Sailing to surf
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: St. Augustine, FL
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Originally Posted by idontwantanaccount
Great job on the repair!!! I have done major recoring efforts from both below and above. Personally, I have found it to be 6 one way and half a dozen the other as far as time and effort. The payoff for the underneath method is of course that you don't have mess with the cosmetics which is a big time saver and, to me, that is the most time consuming and skill-heavy part of the repair to do right. To me it is especially worth the effort to go from underneath if you have a molded non-skid pattern you want to preserve or you don't have the skills necessary to do a proper cosmetic job from above. If you are planning to repaint the deck anyway than doing a job from the top is a no-brainer. Couple of suggestions if doing it from underneath (without vacuum bagging). First, stick the balsa up in smaller sections. After wetting out and filling the kerfs, place the blob of thickened balsa in the center of the section and press on so that the epoxy is forced out to the edges--you don't want voids and smaller pieces are just less nerve-wracking. Scrape off the excess and move to the next piece. Use enough silica in the epoxy mix so that it is really thick and bracing requirements are minimal (use bent furring strips for a cheap brace, if required at all). Second, timing is everything. Paint or roll on the epoxy before adding the cloth...let it kick enough so that it is sticky and then apply the next layer of cloth so you don't have problems with sag. Alternatively, you might try stapling the cloth up with stainless or monel staples into the balsa, overcoat any exposed staples with epoxy at the end.
good tips! I definitely should have used smaller pieces of core, that would have been much more manageable. I made sure to paint on epoxy before glassing, that helped it stick and made life easier. I thought the actual glassing would be the hardest part, but the core was worse (due to the oversized pieces I used most likely).
awesome username by the way
My boat rebuild/sailing blog:
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