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A New Fiberglass Guide And New Website!

By | Boat Repair, General Updates | No Comments

It’s been a while since I’ve done any actual updates about Boatworks Today; mainly because there really wasn’t anything too exciting to announce, but that has finally changed!

In this past week there has been a major over-haul of the website With ALL of that effort coming from Josh and Alyssa over atΒ https://www.fortirisgroup.com/Β  They did an absolutely amazing job, and without question this new site is something that I never would have been able to do myself!Β  When you have a chance stop in and take a tour πŸ˜‰Β  www.boatworkstoday.com

The other bit of big news is this past week I was finally able to finish a Fiberglass guide that I’ve been working on the past couple months! This is the first of what will likely be 6 downloadable guides each covering, in depth,Β  a different topic as it relates to fiberglass repairΒ 

Please check it out and if it looks like something that would be helpful for your projects let me know what you think!! Also sharing this post with your boating friends is always much appreciated!

Thank you in advance and have a great week!!

 

Applying Gelcoat, Spray or Brush?

By | Boat Repair, Fiberglassing Tools and Supplies | 2 Comments

Getting to the point of applying your color matched gelcoat is one of the last steps in finishing off your repair(s). In the video I mentioned that there were 2 common ways to do this; spraying or brushing..

While brushing the gelcoat has it’s advantages, it isn’t always the best approach. For small patches such as chips, dings, scratches and small repairs I believe that it is the most efficient both in prep time and application. However in situations where the repair spot is much larger than what is shown in the video, spraying is definitely the way to go.

Looking at this option a little further, lets go over some of the options for equipment. The first thing that will be needed regardless of the type of spray gun used (we’ll cover this in a bit), is a large compressor. At a minimum a 3hp unit will be needed with a 60 gallon tank. This will provide most of the air needed with brief pauses to let the pressure build back up. Ideally, a 5hp unit will provide everything that you’ll require and then some; the compressor will be able to ‘catch up’ with the demand and occasionally turn off. 3HP units will run constantly and can tend to get a little ‘warm’ πŸ™‚ However, they do work! It’s what I have and so far (knock on wood) haven’t run into any issues.

With that part of the equation in place, now it’s time to talk about guns. Keeping in mind that gelcoat is a resin that has a relatively short working time before it starts to set up (normally 10 min depending on the % catalyst used) I like to use guns that can be broken down quickly. For the most part, this boils down to gravity style guns and cup guns (aka dump guns).

Pictured below is an example of a cup gun. These types of units are an ‘industry standard’ for higher volume application needs. This particular unit is the ES-100, I believe the newer model is the ES-120.

ES-100 Cup Gun

Advantages of this type of gun are:
– The gelcoat can be applied with very little to no thinning
– Simple design which allows quick break down for cleaning
– It’s able to “dump” a lot of material quickly and efficiently

In my opinion, the most attractive benefit of this is that the gelcoat does not require thinning. Whenever a material is thinned it displaces it’s properties. By this I am referring to UV-absorbers and pigments / color. A material that has been reduced will require a thicker film for the same level of protection versus un-thinned applications.Β  Also, when spraying laminating gelcoat (no wax additive), use of PVA will be required to achieve a full cure.

This being said, nothing is perfect. The downside of spraying thick material is that it will not give as smooth of a finish out of the gun, requiring more wetsanding to get the desired appearance.

The other style of gun mentioned is a typical gravity fed gun such as that shown here:

Gravity Gun

Use of this type of sprayer will require thinning the gelcoat to get proper atomization. These units are typically less expensive and can be viewed as semi-disposable. If the gelcoat happens to set up in the gun before cleaning, they can be replaced for $15-$20. Note: These cheap units will NOT provide a good finish with paints! A good paint gun can easily cost $500 or more πŸ™‚

When we start to look at thinners (or more accurately gelcoat additives) there are two brands that I’ve used with good results. Duratec Clear High Gloss Additive, and Patch-Aid. These are both what are considered to be ‘reactive thinners’ rather than evaporative thinners. The difference being that reactive thinners actually become part of the gelcoat and cure together as one film. Evaporative thinners are as they sound, the solvent evaporates from the gelcoat leaving behind mostly straight gelcoat. Styrene and acetone would be examples of evaporative thinners. A lot of Pro’s use these types of thinners, however in my opinion they are more toxic to work with and not as ‘user friendly’. Personally I like to use additives such as the Duratec or Patch-aid.

Use of these additives does change the way that the overall mix needs to be catalyzed. Normal gelcoat should be catalyzed at around 1% – 1.25% Mek-P. When using these additives, the overall mix needs to be catalyzed at 2% or higher (it will be stated on the product container). Also, when these products are mixed in, no PVA is required to achieve a full cure.. That’s one of the benefits of these additives, and for this feature alone, I feel it makes them a very user friendly way to spray gelcoat for the DIY.. Also, because the material being sprayed has better atomization, it will provide a smoother finish out of the gun, requiring less wetsanding πŸ™‚

HERE is a mixing chart showing the ratio’s for the various % of Mek-P courtesy of one of my local vendors, Express Composites.

What’s been going on??

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

It’s been a while since I’ve made any posts or updates (or follow up vids) and I feel I owe a little explanation.

The short story is that Spring showed it’s head a couple of weeks ago and work orders piled in for stuff to be completed before Memorial day (which is typical this time of the year). Then, old man Winter decided to do an encore and pile over a foot of snow!

I’m actually happy that it did as it buys me a little more time and people somewhat settled down rather than asking for projects to be completed Yesterday πŸ™‚

In addition to the Spring surge in work, many of you know that my Wife and I are expecting a new addition to our family hopefully in a couple of months. She’s 7 month into the pregnancy and some small issues have come up (at least we’re hoping that they are small issues) which has been preoccupying my mind when there was some free time here and there.

Basically my baby girl can’t wait to grace the world with her presence πŸ™‚ Normally that’s a cool attitude, but at 7 months, not so cool. MaMa’s been put on bed rest for the duration which means I need to step up and help a little more than before. Believe me, I’m not complaining.. It is what it is πŸ™‚ As long as everyone is happy and healthy, life is good..

So, what this all means is that as much as I want to focus on the video’s and helping everyone as much as I can, my attention to work and home is going to have to be a top priority for the time being (not that it isn’t always, but I think you know what I mean πŸ™‚

I’ll do what I can, when I can to keep the content rolling, but it may be hit or miss for the next couple of months πŸ™ Sorry about that; I thought I was going to have a couple more months before things got crazy.. I should have known better; there’s nothing about life that ISN’T crazy!

On a side note, I passed 2000 subscribers on Youtube today!!! I have 2 things to say about that..

HOLY CRAP! That’s 1000 new subscribers in a little over 3 months :-O

And a huge Thank you to everyone who has stumbled across my content and thought it worth while to follow..

Thank you very much!

Well, now that I’ve written a small novel here I am going to close this out by asking a couple of small favors of you. If you’ve emailed me with a question about a project that you’re knee deep in and I haven’t gotten back to you, please bear with me; I will reply, just not as quickly as I used to..

Also, PLEASE share my FB page with your friends and encourage them to subscribe to my Youtube channel. I’m working towards a goal of being able to create content full time, but the only way this can happen is if my viewer stats continue to increase! Every subscriber, every view and every comment is important in making my efforts attractive to potential sponsors!!

Again, thank you everyone for your patience and support!! We’ll see you again VERY soon πŸ™‚

~Andy

Thank you!!!

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

Having a little celebration tonight πŸ™‚ I reached 1500 subscribers on Youtube a little bit ago! It took almost 2 years to reach 1000 and only 2 months to add 500 on top of that :-O

So, for this I have YOU to thank!! You guys are awesome!!

Facebook.com/BoatworksToday
BoatworksToday.com

Boat Build Update…

By | Boat Repair, Woodworking | No Comments

Hi Friends, I’ve gotten the options narrowed down on the possible designs for this Winter’s boat build. Basically there are two different directions to go:

Very simple (more of a quick and dirty with minimal amount of time, materials and character (something like this http://www.instantboats.com/teal.htm I should add that ‘Simple’ does not mean un-attractive; just less complicated πŸ™‚

OR a more elaborate design something like this http://www.flickr.com/photos/nomadboatbuildi
ng/sets/72157631207839384/

The simple design would entail roughly 60 hours of work and cost under $1k and the more elaborate build would be closer to 200 hours and around $1700 depending on level of finish…

Both designs have an option for sail and rowing.

Which would you rather see / build? Please post a comment on my Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/BoatworksToday and share this with anyone you think may be interested in watching or participating!!

Thank you!

~Andy

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