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Project Log:  Sunday, September 22, 2013

I continued masking the deck, this time with the port caprail.  This marked the end of major deck taping for this stage of the  painting process, though I still needed to mask around the edge of the freeing ports and cover the hull--steps I'd take a little later, as I wanted to give the new sealant around the freeing ports more time to cure first.


Because of the layout of the deck, and the impossibility of reaching it all at once while spraying, I already planned to prime and paint in several stages (the details of which I'd not fully worked out).  With this in mind, and also to keep the greater progress moving along, I'd earlier reached the conclusion that I'd work on the cockpit later on, once the bulk of the painting was done.  So the cockpit would get finished and painted sometime later in the process.  But while taping adjacent areas, I decided that the outboard sides of the cockpit coamings would best be painted along with the forward sections of the deck.

Knowing there'd be parting lines from this approach, I spent a moment determining how best to lay out these planned tape lines for future hiding or blending.  To this end, I decided to mask 1" from the inboard edge of the coamings, for the simple reason that it was easy to lay out with the 1" masking tape, and made sense for hiding/blending reasons as well. 

I then brought this line up the aft end of the pilothouse on each side as well., and masked beneath the pilothouse roof overhang.  This position would allow adequate room for blending in the tape lines later, once painting was done, and allow sufficient overlap of the eventual cockpit paint to assist the blending.  Later, I'd cover over the inside of the cockpit against overspray, but not till the last minute so I could keep easy access to the boat for now.


The next step on deck really should have been to sand the decks lightly to smooth the few areas where I'd applied fine filler a few days earlier, and to generally clean up the deck surfaces one final time before priming.  However, I simply didn't feel like sanding at the moment, so instead I decided to restrike the waterline (i.e. top edge of bottom paint), something which I didn't strictly need to do now, but which needed to be done soon enough anyway, so it was a good focus for my non-sanding energies.

When I moved the boat over to this side of the shop earlier, I'd set her up level, but I double-checked to be sure she was level side to side.  I made a few minor adjustments, checking the athwartships level in several positions till I was satisfied.

From measurements I took very early in the rebuilding process, I recreated the two ends of the waterline (stem and stern).  I'd already spent much time over the past years analyzing these marks and their relative position on the boat vis-a-vis the scum line on the bottom paint (since sanded away), and studying photos of this boat and sisterships to best determine that these marks were higher than "normal"--clearly this boat's waterline had been raised/changed in the past--and in a better position.  I wanted the antifouling (and therefore the boottop) to be well above the actual waterline for better appearance, to prevent  unsightly fouling and staining, and to prevent damage to the boottop paint from immersion.

I knew the existing waterline was not "right"; it was different on each side, and more or less all over the place.  It dipped in the center and became higher at the ends, and formed neither a pleasing, sheered shape nor a flat, planar line.

My personal taste leaned away from the swoopy/raised at the ends look frequently seen on Fishers and boats of similar design.  I did not plan to recreate this appearance in the waterline or boottop.  Instead, for the waterline I chose to strike a planar line connecting the two salient points at stem and stern.  I set up horizontal beams at each end off the boat, at the proper height to match the waterline ends that I'd marked, and ran a weighted, tensioned string between, which represented a planar line between those two points, and level in an athwartships way.   (Though the boat was essentially level fore and aft also, this was not critical to striking the waterline in this way.)


With the string just touching the hull amidships, I made marks where the string touched, and taped the string in position to hold it while I  worked my way aft, slowly bringing the string in till it touched the hull again and repeating the marking, taping, and moving process till I reached the stern.  The shape of the hull at the stern didn't allow the string to touch everywhere, so I carefully made additional marks in the hollows by eye, keeping the marks aligned with the string by eye.  This ensured that the line I struck would be visually straight despite the curvature of the hull.


Untaping the very tight string, I repeated the process from amidships to the bow.  The net result of this process was a series of pencil marks on the hull to denote the straight, planar waterline connecting the two points at stem and stern. 


I repeated the process on the other side of the boat.


Afterwards, I masked to the pencil lines, fairing the tape by eye as needed.  The top edge of the tape represented the "waterline", or top edge of the bottom paint.  I'd prime and paint the topsides down to this level. 





To wrap up the day, from outside the boat, I masked beneath the caprails at each freeing port location


Total Time Today:  5.25 hours

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