Well it’s been a busy month but I’m pleased to say significant progress has been made. I had a visit to Australia for a few weeks, but since being back I have been able to put in 40+ hours a week. Most of this time has been spent grinding GRP; that is working on the interior shell to repair the GRP damage.
First up the original frames were cut away from the shell using an oscillating tool. Most of the frames in the saloon area had parted from the shell due to the severe impact sustained; these all needed to go. Once the frames had been cut away and removed the remains needed to be ground back.
I started out using my Ryobi One cordless grinder. I calculated that my entire battery stock amounted to about 30 minutes of continual use. 30 minutes into the process I could see that I had days ahead of work; a cordless grinder would not do. A quick trip down to Wickes sorted that out and I returned with a Bosch corded angle grinder, and renewed determination. I used a 40 grit flap disk and took some time to tame it; it was easy to accidentally go in too deep and create grooves or gouges if not careful.
In the end I spent 5 full days of grinding, of which Anthony worked alongside me for one of those days. So that’s around 45 hours to cut away the frames and grind back the shell. I guess someone more experienced could have done that in 2-3 days. Overall it was a good learning experience; though I’m not ready to touch the topsides I feel confident to approach smaller internal repairs now. The overall process can be seen in the following videos:
There is a little bit more tidying up to do internally: I need to tab in the mounts for the settee supports. I also need to attach one more frame which seems to be used exclusively as a mount for the cabinet backing. Finally, I need to sand everything down and then apply the flowcoat. Once the flow coat had been applied a significant GRP repair will have been completed. Finally some real progress! Anthony is also moving on to the GRP repairs for the topsides, which I’m really looking forwards to seeing. I hope to show you some of that in the next entry.
Until then, some more images of my current world of sailboat repairs…