Sanding off paint in tight spaces - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 03-24-2007
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Sanding off paint in tight spaces

I am in the process of mounting my new Raymarine S-1 tillerpilot. The PO apparently had a similar unit as the socket in the coaming is the same, but leaves the ram a bit off level. That has been addressed by removing the old brass socket, brazing the new one to it, and drilling out the ends. A little epoxy and I have a longer socket with the end cap inside at the proper height.

Raymarine wants the socket supported by 1" of coaming, if less thicken with a block of wood. I have 3/4" but figured I'd strengthen it anyway. The trouble is that, from the interior, the hollow of the coaming is quite tight. It tapers from about 3 inches down to about an 1-1/4" and is about 6-8 inches deep. Now I know my wife's hand would sort of fit up in there, and after about 4 hours of work she'd probably have the paint off so I could epoxy my backing block to the raw, roughed up fiberglas. The short version, for the un-married, is that this is not a viable option. I can't get enough of my meat-hook up in there to do much good with the sanding block, but have hit on a solution. Thank goodness the Home Depot is open late.

I bought a wire brush similar to a cup brush, which would be too wide. This wire brush looks similar to a shaving mug brush. I also picked up a drill bit extension as the one I had was too short. A drill bit extension is designed to hold speed bore drill bits and comes in varying lengths. Electricians use them commonly for drilling holes through material they can't get at with just a drill and bit. They have two set screws in a socket end designed to fit the standard shank of a speed bit. The wire 'cup' brush fits in perfectly. I'm still laying on my back, with my arms extended over my head, and the drill bounces all over the place, but significant progress is now being made. I haven't measured but the extension appears that you could secure up to about a 1/4" bit in it. Hope this helps somebody else.
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Old 03-24-2007
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Assuming the socket is screwed or bolted to the coaming, why couldn't you just use the thickening block like a backing plate? I'm not an engineer, but it seems like that would tighten it up to the coaming as well as epoxying it there. Of course, I could just be missing something simple here.
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Old 03-25-2007
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I believe that is what his plan is, but he wants to epoxy the thickening block into place against the backside of the coaming where his big paws can't reach...
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