Ericson 27 Project

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Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Sun Jul 12, 2009 11:48 pm

Since I finally figured out an easy way to resize my photos, here are some updates of my progress...

Done to date:

Stripped interior and exterior
Sanded all (almost) old nasty paint off the deck.
Replaced core on both side decks

Here is a photo of the boat when I got her last September
E27 Before.jpg


Paint removal in progress. Didn't bother removing in core replacement areas.
Paint Removed.jpg



Here is the starboard side recored- We did this in the hot sun on rising temperatures and got a ton of bubbles. My wife ground them out and they are awaiting patches.
starboard core.jpg
Last edited by bigd14 on Mon Jul 13, 2009 12:28 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Ericson 27 Project continued

Postby bigd14 » Mon Jul 13, 2009 12:00 am

Oops, didn't realize there was a 3 photo limit.

Fitting the port core material. I made the mistake of using an unfamiliar epoxy to fill under the edges on this side, and mixed it wrong, which necessitated a full removal with grinder (regular and coarse wire wheels), multimaster, various custom made tools, etc. Four days (four weeks!) later, and I am back to where I started...
Port new core.jpg


And the core removed today from the starboard foredeck. The entire foredeck was saturated except for an area the size of my hand. Most of it was delaminating from the bottom skin.
starboard foredeck core removal.jpg


Oh, and a shot of the interior.
Interior.jpg
Last edited by bigd14 on Mon Jul 13, 2009 12:29 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Ericson 27 Project even more!

Postby bigd14 » Mon Jul 13, 2009 12:26 am

Now for some interesting stuff. After much research, questioning of other Ericson owners, etc., I decided to remove a portion of the transom to allow for an outboard. I know this might sound extreme, but there are many other Ericson 27's with such a cutout (it was a factory option). So I didn't feel like it would be that much of a stretch for me to do it, with the proper reinforcement post-demolition. And I have been going back and forth between keeping the Atomic 4 (which needs almost every system replaced on it and I am unsure when it was last rebuilt if ever) and getting an outboard. For the record, most of the sailing I will be doing is local day sailing and overnighters on the Columbia River, so having an inboard is not absolutely required, and I like the idea of being able to service the motor in my garage.

So is the transom pre-demo:
Transom Before.jpg


Here it is after removal- there were about 2 cups of water in there, which I think were freezing and thawing and causing the stern area to bulge, so I am now really glad of my decision. I am not sure why a big void was left in the middle of the fiberglass- it extends to the top of the transom
Water in transom.jpg


Still need to clean this up and recore with white oak or marine ply and glass it over with multiple layers. Also one or two layers on the interior too for reinforcement.
Transom after.jpg


That's all for now!

Doug
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby cmartin » Mon Jul 13, 2009 12:37 am

Nice work, keep it coming!

Fitting the port core material. I made the mistake of using an unfamiliar epoxy to fill under the edges on this side, and mixed it wrong,


Can you elaborate on this a little? Just curious, was your ratio off or was your mixing not enough?
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Oscar » Mon Jul 13, 2009 9:23 am

Cool project. If the epoxy was "wrong" why was it so hard to get out?
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Tue Jul 14, 2009 12:41 am

Dangit, I was hoping no one would call me out on the epoxy! OK, so here's the background: I built a sea kayak using System Three, which is a two to one ratio, and used it for a bunch of other projects around the house. So I was used to mixing by that ratio. Well, I also had some West resin from an unrelated project a few years ago. I got some new 209 extra slow hardener which I had never used before, and according to the West literature was mixed at a three to one ratio. So, using the West pumps I pumped at three to one... and yes, you guessed it, the West pumps are designed to meter it out properly at one pump to one pump, which I found out after reading the can instead of the website. Idiot proof, but not that idiot proof, I guess. So after using about half a gallon of epoxy and a bunch of cabosil, I came back three days later and it was still not cured! It needed three times as much hardener. I wasn't able to get back to the boat for another few days, and at that point the epoxy had hardened, but it was really brittle. Tapping lightly with a tool would shatter it. So I had to tear it all out. I know Tim has advocated on this site tossing the pumps and measuring in the cup, but I never had a problem before, so I went for it. Lesson learned!


I am now using Raka, which is also the two to one mix I am comfortable with (and yes, I am still using the pumps, I kind of like them). I have been very happy with Raka. I really like being able to customize the cure time based on the air temperature using a combination of fast and slow hardeners. And it's a great deal! 6 gallons for under $300. It seems like it's a little thicker than West and System Three, so it takes a little effort to wet out the biax, but I'm not complaining.

So that's the story... measure twice, apply once!
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Oscar » Tue Jul 14, 2009 10:37 am

Aahhh. I'm a Raka man myself, and yes, I use the pumps. Been working well for me sofar.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project- tiny bubbles...

Postby bigd14 » Sun Jul 19, 2009 1:00 am

Here is the latest installment of the project.

Yesterday I cleaned up the foredeck core area, and installed the core. I was going to try to glass over it, but by the time I was ready for it, it was in the high 90s and direct sun. I was afraid to do any fiberglass work based on my recent bubble problems. So I did some miscellaneous grinding, including around the transom to prepare it for glass. I also made a template for the new transom core material out of cardboard. Then I retired to a cold shower, beer and hammock for the rest of the afternoon.

Here is transom area ready for core and fiberglassing.
Aft with cleaned up cutout.jpg


Today I went in circles. I got up early with the intention of completing the bulk of the work before it got too hot. I started by grinding the core material to get ready for glassing. My staging on two step ladders was too short, and I finally got tired of being blasted in the face with epoxy and fiberglass powder. So I went to HD to get a new step ladder. But not wanting to spend 200 dollars on a ladder I would have to get rid of in 6 months, I found an extension ladder bracket that would hold up one end of the staging. Took about half an hour to get it installed, then I realized that the extension ladder wanted to slide off the boat when I stepped up on the staging. Envisioning myself hanging by my fingernails from the toe rail, I decided to lash the extension ladder to the boat and trailer. For some stupid reason this took me three tries to get right. But now I can work without getting my face covered in powder and without my shoulders going numb. As I was grinding the core material to prepare for glassing, I noticed a large area in the center that had sagged significantly. I was worried this might happen, but since there was a liner below it, I couldn't prop it up. In retrospect, I should have drilled a small hole and poked something in there to support the lower skin. So I mixed up a big batch of epoxy with cabosil and glass fibers for strength and faired it as best I could. Here is a photo of that- you can see the fairing material in the middle left:
Starboard Foredeck Core.jpg


When I was done fairing, I realized my paint roller used to spread epoxy had frozen from hardened epoxy in the wheel. So I had to make another trip to HD to pick up some new rollers. As I was preparing to lay the fiberglass over the core, my wife came down to help with finishing up the bubble repair on the starboard side deck. She cut out a bunch of small pieces of biax and began to epoxy them in place. What a horrible messy job. The biax shredded to pieces, stuck to the brush, stir stick, gloves, hair, etc. It was taking forever, so I jumped in to help for awhile. And much to our horror, the bubbles started coming back in the bubble repairs! Once again the sun was directly overhead and causing the material to heat, and this time there was plenty of epoxy to saturate it. So I spent the next hour setting up sun shades, popping bubbles, and generally trying to salvage the job. Some of the blisters appeared before we noticed them and the epoxy kicked, so i will have to mess with those ones again. I'm thinking of just drilling a small hole and injecting epoxy into the void. Another layer of biax will be going over the top so it shouldn't matter too much.

Here is a photo of the makeshift sun block over the blistering area:
Starboard Bubble Fill.jpg


By this time, the epoxy fairing had kicked on the foredeck and some of it seemed pretty well cured so I figured I should wait and sand it. I was also worried about more blisters in the sun, so I gave up on that job. Instead I worked on shaping the white oak that I had cut using the template last night into the void in the transom. I decided to use white oak instead of marine plywood, because a sheet of 1" thick marine ply was about $100. The oak was $10... Dry fitting the oak involved a lot of sanding, a bunch of relief cuts and some bruised knuckles (from trying to remove the core when it got stuck in the fiberglass). After realizing how hard it would be to sand in place, I decided to scribe a cut line on the proud areas and take it home and bandsaw it to remove the bulk of the material. At that point we gave up for the day and went sailing on our other boat (Ranger 22). Perfect conditions, 88 degrees and 15 knot winds... So even though we accomplished almost nothing, the day turned out pretty good in the end. I'll try to finish this job tomorrow.

Doug
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Chris Campbell » Sun Jul 19, 2009 9:23 am

Oof! How frustrating that sounds. Good luck with it today, assuming that you were actually talking abuot yesterday in your write up. I guess there is something to be said for the summer we've been having in NS, then (below normal temperatures and more cloud & damp than usual) - although I'm sure those with boats in the water would disagree.

My Dad's got an Ericson 27, by the way, and is very happy with it. It's going to be the boat I have my summer cruise on also, since mine is not getting launched. A sturdily-built, nice sailing, attractive and cruiser, with standing headroom and comfort for two in 27 ft. Hard to go wrong. And nice to see you tackling the core job to make it right. Only other thing I can think of that might need a look (based on my experience with Dad's boat) is the through-hulls and seacocks - on Dad's they were gate valves, but that could have been a previous owner, of course.

Good luck, and thanks for posting your experiences and pictures!

Cheers,

Chris
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Re: Ericson 27 Project- Battle of the Bulge(s)

Postby bigd14 » Mon Jul 20, 2009 9:53 pm

Thanks for the advice on the gate valves, Chris. I have actually replaced those already, although since I am getting rid of the Atomic 4 I will be able to eliminate a through hull, which will leave me with only 2 (sink and knotmeter). And I am not complaining about the weather at all, just my ability to deal with it!

So yesterday since it was supposed to be a bit cooler, I decided to get up really early and have a productive day. I got to the boat at about 6:30 and it was pretty chilly with heavy dew all over the boat (I had left it uncovered). I started out by washing the foredeck core with water to remove amine blush (not much with the Raka epoxy, but I wanted to make sure). I then sanded it rough, trying to leave the core totally sealed. It was about 60 degrees by the time I got to the fiberglassing and I decided to use the slow hardener in anticipation of it warming up. Big mistake! I should have cooked that sucker on. Put on two layers of 1708 and FULLY saturated both of them. Things looked pretty good. But then the sun started creeping up while the epoxy was still very wet and a couple small blisters formed. I rigged my trusty patio umbrella to cover it and started working on the transom cutout.

Photo of patio umbrella sunshade:
Sun Sail.jpg


Every 15 minutes I would check the fiberglass for blisters. All seemed well, but the epoxy was still very runny after about an hour and a half. Then it started to warm up. Since my umbrella wouldn't reach all the foredeck area as the sun came up, I placed some flat boards over the foredeck to keep the sun off and continued to check every 15 minutes. All seemed well. Then I found a gigantic bubble the size of a dessert plate had formed, and a couple smaller ones too! And the epoxy was getting tacky. I couldn't squeegee the giant bubble out without compromising the remaining material, so i cut it with a knife to relieve the pressure. I guess the core hadn't fully saturated there and was outgassing. I think the boat was unusually cold that morning too, since the temp had been below 50 degrees. There were three or four other bubbles as well. So in the end, I lost that battle, and will have to grind and fill a few areas. From now on I am definitely going to be fiberglassing in the evening when the boat is cooling off. Unfortunately that is going to mess up my schedule. No photos of the bubbles, I was too busy trying to prevent them :-)

At least the transom repair went smoothly. I had previously prepped the cutout and ground out all around it. I also ground down the aft part of the top of the transom which was cracking due to a poor design. I intend to add several layers of glass to this area to reinforce it. Picture here:
Transom cutout from the back.jpg



I wetted out the inside of the transom void with neat epoxy and saturated the white oak core, then mixed up a bunch of cabosil and milled fiberglass. I spread this into the void and mashed the oak pieces into the mix. This took a lot of force and I wished I had some long clamps to help seat the wood a bit better. Then I let this set up.
Filled transom photo:
Transom filled with oak.jpg


At this point I couldn't grind down the second round of bubbles in the sidedeck because the wind was blowing the grinding dust directly onto the curing foredeck and contaminating it. So I spent a couple hours removing and cataloging the rigging from the mast.

Once the foredeck had kicked enough to where it wouldn't attract dust, I spent the rest of the afternoon grinding out the bubbles and imperfections on the sidedeck, and reinstalling a few layers of fiberglass. I threw some fairing compound over the whole thing at the end of the day with the intention of getting a smooth surface for the third and final layer of 1708, which I will be installing in the late evening sometime soon.

Back to work (the boring kind) for now until next weekend.

Doug
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Oscar » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:51 pm

Gaining ground......
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midweek update

Postby bigd14 » Fri Jul 24, 2009 2:46 am

I managed to get three evenings of work in this week prepping and installing the final core material in the port foredeck. Sorry, no photos this week, my wife is out of town with the camera. Tuesday night I cut off the top skin, and removed the core material. This side was almost entirely saturated, but in better overall condition than the starboard side. I had to take the top skin off in strips. I wonder if the boat had a starboard list at one time that caused the water to collect more on that side- I don't remember it listing at all. But I don't really remember what the boat is like in the water anymore!

Last night I cleaned up the new core area, made a template for the new core material, and filled under the edges with thickened epoxy. I also sanded the transom cutout flat. I think the white oak is about as hard as fiberglass. It took forever to sand it flush! When I got home I cut out the new core material in preparation for todays work.

Tonight I started by grinding/sanding a bevel in the cutout area and cleaning the resulting mess up. I then saturated the cuts in the core material and the back of the core with neat epoxy. Then I spread thickened epoxy. Tried to fit the core in, but realized I had neglected to dry fit it. Argh! Things got pretty messy after that. I tried trimming the pieces off, and they would get stuck in the thickened epoxy and cause a high spot, and some of the harder pieces of balsa would mash all the epoxy out from under the core when I cut them. After much struggling and cursing I finally got it done before the epoxy kicked. Put some plastic sheeting and weights on top.

Tomorrow I will start glassing the transom area, sand down the starboard side deck, and make new templates for the final layers of glass on the sidedecks. I am going to wait until tomorrow night to install the new top sheet over the foredeck core to avoid any more bubble problems.

Hopefully I will have some photos to share tomorrow.

Doug
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Re: Ericson 27 Project- Foredeck glassed

Postby bigd14 » Mon Jul 27, 2009 9:27 pm

Some progress was made this weekend. After a hiatus on Saturday to attend some family functions, I went back to work on Sunday. The starboard foredeck had some bubbles from our midday fiberglass job last weekend (you can see them outlined in marker), so I started by grinding them out and then sanded the entire bow section.
Bow Bubbles.jpg


I then filled the bubbles with a bunch of 10 oz fiberglass patches set with fast hardener. Since it was getting hot, this set up in about an hour to where I could sand it again.
Once I sanded the bubbles flat, I mixed up a bunch of thickened epoxy and faired the area between the two foredeck core areas, and any other low spots.
Bow primary fairing.jpg


Then since it was getting really hot and I didn't want to have more bubble issues, I went home.

In the evening I went back and sanded the entire foredeck smooth. Then I started mixing epoxy and rolling glass. This took forever, and was complicated by the fact that I had to run around from one side of the boat to another to reach each side. By dark I had added two more layers of biax for a total of 4. This should match the thickness of the old top skin. It took about a gallon of epoxy!
Bow fully glassed.jpg


I had to create two staggered seams towards the bow where my biax overlapped. These will have to be sanded and faired down. I should have bought slightly wider biax... Also, for the last layer, I put the smaller of the two biax sheets on top, because I had discovered that when installing the lower two sheets, the larger one on top caused some poor bonding right at the seam. I ground a bit of the second layer off to get rid of this weak area out and figured that the top two layers would overlap the bottom two by a large enough margin to reinforce any lost strength. I just hope no bubbles got into these layers...

There is a heat wave coming to Portland (actually its here, ugh), so I'll probably not work during the evenings this week. I am going to be replacing the glassed-in chainplates with external ones, so I need to figure that out before I finish glassing the final two layers on the side decks. In the meantime, I need to finish patching the transom up and fixing a bunch of instrument holes, etc.

Doug
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby cmartin » Mon Jul 27, 2009 9:50 pm

Excellent work.

fixing a bunch of instrument holes


I have that job coming soon too, maybe I'll copy your technique.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Oscar » Tue Jul 28, 2009 11:31 pm

Nice!
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Zach » Wed Jul 29, 2009 11:28 pm

Looking good.

Bubbles:
Small bubbles that come from the sun or resin heating up air and bubbling it out of the core...
Build a rig to hold a tarp up off of the deck... keep it covered before you start, uncover it... wet out your glass, and recover.

Lets you get away with doing mid-day glass work. It also helps if you really soak the core in resin and let start to get a touch tacky before continuing... nice to do anyway for the second layer so the dry one rolled on top doesn't pull resin out of the underlying one...

The larger bubbles that fight you to the end to stay wet out: don't fold the cloth tightly if you can help it... roll it. Throw away the last little bit where it was pulled or cut off the roll, and trim the edges where the weave has been buggered up in transit... Pre-fair the core if there are any ridges or hollows that the glass will have to bend into, just be aware that most balsa comes coated in resin to keep it from soaking up loads of it... so wet it out first or ya may get a dry spot.

(Boat sheds are beautiful things...)

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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Thu Jul 30, 2009 9:06 pm

Thanks, Zach for the excellent advice on preventing bubbles. Luckily I only have a little more fiberglass work left, and my schedule for the weekend actually coincides with evening fiberglassing. Hopefully the sections I had problems/learned on will hold up OK, as there is no way I am re-doing them! I guess I'll consider this my "practice" boat. Although my bank account won't tolerate a "real" project boat, or the boat shed that it would require!

I've enjoyed following your grinder war posts. Wish I could devote a solid couple weeks to my boat...

Doug
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Re: Ericson 27 Project- this weekends work

Postby bigd14 » Sun Aug 02, 2009 11:33 pm

Spent parts of the last three days at the boat. Friday morning my wife scuffed up the foredeck and ground out the instrument holes while I glassed the transom opening. I used two pieces of 8.8 oz tape on the first pass. I also put a layer of glass on the back of the instrument holes to provide some backing. We retreated home for the afternoon to beat the heat (Portland has had a week of record breaking temperatures in the high 90's and into the 100's). I spent the afternoon cutting out the last of the fiberglass from templates I had made earlier. I hoped to return that evening and add the last layers of glass to the sidedecks. However, my wife had some friends from out of town show up so my A1 helper was no longer available to spread epoxy (A2 and A3 helpers aren't fully trained yet!). I returned that night with the kids in tow and added another layer of glass to the transom. Looks a little messy! But hey, I was constantly distracted by requests for food, drink, lost toy retrieval, portable DVD operation questions, etc. No worries, I have to sand all the paint off the transom still...

Instrument Hole Patches.jpg

Cutting Glass.jpg

Transom Glassed.jpg


Saturday we went out to the boat intending to take the kids on a short bike ride and then do some work. Well, we got a late start, took a longer ride than anticipated, stopped for ice cream, and then had to have a picnic under a shade tree. By this time it was the middle of the day and I was too hot to feel like working, but my wife persuaded me to at least glass in the instrument holes, so we did. No photos, I left the camera at home.

Today I went early to the boat to beat the heat and started off by sanding out the transom glass job, the instrument holes and doing a little additional cleaning up on the foredeck. Then I mixed up a bunch of fairing compound and went to work on the instrument holes and transom. I guess I got the mix a little wrong (microballoons and cabosil), because the mix started out really stiff, but as I worked it, the epoxy rose to the surface (like floating concrete), and it kind of started to flow a a little in some of the thicker areas. It turned out OK, but not great, so I tried mixing it stiffer (more cabosil) for the foredeck, with the same results. Maybe I was laying it on too thick in some areas? I then sanded down the portlight cutouts, which I had filled some weeks ago with thickened epoxy (the space between the liner and cabin). Then I spent an hour bowing before the Atomic 4 altar and removed the prop shaft, wiring, and engine mounting bolts, two of which were so loose I could unscrew them by hand. That's the way it is with this boat, everything has been loose, jury rigged, decayed, stripped, or otherwise installed poorly- I'm glad I am finding all these things out now while its on the hard. The Atomic 4 is ready to be lifted out and removed. I am going to have the yard move the Travelift over the boat and winch it out. I am looking forward to the extra storage space where the motor was, since this boat could use a little extra easily accessible storage. I am planning on some custom shelving in there.

Spent the heat of the day on our other sailboat, anchored and swimming. No wind today, which is often the case when it gets really hot here.

Doug
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Sun Aug 09, 2009 10:57 pm

'Nother update.

A lot has happened over the past week or so. I put the last layers of fiberglass on the sidedecks. The third layer of biax really stiffened them up nicely.
Final glass layer.jpg


I added the first round of fairing compound on the transom. Messy! Lots of angles. This is going to take a long time and many rounds of fairing to get it halfway decent. Also faired up the instrument holes. Will need one more layer to get it done.
Instrument holes faired.jpg


I also got the motor pulled. The yard owner moved his travelift over the boat and we hoisted it out.
Motor Out.jpg
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Sun Aug 09, 2009 11:08 pm

Wow, what a difference having the engine out makes! I will be adding some shelving in the space at a minimum, and maybe making the bottom a battery well. I am thinking about extending the countertop over from the right of the photo. The first step would be on the counter top. Any thoughts/advice from the group if this is a good idea?
Engine space.jpg


I then fixed up the three holes in the cockpit- the after-market pedestal, the fuel fill hole (poor location for this!), and the hole where the engine controls went through the side of the cockpit. The cockpit is surrounded by a liner, which is about 1/16 inch away from the cockpit structure. For the larger pedestal hole I mixed up some fast epoxy, and wetted out a layer of biax. When it had kicked, I ran a string through it and worked it into place between the liner and the back skin of the cockpit floor. I then mixed up some thickened epoxy and jammed it in, then pulled on the string to set it in place. I wedged some material underneath it from below to hold it in place, and jammed more epoxy around the holes where I had removed old yucky (but dry!) core material. While this was setting up, I cut out some biax to bring the holes up to level, then added core, thickened epoxy and three layers of biax on top. Same on the cockpit side, except I used three layers of biax on each side, plus one in the middle, since the side wasn't cored.
Cockpit repair.jpg

Finished cockpit repair.jpg


The yellow scraper is holding the top layer of biax away from the edge of the cockpit. I measured poorly, and it's hard to sand in there so I wanted to keep it from hardening on the curve.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Sun Aug 09, 2009 11:19 pm

I finished off today by removing the prop shaft. After struggling unsuccessfully with a home made prop pulling device, and not wanting to spend $$$ on it or a gear puller, I ended up cutting the shaft with a grinder. It had some scoring in the area under the cutless bearing, so may not have been salvageable anyways.

Should I leave the strut in place or cut it flush with a grinder? I am thinking of leaving it in place in case some distant future owner wants to add the inboard back in, but I am worried about it hanging up on something and damaging the hull... Maybe I should just sharpen the leading edge :-)
Shaft tube.jpg



As for repairing the stern tube, what is the recommend method? Should I get a cylinder of fiberglass (or a wood dowel) a little smaller than the ID, then epoxy it in place and glass over both inside and out? Or just cut the inside end flush and glass it over and leave the exterior alone? Advice welcome!

That's all for now.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Chris Campbell » Mon Aug 10, 2009 9:11 pm

Congratulations, Doug - that's a lot of progress! She's definitely coming along nicely. I just got back from a week on my Dad's Ericson 27, and I really enjoyed her. She's great to sail, has an amazing amount of room for a 27 footer, and did everything we asked of her with aplomb. He keeps her on the Saint John River in Saint John, New Brunswick (Canada), and I think she's the perfect boat for that river. Anything bigger makes the river seem too small, anything smaller and you probably lose standing headroom and start to feel cramped. Very nice!

I doubt that I'm qualified to advise you on any of your questions, but I'll stick an oar in nonetheless. On the prop strut, there may be a way to unbolt it from inside and slip it out, then patch over the holes. There has to be a way to replace it, since they do wear out (the bronze dezincifies (sp?) over time) and need replacement. That way you'd be able to offer a new owner the part that s/he could replace. I think you're on the right track with a dowel in the stern tube for the same reason - although Tim makes putting a stern tube in look easy, so maybe cutting the whole thing out and glassing it up properly would make more sense. Then a person putting it back in could just drill and install. Don't know.

On the shelves in the engine compartment - I think I might leave it as a large space, myself. It's often hard to find a place to stow large items, and you can always break it up into smaller spaces with milk crates (not that classy) or custom removable storage compartments (much classier, but takes longer). Do consider weight while you're at it - you've just removed ~330 lbs. from there, and a fuel tank from under the cockpit, and are putting weight on the transom... Not sure how to go about figuring it, but you may find you need to adjust somewhere, somehow.

Once again - nice work! Congratulations and keep keeping us posted. It's encouraging for those of us who are working slowly along as well!

Cheers,

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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Mon Aug 10, 2009 11:37 pm

Thanks, Chris! Looks like you're making steady progress too. Some weeks its hard to see much progress unless you live at the boat yard and ignore your family, work, etc. Those are rare weeks indeed! I am excited about actually sailing the boat. Now that the decks are whole again, it suddenly seems more likely that this thing can actually be finished...

As for the strut, here is a picture of the inside attachment point. It looks like it has recently been repaired or replaced. But I can't envision how this would fit in? Perhaps it was installed from the inside, then bolted into place and glassed over? In that case it doesn't seem like it would be worth it to cut it out. If anyone has replaced on of these and can enlighten me as to what lies beneath the bolted plate, I would appreciate it!

Strut attachment.jpg


And, I am thinking of using the System 3 LPU for the primer and topcoat... I am not looking for the glossiest finish for the deck, but something that's durable and easy to apply. I will be having enough weather problems by the time I get to paint and easier is better. And I can always add a few layers of clearcoat if I want more gloss.

More updates soon as work progresses.

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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Tom in Ohio » Mon Aug 10, 2009 11:46 pm

I'm going to remove the inboard on my boat as well.

I'm planning on grinding the strut down just below the surface then glassing over it. That should encase it. I don't want to leave it hanging out there mainly to reduce drag. My boat is 33 years old. I'm likely the final owner, and if not, any other owners will probably do the same calculus I did and also figure out that a new inboard is simply not worth it. Therefore, I'm not really concerned about any future owners.

I'm going to cut away the stern tube from the inside, so that I can do a proper 12:1 bevel and glass it up all from the inside. That way I don't have to worry about cosmetics or fairing the hull much.

BTW - My strut mounting doesnt look anything like yours though. From the inside, mine looks like a blob of chewed bubble gum. I suspect it may have looked like yours once, but to prevent leaking, a previous owner simply poured epoxy over it.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Tim » Tue Aug 11, 2009 6:20 am

Struts usually have a wide mounting base that is bolted to the hull. Often, this is recessed into the hull to reduce drag, and faired/glassed over. To remove the strut, you'll have to remove those four bolts and any exterior fairing compound, etc. You'll have to patch this area afterwards. I think the means of connection ought to become clear as you proceed, since my description is quite general.

I'd certainly try to remove it for real before cutting it. If you find you can't remove it by unbolting, etc., then cut it as a last resort. Either way, I'd definitely suggest that you remove it and don't leave it hanging there.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Quetzalsailor » Tue Aug 11, 2009 8:53 am

I was able to remove the strut from the Morgan 27. Easy as pie: Grind the fairing off the heads and from around the base. Remove the nuts. Knock the bolts down and out. Pull. I removed it so that I could be fierce with the removal of the Cutless bearing in the comfort of my basement (flailing, banging, sawing a slice out, beating the remains out, tapping the new one in).

Going back in: Clean the old 5200 off. Don't do more than necessary. 5200. New bolts. Bolt it back where it was. Fuggedabout fairing (Morgan had ground most of the boltheads off to get it fair).
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:22 am

Thanks everyone for the advice. I'll tear into it and let you know what I find.

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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Sun Aug 23, 2009 9:45 pm

I finally got back to the boat today after more than a week on vacation. Unfortunately, not the relaxing variety. As I was working on the boat today my family came down with a cold, and I can feel it coming on as well. Dangit! Just when I need to make a big push to get this thing ready for paint before the rains come...

Anyway, a pretty boring day. Spent the day behind the longboard fairing the cockpit where the fuel fill and old pedestal were, the instrument holes, and the starboard sidedeck and foredeck. I think I used too much fairing compound! Hopefully I will only need one more layer to fill in the remaining low spots on the fore deck and side deck.

The longboard I ordered from Jamestown and the sandpaper from http://www.onlinindustrialsupply.com worked great for this fairing. Rounded out with a rubber sanding block and the Multimaster (I had to buy some 6" velcro sanding discs from HD and cut out the multimaster profile from them- worked great!)

I still have to start the port side deck fairing and do a second and probably third layer to finish the transom repair, then a bunch of miscellaneous fastener holes, dings and sanding mishaps to fill. Then I can start sanding for paint! I am saving all other work for after the paint is on the deck.

Cockpit Fairing.jpg


Foredeck Second Fairing.jpg


S Side Deck Second Fairing.jpg
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Tue Sep 01, 2009 12:16 am

A little more progress and a little more work to do...

More fairing and hole filling. Layed another coat of fairing compound in the evening and expected it to cure overnight. When I returned the next day it had gotten pretty cold overnight and the dew had prevented the fairing compound from curing (turned it kind of milky). So I waited much of the day for it to cure and filled a couple remaining holes and removed the strut (see next post for strut details). Tried sanding in the heat of the day but the stuff still wasn't well cured and just clogged up my sandpaper so I gave up on it. Hopefully it's cured by now!

I got the hole in the cabintop (not sure what it was there for) and the exhaust hole in the transom filled. Found a bubble on the inside of the transom and will have to grind it out and put some more glass over it. Now all the holes (except the strut and shaft log) are filled.
3rd Fairing Side Deck.jpg

This fairing didn't cure well...


Hole Repair on Cabin.jpg


This picture raises a question. Should I sand down the nonskid on the cabin top and paint it like the rest of the boat, or try to preserve it and do a light coat of paint over it. My wife really likes the nonskid pattern, which is now only on the cabin top and the cockpit sole. I would prefer to sand it down, but unfortunately I am not the only one making decisions about the appearance of the finished product!

Exhaust hole repair.jpg

The little dingleberry pipe on bottom of the transom is the cockpit drain which is temporarily held in place. It was simply gelcoated to the hull and leaked water into the bilge whenever the cockpit filled up. I will be glassing it in permanently when I find a low profile through hull to put in the cockpit.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project- Strut Removal

Postby bigd14 » Tue Sep 01, 2009 12:30 am

While I was waiting for the fairing compound to cure I removed the strut. It was exactly as Tim and others described it would be- thanks for the great advice!

Here is a photo of the strut after I had sanded off the bottom paint.
Strut after sanding bottom paint.jpg


I chipped away the fairing compound to reveal the 4 stainless steel bolts and whacked them all to hell from the top. I think they had been epoxied into place. They moved only with great difficulty and made splintering noises. Had to drive them through with another bolt from the top.
Strut after knocking bolts out.jpg


When I removed the strut, the material under it felt a little rubbery, and some of it seemed delaminated (I think driving the bolts through helped delaminate it). Looked like poor epoxy cure to me. So i decided to cut it out. Didn't take long to get back to solid material, but now I have a hole that goes all the way through to the interior. I wonder if the strut had suffered damage and been replaced, since it looked like it had newer epoxy poured around it which didn't cure very well, then some material poorly laminated on top and bolted through with a wood backer plate on top. Weird.
Strut hole to be filled.jpg


Now I have to figure out what to do with this giant hole! I am thinking of placing a block of white oak left over from the transom repair to act as filler, then a bunch of thickened epoxy strengthened with chopped fiberglass, then about 4 layers of biax on the exterior and another four on the interior (the hull is about three inches thick here). Hopefully that should seal and bond things up pretty well. Does that sound like a reasonable approach?

More next weekend.

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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Tom in Ohio » Tue Sep 01, 2009 4:25 am

You should bevel the hole. 1:12 is the recommended ratio, but with a hull thickness of 3" that would be a HUGE area to fill. I'd at least go with 1:2. You can either do the bevel from the inside or the outside. If possible, I would do it from the inside that way you have much less of the hull to fair and you don't have to worry so much about the cosmetics. Its also easier to do with gravity helping. If you want to use a core material to save money and time, I would definately increase the scope of the bevel as the core material would be contributing less to the adhesion and strength of the plug. Instead of one big plug of white oak with glass on either side, you might want to laminate a core in using mulitple layers of marine ply with glass in between.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Tim » Tue Sep 01, 2009 6:30 am

You don't need to bevel that to match a 3" thickness. The bevel ratio relates to the thickness of the new material you are adding. So if you're adding, say, 3-4 layers of 1708 to the outside of the hull as a patch, that's about 1/4"+ of thickness, or about a 3" bevel area on all sides.

Fill the hole with a plug of solid, thickened epoxy, your wood block, or prefab fiberglass; I'd avoid the wood myself, but it'd be OK if you want to use it. Then, patch the outside of the hole and tie it into the surrounding hull and fair as needed, and patch over the interior as needed with a couple layers of material. The inside patch need not beveled into the hull in most cases since there's not a cosmetic need to have a perfectly flush patch.

The point of the 12:1 bevel is to give new material a place to tie into existing surfaces when the repair needs to be flush; in the inside of a hull, in an invisible area, you can lay new material right over the top after first properly preparing the bonding surface, since the patch doesn't need to be flush for cosmetic reasons and there is as much bonding surface you want by simply installing it over the top. Your hull is only as thick as it seems there because there must be heavy layers of filler or something in way of the old strut. You certainly don't need to repair it with 3" of solid fiberglass.

On your cabin top nonskid, I'd suggest sanding it smooth since I think new paint over existing molded patterns always looks bad and functions poorly. Tell your wife. :<)
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Capn_Tom » Wed Sep 02, 2009 6:46 am

With regards to sanding or not sanding the old non skid: You can maintain the existing/ create new smooth areas between sections of non skid to maintain/ create visual interest.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Fri Sep 04, 2009 7:48 pm

Thanks again for the advice Tim. I'll proceed ahead more or less as planned on the strut. Still working on convincing my wife about the non skid!

Forecast calls for rain this weekend, so I think I may be trying to build a shelter of some kind. If I don't build a shelter now I will never get this boat launched next spring. The yard doesn't want structures built (unless I pay for another slot), so I am going to have to come up with something that is low profile and attaches to the trailer. Unfortunately it is not my trailer or it would be in my parents yard with a huge shelter built over it...

I'm toying with the idea of creating some huge hoops out of PVC pipe that will attach to the trailer every 5 feet or so and be supported at the top with a rope strung between two tall uprights. Hopefully this will be robust enough to support a tarp.

Or I may go with a framework of 2x4's laid across the trailer with some uprights, then pvc hoops over the top.

I'll take photos!
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Mon Sep 07, 2009 10:08 pm

This weekend I started building a giant covered wagon! Rained a bunch so it was time well spent.
Shelter Forward.jpg

It really does look like one from here...

Shelter Side.jpg

I have the back part lowered a little now and I am going to remove the crossed arches- they are too close to my head when i am on the sidedecks.
Shelter Detail.jpg

I'll cut these ends off when I am done so that the yard guy will have plenty of room to manuever.

I used 1" ID PVC pipe in 20 foot sections, a bunch of 2x4's and some rope. Several additional loops are planned, and I have to order a 30x40 tarp tomorrow.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Mon Sep 07, 2009 10:54 pm

The weather cooperated enough this afternoon to sand the transom and fair the port sidedeck. I HATE fairing. For some reason I always seem to put too much on, then have to sand it all off again. And no matter how careful I am it seems to get everywhere, then hardens into sharp points which cut me and screw up the nice line I am trying to make with the scraper on the next fairing round. And when I go to wipe it up, I screw up the recently faired stuff!

I will be so happy when this part is done...
Port Side Deck 2nd Fairing.jpg



Port Side Deck 2nd Fairing 2.jpg

I didn't notice the big ball of compound on the cabin until just now! More sanding...

Onwards!
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Tim » Tue Sep 08, 2009 6:43 am

If it was easy and fun, everyone would be doing it.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Mon Sep 14, 2009 11:20 pm

Hah, true! Definitely not easy or fun.

I spent the weekend fairing. If I took pictures they would have been of a lot of sanding dust and bunches of red patches...

I think the major fairing is mostly done. Just a few minor spots here and there, especially along the toe rail to fill in and clean up. Then I can move on to fairing in the unused fastener holes, and dings left over from removing the paint.

Oh, and my wife and I sanded the non-skid off the cockpit floor and seats. We'll take it off the cabin top too. She wasn't easily convinced to remove the non-skid, but after much cajoling (and showing her Tim's earlier post recommending removal!), she decided it would it would work out.

I am truly a weekend warrior now that the kids are in school and after school activities... More in a week.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Sun Oct 11, 2009 10:17 pm

See Ericson 27 Project Oops for last update- It got put in the wrong place.


Spent today painting the first coat of primer! It went a lot slower than we hoped since the temperatures were pretty low. We are using System 3 Yacht Primer and have to keep the temperature above 55. It was windy today and the sun wasn't shining very much. I left two heaters running last night and it seemed to help. Got up to the mid 70's for awhile.

Here are some before and after pics. I will be adding the second coat tomorrow, since this one didn't dry enough today. I didn't want to add another coat late in the afternoon with the temperature dropping at night. Hopefully the heaters will keep everything curing right tonight.

Ready to Prime.jpg


First Primer Coat.jpg

It looks a little thin, hopefully the coat tomorrow will even out.

Stantion Base.jpg

Here is one of the stantion bases that I built up out of epoxy to get them off the deck (pre -primer).

More later.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Rachel » Sun Oct 11, 2009 11:57 pm

Doug,

Looks like she's coming along! I like your Conestoga.

Would you mind explaining how you went about making your raised stanchion-base pads? I think they're a great idea (for chainplate openings too, I'm thinking).

Thanks,

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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Mon Oct 12, 2009 12:34 am

Hi Rachel- The stantion pads were pretty simple, really. There were existing stantion pads that had been glassed up to during the deck recore, and scuffed and beat up during the process, so they were essentially flat to the deck. So I just mounded a bunch of thickened epoxy on top and worked it into place with a small trowel as it kicked. I left it well oversized, then knocked the heck out of it with the 7335 and then a detail sander. Its not perfect but once the stantion is bolted on, I think it will look alright.

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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Tue Oct 20, 2009 10:24 pm

Drips and Runs and Sags, Oh My!

Well, the boat primed up well, and sanded down really nice to 220. First coat of deck paint went on pretty well. Second coat... not so well! Dripped and sagged all over the place. I figured out I did not thin it quite enough and it went on too thick- smooth at first, then it sagged after I moved on to the next sections. I have been rolling and tipping and brushing, so its been very time consuming. I am wondering if I should invest in an HVLP sprayer (or rent one) but then the learning curve would be just as steep, so I am not sure whether it would be worth it. Any thoughts from those of you who have tried both methods? Part of the problem now is that I only have access to the boat from the deck, since my shelter is too close to the hull for staging to fit.

The other problem I was having was that its difficult to maintain a steady temp in the shelter. When the sun is not shining, the heaters keep it right around 65-70, perfect for painting. Then the sun comes out and the temp goes up to 85-90. Sun goes behind a cloud for awhile, temp drops... Guess I need to wait for a cloudy day.

So I have lots more sanding in my future. Darn, I was hoping I would be done with sanding for now. Any advice on how best to sand down the lumps?

On the positive side, the boat is starting to look like a boat again!

Argh, the dreaded drips.
2nd topcoat drips.jpg



Hey, it looks good from a distance
2nd Topcoat cabin.jpg



I got the cockpit area right, and it looks pretty good.
2nd topcoat cockpit .jpg




Off to find more non-release-coated sandpaper. System 3 LPU doesn't bond to stearate residue, apparently.

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Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory...

Postby bigd14 » Fri Oct 23, 2009 11:01 pm

Today was a major setback.

The topcoat didn't adhere.

I followed the System Three directions to the letter. Its been a week since we painted. Heaters have been keeping the boat and shelter warm. But the paint was rubbery in spots. I pulled at a drip, and up came a big sheet of paint. It came up easily and didn't even pull up any primer with it. I went around the boat pulling at stuff and a ton of it came off. Mostly in the gutters and seams where it was thicker. I thought maybe it hadn't cured enough. But then I found an area near the heater where it was nice and thin, and that flaked off too.

I made sure that the sandpaper I bought had no coating on it, even calling the manufacturer to ask about it. I made sure temperature was above 55. I sanded the primer to 220. I waited until the first coast was dry to put the second coat on.

So I spent today sanding it off with 80 grit again. I should be done with that in two more days, then I can start over. I'm taking off the primer too, just to make sure, although that seems well adhered and its epoxy, so it should be compatible with anything. But I don't trust any of this stuff anymore.

Oh well. At least we learned how to roll and tip. Next time should be better.

Oh and I lost the great photos of paint sheeting off cause my camera doesn't like the memory card.

Great day.

Doug
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Tim » Sat Oct 24, 2009 6:21 am

Odd. I wish I had some ideas for you, but since I've never used the S3 paint, I have no basis of knowledge to help, unfortunately.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Quetzalsailor » Sat Oct 24, 2009 9:38 am

Aieee! 'Setback' wouldn't describe that for me. Get on the horn with a System 3 techie. Someone else will have had the same problem.

I've had my share of setbacks, but, knock on fiberglass, not a whole deck. It's usually been my mishap: impatience, failure to follow instructions, failure to mix correctly or completely, poking around before the stuff cured (I doubt this is your issue, but I've managed to peel finishes in localized places that elsewhere went on to cure and give years of service (automobile lacquer, Cetol on teak, brightside polyurethane on epoxy, latex paint)), insufficient cleaning of substrate.

Keep the faith, you will prevail! And your boat is looking very good.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby LazyGuy » Sat Oct 24, 2009 9:23 pm

I am heading into a similar project and was thinking about using S3. Please call the tech hot line and keep us posted on what happened. Those pictures of your second topcoat looked great.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bigd14 » Wed Oct 28, 2009 1:10 am

I spent this evening at the boat installing a second tarp over the covered wagon structure. The tarp I ordered online turned out to be pretty pathetic and after two wind storms started to develop leaks. I even had added foam pipe insulation in wear areas to no avail.

I also tried to determine if I should strip the System 3 paint off and do over with something else or try to fix the problem. The S3 techs suspect that it wasn't fully cured, and maybe some small areas of contamination caused it not to attach correctly, which then pulled up more paint when I fiddled with them. The remaining areas seem to be adhering well and hardening up better. But I am still not fully comfortable with how well it will last if there are adhesion problems.

So, I have a decision to make:

1. Instead of removing all the paint and starting over I could feather the edges of the peeled up areas, build back two layers, sand those flush with the rest of paint job then add two more coats over everything.

2. Or I could go ahead and strip it down and do it over with something else.

Any thoughts on what I should do?
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby bcooke » Wed Oct 28, 2009 6:33 am

I had a similar question to ask myself when I had a primer coat fail in a few places. I considered doing the spot repair as you mentioned but in the end I took it all off. The topcoat was too much effort and expense to risk to a suspect primer coat. If the primer fails you will lose the topcoat. That was just my call in my situation.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby Tim » Wed Oct 28, 2009 6:35 am

After a week of heated cure time the tech still thought it was OK the paint wasn't sufficiently cured?

What do you honestly think the average ambient temperature inside the cover was during that time? Is there a chance it was cool and damp despite the heater? Has there been dampness/condensation in the structure before, during, or after that time?

While it's certainly possible that the paint took this long and longer to cure enough to untape, unless the structure was extremely cold or damp, it seems more likely that something wasn't mixed right in the paint. Had you ever mixed and tested this paint on anything else before this use?

bigd14 wrote:The remaining areas seem to be adhering well and hardening up better.

Seem to be? Is the paint actually hard and cured now? Any paint ought to be clearly cured much sooner than within a week or two. If yours didn't (and isn't) I'd start to suspect the paint mixture itself. You should be able to untape without issue within 16-24 hours, and most LPU paints are safe for overtaping within 48 hours even at colder temperatures.

bigd14 wrote:But I am still not fully comfortable with how well it will last if there are adhesion problems.

Nor should you be. Something is fishy--I just don't know exactly what.

There are no fun answers to your dilemma, unfortunately, and ultimately you alone will have to decide what action makes you comfortable. It's a lot of work to undo, whether you choose to do it or it does it on its own. Good luck.
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Re: Ericson 27 Project

Postby sscoll » Wed Oct 28, 2009 7:09 am

What fuel do your heaters run on? Possibly this might be a source for slow curing.
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