Been epoxying instead of blogging. The goal is to take these cracks (which most of the time are just the butts of two slabs of plywood sporadically and feebly glued together) and turn them into rigid watertight seams.

smoother going when I clean up the tabs first.

The procedure for fileting and taping each seam:

  • combine and stir epoxy
  • prime wood with unthickened epoxy
  • stir more epoxy
  • thicken with wood flour, stir more
  • apply and squegee thickened filet along seam
  • press 3 inch fiberglass tape into place
  • stir more epoxy
  • wet fiberglass tape
  • press 4 inch fiberglass tape into place
  • stir more epoxy
  • wet fiberglass tape

which is to say that I have become very good at stirring.

the other thing to note is that this is fast-hardening marine grade epoxy which means it has a pot life of oh, about 12 minutes in this weather before it hardens into an unusable block.

stern before filetting

it helps to have your fiberglass tape all precut, handy, and well-marked.

midway through some phase or other

Some people do it in phases (fileting, then taping one layer, then the next layer) but I like going from bare seam to taped in one session before the epoxy’s fully cured. It may make for a better bond, there’s no sanding inbetween, and I have fantasies it results in less epoxy used. I broke it up into two sessions of stern and bow and would do all the seams in an overlapping sequence which allows me to interleave the ends of the fiberglass tapes for a nice joint. Setting up and getting each half moderately smooth took 5 hours each or so.

wrapped up the bow