The TotalBoat Workshop: Our Winter Boat Projects

As the sun sets later and the breeze gets warmer, the hustle in the TotalBoat Workshop is a bit more frantic. As an owner of many boats I can attest to the comfort that accompanies access to the well appointed TotalBoat Workshop. Availability of the best tools and supplies for any and every job that needs attention aboard is pretty unique. And when you add in Shop Night as the brother/ sisterhood of boating brains  – it’s a pretty awesome perk to our jobs here.

Shop Night tends to wind up and pack it in when boating season pokes its head out of the wash of spring showers. Here at TB HQ, the bottom paint is flying off the shelves and final coats of varnish are being laid. It’s almost here – we can all feel it in our work and it’s what we wait for, for 8 months of our New England year – It’s almost launching time.

So here’s the quick update on all of our winter boat projects that have been keeping us busy at Shop Night.

Lorelei and Joe are making great progress on their Century Resorter. It’s been stripped, the wood grain has been filled and they are finally varnishing the hull. The deck is re-caulked and varnished as well, and it’s only a matter of another 8-10 (or more…) coats of Lust Marine Spar Varnish to apply before they are on their merry way. Oh yeah – and the engine. Joe has been doing some engine work that I don’t understand and cannot explain – but this is a blog about boats so if you want engine info, you’ll have to find a motor head blog to follow. So sorry. 😉

Dan O’s Cape Dory Typhoon is coming along – if by “along” you understand – as Dan does – that any progress if forward motion. Dan picked up this awesome little day sailer for a song and now he’s singing the blues because the foam decks were soaked in many places requiring a bigger job than he had planned on. But as mentioned, we have the materials and with all of us to chime in, we have plenty of know-how and so Dan is busy replacing the wet areas of the deck. He has never done this type of repair before – but he’s getting it done and it will be a big improvement to his Typhoon.

He first cut out the wet areas, ground back the edges and the bottom, filled the area with the High Performance 2:1 Epoxy and is putting down new foam core on top. Then comes fiberglass, more epoxy, TotalFair Epoxy Fairing Compound and of course, paint – but let’s not get ahead of Dan. We will check back in tonight to see what he’s up to now.

The transom work on the SeaCraft 20 is also coming along nicely – with good progress towards actually hanging an engine off the raised transom. Chuck and Eric did a masterful job of using Koosa board and fiberglass and now TotalFair to bring what was once a “dangerously” low transom up to a more comfortable height.  The Total Fair has, at this point, been applied and sanded a few times, filling in every low and fairing it into the existing glass transom. Soon we will be zipping around, using the SeaCraft for product testing and development. And for some enjoyment, too.

Last week was the big push to get the 2017 Bottom Paint Testing panels prepped and ready for lots of different bottom paints. We are building new rafts for these panels, each will be individually numbered as before, and they will be monitored and recorded for growth over the summer season in 3 different locations. Our last earnest bottom paint testing was in 2015 with the help of Roger Williams University and their marine bio program. Dr. Scott Rutherford will again team up with his summer students to monitor and scientifically (and without bias) record tons of data to see which paints perform best, and where.

Check out our 2015 Study and the raft building process, as well as the ever important results. We think it’s very worth the expense and effort of getting this data so that we can better answer your questions about paints, and we can ourselves develop better products for different areas.  The pic below shows the team applying TotalProtect Epoxy Barrier Coat Primer to every wooden surface that will need protection from saltwater and then bottom paint. Much more on this to follow in the coming months!

We will be back at it tonight – getting these projects closer to completion. Watch us on the Live ShopCam, follow us on Instagram for pics from the night. It’s lots of work but always a good time.

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