Prism's Blog

Projects, Projects and some MORE Projects

Wait a minute, I though we bought this boat cause it did NOT need a lot of work. And yet here we are. Yes all the projects we are doing we knew we needed to do. However I do feel like every project we start on opens a can of worms. A simple task turns into a whole day event. But then again this is a boat and that’s how all boat projects go…. right? BOAT aka Bust Out Another Thousand.

Yesterday while Jon and I were about to go to the store, we noticed that our front STBD chain plate is bulging. We have done our research about this, and there has never been a report of a HC33 chain plate failing. So it could be one of 2 things. First it could just be some water that made its way into the chain plate cavity then froze and expanded. Or it could be that salt water got into the cavity and has rusted the non structural cross member that is made of mild steel.  Only a test pilot hole into the bulge will tell us which one. What will it be? I am not sure. There is a couple who had the same kind of bulge going on their front chain plate and they dove in deep to find out what was happening. Once they were said and done it was a cheap fix but very time consuming and not completely necessary to their finding.  All they did was replace the mild steel cross member with stainless steel. So Jon and I are left with the same taunting question that this other couple faced…. Do we or do we not cut into our fiberglass boat? As for now from what we have read the bulge is not hurting the boat so we are going to leave it alone.

Another project we have started and half way finished is the main leak coming in from the turtle shell. Jon had read that most HC33 boats have the same leak, so we were able to pinpoint it right away. During the process we had to take off the teak access ports on top of the turtle shell to gain access to the hole where the wires come through the deck. Who ever had removed these and resealed them before used a home quality silicone sealant. They used this sealant to fill old screw holes, mend broken wood and attempted to make a water tight seal. Jon went to town removing all the old sealant, filled all the holes with epoxy and replaced and repaired the damaged wood pieces. Before we put it all back together and seal the shell once again, we are first going to take a heat gun to the very thick and orange cetol.

We have started with the heat gun and scrapper, but can only work as long as the weather allows us to. We are really missing the California weather right about now that is for sure. Once we have removed all the old cetol we are going to give the teak a light sand and go with a 2tone look. We are going to use cetol once again just a different kind. Cetol Marine Natural Teak will be the first 3 coats, then another 3 coats of gloss and this boat will be looking bright and beautiful! We have a sunbrell cover over the part we are working on here in the pictures, but it can only hold off the pounding rain for so long. We can not wait to see what she will look like when we are done!

Jon noticed that there was a leak coming in from the chimney so we took that apart and fixed the wood that was rotting around the entrance and repainted on the inside. The deck fitting was pretty much trash so we bought a new one at fisheries. We plan on installing that today if the weather permits. When we took down the diesel heater to take apart, clean and put it back together, we noticed that the unit was shot. We could spend the money on the parts and piece it back together, or just buy a new one. We are going with the later.

Prism as far as we know have never been repainted, she still has a good amount of Gel-Coat left. (or so we think.. so far so good) There is a lot oxidation on the hull and a little scratch here and there. Jon and I bought a 3M rubbing compound and we were ready to make the hull shine once again. We tested the product in a small section on the bow, and we were let down for how little it worked.  We then busted out the wet/dry sand paper and wet sanded with 600 grit in the same small area. We could see a difference after about 5 minutes, but it still was not cutting it. When we went back to Fisheries for the 3rd time, we returned the 3m rubbing compound  and went looking for something that will cut through the oxidation. We chose Starbrite rubbing compound for heavy oxidation. Sounds like what we are looking for… right We have not tried this out yet cause it has not stopped raining for the last 3 days. Well it stops just long enough to trick you into thinking it is done, and right when you get your tools out and get ready to start the project again.. IT STARTS TO RAIN AGAIN! Its like it KNOWS or something. Any way we are hoping we can make her shine again with out having to paint the hull.

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