will one day let it delaminate and all the hard work I’ve done will become a serious problem.

    Like I said, it was just a light mist, so I guess there was plenty of non painted surface between the atomised drops of paint.

    There is a product manufactured by 3M that is a dry guide coat, which I think could be a better alternative. At least you don’t have to wait for it to dry before sanding.

    Any experience with it?



    • Luis, I had the same concern but in the end decided that since I sanded 95%+ of it away it shouldn’t be an issue. I used a regular flat black spray paint, and when that can was finished I switched to some auto body grey primer. It was all done as a very light mist.
      And yes, the auto body 16″ flexible blocks aren’t enough. The 24″ hardwood board is as big as I could physically handle, but probably a 30-36″ would be better. The 24 did provide satisfactory results.
      Which hull design are you building? Any photos to share? Just curious!


      • Hi Greg,

        I’m not building a multihull, actually I am refitting a monohull. It’s a Morgan 31 designed by Angelo Lavranos and built in 1979 in South Africa. You can see some photos of the process in my blog. The link is with my name at the top of this comment.

        I found your blog while searching for carbon fibre chainplates. I need to replace the stainless steel chainplates on my boat which are fibreglassed to the hull in the same fashion a carbon fibre chainplate would be.

        I figured that since I will need to grind all the fibreglass to reach the chainplate and then fibreglass over the new ones, I would go the carbon fibre route. Other than making the chainplates, the work to install them will be just the same and I’ll have something that is leak free and no corrosion.

        I’m also going to change to synthetic rigging using Colligo gear. Have you checked the new Colligo website? I was involved in the development, check you the rig builder wizard!

        What are the specs of the chainplates on your F36? Could you share the dimensions and give some detail on the build process?



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